Best luxury hotels in Borneo 2022

There are no direct flights to the huge, rugged island, so it’s best enjoyed as part of a twin trip, with Kuala Lumpur being a popular stopover. Part of the Malay Archipelago, Borneo has one of the oldest rainforests in the world (it has existed for 140 million years); a bio-diverse environment that is home to rare species such as orangutan, sun bear, dwarf elephant and clouded leopard. Indeed, many travelers come to discover the rare fauna, as well as one of the largest flowers on the globe and its tallest tree. The jungles of Borneo offer a bucket-list-worthy adventure and here’s where to stay when you come here.

Shangri-La Rasa Ria, Kota Kinabalu

Located on two miles of clean beach, this resort has two areas — the Ocean and Garden Wings — designed for adults and families, respectively. There are enough amenities that you never need to leave except for an excursion further into the rainforest. Lagoon-style swimming pools, croquet and putting greens, tennis courts, an 18-hole golf course, spa, water sports center, kids’ club, and nursery are on-site. Guests can dine at the Malaysian, Indian, and Japanese restaurants, with snacks on the terrace cafe and drinks in the lobby lounge.

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Shangri-La Tanjung Aru, Kota Kinabalu

Also part of the Shangri-La, the elegant Tanjung Aru, like its sister property, has extensive leisure and dining facilities. This hotel is steps from the beach but offers unobstructed views of the South China Sea from many public areas and rooms in the Tanjung Wing. Popular with families, the Cool Zone Kids’ Club’s theme nights and water play area (featuring three slides, a giant bucket, and a water balloon war station) are a hit with toddlers. Meanwhile, parents can indulge at Chi The Spa, with Borneo treatments, yoga, tai chi and pilates classes.

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Gaya Island Resort

An island off an island, this idyllic 40-acre resort is part of Tunku Abdul Rahman Park and is a great choice if you want to spot some of the native wildlife, especially as the hotel offers its own guided tours. nature walks. Guests are accommodated in 120 contemporary villas, designed with local materials – book a Canopy Villa to be close to the beach, a Bayu Villa if you want tropical mangrove views, or a Kinabalu Villa for stunning sea views. Several restaurants include the adults-only Fisherman’s Cove, which serves freshly caught seafood.

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