As our visit to KK was about to be rounded off with a splurge stay at the Gaya Island Resort, expectations were high. The reception at the Sutera Harbour Marina was up to standard of luxury hotels. The boat ride was a good start of the total experience at GIR. We were welcomed and escorted to our villa by Ms Yoyoi, who elaborately informed us on the facilities of the resort; very well. The pool and beach were amazing, with cabanas on offer to have your daytime nap. The Borneo Fried Rice (RM 55) we had for lunch at the poolside was excellent.
The villa is well decorated as typical 'Asian', with finishing of dark wood and stone. The bathroom offers two separate basins - for him and for her - so no need to bother 'who is first'. My compliments for the comfortable slippers. So far, all positive.
However, the dinner turned out to be a bad experience as the pool side bar offered a reduced menu compared to the lunch menu. As we opted for pasta, we expected that nothing could go wrong. Amazingly, the fettucine aglio oglio with prawns was unique in its kind. The pasta was drenched in a soupy reddish broth with tasteless spices. The fettucine with pesto and softshell crab was also 'special'. Drenched in green paste, but no trigger to the taste buds as well with this dish. The softshell crabs were deep fried with oil still leaving marks onto them. How can pasta go so wrong at a 5-star resort?
Breakfast is served at the Feast Village, but offers mediocre selection of food to my opinion. The queue for the egg station is just too long. Also, the staff needs to get their eggs right. How can a scrambled egg show eggwhite in the end product? Obviously, the cook here was on practice.
As Ms Yoyoi took our complaint about the dinner seriously, Chef Vivian approached us to receive our opinion. Great response and handling of this. He later committed himself to prepare the lunch - Borneo Fried Rice with extra skewers of satay - for us. Well done.
Gets your basics right in the kitchen; pasta (many Italian guests i noticed), eggs (everyone loves them), wider selection and variety of food (sushi and sashimi wouldn't hurt). And: why no room (ehm..villa) service?
So, overall I would say that GIR still needs to put the dots on the i. If they do that, we come back.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Gaya Island Resort is located on Pulau Gaya, the largest of a cluster of five islands that form the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, a natural conservation area off the coast of Borneo, close to Kota Kinabalu. Gaya Island Resort has a unique setting: the land is fringed with a golden sandy beach, rocky coastal outcrops, and surrounded by coral reefs. The hilly island landscape is covered with lush tropical rainforest and an abundance of flora and fauna. And to complete this perfect setting, visible in the distance, is the stunning outline of Mount Kinabalu. The guest villa exterior respects Sabahan architecture uses local materials and blends harmoniously with the natural environment. The interior living space is designed with contemporary elegance to create warmth, comfort and a serene indoor setting. Gaya Island Resort is committed to ecologically sustainable practices to minimise the carbon footprint within its environment. Therefore the resort is a walking resort and only minimal motorised vehicles are used for operational purposes. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Gaya Island Resort Malaysia/Pulau Gaya