We really enjoyed our stay here for 6 nts in March. We had booked a Mangrove Villa but when we arrived and checked into our room we noticed a really bad smell outside the door. On reporting this to reception we were promptly moved to an Ocean Villa and later advised that the problem had been caused by the breakdown of a pump on the grey water tank under the boardwalk. They said this happens quite a lot! (So why is a permanent solution not found?). The Ocean Villa was very nice but close to the renovation work being done on other Ocean Villas which wasn't really a problem. Only on a couple of occasions did the work get a bit too noisy.
The best part of our stay was being able to snorkel direct from our villa. There were lots of different colourful fish species to see. The breakfast at Macac restaurant was great with a good selection of dishes to order from the menu plus a buffet for fruit, cereals, toast, breads, pastries etc. We found the quality of the food in general to be good.
Drinks at the Latitude Bar at sunset were good and the view was magnificent.
We took the opportunity to visit Bungaraya, the sister resort to Gayana, which is located about a 15min boat trip away around the other side of the island. It was beautiful, but almost deserted. We enjoyed an early dinner there and appreciated the good service and friendliness of their staff.
The Gayana Eco Resort staff were also lovely and very friendly. The Marine Ecology Research Centre is well worth visiting and doing a great job to save the coral and giant clams.
There are quite a few monkeys around but we find these amusing rather than a problem.
The rubbish in the water wasn't really a problem whilst we were there. However, on the morning of our departure there was a high tide (higher than we had seen all week) and it had brought with it a lot of rubbish. We felt sorry for the staff who had to deal with it. The management should invest in a purpose built watercraft to deal with this.
There was a 'red tide' on another day when we were there. None of the staff that we asked seemed to know what it was. The water went a reddish brown colour for about 18 hrs. Finally we asked the dive master and he said it was a 'red tide'. On googling this we found it is a regular occurrence in the waters off Sabah at this time of year.
We left feeling very relaxed and would consider visiting again one day. Management just needs to concentrate on maintenance issues and addressing the rubbish problem (which is no fault of the resort - the powers that be in Kota Kinabalu should be addressing the cause).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Gayana Eco Resort rests serenely at the edges of Gaya Island off the coast of Borneo. 52 over water villas designed to enhance the soothing sounds of the surf, while capturing the enduring vistas of Mt. Kinabalu on the distant horizon. At its heart is about protecting and re-generating our precious Marine Ecology, and the only property to feature its own Marine Ecology Research Centre propagating Giant Clams and restoring damaged coral reefs. Striking the perfect balance of forward thinking ecology and indulgent luxury which pampers both the body and the enlightened soul. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Gayana Eco Hotel Kota Kinabalu
- Gayana Resort
- Gayana Eco Resort Malaysia/Pulau Gaya