Gayana Eco Resort
Malahom Bay, Gaya Island (08 838 0390/ www.gayana-eco-resort.com). Set on the beautiful Gaya Island and part of a marine park, this resort has 52 overwater villas that will delight and captivate both young and old guests. At its heart, the resort is about protecting and re-generating our precious marine ecology and it features its own onsite Marine Ecology Research Centre (MERC). Ideal for children, there is a touch pool where anyone can experience the harmless marine life found in the surrounding waters such as sea cucumbers, starfishes and conches. Kids (and adults) can also get involved in a variety of fun projects and activities at MERC, such as learning how to test water quality and getting out on the reef with an underwater camera.
Nexus Resort & Spa Karambunai
Off Jalan Sepangar Bay, Kota Kinabalu (08 848 0888/www.nexusresort.com). Although this hotel receives mixed reviews about the dated state of its rooms, still Nexus can boast a beautiful location and excellent service. The attention to detail from the staff is second to none. For kids, there is a wide range of facilities including a fun pool, a large toddler pool which is shaded in the afternoons and evenings by a large sunshade, and the Nexie Club, open for guests between the ages of four and 11 years old. The resort restaurants have a kids’ menu. Activities galore await both parent and child from batik painting and origami folding to horse riding and football sessions.
Shangri-La Rasa Ria Resort
Pantai Dalit Beach, Tuaran, Kota Kinabalu (08 879 7888/www.shangri-la.com). Voted fifth in Asia’s Top 10 Family Resorts 2014 by readers of the Australian-based Holiday with Kids magazine, Rasa Ria sits in a gorgeous tropical setting, where
Sutera Harbour Resort
1 Sutera Harbour Boulevard, Kota Kinabalu (08 831 8888/www.suteraharbour.com). Escape from the hustle and bustle of your city life to the beautiful shores of Sabah. Sutera Harbour provides an array of activities for kids. The Kiddies Club is safe and secure and has both indoor and outdoor facilities that cater to your child’s needs. There are games and activities scheduled hourly so easily distracted minds will always find something of interest. Take a dip in the custom-made kids’ pool for a splashing good time. Staff recommend the Glass Bottom Boat Cruise for an idyllic family outing.