Malaysia: Gaya Island Resort to Debut in July

Marking the first Borneo outpost of Malaysian hotel group YTL, Gaya Island Resort (from US$331) opens in July amid Sabah’s Tunku Abdul Rahman marine park, just off the coast of Kota Kinabalu. Backed by dense rain forest that reverberates with the calls of hornbills and macaques, the property’s 121 hillside villas look across the water to Mount Kinabalu, Southeast Asia’s highest peak. True to its setting, the resort has incorporated Sabahan elements into both its architecture and its spa treatments, which reference indigenous rice scrubs and the age-old healing traditions of Bajau sea gypsies. –Angela Leenhouts

Originally appeared in the June/July 2012 print issue of DestinAsian magazine (“Isle Take It”)

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