Ranee means "wife of a rajah," a fitting epithet for this boutique hotel located in the heart of Kuching’s Old Town. A TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence winner, The Ranee has been stylishly rebuilt from two traditional 19th-century shop houses and adapted to modern standards of comfort. The hotel harmoniously blends old and new elements, with the warmth of natural wood complementing contemporary design and traditional local craftwork. Its 24 spacious suites features individual charm and character—no two are alike. Wide windows and verandas open onto scenic views of the bustling market, colonial heritage buildings or the Sarawak River.
Elegant guest rooms feature glossy hardwood floors and teak accents, king or two twin beds, wooden writing desk, en suite bathroom with robes, slippers, hair dryer and quality toiletries, flat screen cable TV, free Wi-Fi, universal power points, telephone, mini bar, complimentary tea- and coffee-making facilities, personal electronic safe, individually controlled air conditioning and ceiling fan. Public spaces include a reading lounge with small library, the MBar and Bistro, the casual outdoor Cafe Trio's, and The Ranee Gift Gallery where guests may purchase an exclusive selection of "Made in Sarawak" handcrafts that support individual artisans and underprivileged community members.
Sepilok Nature Resort
The consummate jungle lodge, Sepilok Nature Resort is hidden amid dense tropical vegetation including hug trees and rare blooming orchids. Steep-roofed wooden bungalows offer roomy accommodations within walking distance of the famous Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary. The fully air-conditioned chalets have forest views from individual verandas. Interiors have glossy hardwood floors, a high beamed ceiling, comfortable beds with crisp cotton linens, and private baths with stone soaking tubs. Walk along elevated wooden boardwalks among 150 orchid varieties in the lavish surrounding gardens before heading to the patio deck to dine overlooking a lake backdropped by dense rain forest.
Selingan Turtle Island Chalets
Selingan Island, Malaysia
The sole accommodation on Selingan Turtle Island, these simple chalets afford guests the unique opportunity to observe nesting green turtles up close and assist in releasing hatchlings into the clear waters of the Sulu Sea. Accommodations here are basic but comfortable. Each chalet has an attached bath, air conditioning and simple, tropical inspired decor. You won't find any pools or spas, but that's not really what a stay on Selingan is about. Visitors will enjoy a highly privileged opportunity to watch both egg layings and the release of hatchlings into the sea.
Kinabatangan Wetlands Resort
Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary, Sabah
This remote jungle ecolodge offers an incomparable location from which to explore the wildlife-rich wilderness of the Lower Kinabatangan Segama Wetlands region. Tucked within a secondary forest reserve and surrounded by pristine freshwater swamps and mangrove forest, this exclusive nature retreat is located in undeveloped wilderness about an hour's boat ride from Sandakan Harbor. Access is by elevated walkways made from local Bornean ironwood. Accommodations are in 10 deluxe wooden chalets offering plenty of space, privacy and amenities. All have gleaming hardwood floors, comfortable beds with cool linens, air conditioning, ceiling fan, and a private en suite bathroom with large walk-in hot and cold showers, double sinks and bathing toiletries. Each has an open-air deck for your secluded sojourn in nature. Free Wi-Fi access is available within the restaurant area. Laundry service is offered for an additional fee. Electricity is provided 24 hours a day via solar panels and a generator. The resort uses river water that is treated and sand-filtered before use. Rainwater is also collected to supplement the water system.
The broad floodplain surrounding the lodge is one of the most important wildlife refuges in Malaysia and is recognized as an internationally important wetland for its undisturbed ecosystem that shelters a number of rare, endangered and threatened species, including Sumatran rhinoceros, proboscis monkey, Borneo pygmy elephant, oriental darter and rhinoceros hornbill. Five distinct habitats in the region—waterlogged and dry forest, limestone forest, and saline and freshwater swamps—support some of the most varied concentrations of wildlife in Borneo. The biodiversity of the area is striking, with 1,000 plant species, more than 200 bird species, 90 fish species, and 50 mammal species. In the vicinity of the lodge, guests can expect frequent sightings of birds and monkeys such as silvered langur, maroon langur and hose langur, and wild orangutans are regularly spotted in the area, too.
Borneo Rainforest Lodge
Danum Valley, Borneo
Borneo Rainforest Lodge provides an exotic wildlife experience in the remote reaches of the Danum Valley. Premium deluxe rooms in individual chalets have large picture windows for an immersive view on the rain forest; elegant, clean-lined contemporary furnishings incorporating sustainably harvested tropical hardwoods; air conditioning; ceiling fans; spacious en suite baths; and large private decks with plunge pools overlooking the last vestiges of the country’s virgin primary forest, the oldest in the world. The central lodge, standing on columns of Borneo’s famous belian hardwood (Borneo ironwood), contains a spacious veranda and dining area. The spa offers massage and foot soaks to rejuvenate weary wildlife trekkers. The lodge accommodates a maximum of 60 people, ensuring guests an intimate experience of the jungle with a limited impact on the valley’s natural resources and wild character. A TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence award winner, the lodge is recognized for its efforts to create a sustainable, environmentally conscious guest experience.
Kota Kinabalu Marriott
Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
This gleaming new hotel offers luxury accommodations in Kota Kinabalu, the capital of Malaysia’s Sabah state in the northern part of the island of Borneo. Set on the city's famous waterfront just 15 minutes from the international airport, the KK Marriott enjoys a sweeping vista of the South China Sea. Guests are welcomed in the soaring lobby inspired with design elements from Sabah culture, which are woven throughout the property's contemporary construction. Rooms are infused with abundant natural light and have a clean, minimalist vibe in a calming neutral palette. Wall-to-wall windows showcase panoramic views. Beds feature pillowtop mattresses with deluxe bedding. Luxury bathrooms have walk-in rain showers and Thann bath amenities, and guests have use of robes and slippers. Media amenities include a 49-inch LED flat screen TV with international cable and satellite plus premium movie channels, iPod/iPhone dock and complimentary Wi-Fi. Five dining venues are set against a stunning backdrop of Sapi and Gaya islands. Each offers a distinct experience, such as interactive Japanese cuisine at Teppan Table, and Big Fish, with a surf-and-turf focus. Stylo, the rooftop bar overlooking the sea, invites relaxing over cocktails. Exercise in the fitness center is equipped with the latest in cardio-monitoring technology, or relax in the outdoor infinity pool or luxury spa.
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