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Tuesday, 11 June 2013

A Little Peek At Heaven - Bunga Raya Island Resort & Spa

*Be warned! VERY photo-heavy post ahead - but completely worth it!

Sabah is well-known for its beautiful islands and beaches, with quite a few easy-to-reach getaway spots just a 20 minute speedboat-ride away. One of the less-discovered but I would say most untouched beauties, is the Bunga Raya Resort on Gayana Island (Pulau Gaya).
As soon as you get off the boat you are greeted with such beauty~
I was invited for a first-look at their recent day trip package with other bloggers and I have to say, it felt like I was looking at a totally different environment than the norm!
The group all ready for the ride!
Yes, I was excited!
Huge sunnies!
Arent we fahhbulous darling?
Lush virgin jungle framed by the white sandy beach and clear blue water, this secluded island hideaway offers 48 timbered villas ranging from 1-bedroom jungle or ocean views to the private 2-bedroom Royal Villa with a designated butler, chef and housekeeper, and even a private beach!

Upon arrival, after all the ooh-ing and aah-ing at the breathtaking view, we were given a short brief and ushered into the lobby.
I swear these cold towels were like heaven on the face - it was so hot that day!
Charlotte getting her complimentary orange fizz!
How can you not fall in love with this view?!
Even the leaves are in love!
 We were all given media packs so we can tell you lovely readers more!
The little black thing right by name (yes, I am purposely showing you my name. Deal with it. ;p) is a cute pendrive!
And then it was off into the buggies we go as we were taken for a tour of the resort!
Eric completely fascinated by the namesake of the resort - the hibiscus!
Which brings me to my next point: Bunga Raya actually means Hibiscus Flower in Malay, and the resort is named after the hibiscus because there are over 40 species of hibiscus growing around the vicinity!
Preoccupied while being driven around like a queen.
"Oh you have your camera pointed at me, Tom?" ;p
We dropped by the spa but didnt get to see inside as it was fully occupied.
Next up was the wine cellar!

The Koi Restaurant was one of the few places you can eat at Bunga Raya, with another one being the Pantai Grill, which I'll show you a bit later.
Love the fact that they have a cultural spot to enjoy your meal - by sitting on the floor like traditional Malays! =)
Thanks to the amazing zoom on my Samsung Galaxy Camera, I got to capture 2 hornbills way high up in the trees! =D
At the Pantai Grill, we had the chance to sit down and chat to Mr Tomas Anderson, the General Manager of the resort over a super delicious lunch prepared specially for us!
Our table
As Bunga Raya is also an eco resort, they are very much into reusing nature - like our leaf menu!
The food was way beyond yummy; my fave had to have been the lamb shank - so tender!
And the dessert - oh my! Melt-in-your-mouth, creamy peppermint panacota was to die for!
Clockwise L-R: Lemon Water, Pink Guava and Orange Juice, Tiger Garoupa, Beef and Chicken Satay, Peppermint Panacota, Lamb Shank, Mix Garden Salad, Tuna Club Sandwiches
Their pizzas are baked in this Greek-inspired dome charcoal oven - a couple of minutes is all it takes for the pizza to be done!
We then visited one of the villas to see what kind of luxury guests were to expect when they stay overnight. Unfortunately, the Royal villa was under maintenance so we didnt have the chance to see what the rich and famous get (for a whopping RM18,000 a night no less!), but the smaller one bedroom suite was no less tempting!
The villa, personal pool, bedroom, ceiling details!
The Bathroom!
The Songket is a gift for the guests, and Bunga Raya has their name printed on almost everything!
Before we left around 3pm, we also got to have some fun in the sun as snorkelling and kayaking is also provided. Most of us decided to go kayaking first, and all only made one lap before screaming our arms were tired, then grabbing snorkelling gear! One of the resort guys offered to take us to see the Giant Clams, which Bunga Raya Resort, the Marine Ecology Research Center, Gayana Eco Resort and Le Meridien joined efforts to save and protect.

One of the best parts about Bunga Raya is that the water is so clear, you can swim out with just snorkelling gear and still clearly see these Giant Clams on the sea bed!The water wasnt shallow as none of us could touch the bottom, so you can imagine the clarity! It was so beautiful!
Tom and Eric getting ready to go kayaking
Unfortunately, no one could take pictures of us while we were doing these activities, but here is a photo of a giant clam. ;p
Photo credits to www.frogandprincess.wordpress.com
And that was it! After the most tiring swim ever (I dont swim very well, lol) back to shore, we just had to change then hop on to our boat back to the city! We were lucky enough to catch the wondrous Mount Kinabalu in all her glory on the way back though!

If you're interested to go for a day trip to Bunga Raya Resort and Spa, details are as below:

For bookings or more info, you can also
Visit www.bungarayaresort.com 
Email reservations@bungarayaresort.com  or
Call +6088-271000  / 380390

Group Photo with Mr Anderson!
L-R: Beverly, Vivian, Matthew, Chloe, Charlotte, Meitzeu, Eric, Tomas, Tom, me!, Margaret, Sherrie, Nadia and Diana!

Til the next escape,
xxxxx

**Photo credits as per watermarks! =)

5 comments:

  1. the water so clean! really worth going!

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    Replies
    1. Yeah it's so different from the usual islands in KK, definitely recommended! =D

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  2. looking fabulous girl! I wanna do some snorkeling when im back in sabah!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why thank you dah-ling! ;p Let's go diving next time you're in town! =)

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