When we were booking accommodation for our family holiday in Borneo, we couldn’t decide whether to stay at a central apartment in Kota Kinabalu city centre or at Nexus Beach Resort (30 km away in Karambunai).
The city apartment would have been closer to the city attractions and the many things to do in Kota Kinabalu. However, Nexus Beach Resort offered better beaches and potentially a more relaxed, exotic location.
In fact, we had actually booked a lovely apartment in the city before the trip, but changed our minds at the very last minute.
Read the article for our review on the accommodation, pool complex, beach and things to do at the Nexus Beach Resort. Discover the advantages and disadvantages of a stay at the Nexus Beach Resort and whether it was worth a stay.
Nexus Beach Resort is located in over 3000 acres of natural surroundings. The gardens are pristine and as you wander around you can see the nature and wildlife of Borneo, such as monitor lizards, birds and monkeys. As you would imagine, the accommodation looks out onto a beautiful beach, with trees at each end.
Nexus Beach Resort has 236 villas, which overlook the beach or the gardens. All of them have a small balcony. Our room had 2 double beds, but they did bring an additional foldaway bed for the room.
The rooms had high quality furnishings and were very comfortable and clean.
The pool complex
Nexus Beach Resort has a number of interlinked pools, with a lifeguard in attendance. The water is shallow and clean and there are loungers, shades and palm trees surrounding it. The kids loved it.
Nexus Beach Resort is located on 6km of white sandy beach. The kids spent a fantastic day just digging and building in the sand. An evening stroll up the beach provided a spectacular view of the sunset.
The sea at Nexus Beach Resort was rather rough, so I didn’t let the children swim unsupervised. However, it was a great opportunity for jumping some giant waves together. Great fun, though you needed to hold on to your swim wear!
The children were very keen to sign up to the activities at the recreation club. After a very thorough study of the programme, they signed up for tae kwondo, arts and crafts and Batik painting. There is also a supervised kids’ club for younger children.
There are 8 different dining options at Nexus Beach Resort. These are the ones that we tried:
Sunset Bar and Grill – We had a buffet breakfast here each day and there was a great choice. It was down by the beach, with a lovely view of the sea and gardens.
The Kingfisher – This is their Chinese restaurant. It didn’t have much atmosphere as it was rather empty, but the food was great and the service excellent.
The Penyu – This offers a mix of European and Asian options, but was average.
Seoul Fairway Grill – We went here for a quick lunch on our day of departure. We ordered sandwiches, which were very mediocre.
Beach Bar – This beach bar offers half-price cocktails between 4 and 5pm each day. What’s not to like?
After a very busy 2 weeks on our adventure in Borneo, it was great to put our feet up and have some down-time.
For adults travelling without children, the resort offers a spa and golf course too.
Disadvantages of Nexus Beach Resort
Distance from Kota Kinabalu
Obviously, by choosing the resort option, we were not as central for exploring Kota Kinabalu. However, it was fairly easy to use a grab or one of the hotel’s shuttle buses.
On a positive note, the location was better for our white-water rafting trip, and didn’t have to leave so early.
Top tip: Avoid the journey to Kota Kinabalu at rush hour, as the traffic can be very slow.
Although I have put this a positive, I found it rather restrictive being tied to the restaurants on site and would rather have been able to choose where to eat in town.
This was more expensive than in local shops, so we stocked up on a few essentials (crisps and beer) when we were out and about!
On reflection, we were really happy that we chose to change to Nexus Beach Resort. Although being in Karambunai added more travel time to days out, we had the benefits of beautiful surroundings and relaxation, which was just what we needed at the end of a very busy holiday.
Pin for later: The Nexus Beach Resort, Kota Kinabalu