It really is unique
Unic Hotel certainly nailed it with their name (you know, except for the spelling). Rooms are unusual to say the least and they are all different. The entrance to this midrange hotel offers a little taste of what’s to come, with contemporary furniture and lighting and a round rainbow rug. It’s a little glam, a little space age, perhaps with a touch of Austin Powers.
Enter the lift and red and gold baroque-style carpet is offset by geometric etched panelled walls — but wait till you get to the hallways! Welcome to the my-little-pony rainbow fantasy. Rainbow-striped carpet stretches the length of each hallway, and walls are painted sky blue on some floors and sky grey on others, all with a dappled cloud paint effect. Strips of blue neon illuminate your way. All that’s missing is the glitter.
Fortunately the rooms are a little calmer. A little. Air-con rooms come in a number of configurations from standard double to grand deluxe. The standard rooms are spacious, and they get larger and larger up the categories, until they are vast.
All rooms have windows, but none with views to speak of — some look directly into the shopping mall. Rooms are bright and light-filled. Facilities include flatscreen satellite TV, safe, minibar, hair dryer, tea-making facilities and free WiFi. Selected floors are non-smoking, and some rooms interconnect. Most rooms feature wall-sized photographs of images from around Sabah. Giant sea turtle on the ceiling? Yep. Larger than life-size orangutang? Yep. Swinging rope bridge? Yep, got that too. Floor coverings are predominantly white, others feature wood laminates. Furnishings are mirror-clad, adding a touch of glam. Some rooms have painted feature walls in distressed dark neutral colours. Others have ceilings with moulded wave shapes and concealed neon lighting. Beds and linens are soft and comfy.
The larger rooms provide sofas or other furnishings, and one style of room comes with a Jacuzzi. Ensuite hot-water bathrooms are all unique too and feature a lot of glowing things — the taps glow, the mirrors glow, even some switches glow. Stainless steel basins feature in some, others are square ceramic. Showers are contained behind different coloured glass screens, and only the Jacuzzi room comes with a tub (which isn’t in the bathroom). Everything is clean and shiny.
Unic is in a handy part of town, opposite the waterfront area and close to central markets. Breakfast isn’t included, but there are plenty of options nearby. We think the rooms at Unic Hotel are rather fun, and they’re good value for the size. Family rooms are great, and kids will love the features.
If this contemporary styled offering doesn’t suite your sensibilities, there are several other more conservative midrange options in town. Dreamtel also has a modern style, but is much more staid.
Address: Block A, Lot 15 & 16, Warisan Square, Kota Kinabalu
T: (088) 484 778; (088) 4485 195; F: (088) 485 196
Coordinates (for GPS): 116º4'15" E, 5º58'41.49" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: 120 to 250 ringgit
What we were quoted as a walk-in.
|Standard double room||158 ringgit||218 ringgit|
|Superior double room||178 ringgit||238 ringgit|
|Deluxe double room||198 ringgit||258 ringgit|
|Family room||248 ringgit||308 ringgit|
Sally spent twelve years leading tourists around Indonesia and Malaysia where she collected a lot of stuff. She once carried a 40kg rug overland across Java. Her house has been described as a cross between a museum and a library. Fuelled by coffee, she can often be found riding her bike or petting stray cats. Sally believes travel is the key to world peace.
Our top 10 places to stay in and around Kota Kinabalu