Hostel with excellent common areas
Mermaid Inn’s excellent common area’s make the pricey dorm beds and private rooms with share facilities not such a bad deal.
This waterfront hostel has a prime corner positing above a row of restaurants. Only the dorm and one private room have windows to take advantage of the views, although the furnished balcony and lounge onlooking the sea has the goods. Neat, clean and shiny, it’s decked out like an IKEA showroom with a big TV, comfy couches and communal table. An office area offers a long worktop bench to prop up your laptop where you can log into the free WiFi and there’s a printer for guest use too. A communal kitchen is a hefty additional 50 ringgit to use for a group of three, although a single person can use it for 10 ringgit, which seems like odd maths to us, but maybe we misinterpreted the Chinese sign.
Two six-bed air-con dorms, one female and one mixed (pink or blue and purple sheets in case you’re not sure) are appointed with sturdy white painted wooden bunks with personal lighting and power outlets. Lockable lockers are roomy enough for a medium-sized backpack. The tiled dorms are clean, cosy and not too cramped. Air-con private rooms are spartan, but well sized and the one sea-view room has excellent views from two windows, but you’re better off paying a little more at Sipadan Inn 2 for a sea view with an ensuite. Share hot-water bathrooms were a little grotty when we checked, but to be fair they had not yet been cleaned, and were mould free.
Mermaid Inn has a friendly traveller vibe. Like most of Semporna, it has a majority Chinese clientele. If you’d like a better sea view with your dorm bed, head over to Best Bunk Beds, just along the esplanade.
Address: Lot B1 & B2 Seafront New Township, Semporna
T: (089) 782 417; (0123) 959 063;
Coordinates (for GPS): 118º36'50.31" E, 4º28'47.31" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: Under 60 ringgit
What we were quoted as a walk-in.
|Dorm air-con||58 ringgit||58 ringgit|
|Dbl air-con private bathroom|
No window. Sea view: 158 ringgit.
|108 ringgit||108 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.
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Our top 10 places to stay in and around Semporna And Sipadan Island