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Travel & Resources: KOTA KINABALU

Please help us keep these listings up-to-date.
Special thanks to Clement T., joog, skit, CORTAILLOD, sohocub, colonnades, Canguro, Jephostan, cynerjii, cosmo30, Stealth, mahesh12, sampath, fredos79, Roggie, mattyboy, ZAR, M. Aziz, Dr Chen, Lukas, Chris, Larry C, The Queen of Sabah, John and David!

KOTA KINABALU (Sabah State) -- +60-88

Advisory: In April, 2018, Malaysia began to censor LGBT and AIDS/HIV content on the Internet. Do NOT use any Internet ISP or mobile SIM from TMNet, a Malaysian Internet Service provider (there are other non-censored providers including easily purchased Wi-fi SIM cards for travelers) or start using a VPN to access your favorite Internet sites as many Malaysians, Indonesians and Chinese do.

General Information

    This happy-go-lucky resort town on the South China Sea is almost entirely new, having been destroyed and rebuilt following Japanese occupation in WWII. The waterfront is currently seeing another surge of development, but, luckily, buildings are height-restricted due to the close proximity of the airport. Seafood feasts, island hopping, and unspoiled nature are the main attractions in the vicinity. There is also more than a little gay life bubbling under the surface. KK is a great place for a romantic get-away with your partner or special someone, but it's also easy to make new friends with a smile.

    Super cheap Asia Air flights get you here in only 2.5 hours from Kuala Lumpur so it's a great escape from the urban tangle of the capital. There are also three non-stop flights a week from Bangkok.

    Muslims are in the minority in Sabah, so KK feels less uptight than West Malaysia. Respectful and properly dressed visitors may even be permitted to enter and photograph the interiors of some of the city's large mosques, a rewarding cultural experience if you have the opportunity.

    KK's population is around 350,000 (that's about 15,000 Utopians). There are more than three dozen indigenous ethnic groups in Sabah, so the people here are a rainbow in themselves.

Travel Services

  • Borneo Boats and Beaches UTOPIA VERIFIED APR 2013
      Jesselton Point Jetty

      Gay-friendly, private boat trips to the islands off Kota Kinabalu. Be as discreet (or indiscreet) as you wish for the day aboard your privately chartered boat. Swim, snorkel, sunbathe, dance - whatever. Visit deserted beaches where nobody will see you. Jonathan will be a charming host and his boatsman will look after your safety, serve soft drinks, beers, accompany you snorkeling, etc.
      Utopia Member Benefit: 10% DISCOUNT on basic charter price.
      Add your review, comment, or correction

  • Fun Sabah Tours Sdn Bhd UTOPIA VERIFIED NOV 2017
      2/F Lot 8, Fortuna Commercial Centre, Mile 2.5 Penampang Rd
      +60 88-314-178, FAX +60 88-314-177, email

      Gay-owned inbound travel agency aiming to promote the natural beauty of the State of Sabah and Sarawak (East Malaysia, formerly known as Borneo). They provide lots of affordable day trips and can customize your itinerary based on your interests and preferences. Hike up Mt Kinabalu, dive down in the beautiful warm ocean, or an exciting jungle trek in Danum Valley.
      Utopia Member Benefit: 5-10% DISCOUNT on select tour packages.
      Add your review, comment, or correction

Popular Spots


    Click here for Kota Kinabalu hotels and accommodations.

Bars and Clubs

Dance Clubs

    • 999 Club UTOPIAN VERIFIED NOV 2017
        Opposite Plaza Shell

        A dance club with lots of LED screens, good sound system and sometimes big-time DJs from around Asia. On weekends, go-go shows (guy/girls) will take the stage. Mixed crowd, gay-friendly.
        Add your review, comment, or correction


Massage and Spas

    • Elix Outcall Massage UTOPIA VERIFIED NOV 2017
        011-3791-3975, WhatsApp/WeChat/LINE: 01137913975, email

        Outcall massage to KK city center and outlying suburbs (Luyang, Likas, Inanam, Penampang, Donggongon, Tanjung Aru, Kepayan, Putatan, and in between). Chinese masseur in his late-40s with over ten years experience, offering a fusion of Malay, Chinese, Thai and Swedish traditional full body massage, including urut batin at affordable rates.
        Utopia Member Benefit: 10% DISCOUNT.
        Add your review, comment, or correction

    • oneB Healthcare & Charming Gallery

Meeting Places

    • Anjung Senja hawker center

    • Centrepoint shopping center

    • Hyatt Hotel entrance

        The pedestrian pathway connecting Jln Datuk Salleh Sulong to Wisma Merdeka is very cruisy. Sit in Mosaic café at one end or hang out near the shopping mall entrance at the other end.
        Add your review, comment, or correction

    • Imago Shopping Centre UTOPIAN VERIFIED NOV 2017

    • Long distance bus terminal at night, transgenders

    • Suria Sabah Shopping Centre UTOPIAN VERIFIED NOV 2017

      Comments from Utopians:

      "KK's waterfront is still a good meeting place for people watching, sunset viewing during happy hours, and tasty food at various restaurants. Mixed crowd and gay friendly. Can be cruisy during weekends or when sailors are in town. :) Younger LGBT groups mostly hang out at Cafe Row (rows of cafes and new age restaurants) by the Australian Place, close to Atkinson Clock Tower. Apps like Grindr and Jack'd are popular among locals who mostly find their dates online. Be careful, though, of moneyboys posing as potential dates. Transgenders have relocated to the shoplots behind Plaza Shell (the area is called SEDCO). After midnight, you will be able to spot them. Stay away from Prince Philip Park as police usually patrol the area." -- Clement T.

Restaurants and Cafes

    • The CHUBs Grill UTOPIA VERIFIED NOV 2020

    • Indonesian food stall in Grace Point Food Court UTOPIAN VERIFIED JUL 2013
        In Sembulan area, next to Grace Court and Grace Ville Condominium; opposite the Sutera Harbour Resort

        Run by PLUs. It's famous among locals for its fusion of Indonesian and local style grill. 'Die die must try' popular dishes are the grilled lamb shoulder, grilled salmon (lowest price in downtown) and fried pangsit salmon.
        Add your review, comment, or correction

      Mosaic Mosaic (Italian food, coffee, ice cream and cakes)
        Jln Datuk Salleh Sulong (just at the foot of the Hyatt Hotel driveway)

        This sleek and modern air-conditioned restaurant and café is the perfect place to cruise the foot traffic heading in and out of Wisma Merdeka while sipping a cappuccino or demolishing one of Mosaic's delicious sweet treats. Where are we again? Melbourne? South Beach? Oh, yeah, Kota Kinabalu. A stack of Gourmet magazines is on hand if you get bored, but we think you'll want to view all the Asian poetry amidst the passing parade, so grab the corner table in front of the picture windows and practice your deadliest Memoirs of a Geisha glance. Very cute and friendly staff.
        Add your review, comment, or correction

    • Tavern Kitchen & Bar UTOPIAN VERIFIED JUN 2016
        Lot G-93, Aramaiti Street Walk, Imago Shopping Mall (same row as Starbucks, just beside Nike)
        012-586-0093, email

        Gay-owned restaurant and bar specialising in local and western cuisine. Exciting, unique food; strong, tasty drinks; and delicious homemade desserts. Twists to timeless western and Malaysian dishes to bring to you Sabahan flavours. They utilise the best local produce and include ingredients found only in Borneo, including tuhau (a root akin to ginger), buah tarap (a seasonal fruit related to jackfruit), bambangan (a variety of local mango) and more. A celebrity chef and cookbook author carefully curated the menu. Interior design by a host of ID TV show, Casa Impian. Daily entertainment. Open daily 10am-2am.
        Add your review, comment, or correction


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