Family-owned Sabah hotel to close after 54 years

A view from the rooftop restaurant atop Nak Hotel in Sandakan.

KOTA KINABALU: Another hotel in Sandakan will be closing down soon due to the impact of Covid-19 and the resulting travel restrictions meant to prevent the spread of infections.

The famiy-run Nak Hotel will cease operations on June 15, after 54 years.

It would be the second hotel in the east coast of Sabah to be closed after the 5-star Four Points by Sheraton closed on May 31 after more than seven years.

An announcement by the hotel said: “The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, global lockdowns and advice against social gatherings have all contributed to making it operationally unsustainable for us.”

However, the hotel’s restaurant, San Da Gen, on the ground floor of the building, will remain open.

Hotel general manager Linn Ngui said the situation had become extremely challenging and made it unsustainable to continue operations.

“Our priority has always been to make sure our employees are taken care of. For the past few months, we have burned through our savings and are now unable to sustain the current business model,” she said.

Linn said some staff would be retrenched while others would be given other roles in the company.

The hotel was opened in 1966 and was named after Ngui Ah Kui, a clerk who later became an MP.

The hotel is a family-run business and has 24 rooms. Its rooftop restaurant, called the Ba Lin Rooftop and Bar Restaurant, is a landmark as it overlooks Sandakan town and has a breathtaking view of the sea.

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