Last Updated on : Sunday, 27 January, 2019 02:58:23 PM

Ranked #1 of 7 hotels in Semporna : Sipadan Inn
Ranked #2 of 7 hotels in Semporna : Sipadan Inn 2
Ranked #3 of 7 hotels in Semporna : Seafest Hotel
Ranked #4 of 7 hotels in Semporna : Dragon Inn Resort
Ranked #5 of 7 hotels in Semporna : City Inn Semporna
Ranked #6 of 7 hotels in Semporna : Blue Sea Divers
Ranked #6 of 7 hotels in Semporna : Han Palace Hotel

Ranked #1 of 6 Semporna B&B and Inns : Celebes Beach Resort
Ranked #2 of 6 Semporna B&B and Inns : Spheredivers Homestay & Scuba Diving
Ranked #3 of 6 Semporna B&B and Inns : Pom Pom Island Resort & Spa
Ranked #4 of 6 Semporna B&B and Inns : Holiday Dive Inn
Ranked #5 of 6 Semporna B&B and Inns : Semporna Floating
Ranked #6 of 6 Semporna B&B and Inns : Arung Hayat Hotel


Jalan Kastam,  Semporna,  Sabah

Dragon Inn Floating Resort


Dragon Inn (F 450958)3 Orchid

Address : No. 1, Jalan Custom, Bandar Semporna,
P.O Box 168, 91307 Semporna, Sabah, Malaysia
Phone : +6089 781088
Fax : +6089 781099
Email :
Website :
Publish Rate: RM20.00 - RM400.00

Phone#  089-781088 Fax# 089-781559
Address Jalan Kastam, P.O. Box 168, Semporna, Sabah, Malaysia
City  Semporna
Number of Rooms  64
Room Facility :
air conditioning, satelite tv, hot/cold running water.

Dragon Inn Floating Resort owned by Datuk Seri Panglima Gan Sau Wah. Gan is the president of Sabah United Chinese Chambers of Commerce (SUCCC).

Other Facility :
conference/function room, credit card facilities, tourist information center, car rental/limousine service, mailing/courier service


The Dragon Inn is a floating resort built just off the marina at Semporna.

Dragon Inn is not an island resort by itself.

Opened in 1985, it is a popular pit stop for travelers heading to the world famous Sipadan and Mabul.

It offers a very distinguished resort experience not many places in Malaysia can offer.

The rooms are built on stilts and they have an amazing view of the ocean, Bajau Laut's lepa boats and sunsets.

Many mainstream tourist promotion material are misleading. This is an inn as the name Dragon Inn imply which often confused by gusts as one of the 5 Starts "Floating" Resorts on Mabul Island.

Many guests mislead by websites introducing resorts on Mabul Island which are also "Floating on Water". Those "Floating" resorts on Mabul Island are 5 stars resorts build only few years ago.

Unlike travelers and divers who well prepared and planned for their expensive trips, those budget tourists who just pack and go are often mislead by Airport posters or Tourism's advertisement in TV. These see-look-see-look type of tourists who did not study for the trip are easily confused by those 5 stars Resorts on Mabul Island which are also "Floating".

This is especially difficult for those poor in English to understand because most of the tour travelogue and hotel information in the internet are written in English. So when they reach Semporna, they thought they were already in Mabul and mistaken an inn (Dragon Inn) as a Mabul Resort.



Dragon Inn Floating Resort is a cluster of hardwood structures darkened with age sitting atop beams piled deep into a shallow seabed. It is not floating on water, and never float.

Wooden boardwalks lead to rooms, chalets, restaurants and a community hall with more walkways to viewing galleries fronting tree clad islands to the south and east.

Its the place overlooks the bay of Anjung Lepa (Balcony of Boats)

This floating resort looks amazing and the rooms are very spacious, great view from your room .

Outside your room you can have a nice walk on wooden boardwalk and look around the shops while still being inside the resort.

The Inn was not constructed by cement but build with eco-friendly materials. The room wall, for example, are covered by cutting from palm trees.

Rooms have some gaps on the wall,  certain gaps have sunray passing through to the room from outside.

The room is built on the water and when tides are strong, guest can feel slight vibration. This is part of the experience being living on a "Floating Hotel".

When you see big fish  below your room, you feel like in aquarium below your feet.



Rows and rows of hotel room look great from outside. Widespread, above the water and near some diveshops.

As the rooms are build of light weight Palm Board,  it is not sound-prove inside the rooms!

You hear every word and sigh inside neighbor rooms.

Being build above water and stand on sea water all year round, guest can expect the rooms to be warm and humit all year round.

The smell of Semporna sea is definetely different from the smell of Mount Kinabalu.

The experience of sleeping on water with the sound of waves crashing gently onto the inn's foundation columns is exciting especially for children.

The room floor cover with  wood planks, sometimes have cracks in it, so you good look straight at the water and fishes below.

Never mind about the GARBAGE drifting on the water, this is unfortunately a general problem of Semporna).

The bathrooms are 'open-air' so beware of mosquitos - and curious lurkers ;-).
*) This hotel stands just on the water! It's funny and interesting. You feel yourself in real nature when in the night you feel the punches of the waves at the pillars.

This hotel has a great location if you are in need for a place to sleep while waiting for transfer to Mabul or the other dive resorts.

We stayed several days in Semporna for snorkeling and diving. "Dragon Inn Resort" was our first try due to the late time. Our "Budget Room" is 80RM plus 50RM for the key's security deposit. It has a big room but VERY VERY POOR equipments. One worst part is the "bath area" (not a bathroom).
For a budget hotel, you get budget bathroom.

For foreign tourists, get the Rooms and keep the Dormetory for holiday student who could not affort. batter.





This hotel is excellent stop over before leaving for diving spots. Very affordable inn for divers to spend the night before heading down to Mabul, Kapalai or Sipadan Island in the next morning.  Because divers' final destination is the dark blue sea, they do not expect too much out of a budget hotel where they merely spend over night.




Every chalet include with breakfast for 2 but the breakfast so funny because they just serve 1 set of toast + 2 hardboiled egg + Tea/Coffee per person so I think this is my worse breakfast that I had ever....!!!

*) The breakfast, included in the price of the room, is poor.

Do not expect full breakfast though in here cause you only be getting hard boiled eggs and toasts. It's good if you are diving in the next couple of hours.

Breakfast was included but really kind of a joke: two very soft boiled eggs and pre-prepared white sandwich with someting looking like jam.

Breakfast consisted of two slices of bread and a pack of jam.


Most of the majour dive company have their offices also in this resort.


The restaurant is very expensive, and stuff there not enough polite, IMHO. Hahahaha... At night I and my famliy having our dinner at Pearl City Seafood Restaurant inside chalet area. The price for seafood I think its quite expensive. Total cost for 11pax is RM600!!!! Eventhough the price so expensive but the taste of food and the service + the enviroment its so great!!!!


Absolutely no internet.


Some pollution in the sea water under your chalet.

The location is about 10 mins from center town. When we finished our dinner at night, it was really dark to walk back.

In total, there are about 70 rooms scattered throughout the floating resort. There are 6 VIP rooms, 7 family suites, 33 singles, 16 doubles, 3 longhouse units (each can fit in 18 pax), and 3 dormitory-style units (can fit in 4 pax per unit).

The longhouse and dormitory units are only equipped with fans, but the latter only have shared bathrooms. The single and double rooms are air-conditioned and come with hot shower (though the water pressure was rather abysmal during my visit).

The family and VIP suites are definitely larger and located on their own floating chalets. When I stayed at a family room, I also noticed the unit had some sort of a living room with wooden sofa and adequate windows that you can open to enjoy the immaculate sea breeze.

The resort also has a conference hall, a multi-purpose hall, a fabulous seafood restaurant called Restoren Bandar Mutiara and a number of natural aquariums where various types of ocean fish are reared for visitor showcase.



Actually, there is almost no reason for anyone to come here except for the world-famous diving spots in Sipadan, and to some extent, Mabul and Kapalai.

Daily dive trips can be arranged from Semporna to Sipadan and the boat journey takes about 1 1/2 hours. Considering one usually pays through the nose to stay at Mabul or Kapalai, staying in mainland Semporna isn't exactly a bad idea, especially for yours truly.

Other than that, the daily lifestyle of the local Bajau Laut tribe (or sea gypsy) is worth mentioning. I am always smitten by their exotic lepa boat design and how they associate themselves with the bountiful ocean surrounding them.

A quick stroll to the nearby fishing harbour as well as the wet market is quite a spectacle, to say the least. Also, just right before sunset, you can witness the dozens of lepa boats parading themselves home, bringing back daily catch.

A short walk away out from the resort brings you to Semporna town with cheap bargains but the town itself is not entirely clean and organized.

At night, you MUST try the floating seafood restaurant (Restoran Bandar Mutiara). Cheap lobster and coral grouper taken fresh from the water and specially cooked for you. Lobster goes for RM50-60 per kg, while grouper goes at about RM40-50 per kg. 4-5 people can enjoy 1-kg of grouper.






Saturday, August 15, 2009
Semporna---I Love You!


.....I changed my mind to staying at Dragon Inn. I made the right decision to switch for 2 obvious reasons.

Firstly the RM66 nett rate at Dragon Inn was half of what Seafest was offering me.

Secondly, the tour operator to Mabul Island, Uncle Chang, has his office situated right in front of Dragon Inn.

Dragon Inn is an integrated tourism complex built over the shallow sea at Semporna Bay. It consists of 65 hotel rooms, several restaurants, conference rooms and a large netted area where many species of marine fish and creatures are kept for the viewing pleasures of its guests and the public as well.....


September 2009

The Dragon Inn Floating Resort, located at Semporna, Sabah, secured the seventh place in the top ten floating hotels list, based on a compilation by a leading men's lifestyle website that attracts more that 7 million monthly readers, (

The website describes the resort as such: "Built on the sea near Semporna, the Dragon Inn Floating Resort or Semporna Floating, as it is otherwise known - offers guests sumptuous rooms on stilts and a unique paradise island resort with palm-leaf roofing. Not only does the hotel offer every conceivable creature comfort, but the structural design of the hotel affords guests a sense of a traditional Bajau water village. An experience you won't find in cloned hotel chains on the mainland. As you'd expect, the hotel offers some of the best diving opportunities on this side of this world, with daily dive trips to the world-famous spots in Sipadan."

Read Full Press Release :
Issued by: Communications & Publicity Division, Tourism Malaysia
Date: 2 September 2009

Rooms are built on stilts and they have an amazing view of the ocean offering a very distinguished resort experience in Malaysia.

Basic rooms, air conditioning, attached bathroom, local TV channels...


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