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“Great Week-end Get-away paradise” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Batu Batu

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Batu Batu
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Tengah Island, Mersing, Malaysia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 11 Mersing B&B and Inns
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
“Great Week-end Get-away paradise”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2013

Have been looking at going to Batu Batu since August last year - and finally - the weekend was here. The drive from Singapore to Mersing went without any hassle,and we arrived to the Jetty well in time for the departure of the speedboat. We were met outside of the Cafe at 11 AM as agreed, the boat was abit delayed, but we headed to the island about 20 min past 11.
At the jetty we were met with alot of staff that smiling took our luggage to the rooms and while they did that, we were met in the restaurant/lobby with fresh juice.
We checked into villa S9 that had an annex for the kids. The villa was large, clean and had everything we needed. Loved the "daybed" on the balcony. The kids loved the little annex with their bunkbed and the cool aircon. Yes, their room was cooler than the main livingroom.
Good curtains kept the room dark, so had two good nighs of sleep.
There was a TV and DVD player there, but we did not use it.
We used the docking station for the Iphone that worked perfect
Also the wireless was ok to work with from the villa. (more slow in the restaurant area)
As it was high tide, we could swim at the beach just outside the villas, hence we started our day there. After lunch there was low tide, and we went to the jetty where the rest of the family jumped into the sea - great activity - but wished there was a ladder there to climbe back up again.
The Long Beach was beutiful both at low and high tide. The bar just opened at this beach, so not far to walk to get something cold refreshing.
Next day we hiked around the island. The trail was good marked and easy to follow.
We also rented kayaks (at Long Beach), but as the water still was a bit choppy after the monsoon, the kids got tired fairly quickly.
Pool - Beutiful infinity pool that looked nice, but we did not use it.
Breakfast - limited choices, but the food that was there was good. Fresh fruit juices. Egg station. You could see the staff was new, ad it could take a while before you got the omellett or egg, but it came and tasted good.
Lunch - a choice of 3 main dishes on the menu every day pluss 2 or 3 desserts.
First day we had the choice between Hamburger, salad and ...sorry, do not remember the third one. I am not a big hamburger-fan, so I have to admit I was dissapointed of having hamburger on the menu on a hotel in an Malaysian island...but that is me;-)
All we tried tasted really good. I went with the noodles from the kids menu
The kids menu had 8 dishes on, and was the same menu every day and same for both lunch and dinner. Found this abit boring, but talked to the manger on day 2, and found that the kids could also order smaller portions from the adult menu. Good!
Dinner - same as lunch -3 main courses. The portions Saturday was small, but we found they were perfect for not over-eating. We ended up surprised when the Sunday portions seemed to be at least double the size. Could not eat it all. All of the meals we had tasted really good. The chef was new this week, so again...some starting problems. Not with the taste, but the timing... We had to wait very long to get our various dishes.

All in all - a lovely week-end. Abit expensive, but guess that is what we have to pay for a paradise..so cannot do it every week-end,-even if I want to.

Hopefully the spa is open next time we visit.
Also, I have to admit I would prefer to have ala carte menu instead of full board. I am not keen on dessert every day, and would be nice to have abit more choices. There is really no other restaurant to choose around in the area :-)
As pointed earlier in the review - a ladder at the jetty would be nice as well.
A proper lock on the doors would be nice as well - at least I would have felt more safe with regards to items in the room

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cher L, Owner at Batu Batu, responded to this review, April 7, 2013
Dear GrolNorway,

Thank you very much for your review and we are very glad you had an enjoyable stay with us.

You might know that your stay straddled a period where we had a changeover in the kitchen - hence the puzzling changes in size of your meal midway through your stay! We are working hard to get feedback from guests on the food and respond accordingly - portions, variety. childrens' and adults - and are very much receptive to any suggestions.

We have ordered a ladder to climb up to the jetty at low tide. The stainless steel factory in Mersing is unfortunately notoriously either slow or busy -- but hopefully we will have one here soon (at least for the next time you visit).

The spa is currently open with one therapist providing simple massages but we are also trying to concentrate our efforts in finding and bringing in more therapists and a manager to set-up a more fully-fledged spa operation. This is work-in-progress and one of our priorities.

Many thanks again for your review - all feedback is very much appreciated.

Kind regards,

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166 reviews from our community

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  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
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  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2012

After hearing about the 'New' resort and mixed early reviews, I decided to take the plunge and booked 3 nights in an Ocean Villa for my husband and 2 children aged 5 & 3. We left it late and this was all that was available. Parking was easy (arriving at 10am) at Mersing. We were met by a representative, he didn't speak much English, but his sign language was good. Jumping aboard the boat with 3 other families we had a pretty smooth 20 minute ride to ......
OMG one of the most BEAUTIFUL islands I have ever seen.

Accommodation is beautiful, classy and rustic. This is partly to do with all the rooms being made on site with local material. So yes there are small holes/slits when you close your doors, so you do need to be aware of insects and Mosquito's, but then you are on an Island. The aircon worked well in our rooms. As we did change rooms due to extending our trip, we noted that the rooms are not all finished to the same standard. For example the space in the shower doesn't fit the luxury products provided. They just need to pop a simple stool at the end of shower to store these.
For the first 3 nights we stayed in an Ocean View villa - no child annexe, all 4 of us in one room. One child was on the day bed and the other was on an additional bed they popped in the room, at no extra charge. Both full size singles and still room to play..GOOD size rooms. We then moved to a Beach Villa with Child annexe for the last 2 nights, perfect for just a little privacy. The kids loved their little room. Both rooms have their advantages, the view from the Ocean view was stunning, but for a family with young children the beach access from the beach Villa was our preferred option.

Food, yes the restaurant staff are still learning, but I believe since our stay they have a new restaurant manager. As the resort is still newish it is pretty obvious the restaurant staff don't know everything, but they will find out for you. Breakfast is simple, the egg station we thought ended up being an additional headache, do away with it and add to the simple buffet instead, The pasteries were YUMMY. Now lunch and dinner. For the Children, we loved the small, medium and large child portions, the selection was great, maybe just needs mixing it up now any again. We tried all the children's meals and all went down well with the children. You can even order them in adult size if you fancy something different from the 'adult menus'. The meals provided by the brilliant Belgium chef and his Malay Sous chef were OUTSTANDING. As good as any 4/5 star restaurant in Singapore without being too fancy for the resort, and well priced too. At every meal there is a mix of Western and Asian, and Meat, Fish/Seafood and vegitarian. The wine selection was also more than adequate and well priced, try the Classic Mojhito's!! There have been previous comments about the restaurant being slow, but we didn't notice this, I think we were VERY relaxed.

The service by front of house - Nell and the English Chap (sorry I can't remember your name) who took a splinter out of my foot (wear footwear on the board walks) were always keen to help. Cher and her family were around regularly for a chat and if you have suggestions they were always keen to hear your view.

I haven't even started on the actual Island which is unbelievable. I could tell you about the turtles we saw daily at the end of the Jetty as we were taking our sunset kayak around the Island. Or the amazing clean beaches and sea that both of my children felt comfortable enough to dive and swim in. Watching the older boys and some daddy's jumping off the jetty as the sun dipped down, taking a walk in the morning as far around the island as the stunning Long Beach will allow you. If you dare go trekking around the island take runners or walking shoes. we attempted it with the children but had to turn back. The pool is relaxing and enough loungers for all.

The small downsides, and these are small, there needs to be a bit more greenery around the resort to cover the wires, pipes etc. Breakfast needs to be a little more organized.... hmm yep that's it. Love love love it. I want it all to myself

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
1 review
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

Below is feedback I sent to Batu Batu directly. They did not even bother to reply!

Dear Laurent,

My wife, daughter and I stayed at Batu Batu from 6-8 October and I just wanted to give you some feedback as to our stay.

We think the island is amazing, as is the food, and that you potentially have a fantastic product which I am sure will be successful once you get through your teething problems.

My concerns are that the resort is expensive, which is fine if you receive five star service, and given the service we received we feel hard done by. Our two night stay cost S$1,150 and when you read this email you understand why I do not feel we received value for money. I have been asked by several of our friends how our stay at Batu Batu was; and I can only say that we had so many problems over the weekend that I was actually looking forward to leaving the island.

Our weekend went something like this:

We arrived at 1030 in Mersing and tried to call Katie. She did not answer. Then at about 1115 we were rung and asked if we were at Mersing, when I told the lady who rang we were she informed me you were waiting for three other groups. All three groups were waiting at Mersing however because there was not a representative from Batu Batu in Mersing you did not know this.
I was then told the boat had arrived even though it had not. We finally left around 1130.
Once we arrived at Batu Batu we had a nice lunch and were shown to our room. The room was a Beach Villa, rather than an Ocean Villa which was what you had confirmed us in. When I mentioned this I was told, bad luck, the resort is full.
In the afternoon there was a storm at which time we found there was a leak in our roof above the bed. After calling reception several times unsuccessfully, and once the storm blew over, I walked to reception and told your on-site manager about the leak. She ensured me that she would personally ensure the sheets on the bed were changed. When we returned from the beach the manager was leaving work and when we arrived back at our room, the sheets had not been changed.
On top of this, the blinds in our room were broken.
We rang to ask for water which never arrived.
The plug in the bath did not work.
Our iPod dock was broken and I had to physically take it to reception to ask for it to be replaced, after already asking 5 times for a new one.
There were no television channels.
Mosquitos are an issue, and will continue to be an issue as the doors do not close flush meaning mosquitos will always be able to get into rooms.
As a piece of general advice, I think the rooms may be more comfortable if you put a couch inside rather than day bed.
On Sunday morning we stripped our daughter's cot only for your cleaning staff to remake with the cot with the dirty sheets which we had placed on the floor as they were covered in vomit. We then had to physically walk to reception to pick up clean sheets.
We were left without toilet paper after our room was made up.
Finally, on Sunday night, we picked up our daughter's dinner. After tasting it myself I went to the kitchen only to find they had put milk and salt & pepper in her vegetables. On Thursday 11 October we had to take her to Raffles hospital to get a suppository as she had been constipated since our stay at Batu Batu - most likely as a result of milk and salt & pepper being put in her food!

As you can see from the points I list above, we did not have a great weekend. I hope this feedback is useful to you and best of luck with the resort.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cher L, Owner at Batu Batu, responded to this review, December 14, 2012
Dear DGB77,

We are very sorry and disappointed that you feel so negatively about the resort and about ourselves. We try our best to make Batu Batu a pleasant and relaxing experience to all our guests, so it is disappointing to hear about of guests who are impatient to leave.

First, we would like to say sorry that your Oct 17th email was not answered.You sent your email to my personal gmail account and it went unnoticed. Unfortunately I do not spend much time on my personal mails these days so mails do get missed. We understand that it must have been frustrating for you to have sent us all these complaints and not to have heard back but I hope you understand that this was because it was sent to the wrong email.

We acknowledge that everything was not perfect during your stay but we believe that we have been very transparent to all our guests warning them in advance that there could be teething problems (service level and infrastructure problems) and explaining that we have been extending a 20% discount for this reason. Our standard warning can be found at the bottom of the response. The majority of our guests have shown some understanding when these hiccoughs have occurred. We have tried to cover all your points below but first we would like to comment on two of your statements "No care, no responsibility.." and "the resort is expensive, which is fine if you receive five star service".

We do think that the title of your review "No care, no responsibility..." is unfair - particularly in light of the fact that the email was sent to my personal email and not my work email or our generic info@batubatu.com.my email. Furthermore, I personally wrote you three emails in the few days before your arrival:

- first to answer your question about mosquitos;

- second to let you know that both a Beach villa and an Ocean Villa were now available (you were originally booked in a Jungle villa);

- third, to let you know that the Ocean Villa might be better for mosquitos than the Beach Villa (The last email was sent one minute after the second email).

Interestingly, good intentions can have bad consequences. Thirteen minutes after my last email, you replied saying that you wanted a Beach Villa, but a few minutes later you replied to my personal email saying that considering the mosquito advice you would prefer an Ocean Villa. I was very busy and missed your final email. We were full that weekend so we were not able to move you to an Ocean Villa, but we charged you for an Ocean Villa (RM 640) and not for a Beach Villa (RM 704). I am sorry that I missed your last email, but I do think that the exchanges above show that we do care.

Also, as my wife and I are always on the island and were there during your stay, considering your negative experience, we are surprised that you did not ask to speak to us or complain to our Front Desk Manager who would have informed us of the situation. Had we known all these issues early-on, we would have personally apologized to you and would have personally tried to ensure that the rest of your stay was more comfortable.

Regarding the price and the five star service, your room rate was RM 640 (~ SGD256 or ~ USD210). We do not think that we are very expensive for a spacious beach / ocean front villa on a private pristine tropical island with a good restaurant and only 21 other villas to share the island with. Our neighbours, Rawa, currently charge a very similar price and are not a 5-star resort. 5-star boutique resorts on private islands cost a lot more than we do (most being well north of USD 500 per night and many above the USD 1000 mark).

Do note however, that we are constantly trying to iron out our service issues and step-up in-villa maintenance the general resort condition. Since your stay early october, we have made several changes which directly address the issues you are raising:

- two representatives in Mersing so that there is always at least one person to welcome guests on their arrival;

- we have hired a very senior housekeeping executive to oversee the resort's cleanliness, housekeeping teams and villa maintenance who will start in February;

- all the infrastructure defects you mentioned have been repaired and most of the gaps in the villas have been blocked. This is work we are carrying out now in our quiet season.

I would summarise your complaints in 7 categories:

1. Wrong Villa Booked (already covered above)

2. Mosquitos / Villas with Openings

Most of our villas are very spacious with an exposed roof and indeed this means that mosquitos are more likely to enter than in a closed smaller room. Nevertheless we have stepped-up and tweaked our anti-mosquito plan (this needs to be tweaked as we learn over time) and I have not personally heard of any mosquito complaints from guests over the months of November and December so far.

3. Arrival in Mersing.

We are sorry that there was no representative in Mersing when you arrived. Kathy left Batu Batu without much notice five days before your arrival and was replaced that same week by a new representative who was still learning his job. With only one representative in Mersing there was at times no one to welcome the guests. Several guests told us about the poor experience in Mersing and we have since hired a second representative so that there is always at least one and often two representatives to welcome our guests.

4. Roof Leak / Broken Blinds / Plug in the Bathroom

All these issues are unfortunate but these are what we mean when we say that "we also experience some teething problems on our infrastructure ". Problems arise and we are solving them as fast as we can. Typically we try to solve the issues when you are here on the island. We are sorry that this was not the case -- but as mentioned, we have hired an experienced Housekeeping Executive who will be kick-starting a series or proactive maintenance works in managing and ramping-up the skill sets of our Housekeeping team.

5. Amenities

In-room TVs can only be used to watch DVDs which we provide for free -- there was no intention to include normal TV channels in the villas and we have never had any complaints on this. For specific requests, we install a TV with satellite channels in the bar (soon in our Children's Playroom). We do not currently have an i-pod docking station in all our rooms as many of these blew with the generator power in the first weeks. However, they are generally available on request.

6. Level of service from housekeeping

We acknowledge that our housekeeping department have been slow on requests in the past and we really apologise for your experience. We recognise this problem and it is for this reason that we have hired an Executive Housekeeper with 5-star experience to help us up the levels of service in this department.

7. Baby Food incident.

Baby purees are complimentary. Our kitchen staff all used to work in city restaurants and have never cooked food for new borns or babies under the age of one. Please also note that the practice of non-dairy, non-salt for babies is not something practiced locally in Malaysia. Nonetheless our kitchen have been told not to put salt or milk in baby purees (and have been told again). This is an unfortunate teething error / miscommunication in the kitchen for which we apologise. However, we would always suggest that parents always taste the food of any newborn / 4 month old baby before they feed them. Obviously if a complaint had been raised, we would have replaced the puree immediately to your specification.

Kind regards,

Please note that we have only recently opened and there is some construction work outstanding at Batu Batu. For instance, there may be some noise during the day around the pool area when we finish off our guest communal washrooms (September). Most of the facilities are finished but some touching-up remains to be done in both communal areas and in the villas. From time-to-time being on a self-sufficient little island, we also experience some teething problems on both our infrastructure and service sides and very much appreciate your patience.

Guests have been coming over the past few months and have had a good time but we just wanted to make sure you were aware that we were not 100% finished (hence the 20% discount). The Beach Bar, Children?s Play House, Dive Centre and Spa continue to be work in progress and will be opening over the coming months. (Note that these buildings are structurally complete and there are just interior finishing required which are not generally noisy).
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Singapore, Singapore
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 22, 2012

Coming from Singapore by car, this little island is within easy reach. It took us about 3 1/2 hours to get there.

On our way to the island the sea was a bit choppy, but as the boat-ride only took 20 min. it was ok.

First impressions:
The little boat is very simple. The man greeting us in Mersing was very nice and helped us with the luggage. The boat left as I was still standing carrying a baby - not so nice.

Upon arrival we were greeted by Neli and her colleague. A very nice and friendly welcome, quick introduction and a nice welcome-drink. All very smooth and relaxed.

Entering our room - we were impressed by the size of our beach-villa. We loved the teak furniture, the Malin+Goetz toiletries, the verandah, the partial view of the sea (through the palm trees), the 2 bottles of water, the safe and the wardrobe space. Our villa had a c/a which we did not use as we decided to have our two little ones next to us in their cots. But we love the idea - would probably work well with older children. We had mosquito-nets for our beds - and they are necessary.

What we did not like very much were the following:
Low water pressure for the bath tub - I was looking forward to having a bath in the beautiful bath tub, but there was no point trying that. There are no hooks to hang anything, but there is a nice wooden towel rack. The shower area looked a bit old with the paint alredy coming off. But they will work on that (new paint). Also, there were some wires next to the mirror. The sliding-door leading out to the verandah is very hard to open - this is also a work in progress. There are two nice daybeds, one inside the villa and one on the verandah. The fabric looks already very dirty, so that I found it difficult to enjoy using them.

The restaurant:
Coming to breakfast, nobody tells you what you can order (coffee, eggs etc.)This only changed on the second day when Francene was around and did a wonderful job. All in all the waiters are doing an ok-job, but could and should do better. It is a breakfast-buffet, the choice is rather small, but the quality is fine. Lunch and diner - we loved the food, it really was very tasty and well presented. Unfortunately, also here the cushions are very stained. Maybe it is just me but I cannot relax with all the stains around me.

The bar:
With a play-area for the children in there I must say I felt it was not very safe. There are rocks coming through the deck and a tree. While a nice idea, there are gaps, and the wood around the rocks looks "not safe".

The infinity-pool is not very big but very nice.

The beach - Longbeach - a beautiful beach, very clean and calm.

The jetty - watch out for Rufus the turtle. We were so happy to see him from the jetty. Plus, my husband went snorkelling and saw him very close.

What would we change or ask for:
Please exchange the stained cushions and daybeds.
Train the waiters and hopefully you can find a F&B manager soon.
More water (pressure) for the nice bath tubs.
A babysitter-service.
Make the bar-area safer.

What were great touches:
Kids-menu offering different sized portions and not only the typical fries and burgers.
The toys for all children.
A changing mat, a potty, a baby bathtub and a little stool in the villa.
The possibility to have baby puree freshly prepared and foc from their kitchen.

As to why I chose the title "love at second sight". They are still in the opening-phase and it is not perfect yet. But they try and they listen (Neli and the owners). The day after we came back our little daughter said " I want to go back to Batu Batu".

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2012

Beautiful island and lovely resort. Stunning white beaches and crystal clear water and the resort is run very well. Extremely friendly staff who are only too happy to help. An easy journey from Singapore and will be back again hopefully some time soon.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2012

To be fair, we didn't absolutely hate our entire 4-night stay. The first 2 nights we were placed in a Beach Villa with c/a (S5) and absolutely loved it! We were able to relax and enjoy the space, beach and our family of 4 including a 2-year old and 4-year old. Relaxing both mornings, only missing breakfast in bed.

On the 3rd day, apparently there was some kind of computer mix up or miscommunication, it was never quite clear, but both were mentioned by the staff and we had to move to an Ocean Villa (N1). The villa was on stilts built into the side of a cliff, which restricted any cross-breeze through the villa. This would not have been a huge problem, if the air-con worked for the villa, but it did not. The villa is constructed with a large (maybe1-foot) gap between the roof and the wall, letting all the cooled air out and letting the bugs in at night.

This problem, must have been brought to the staff attention prior to our arrival, as extra table fans were placed in the room. However, these fans blew the mosquito netting around the beds open, blowing the little pests right into our sleeping tent - we all woke-up covered with itchy bites.

All the villas appear to have a side deck/balcony with a door that opens from the bathroom. The only lock on this door is a wooden latch that the children can easily reach and open. This was not a problem in our first Beach Villa as the deck had a bamboo fence and safety rail all the way around it and a few stairs that lead down to the ground - not a big fall. In the Ocean Villa that was built 20-feet up the cliff, there was no safety rail what-so-ever. The flooring was there, but nothing around the sides. The door to this area had no additional lock and the first thing the children did, was of course open that door and run right out.

The other issue we had with this villa was the entrance. There is no landing from the stairs leading into the front door. When the door is open, the handrails can not be used, as the door covers the rails. The stairs are also open, so if a small child slipped trying to get out the door, they would fall right through (See picture attached). Our children both felt the need to go down the stairs on their butts to keep from falling.

Overall, this villa should not have been given to a family with young children. The staff should be aware of the restrictions with each of their 20-villas and assign appropriately. When we asked for other options, we were initially told nothing else was available. The next morning, when we told the staff we would be leaving a day earlier than expected, they suddenly came up with 1 or 2 options, but by then, we didn't want to move again.

Another point for driver's coming in for the late boat transfer - the Secure car park, mapped out in the faq's that Batu Batu sends, closes at 7pm. We had a difficult time finding a car park open at 7:05pm. When we called the resort, we were told that there should be plenty to choose from if we just looked and drove around a bit. They were all closed. Finally, a representative from a different Beach Resort helped us find parking in the Cargo loading/unloading area and there were no issues.

Overall, the food is amazing, the beaches and island are beautiful, pool is great, but the villa assignment needs to be reviewed more closely for everyone's safety and enjoyment.

Very Disappointing to leave a holiday weekend early!

Room Tip: Do not stay in an Ocean Villa with small children - they are not child-friendly in any way. The Bea...
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cher L, Owner at Batu Batu, responded to this review, October 25, 2012
Dear 40littletoes,

We are sorry that you were disappointed with your stay and left early. Please note that when you made the web booking, you split your booking over a Beach Villa for two nights and an Ocean Villa for two nights because we were fully booked. As such, the confirmation email you were automatically sent showed that you would be in a Beach Villa with annexe for two nights and an Ocean Villa for two nights.

You were allocated N1 when you left the Beach Villa because it is the Ocean Villa which is very often chosen by families with young children (we have families who specifically request it with children the same age as yours). Our Beach Villas unfortunately go very quickly (as they are the most popular given our guest demographic). There really were no other beach options the day you had to move and Laurent my husband spoke to you and he has just assured me that the only option available to you was a Jungle Villa (which you were not interested in taking).

We definitely note your points on N1's non-child-friendly issues -- these have not been highlighted to us by the other families who have stayed -- and will work on making a few necessary changes.

Kind regards,

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Singapore, Singapore
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
34 hotel reviews
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104 helpful votes 104 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2012

I had virtually given up on holidays in Malaysia. We have accepted that the key to enjoying a trip there is careful 'expectations management'. A long weekend in Batu Batu has thankfully changed that.

Cher, who owns the recently opened resort, clearly understands her market. She has found an idyllic island, within easy reach of Singapore (approximately 2 hours' drive and a 20 minute speedboat ride from the Woodlands Checkpoint). Compared to Batu Batu's most obvious competitors, located off Bintan, the journey here is extremely straightforward.

The accommodation is really well thought out and very competitively priced. We stayed in a two-bedroom villa, which had two reasonably sized bedrooms and a fabulous terrace. The outdoor bathrooms and high end toiletries were a lovely touch. For some, the location, by the pool may be seen as a disadvantage but it worked well for our young children. The one change that I would have made is a connecting room between the bedrooms rather than having all access through the terrace. We looked at a beach villa with children's annex, which seemed ideal for a small family. One feature that each villa has, is AC. This is not available at so many similar resorts, and can make sleep very difficult on oppressively hot nights. You can, of course, choose not to turn on the AC, but is is great to have the option.

The food is what really sets this resort apart. I don't think we have ever stayed in a resort where we looked for ward to lunch and dinner so much. In many other resorts near Singapore, meals are more about sustenance, at Batu Batu they are eagerly anticipated. We travelled with another family and food was the highlight for all of us, but none of us could agree on our favourite meal because we had so many outstanding dishes. As other posters have noted, the service could be slow (especially when the resort was at capacity), but it was absolutely worth the wait every time. The wine list is fairly concise, but reasonably priced (if Singapore restaurant prices are a gauge).

We were pleasantly surprised the attention to detail and overall service levels at Batu Batu. While not comparable with service in countries like Thailand and India, Batu Batu is in a league of its own when compared to other resorts in Malaysia. Aside from the hands-on approach of Cher and her management team, some of the more junior members of staff displayed a pride in their work that we had not expected. When walking to our villa one day, one lady stopped us and asked about the bites on one of our daughters' legs. When we said that we suspected that they were from sand flies rather than mozzies, she said that she would see what she could do. Half an hour later, they were treating the beaches for sand flies.

I must confess that I had considered not writing a review because I know that soon it will be almost impossible to get a reservation, especially during school holiday periods. However, resorts like this are breaking the mould and deserve to succeed. Cher and her team have identified a huge gap in the market and in a few short months have already managed to fill it. With luck, they might force the other resorts in Malaysia and the Riau Islands to 'up their game'. I have given a 'Very Good' rather than 'Excellent' rating because the resort is still in a 'soft opening' phase and are still ironing out a few small details. I am confident that when we return in a few months, these little issues will have been resolved. This is the first time in 7 years in this region that we have booked our next stay at a resort before checking out, I suspect that we will soon have to book way in advance because Batu Batu won't remain a secret for long.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Batu Batu

Address: Tengah Island, Mersing, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Johor > Mersing District > Mersing
Bar / Lounge Beach Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 11 B&Bs / Inns in Mersing
Number of rooms: 22
Also Known As:
Batu Batu Mersing, Malaysia - Johor

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