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“What a place!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Tubotel

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Tubotel
2.5 of 5 Small Hotel   |   Jetty Pelancongan Chenang | Kuala Cenang, Langkawi 07000, Malaysia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #14 of 130 Langkawi B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Hamar, Norway
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“What a place!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2014

Amazing food, amazing view and scenary, amazing tubes, amazing people and service, on an amazing island! We had a great time there and we will absolutely come back one day in the future and stay again at Tubotels!

Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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135 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    52
    53
    22
    5
    3
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4
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cheonan, South Korea
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2014

Stayed here for 4 nights in January 2014. When we tried to pay with our Mastercard upon checking in, it wasn't accepted (after 3 attempts). We thought it was an issue with our bank, and asked for a day to contact them before trying the card again. We confirmed with the bank that there was plenty of money in the corresponding account, and there was no hold on the card. Next day, tried it again, and it didn't work again. So we had to walk 40 minutes to the nearest ATM, take out way more cash than we planned to, and give it to Tubotel. Now we faced a cash shortage, so we contacted the bank again, and they had received no record of the four failed attempts to charge our card (which means the problem was with Tubotel's charging system, not the card). When we brought this information to Tubotel, the owner's wife insisted it was our problem, not theirs. We relented, and finally they agreed to charge our card again...using a second, obviously newer, and previously undisclosed card machine! Of course, it worked right away on the different machine, and they refunded our cash. However, there was never a breath of an apology for having caused us to plan two of our days in Langkawi around fixing money issues that were their fault.

Another issue we had was being directly lied to by the owner. Tubotel offers Nasi Lemak (a traditional Malaysian dish) for sale at the bar. We were interested in learning about how to make it, so we asked the owner, Alex, who makes the Nasi Lemak. He said the morning kitchen cook makes it, and that we could observe her at 7am. Upon meeting the morning cook at 7am, we learned that she buys the Nasi Lemak at the market, premade. I'm not sure why the owner lied to us about that, but a pointless lie like that doesn't bode well for his credibility.

After both of these unsatisfactory experiences, we just happened to ride in a local taxi that was driven by a former employee of the ownership couple. We asked him directly, and he confided that he was not treated well while employed by them for over 5 years (at a previous business, not Tubotel). This may explain why some of the current Tubotel staff were running ragged seemingly every time we saw them, while another staff member was sitting and smoking every time we saw him.

If not for these issues, we would have immensely enjoyed our stay here. It is a unique experience they provide, the atmosphere is chill, the views are amazing (especially the sunsets), and the free breakfast is the best we've ever had at a hotel.

There were only two cons about the actual facilities. One is that because it is open air, smoking is allowed everywhere except the tubes (even inside the bar/desk area, where no-smoking signs are posted, but not enforced). As non-smokers, it was very frustrating, and hard to really relax, because the smoke was unavoidable. Clearly delineated areas for smoking and non-smoking would be a huge improvement. The other thing, which is not Tubotel's fault, is that the road leading to the hotel is very sketchy at night. Nothing is on the road but an abandoned construction site, but both nights we ventured out after dark there were 5 or 6 cars parked along the road for no reason, and one night we saw a man open his trunk to a newly arrived group of people. This obviously kept us from going out at night again.

If Tubotel was taken over by new management, we would stay again in a heartbeat. Under the current management, we can't recommend it.

Room Tip: Don't book if you care about good business practices. If you're a non-smoker, prepare for s...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
langkawilover8, Owner at Tubotel, responded to this review, February 3, 2014
hello,

wow u have taken a lot of time out of ur well deserved holiday to write this review and feed back to us. *(thank u)

the construction site, yes it is there, and the cars are from people fishing of the shores.

the nasi lemak story must be in ur imagination, and yes the cook buys the rice on the way to work and makes a 50 cent profit by reselling it. we could have recommented a cooking school to u.

almost forgot ur credit card issue: ur booking was made one day earlier and we have not charged u yet.

ur creditcard might have had a faulty magnet strip or chip, this happens often. then the other newer machine, is a pos terminal for online sales that does not require the card to inserted in the machine, only entry per keyboard.

me the terrible owner is the fat guy that invited u to join his and his daughters birthday party 9i remember u looked happy)

almost forgot zizo the smoker. i also keep telling him is bad for the health, but he does not listen.

and the management, any suggestions (in short) wanna take over? , can, no problem

at first i was shocked about the feedback, we received from u, but i believe every comment is a good comment and we can learn from our mistakes.

best regards and happy traveling.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Copenhagen, Denmark
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2014

We stayed for a total of five nights. The breakfeast was incredible and made the direct view to the sea, even better. The staff was extremely helpful in organizing tours and motorbike rental - which made you feel very welcome. Overall very pleased with the stay, and would definitely go back for a few nights at Tubotel.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
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Luzern
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2014

I was positively surprised of the Tubotel. The hotel is extremely well located on the sea side and you can also enjoy marvellous sunsets. On the common guest area, there is a lounge like type atmosphere with cool seats, lounge beds and music.

The beds in the tubes and square rooms are surprisingly good quality.

The beautiful Cenang beach can be reached with a five minute walk.

I liked also especially the food which is prepared by the German cook who is also co-owner of the resort.

The only big disappointment was that the internet connection was useless, even did not work. We understand that the resort has no fix line and all is going over the mobile net. However, this was not declared properly in the webpage. Therefore, we do not give an excellent rating.

The Tubotel can be recommended if you like a beautiful, romantic and cool place for a reasonable price. Keep in mind that the tubes are small and there is no bathroom in the tube.

Room Tip: If you like more space, take a square room. However, these have no sea view and are not so original...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Sydney, Australia
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2014

We stayed here for 4 nights, and didn't think it'd be that great. To my surprise it was more than I could ask for.
The breakfast was offered to us for free, which was also really nice. I would definitely come here again for my visit to langkawi, and recommend for everyone coming to langkawi.

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

Wen't there for two nights but book two nights more straight away because it was great place! Good food, great breakfast, wonderful view from the tubes. Clean toilets, cheap beers, free excursions to sea and motorbike trips around the island. Best place to stay in langkawi, at least we thonk so. Worth of every rm ;)

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Townsville, Australia
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2014

My girlfriend and I stayed here for 2 nights (which turned into 4!) this past month while traveling through Malaysia. While the room might be a bit small for those looking to spend a lot of time in their rooms, the hotel's charm, amenities, and scenery more than make up for it. There are 4-post beds set up to lounge on on the verandah overlooking the beach, cheap beer, great (and free) breakfast, and 3 hot tubs! Not to mention, it's right on the beach. The staff are extremely friendly and helpful, and the place is immaculately clean.

When we were checking out early in our last morning, we got into a small disagreement with a staff member, and in our haste to catch our flight, left the hotel before we got our deposit back. To our absolute shock, as we were waiting to board our flight, the owner of the hotel appeared beside us to give us back our 50 ringgit deposit and apologize for whatever disagreement happened. While 50 ringgit doesn't mean that much to us, his acknowledgement and courtesy did. He was an absolute gentleman, and we were both blown away!

We voraciously recommend a stay at the tubotel!!!!

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Additional Information about Tubotel

Address: Jetty Pelancongan Chenang | Kuala Cenang, Langkawi 07000, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Kedah > Langkawi District > Langkawi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 130 B&Bs / Inns in Langkawi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Tubotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 17
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