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“Brilliant diving BUT...” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Seaventures Dive Resort

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Seaventures Dive Resort
Off Mabul Island, Pulau Sipadan, Malaysia   |  
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Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Pulau Sipadan
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Brilliant diving BUT...”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2011

THE RIG: Brilliant, no thrills accomodation, very comfy & clean. Staff always smiling and a great team spirit. Food was good, unless you're a veggie where even though you'd specified that you dont eat meat/fish, you still had to ask to be catered for and even then, 99% of the time it's tofu which after 6 days was a struggle.

DIVING: Loved all the artificial reefs, house reef and Sipadan was just awesome!!

DIVING ORIENTATION: Great! PADI / Dive practices read out. Gloves not allowed, Dont touch, Dont prod anything etc ...LOVE IT!!! ..BUT then a day or so later, we had a few new people on our dive with cameras, wearing gloves. Our DM didnt say anything, so I took it that this person had some kind of skin allergy or something. That dive, we had the misfortune to witness, not one but 4 divers, lying on, grabbing hold of and breaking corals ..we were all in shock. We couldnt believe our eyes. We all signalled the divers to get off, dont touch but they were totally oblivious. I was almost in tears! Not even the DM intervened and nothing was said back on the boat.
Anyway, back on the rig and having calmed down, I approached a member of staff. Asking about the NO GLOVE policy, saying that it was a brill idea and wondering why people still wearing gloves? He replied "It's so they can have a tighter grip on their camera" ..I then went on to explain what we'd witnessed. The staff member didnt like this at all "this didnt happen" ..I replied "we'd filmed I'll show you" then went on to suggested that DM's should include something in their non existant breifings and debreifings. The staff member got really stoppy and was in total denial ..then suddenly got a phone call and walked off.

Video coming soon

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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269 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Winnipeg, MB
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2011

Stayed here from Oct 15 - 19, 2011. Ended up coming at the end of peak season, and obtained permits to Sipadan for every day except the arrival day (in which we did the house reef and an afternoon dive at Mabul). Rig only had 15-20 guests staying, which creating for a nice, relaxing, atmosphere.

Everything went reasonably smooth, from the transfer from the Tawau hotel to Semporna, boat transfers, and accommodations. While I was travelling on my own, the rig quiet enough that I was given my own room, which was nice (although I had indicated I would be willing to share to avoid the single surcharge). The rooms are small (what do you expect?), and two complete strangers sharing a room might be a bit too intimate.

The food was excellent, a lot of choices to match any taste. This isn't 5* cuisine, but you'd have to be pretty picky to not find something you like. Unlimited water, orange drink, coffee, tea, etc. was included, with canned soft drinks running RM4 and beer running RM8 if I remember correctly.

The staff was friendly, although left you alone for the most part unless approached. I know some people complained about power outages, however the generators were all working when I was there. Every few hours the power would indeed go out while they switched, not a terrible inconvenience for a few minutes.

There was a minor incident when I had left my BCD out to dry the night before I was scheduled to depart. I was confused when I woke up at 8am only to find it was missing. I approached the staff, who looked around the rig, and ultimately radio'd the boat at Sipadan to find that somehow it got loaded onto the boat. No one was using it, but it was a bit concerning. That morning it absolutely poured rain, but the staff apologized and kept it as reasonably dry as possible on the boat so I wasn't packing a wet BCD.

Overall, a great place and I would recommend it to anyone.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2011

I am having a very hard time rating my experience at Seaventures. On the one hand, it's a unique experience and the diving is fantastic. I met some amazing people and had an amazing three days. On the other hand, I don't think my amazing time had much to do with anything that Seaventures did. It was definitely a nice touch that they picked us up at the airport and had a cold drink ready when we arrived. But overall, the customer service was lacking in a major way.

The staff were completely indifferent. No one was happy to see you or paid you any attention. A few staff warmed up after some effort on my part but it was a bit like pulling teeth. The power and the water would go out frequently. Although they were supposed to be some scheduled outages, they just sort of went on and off throughout the day. Hard to plan a time to shower. The food was ok.

The dive staff were completely apathetic and did not seem to be enjoying themselves at all. The groups are far too big and one man got left behind two different times on the same dive and eventually just went back to the boat to wait for us. The dive master didn't even seem to notice he was gone. So even though the diving was technically very good, I had a hard time being enthusiastic about it since the dive masters seemed unhappy to be there. I've had much better overall experiences at places where the dive sites aren't technically as good.

Stayed September 2011, traveled with friends
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2011 via mobile

I had à wonderfull stay at THE rig And could not wish dor more THE diving the food was so great!! And then THE staff was awsome the realy let you feel your home!! Thumbs up for the manager hes dooing a great job!! And my dive master CAT for his great guiding And showing me al this great things!!! Thanx you all i Will devenitly come back again!!! Jeroen 5 till 8 oct

  • Stayed October 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2011 via mobile

helpful staffs, friendly and willing to teach dive master n instructor, good food, safe diving, unique dive resort, reasonable price, n much better view than staying at the other resorts. of coz there r room for improvements which is minor. Overall i was having great time there. by the way, i hope they will consider to provide mask for those who r short sighted as it is important to have a comfortable diving without the need to wear contact lenses.
in short, i enjoyed n satisfied with the services provided by Seaventures Dive Resort. you should come n see it for yourself :)

  • Stayed September 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Warsaw, Poland
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2011

Wonderful time with friends and a wonderful and unforgettable divings. We had 3 permits for diving at Sipadan! Staff is very friendly and helpful. For everybody there is a lot of delicious food.
Wonderful atmosphere on the rig, but honestly it is certainly a place for divers and others would not have so much fun.
Beautiful place, warm and clear water. I hope I'll get back there yet.
Divers - this is a real paradise for us! :-)

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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15 reviews 15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2011

We had several options on how we were going to visit Sipadan for a few days of diving, and the Seaventures Rig Resort definitely offered the most interesting way to experience diving.

We thought the idea of the converted Rig Platform to a dive platform was a great idea for sure. Check-in in Semporna was pretty good, although having arrived at 4:30am on the only overnight bus to Semporna kinda sucked and would have been nice if they an an opportunity to check in earlier than 9:30am so we were sleeping on benches until their shop opened.

The driver to the boat and the captain taking us to the rig were nice and offered to help with our bags.

On arrival, "Lady Gaga" was nice to meet with nice cold orange beverages in wine glasses and offered us a brief orientation of the rig and when our dive times would be.

An orientation dive is mandatory of all divers which takes place on the "House reef" below the rig. There wasn't much involved as we were expecting to perform skills and what not. Cat our DM briefly went over some of the nearby dive sites, safety rules and we set up our own equipment.

Due to whatever reason, the week we arrived the Rig had been having issues with not one, but all three of there generators. As a result we had to walk to the back of the Rig, rather than use the lift that they usually take to get in and out of the water.

The dives were great and the DM's were pretty good. We really liked diving with Ben. Hiemi wasn't as friendly in the morning when we met for our Sipadan dives and gave very brief descriptions of the dive site and plan. Dive times were pretty good though, mostly lasting 50-60minutes.

We were there when the conditions weren't great. Viz was pretty crappy under the rig, although you do see alot of cool things like Leaf Fish, frog fish, crocodile fish and scorpian fish. Sipadan was disappointing with the viz, but we saw heaps of sharks and turtles on Baraccuda Point and Whitetip Alley. Only thing I wished was the dive shop and the island communities made more of an effort to keep the sites clean from garbage. It was a real disappointment to see cigarette packages, sandals, bottles, wood. chip bags ect scattered all over the beautiful dive sites.

The food, next to the diving was amazing. I really can't put a stronger emphasis, on just how amazing it was. The chef did a really good job of giving different options with impeccable flavor. They always say if you don't like the diving, the food better compensate for it. And it was so good! fresh deep fried bananas at 4pm and or fresh donuts!

The accommodation was good with the exception that with the generator being down the AC was very dodgy, we usually didn't have power in the room, and the water was not working for the first 2 days we were there. In the orientations we were told our rooms would be made up while we were on our first dive, but they never were.

The only issue I have with all this was how the customers were dealt with while the generator was down. Here are the things I can appreciate that they did do. The first night we were put up in nice bungalows on Mabul as the power was out. Along with that, we were offered an extra free night with a day off diving.

What I did not appreciate was the staffs interactions with the guests during this frustrating time. We were told there would be water within an hour, and then there would not be water. We felt very powerless and just wanted to hear from someone, anyone, that they were sorry about this whole mess and what an inconvenience it was. I get that we were there to dive and diving is what we got, but things like having hot rooms, no water, and no internet became a little annoying.

It wasn't until we finally approached the Operations Manager on the Rig and asked him what was up and what we would be getting out of this. I was amazed that after venting to him, that he did understand and in fact he did empathize with our situation. I guess I just wished they had been able to approach us with customer service to make us feel better, rather than us stewing and wondering why they act like they don't care.

Overall the trip ended well. We enjoyed the diving, the staff and the experience.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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 Seaventures Dive Resort

Address: Off Mabul Island, Pulau Sipadan, Malaysia
Phone Number:
Location: Malaysia > Sabah > Semporna District > Pulau Sipadan
Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Hotels in Pulau Sipadan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 25
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Also Known As:
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