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“Very good place to stay”

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Arung Hayat Sea Adventures
Rome, Italy
Level Contributor
15 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Very good place to stay”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 12, 2013

I had a very nice time in Arung Hayat.
The staff there do the best for guests, there is a very friendly atmosphere.
The rooms are basic but in good condition.
The food was great. A very good solution for scuba e snorkeling lovers.

Stayed August 2013, traveled solo
Helpful?
Thank Manuel C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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75 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    21
    8
    5
    15
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4
18
15
Business
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
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English first
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 26, 2013

We stayed for 2 nights at Arung Hayat because the scuba junkie resort was fully booked (and quite more expensive as well). The staff were nice, the food (all inclusive, just like all places on Mabul) was pretty good and the room in a longhouse on stilts above the sea seemed fairly clean and was spacious enough. However, after dark the cockroaches seemed to like our room as well, as plenty of them were running across the wallsand our luggage. A can of insecticide supplied by a staff member brought relief for the night, although the next evening they were back again.

Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank slknijnenburg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 12, 2013

Firstly I booked a long way out because I knew it took time to get Sipidan permits. Sipidan was to ONLY reason I was going.
Management repeatedly told me they were working on it and I never got any feedback because they knew I would have cancelled the booking. This is not on.
There were plenty of permits available right up to the week. I talked to multiple people who got them a week before.
Looking at the range of prices for transfers/accommodation from a range of providers it is very evident that they are well over priced. The room was well below standard. Nothing worked, including the basics like a wall socket and the toilet. The toilet smelt bad all the time too.

The meals provided were standard but good and I enjoyed them.
The diving was good and the dive master and boat crew were good.

Generally I as treated very well by staff,,,,, until I stopped diving. Once I finished diving due to the 48hr stand down period before flying I was totally ignored. This again was rubbish considering was only 2 of us there.
There was absolutely nothing to do once I finished diving. There wasn't even a seat/lounger to sit/lay out in the sun.
Finally the quotes/prices I got earlier from them does not match what I paid. To be honest I paid for something that I did not really receive.
All in all I was pretty disappointed with their service. Their other reviews provided here are clearly provided by there own company/friends because I saw none of what was listed.

Room Tip: Don't stay there. Plenty of other options
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank scott19832013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
arung h, Director of Sales at Arung Hayat Sea Adventures, responded to this review, December 1, 2016
“Thank you for your honest feedback! I’m very sorry to hear you had such a bad experience and will be sure to review your comments with my staff in an effort to improve the experiences for our future customers.”
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shenzhen, Guangdong, China
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 24, 2013

I have to say, Arung Hayat is awesome!
I stayed 6 days there taking OW &AOW course, and travel alone. The instructor/DM are experienced, the staffs are very friendly, always gave me big warm smiles and chat with me, make delicious seafood for us, playing guitar, singing, swiming, diving together... which make me feel like I am part of the family. Thanks them, I had much fun and spent a great time there :) Miss them sooo much!!
About Arung Hayat, the rooms are clean and comfortable, they offered me a single room with same price. no aircondition but a fan plus the winds from the sea is pretty good. Awesome sunset view outside the room, and can see turtles swim underneath when rising tide.
So much memorable time at Arung Hayat, I'm sure I will back there someday. Highly recommand to stay and dive there :D

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Wenxiu C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 9, 2013

I stayed at Arung Hayat for 4 nights - as it was the only accommodation i could find available (i arranged the trip at the last minute). It turned out to be a lucky last-minute trip for me - as i found a great place to stay and i got a permit for Sipidan diving which was basically a miracle... (book this as early as possible as some people wait for up to 6 months!) and YES the diving is that good so totally worth it.
THE STAFF: The best thing about Arung Hayat were Hanif the boss and his team. They were lots of fun, chatty, friendly and made a huge effort to make me feel comfortable - especially as i was travelling alone as a girl. They were always asking me questions and talking to me - so by the end of the trip I felt like we'd become mates and i was really sad to leave! ;-)
THE ROOMS: The rooms are all on stilts above the ocean - they sway a little at night so i slept like a baby ;-) especially after diving all day. They're basic with bed/fan/and private bathroom with shower / toilet... but they're very comfortable.Ask for Room #1 which is bigger than the other rooms... Electricity is only on from 6pm until 6am so you can't really hang-out in your room during the day - it's way too hot without the fan!
THE FOOD: John the cook and his wife were lovely and the food was really fresh and delicious - lots of seafood / fish / salad and rice dishes... plus huge portions.
THE OTHER STUFF: it's cheap. It's pretty social at night times eating and drinking with all the other guests. i had a great time ;-)
if you're a diver - come to mabul / dive sipidan island and stay at arung hayat ;-)

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank KayteWebb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Carcassonne, France
Level Contributor
167 reviews
70 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 104 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 28, 2013

Arung Hayat is a well run adventure dive centre on Mabul island.With twin privates or 4/6bed dorms,its 1 of the more reasonably priced resorts on this tiny"dive island".I had already booked a room elsewhere but changed as they offered room only. As i was freediving i did not need normal dive packages.Well run with a friendly proprietor,it was great not to be tied down for all meals.I ended up buying fish from the local fisherman and have 1 of the few untied restaurants cook it for a small fee and cop the beer money.Sleeping over water on stllts is a unique buzz,just dont drop anything valuable during the night or it will vanish through the planks and sleep with the fishes.Accomodation on Mabul without full board is well worth hunting for as the "all in"buffets on offer in most other resorts can be boring after a while.Arung Hayat was good value but not for the precious

Room Tip: Ask for a room away from the dock as the noise of dive air bottles being loaded for early or night d...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank peter c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 24, 2013

I stayed here for two nights. The problem with accomodation on Mabul is that you buy before you see and you commit to all meals at the place.

The positives - friendly, fair staff. Good fresh food. Staying in buildings on wooden stilts above the seq. Beautiful sunsets. Sociable in the evenings.

The negatives - we had a rat in our room. It went after a banana I had in my bag. The mistake was to leave windows open and have food in the room. We were staying in the dorm on mattresses on the floor. Also there was a fight at the end of the evening between staff that sounded pretty scary. Fueled by Phillipino rum. The management were very fair and accepted when we didn't stay a second night. I wrote about it on http:\\twoteacherstwobikesoneworld.blogspot.com

I didn't dive there and Mabul is all about diving. Definitely worth sorting out Sipadan permits if you do. Did snorkel however and saw a huge turtle swimming in the shallow water by the beach.

Room Tip: I think the twin/double rooms are probably a better bet
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank MariGWIlliams
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
arung h, Director of Sales at Arung Hayat Sea Adventures, responded to this review, December 1, 2016
“Thank you for your honest feedback! I’m very sorry to hear you had such a bad experience and will be sure to review your comments with my staff in an effort to improve the experiences for our future customers.”
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arung Hayat Sea Adventures

Property: Arung Hayat Sea Adventures
Address: 245 Jalan Pinggir Bakau, Pulau Mabul 91308, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Sabah > Semporna District > Pulau Mabul
Amenities:
Beach Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 10 Specialty Lodging in Pulau Mabul
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 31
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Live like a locals with Arung Hayat Homestay!! Located just above the sea water, our guesthouse provide clean, nice and comfortable place for you to stay. The beautiful scenery of pulau mabul with its clear blue sea water will surely amaze you. Since its early years as a guesthouse, Arung Hayat has undergone major renovations and improvement. It begins with a single house with 5 rooms but as our guest increased we extended into 10 rooms but over the years our guest keep knocking at our door hence we decided to built more rooms so today we have total 31 rooms already. (Meals are served 3 times a day with unlimited hot drinks). The long houses are built on stilts overlooking the turquoise waters of the Celebes Sea with a splendid sun set view. All rooms have an en-suite bathroom with 3 types selections either fan, Air-conditioned and VIP room. Electricity runs from 6pm to 6am, like in most places on the island. ... more   less 
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