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“Great dive resort , over expected”

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Seaventures Dive Rig
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Pulau Sipadan
Certificate of Excellence
Bangkok
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Great dive resort , over expected”
Reviewed May 11, 2014 via mobile

We , 6 divers, stayed there for 4 nights in April this year. We were lucky since there were not many people during that period. The resort seem bigger than I expected so it was so relax and comfort. The room was large enough in term of diver's standard. The bed was not too strong. The game room was needed a better care. The diving crews were great and very helpful. The dive sites as you know, it is a world class.

Stayed April 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Somroong
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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442 reviews from our community

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Los Angeles, California
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed May 6, 2014

We stayed for 4D/3N with one guaranteed day at Sipadan. The diving, particularly at Sipadan, was amazing and the focus of the Rig was really with hard-core divers. It was fun to have the open areas to have a chance to socialize and the dives were all very well organized.

We knew this would be a unique experience on a dive rig, and one that we would never forget, and that was absolutely the case. I did think it would be more renovated than it was. but it was not. There was a pretty strong petrol smell and the room was a bunk of a former oil rig worker with absolutely no changes. Probably even the same beds. Drains in the bathroom didn't work well and flooded the bathroom during a shower. It felt dirty so you don't want to walk around barefoot, but then the entire floor gets gross. There was an air conditioner and the room was kept very cold.

The food was a real struggle for both of us. Numerous times during our few days on the Rig, we would dream about the next chance we were able to have a proper meal. Now grant it, I'm a little bit of a food snob, but the chicken was butchered with what appeared to be a 3 year old wielding a meat cleaver. Soups without fish would have a strong fishy after taste. The noodles at breakfast were good, however, and I enjoyed afternoon tea (fried bananas, etc).

Some of the dives (at Mabul and Kapalai) were just "okay" and certainly not worth going around the world for, but our 5 dives at Sipadan were incredible. I wouldn't say I loved them more than my Great Barrier Reef experience, but probably as good. It was nice that there was an organized white board telling you where you would be diving the next day and any time you wanted to pop down to the house reef, you could. We DID have to pay about 200 RM per person for the two afternoon Sipadan dives with a boat of 8 people. That is very expensive, but I guess they CAN charge a fortune, so they do.

Cost: This was certainly not an inexpensive trip, and even the equipment rental was very high. I asked about getting our Advanced certification, but the price they quoted me was VERY expensive especially considering my per day price on the rig already covered diving and I was already paying for rental. It probably cost $100 USD more than a place in Playa del Carmen we went to, and that one included dives AND equipment. Anyhow, price-wise, I don't think it makes a lot of sense to do certifications at the Rig, but I'm in Finance, so I'm fairly analytical about these things.

Someone else said that if this were a hotel on land it would be condemned, that's probably true. If we're going to call it a hotel, it was by far, the worst hotel I've ever stayed in. However, if we think of it as a unique diving experience, than it was really great and I'd recommend it.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank LeMare
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hong kong
Level 6 Contributor
72 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed April 24, 2014

The best place ever for dive addicts !

Based near Mabul, this Oil Rig is a comfortable place with all neccessary accommodations.
The team is extremely welcoming and passionate. Food is awesome. Transfers from airport where easy and very smooth.

The dives are absolutely breathtaking. Dive Masters are professional and always ready to help with requests to make sure that customers get the best experience ever.

Very warmly recommended!

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank marine971
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jurong, Singapore
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed April 23, 2014

Seaventures really do live up to their expectations as a 5 star rated accomodation here in Tripadvisor.

Stayed 6D5N w 2 Sipadan permit @ 3160MYR (pp)

We were taken care of the minute we cleared immigration. Land transfer was prompt and took us to Seaventures office in Semporna town to pay the balance. Shortly after we took the 1600 ferry and turns out we (w my cousin) were the only one on the ferry transfer. However they did not charge us for that.

Upon arrival, we were greeted by very friendly staff, and a small glass of lemon juice. We were briefed by a staff about how the place works and went back to our rooms shortly.

Rooms were very basic. However the I guess living on the 4th floor puts a little pressure on the water pump. I couldnt get enough water to bathe on the first two days. Room service was available daily.

The amenities were not too bad either. There was a sundeck, with beach chairs and hammocks. It overlooked the sea. The games room had a pool table, table tennis, mahjong and various card & board games. However, although I used it countless times I found out that no one really uses the room.

Food was good, buffet style. There were specific timings for meals and damn you're gna love it. Good variety, there were fish, prawns, beef, pork, chicken, squid, etc etc. Free flow of fruits every meal.

The dives were well organized. They have different groups heading to different locations each day. This was written on a timetable located on the deck. Also, they have a whole area dedicated to dive equipment. Do note that Sipadan days sets off earlier in the morning, around 6.

The diving at Sipadan really is world class. You get to see huge loads of green turtles, blacktips whitetips. I managed to spot the school of bumpheads @ Coral Gardens, Barracuda spiralling @ South Point, and the school of jackfish @ Barracuda Point (ironic as it may seem).

My favourite dive was at the hanging gardens. It was really a true wall dive, almost 90 degrees downwards. It was swarmed with green turtles everywhere and sharks swimming around.

All in all, I would totally recommend this place to others. I would mention that it is not exactly economical for non divers but definitely a memorable experience here in Seaventures. Kudos to the staff.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank seexuanbin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grenoble, Rhone-Alpes, France
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed April 22, 2014

I spent 5 days/4 nights on the rig and overall I am very satisfied with it.
I've been staying in the dorm, which was actually a twin cabin. I had way enough space there, air con is working but smelly, the room was smelly as well. Toilets and showers are shared but clean.
I think the whole rig could use a bit of renovation, although everything is clean, I always felt like if it was not just because it's so old. I wasn't expecting anything fancy and I'm used to backpacker/budget accommodation but I've been a little bit disappointed BUT, given the time I spent in my room, this appears to be a minor point.

Apart from that, everything was perfect: the rig has a lovely sundeck with sun chairs and Hammocks and you have a great view of the surrounding area (unlike those great looking bungalows that have a view on an oil rig!!).
The food was plenty and really good, and the diving very well organized.
I had my own gear but from what I saw, the rental equipment was ok, Emergency oxygen is available on the boat although any dive site is at Max 15 min from the rig; we were reminded of safety procedures before each jump and diver's certification level were checked.

I am not going to mention anything specific about the dive sites, you will see once there but just take the time to dive under the rig because it's worth it.

The staff was great, all of them, always smiling and you can see that everything is well organized to run this RIG;
The Divemasters were great as well, I've been diving with five different ones and all have been making sure to spot for us great stuff, you can see that they still love these dives after so many years working there.
A special thank you to Suki who has been taking good care of me! Always happy, always chit chatting, joking and so excited about diving.

Overall a very good experience that leads me to recommend this dive operator.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Soumeya M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St Paul, Minnesota
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed April 18, 2014

We stayed on the rig for 6 days and 5 nights. It is the perfect place to stay while diving Sipadan and the surrounding area. Sipadan is all that I had hoped...bumphead parrotfish, barracuda, schools of thousands of jacks, huge turtles, reef shark, and even a manta ray. The diving in Kapalai, around Mabul, and under the rig was great for exploration...each dive provided new little critters. Mark was a wonderful divemaster - we had so much luck finding many elusive underwater creatures!

The rig works like clockwork - meals are ready on time, boats depart on time, the staff was always open and willing to assist.

Rooms are basic and clean. The staff is helpful, friendly, and wonderful. Thank you so much for the cake and songs to celebrate the birthday while onboard. Between dives and in the evening it is fun to get to know the other guests and the staff - many new lifelong friends were made. We loved listening to the rig's band and whenever the guitar was pulled out for acoustic sets :) Great atmostphere!

No question - we would return in a heartbeat!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank scubavagabond
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 5 Contributor
66 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 108 helpful votes
Reviewed March 28, 2014

Excuse this long review again :)

The transfer to the rig was well-handled from the moment we arrived at Tawau airport. Van from airport to Semporna where the jetty is takes 1 hour 20 minutes. Payment is made at the Seaventures office in Semporna before a 30 minute boat ride gets you to the rig.

The rig is 30 minutes boat ride from both Kapalai and Sipadan and just 3 minute from Mabul. They offer a ride to Mabul every evening for a hour and a half walkabout on the island before taking you back to the rig.

We were surprised when we were offered the VIP room. It is definitely a step-up from the more basic rooms. Air-conditioning was good and the room is large enough to have 8 friends inside playing cards.

The rig is run like clockwork and everyone knows and does their bit. Meals are good and food is plentiful. The staff made sure we always had enough to eat and that they only cleared up when we were done. We were told that there were 44 divers on the rig when we were there but we never felt crowded out or a lack of any offerings. A dedicated table was set aside for each group for meals and whatever else we wanted to use the area for.

The diving is superbly organized with each group having dedicated guides and staggered departure timings. We had a lot of space on the dive deck and the shower areas even though it was full house most days we were there. Great organization and communication amongst the staff. Thanks to Miji for guiding us in spite of his toothache. He was genuinely excited to locate critters for us and went wild when we came across the Blue-ring. 'Depends on your lucky!"

We were pleasantly surprised when a dinner was prepared for us at the helipad one of the evenings. Seaventures had been in touch with our friends who asked for a special dinner for my wife and I. The dinner was fantastic, Mando sang so sweetly and whistled Winds of Change amazingly and the staff were very warm and attentive. There was so much food we stuffed our faces silly.

The games room has a pool table, dartboard and table-tennis table. It is air-conditioned and has a nice seating area to relax between dives or after hours. We fully utilized the room for some killer ping pong.

Craig is very informative and warm in his interaction with the guests. We spent some time exchanging stories with him. He is also genuine in making the rig a better establishment and making customer stays better. We shared some points with him.

The room service was missing for 2 days, even though we dropped our keys into the correct 'Room Service' box early in the morning before heading out for our dives. The toilet was clogged and unattended to as a result.

Water went out one of the days we were there and it was a while before water came back on in our room. There are occasional power outages on the rig but nothing to be upset about. The power comes back on almost immediately.

Overall, the rig is a fantastic place to stay, with a great dive set-up and amazing staff. For the price one pays, it is very good value. We could not have asked for a better time.

Room Tip: Ask for the VIP rooms if you want more legroom.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank hankyspanks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Seaventures Dive Rig

Property: Seaventures Dive Rig
Address: | off Mabul Island, Pulau Sipadan, Malaysia
Phone Number:
Location: Malaysia > Sabah > Semporna District > Pulau Sipadan
Amenities:
Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Pulau Sipadan
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Seaventures Dive Rig is a scuba diving platform located within Mabul Island, some 30 minutes boat ride to Sipadan Malaysia. Sipadan Island is known as the world's scuba diving mecca. This rustic dive resort package includes diving around Mabul island, Kapalai and Sipadan Island. All rooms are fully air conditioned, Wi-FI is available at free of charge and food are served buffet-style. The unlimited diving on the Rig's house-reef is popular as it is home to some diverse underwater life. Seaventures Dive Rig is a PADI 5-Star Dive Centre offering Scuba Diving courses for beginners to professional. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Seaventures Dive Hotel Pulau Sipadan

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