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Reviewed 6 September 2015

Overall are basic. Just nice stay for backpackers style. Nice location which near to villagers. The sunset view is awesome from here. One thing that need to be improved, the local staff at this resort have to more sensitive and alert with basic thing like well prepared of the room when the time of guest arrival, on time of dinner preparation, and yes the electricity here is so limited. If you are more into comfortable vacation, please go to hotel or resort which also available in this island. Overall i was okay with my stay, even there were changes on my itinerary where my second night at this homestay has been shortened by the owner due to certain circumstances which were acceptable by us.

  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank AwanEzallief
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 reviewResponded 1 December 2016

“Thank you for your honest feedback!"

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Reviewed 31 August 2015 via mobile

Beautiful place to enjoy our stay and join the life of the people who live their lives here even for a short time. Our guide even told us their story of how they make their living. They even cook us a nice food for dinner and breakfast. Our friendly tour guide also took us to many islands around the area, including the beautiful Bohey Dulang, Sapi Island, Sipadan island, etc. We enjoyed snorkelling, diving and barbecuing for lunch. The fish they provide was very fresh. they also put much effort to make our stay memorable by taking us to their trip to one of the beach where we were greeted by the Bajau Laut children. Also went for a visit to one of the Bajau Laut place where they dried up seaweeds to sell in Semporna town. Overall it was truly a great experience. I don't think there is a better Home stay than this.

Stayed: September 2014, travelled with friends
2  Thank Lya2702
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 reviewResponded 1 December 2016

“Thank you for your honest feedback!"

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 August 2015

This home stay is on the other side of the island compared to the resorts like Scuba Junkie. It's a 5 minutes walk through the village where the locals live.

It's in no way as nice as the resorts, and I ended up going there to use their bar and their diving/snorkeling offers. The day I didn't join an activity, I used the beach on the resort side, as the snorkeling there was great. Outside Arung Hayat it was only sand.

The positive side was the the food they served was quite tasteful.

  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled solo
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank OddNord
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 reviewResponded 1 December 2016

“Thank you for your kidnest feedback!"

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Reviewed 6 July 2015

My friend had been to this place and recommended it so we went together. The experience she had with us was very different. From the start the management was unreliable and didn't answer our questions and wanted to over charge us on accommodation and transport (don't book transport with them it's way more expensive).
The whole of Mabul island is unfortunately very polluted and dirty. The high end resorts have better waste management and water treatment, but low end places like Arung Hayat and the local "village" are just dumping everything on the island or in the sea. Dumping plastic in an area with wildlife and turtles is going to kill the fauna.
Each room is less than basic. The dirty water from the cold shower and toilets is evacuated right below each barack directly in the sea water, where they actually teach diving ! There is no filter, no incitation to use eco detergents, soaps, ... no waste treatment. The place is disgusting.
When you see how they prepare the meals it definitely puts you off wanting to eat there although it's included.
We had a room just next to the reception and dining room. So we had people spend the whole day sitting right in front of our room. No intimacy, no possibility of opening the windows unless you want to have every one staring at you and looking at what you're doing. The kitchen staff turned on the radio at 6am, good bye morning rest. Anyway the whole place is so hot and humid you don't want to stay in the room.
There is no electricity in the day, only from 6pm.The electric generators work all night for additional noise. One evening there also was no water. They turned back the water in the night which made the plastic pipes pop in the bathroom and terrible water fall noise. We fixed it by ourselves and it happened again at 6 am...
The snorkelling equipment is not good.
My friend had booked a room for herself and payed extra for it, not to share. But 30mn after we arrived they asked if she would share with a man who just arrived at the resort and had a booking... They did find another solution. But she also won't ever come back to this place.
To top it all, we took the boat back to semporna jetty with their transport. But they actually left us somewhere else where a mini bus was waiting for other people and then drove to semporna. So the trip almost took double the time. Really need to plan a lot of time for the transport and unreliable people like this.
Seriously avoid this place.

  • Stayed: May 2015, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
7  Thank LaetiTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 April 2015

My stay at Arung Hayat was super nice. Booking through Agoda was quite fast. Mr Suffian the executive officer was quite fast in giving response to my inquiry. Confirmation on my stay was neat and very flexible as long as we negotiate with good manner. I had read some negative review from other guest but I found out that all the staff were good natured, kind and very friendly. I ve been through reading with all the others homestay and compared all the pro and con and choose staying here due to the affordable price of budget room with fan Rm100, aircon room rm150 full board (bf,lunch,dinner). I thought the price is quite fair. Food served were very nice and very delicious. I m so happy for the varieties of meals are up to my expectation . (I don’t eat prawn, crab, cuttlefish).
My room (no 1) was spacious for two people. The bathroom/toilet was okay. There was a time with shortage of water in the very early morning maybe around 5.30am. Be sure to fill up the fail for emergency purpose, but it was only for a short duration.
This was my first visit and i thought that it was quite safe even though the Security of Ministry is imposing curfew. Its not dampened my spirit to enjoy the beauty and nature of Mabul island. During my stay at Arung Hayat Lodge, the security personal were around and thus makes me felt safe.
My firs dive. I fell in love with scuba diving here. Never cross my mind of doing scuba diving but then Mr MD Tony and Kenon were so gergouos. I thought that they are indeed very dedicated and i felt so lucky to have them doing my DSD. I was unaware of the risk for I don’t swim at all. But all went well and am so happy. In conclusion Arung Hayat is very high recommended for low budget or backpackers.I will stay here when i come to visit Mabul island again.

Room Tip: room no 1 is spacious for two people.
  • Stayed: March 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
2  Thank epetra
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 reviewResponded 1 December 2016

“Thank you for your honest feedback!"

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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