A handful of duplex wooden chalets line the paths heading back from the beach, punctuated with flowering tropical plants and birdsong.
The rooms, although pleasant, feel like prefab workers huts that have been given a makeover, and we felt rather overpriced for the offer, but that is more to do with prices on Mabul in general than this particular resort. They are definitely comfortable, just not luxurious. Soft beds, air-con and ceiling fans, a safe and tea and coffee making facilities plus a drinking water dispenser are all offered, and rooms are clean and bright with some local decorative touches.
Hot-water bathrooms are clean, but a little stained and there’s not much bench space, just a tiny glass shelf. Wide verandas offer two hard wooden chairs; we’re sure something more comfortable would be welcome after a hard day's diving. The path surrounding the beachside swimming pool was damaged, as were some tiles, but to be fair, the maintenance guys were resurfacing it when we visited. The pool is clean, but offers no shade; if you really want to soak up the sun, there’s plenty of sun lounges (although they had maintenance issues too), but we’d be heading to the lovely white sandy beach in front of the resort. Set at the back of the garden, the open-air restaurant serves the included buffet meals (beware of vultures), and beachside, along from the resort a small beach bar is the perfect spot for watching the sun set, listening to the lapping waves and winding down your day. If you’re still wound up, the on-site spa next door should help. The dive centre can guarantee a Sipadan permit if you stay for four nights or longer.
A three-day, two night package costs 1,800 ringgit per person, or 1,440 for non-divers. The package includes meals, three boat dives per day, unlimited dives on the house reef and return transport from Tawau airport. A single supplement is an additional 50% and an additional night is priced at 800 ringgit including dives and 640 ringgit for a non-diver. For cheaper accommodation with a reputable dive company, Mabul Beach Resort
run by Scuba Junkie is a good choice.