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“Great place for divers” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Avillion Layang Layang

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Avillion Layang Layang
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Layang Layang
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
33 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Great place for divers”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 January 2013

Layang Layang is an island off the coast of Borneo Island - the Malaysian owned part. It is accessible for plane or by LoB. Its primary activity is scuba diving. You will get to see sharks, manta rays, dolphins, plenty of small coral fish, and coral reefs. Its got a pleasant house reef with its own resident moray Eels. I found the staff to be friendly, helpful - the food was also pretty good considering everything has to be flown in. They served a royal feast for us at the end of the trip.

If you love tropical blue clear waters you will love this place. I went in Mid May 2012 and luckily I got to swim with a 3m long Marlin fish. What I wish for is for the resort to provide a dolphin exclusive snorkeling trip where you get to ride in the water on a zodiac while it follows the dolphin school. I guess one problem with this resort is that the walls are a bit thin and you can hear your neighbors next door - esp if they are the noisy loud mouthed variety.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Yauming
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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108 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    30
    46
    18
    5
    9
See reviews for
4
37
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4
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (25)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
104 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 October 2012 via mobile

I loved layang layang for the ease and standard of the beautiful wall dives one after the other. 10 mins to most dive sites in seaworthy craft with ample room and good guides. I never expect western style accommodation before I go to any remote dive destination, and that saves disappointment, however, I make that part of the adventure, the unknown, and appreciate the haves rather than the have nots. I slept well. Loved the dives. Tolerated the food. Enjoyed a drink or two with great mates by the pool. We travel with our own crowd which I enjoy. Didn't see a hammerhead, saw mantas, and lots and lots other critters large and small. Lots of nudibranch a every dive plus enjoyed the muck dive which I usually hate.

Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
Helpful?
2 Thank Louise W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
203 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 144 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 October 2012

OK, first and foremost, only go if you want to dive. The resort has seen better days and although the staff are friendly and helpful, the rooms and food are average.
Second, seeing the hammerheads is NOT guaranteed. We were the only group to see them - but when we did it was spectacular and who really cares what the room's like when you dive with sharks all around you!?
You need to be an experienced diver as the diving is all outside the lagoon and you go deep. Apart from sharks there are mantas, devil rays and lots of dolphins

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank tarostra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
164 reviews
148 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 182 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 August 2012

Since Avillon is the only hotel on Layang Layang there seems to be no incentive for the business to make any effort to provide anything that resembles a decent resort. People will still come to dive and pay the extortionate rates.

The service is terrible, all the time. The room was old and shabby, the aircon struggles, the shower is little more than a dribble. There was no safe deposit box.

The food at the resort was incredibly poor. Since there are no other food options on the island you’re stuck with buffet-after-buffet of tasteless, low quality and unhealthy food. I have never been to any hotel in southeast Asia that didn’t serve fresh fruit.

The dive centre was acceptable. Our dive master was very good and the equipment seemed to be OK. The diving was decent but not as spectacular as advertised.

Room Tip: Quieter the further you are from the pool area
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank talltaff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nicosia, Cyprus
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 August 2012

We did 42 dives here during the last part of May 12, and saw an impressive selection of both big stuff and critters, including a few hammerheads. The trouble with hammerhead sitings is the tendency of those with cameras to swim straight at them the moment they are spotted, which results in them disappearing rapidly before anybody can see them well. The only time we saw one close was when we were on our own with the guide, the rest of the group having gone off in pointless pursuit of a shadow in about 40m. There are some spectacular walls, and in some areas the variety of reef fish is astounding. Some areas are, typically of Asian sites, damaged by dynamite fishing and a recent plague of crown of thorns, but who cares when a couple of mantas, a shoal of bumpheads, a turtle, grey reef sharks, +,+,+, all pass by on that dive!

We found the food OK. There was plenty of it, the quality and variation was acceptable, with a chance to sample proper Asian food, there being many Asian guests.

The big problem for us was the rooms. We don't care too much about luxury, as we go to dive, and the beds were comfortable enough, the cleanliness adequate and the towel sculptures most inventive, even if the bathrooms are a bit tatty and the furnishings unattractive. But the paper thin walls are awful. You can hear every word from your neighbours, and much more besides! We were unfortunate enough to get loud-mouthed ones that stayed up late next door, it can be a real torment when you are trying to sleep after a busy day's diving with an early start in the morning, or even if you are having a quiet read in bed. Come on Avillion, lots of complaints about this, so put up some soundproofing, even cork tiles would help.

A pleasant ambience, varied diving and great staff would certainly draw us back for another holiday there, but ONLY if they do something about those dividing walls. With the effort and cost involved in getting there, one really doesn't need the irritation.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank GirneGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 July 2012

The walls were beautiful and the reefs nice. I expected to be really blown away by the diving here and I was not. The dive staff are competent and friendly. They offer briefings before each dive which are scheduled 3 x daily. You can do the shore dive at the dock which I did and recommend. We dove it at dusk and it was fantastic. We saw alot of critters in about 15-20 feet of water. We never saw any hammerheads at all. Every morning the dive master takes you out into the blue to look for them, its the ocean so nothing is guaranteed. We had Amanda as our dive master and I felt she rushed the dives a bit. We saw some eels (not a lot), big schools of barracuda, pygmy seahorses, lionfish, turtles.

The meals are buffet style with lots of it. Although by the end I was sick of it. Lots of rice and Chinese dishes. The rooms are average. There is a TV in each room. One big complaint I had was that we had no hot water in our room and after some rainy days of diving with no sun, you just really wanted to take a hot shower to warm up again. And that just didn't happen.

I think if you live in that part of the world (I do not) the diving and traveling is okay but if you live far away like I do (East coast of the US) its not that impressive to come so far.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank ScubaChickJamie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 June 2012

Spent 7 days diving on Layang Layang beginning of June 2012.

Resort: I would describe it as a resort with 3 star rooms (clean but simple and a bit outdated), 4 star facilities (nice pool, good food, 3 meals a day with good choice of Western and Asian, 2 snacks in between, nice bar with books and tv) and 5 + star people (always friendly and cheerful)

Diving: magnificent drop offs and walldiving, abundant fish and corals, and a good chance to see mantas, hammerheads, sharks, pygmee seahorse, ornate pipefish etc etc. No guarantees though, so if you're unlucky you may spend all your dives waiting the first 10 to 15 minutes out in the blue at 25m for nothing. Just to manage your expectations. However, the remainder of each dive is near the wall or reef and that's guaranteed to be fantastic every time. We saw hammerheads twice in 18 dives, partly because we had rough weather first few days. Boat rides all 15 minutes max. Diving not very difficult, these are currents and deep drop offs but not very hard as long as you have decent buyoancy control. Dive master Allister very professional, good briefing and a good eye for spotting fish, as well as small "stuff".

Note: apart from diving there is nothing to do on this remote island. It is a great escape though and diving is fantastic!

  • Stayed June 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Steve123453
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Avillion Layang Layang

Property: Avillion Layang Layang
Address: Layang Layang 88005, Malaysia
Region: Malaysia > Sabah > West Coast Division > Kota Kinabalu District > Layang Layang
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Layang Layang
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Avillion Layang Layang 3*
Number of rooms: 86
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Layang Layang Island Resort Sdn Bhd is an exclusive resort that dominates the Layang Layang island - an oceanic atoll of Spratly Islands situated approximately 300km northwest of Kota Kinabalu in Sabah, Malaysia. Fondly known as "The Jewel of the Borneo Banks," it is truly a diver's paradise. As many as 14 coral reefs have formed here, creating a breathtaking underwater scenery. The dive sites are well known for the intriguing hammerhead sharks and pygmy seahorses among other rare creatures. An hour's flight north of Kota Kinabalu, the island on which Layang Layang Island Resort Sdn Bhd nestles lies in 2,000 m of ocean and, due partly to the depth, this atoll has become famous for sightings of large pelagic species and for wall diving. Layang Layang Island Resort Sdn Bhd is the only resort on the island besides a Royal Malaysia Navy base. The resort, designed to look like the traditional Long House, comprises 86 cosy rooms, restaurant and bar, outdoor swimming pool, dive center with certified diving instructors and a variety of diving courses among other facilities for modern comforts. Come for the exclusive and intriguing diving experience at this remote destination out of the world, where rare and uncommon underwater creatures await you! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Avillion Layang Layang Island Hotel Layang Layang
Layang Island Hotel

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