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“Excellent accommodation in Bunaken!”

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Happy Gecko Resort Bunaken (Cicak Senang)
Certificate of Excellence
Valletta, Malta
Level 6 Contributor
206 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
“Excellent accommodation in Bunaken!”
Reviewed 9 June 2013

Boy was i happy when we turned up at this hotel. The place is mostly run by a European lady who also speaks the local Indonesian dialect fluently, making arrangements all the more easy for you! The rooms had the most stunning views, and the bungalows themselves designed tastefully. I've lived in Indonesia myself for 9 months now, and this hotel served up some of the best meals i've ever had in this country! Clean, affordable, great staff - this place takes 'cheap and cheerful' to a whole other level! Highly recommended!

Room Tip: Ask for rooms as high up the hill as possible for the best views!
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank Chris E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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104 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Slovak first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Zurich, Switzerland
Level 4 Contributor
21 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 May 2013

we spent 5 nights in the small resort of 5 bungalows which is run by the dutch girl willeke, her bunaken husband jerry, their two kids, two dogs and a cat. we went diving every day with the guys from the attached dive shop. the accommodation seems to be a bit expensive on the first sight but the bungalows (2 rooms, balcony, and bathroom) are clean and spacious, the attached bathrooms have western toilets and showers and their own well provides constantly water for the sanitations. they serve plenty of delicious fresh food (vegies, fish, rice, fruits, chicken...) which is included in the price and you get free drinking water and coffee/tea as well. cold soft drinks and beer are as well available for fair prices. compared to the other resorts next door you'll be assured to get some good value for your money.

their website www.happygeckoresort.com provides all needed information and is up to date. they organize pickup from harbour/airport which seems a bit expensive but being dropped of right in front of the resort (2 hours after landing in manado airport) turns out to be the much better option than to walk/ojek your way up from the public ferry landing and is definitely worth the money.

the diving around bunaken is great and we found it very cosy to be with only a few other guests on the dive boat instead of being crunched with 20 other people like many other dive operators do there. we enjoyed diving with the brilliant local diver jimmy who speaks good english but as well the other dive guide jamie is a very experienced and funny dude. the dive equipment was in very good shape and the prices are among the cheapest we've seen all over indonesia.

the only down side - not of the resort but the surrounding - is that swimming/beach life is definitely not recommended on this side of bunaken due to the disgusting waste floating on the surface which eventually gets washed up on the beaches. even snorkelling is - depending on the tide and wind - sometimes just horrible and plastic bag and bottle experience.

summing up we had a great stay and would recommend especially to divers as there is not much else to do on bunaken. there is no party at happy gecko, no karaoke and no other annoying hassle going on. just sleep, eat, dive, eat, dive, dive and relax, then start all over again.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank puregin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
graz
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2013

this is a really good place to stay. the bungalows are basic but functional although we were very happy to have brought our own mosquito net with us as there are quite a few lurking around.
the food is good, with fish cooked in every way possible and the occasional bit of chicken as a break from the fish :) there is fresh fruit with every meal as well.
nice view, friendly staff and of course, great diving

Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Grazonb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Barcelona, Spain
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 December 2012

My husband and I spent 4 nights in Cicak Senang last September 2012 and we really had a great time. We arrived at Bunaken after 2 days of trip and still with our busy lives pace, and I have to admit that I first thought I wouldn't be able to stay more than 2 nights because I thought I would get bored. But no, I was even sad to leave the place after 4 nights there.
To sum up our stay:
- we met great people: beginning with Willeke, the owner of the place with her local husband. So helpful and nice, she really enlivened our nights after dinner. And Jimmy, a great local dive master. Then, as the resort only has 5 bungalows, contact with the other holiday-makers is very easy, especially at lunch/dinner time.
- we ate incredibly well. It was our second time in Indonesia and during the 6 weeks we spent there in total, we never ate so well as with Ida's local food. On top, meals are included in the price of the resort, and it's really worth it.
- we did wonderful diving. I have to say that if you don't dive, you will propbably get bored in Bunaken as there is practically nothing to do on the island, not even take the sun. As the Lonely planet says, beaches are full of rubbish coming from Manado, so you can't lie on the sand. But it is not the case of the underwater which is really really beautiful and really worth the trip.

Advice if you go to Bunaken: try to book your next stop beforehand as there is no Internet connection on the island. And don't hesitate to visit the villages that are nearby the resort: people are very nice and are not so used to see tourists who normally remain in their resorts on the coast.

Room Tip: All the bungalows are up the hill behind the restaurant/ reception and I think they all have sea vie...
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  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank SevcheBCN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tangerang, Jawa Barat, Indonesia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 October 2012

This place had become my first trip with my wife to Manado, and I'm having great time to stay. Great place and friendly service from the owner and all the staffs. Clean place. Clean Room. Very good food. Easy to have snorkling in front of the cottage. Not much mosquito. There are no hot water and no air conditioner, but there is a fan, anyway you won't stay at room whole day, because a lot of great site you will be missed.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Cicak_Senang_Bunaken
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canberra, Australia
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 September 2012

This is a great little joint. Run by a dutch lady and her Indonesian husband.... determined to make your stay comfortable and hospitable. it provides comfortable and clean accommodation, simple and tasty food, and warm hospitality. It is not luxurious, so don't expect air con, sparkling ensuites etc etc. But, the price is very reasonable, the rooms are naturally cool, and for what you pay, it is a five star place. It is also not to far from the action so if you can swim a few hundred meters you will be right amongst the boats that people hire to see the sea garden!! For me, I was happy to hang in the bungalow, admire my view of the ocean, read and enjoy the ambience of the cute local village not too far away.

Room Tip: I was in hut 3, with great views, but they all look pretty good
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  • Stayed September 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank Damien1967_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Netherlands
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 11 September 2012

We had a great time at the Happy Gecko Resort:
-Nice bungalows with magnificent views
-Warm & friendly staff, (kitchen, owners)
-Beautiful scuba diving with skilled instructors, personal attention
-Great food ! The fresh grilled tuna was awesome

We allready miss the Bintang beers & guitar playing by Jerry & friends.
Hope to come back sometime

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank Reinier B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Happy Gecko Resort Bunaken (Cicak Senang)

Property: Happy Gecko Resort Bunaken (Cicak Senang)
Address: Liang Beach, Bunaken Island 95242, Indonesia (Formerly Happy Gecko Resort (Cicak Senang))
Region: Indonesia > Sulawesi > North Sulawesi > Bunaken Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Restaurant Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 16 Speciality Lodging in Bunaken Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Small and cosy dive resort with only six spacious wooden bungalows on a hillside. Great sea views from your private balcony. Breezy seaside restaurant, with great food and cold drinks. Dive center on the premises with good diving at competitive prices. The owner, Jerry, was born and raised on the island and together with his Dutch wife he welcomes you to come and dive Bunaken. ... more   less 
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