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“Nice Place to Stay in Bunaken”

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Happy Gecko Resort Bunaken (Cicak Senang)
Certificate of Excellence
Bogor, Indonesia
Level Contributor
22 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Nice Place to Stay in Bunaken”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 December 2013

The owner, Willeke, was a nice lady and fairly offered the room rate with quick-response email. No disatisfaction. She arranged port pick and drop-off with cheap prices. She also suggested us to join other's group so that we could have cheaper snorkeling trip. And the food, she had a local cook that served us delicious meals 3 times a day which're included in the room rate.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
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    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Lilita N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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101 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Korean first
  • Polish first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Amsterdam, Nederland
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 November 2013

In contrary to what is written in the Lonely Planet, this side of Bunaken offers you the best views and is definitely the better side of the island. The resort is owned by Willeke and we immediately felt like home upon arrival.

As Bunaken mainly attracts divers, we did our PADI course here and couldnt have made a better decision to do it with Cicak Senang. The instructor Ferdinand is one of the best out there, very calm, friendly and makes you really feel comfortable in the water. Same for the other dive master Jimmy, you can tell he has been down there numerous times, literally knowing every cave.

We spend 4 nights here, enjoyed many good laughs with our group, thanks for the truly amazing experience.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sander1058
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 September 2013

It’s hard to imagine a place with better value for money than Happy Gecko on Bunaken. The location of Happy Gecko Resort is very good with fantastic snorkeling just off the beach. As there are only five bungalows (all have sea views), the place is pretty quiet and has a laid back atmosphere. The wooden bungalows are simple but spacious and clean and beds are good. The excellent cooks serve three meals daily, which are included in the price. When we stayed here, we enjoyed lots and lots of fresh fish of which the grilled barracuda was a true highlight. We made 6 scuba dives with local guide Jimmy, who is a very relaxed guy and really takes the time to make sure everybody is enjoying their dive. He showed us many weird creatures, big and tiny. Dutch owner Willeke, who runs the place with her husband, is a very welcoming host and helpful with transportation arrangement. When we come back to Bunaken, we will stay here again.

Summarizing: highly recommended

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
3 Thank Jazzplanet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leiden, The Netherlands
Level Contributor
31 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 September 2013

This place is run by a Dutch owner, who tries to help out with anything you need. It's all inclusive, the food is pretty good. They try to serve some different every day. At the same time I found the diving center not that professional. Some of the equipment is run down and needs to be replaced. The atmosphere at the resort is very relaxed.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank RTiber
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bandung, Indonesia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 August 2013

We stayed 4 nights and personally like this hidden gem. The room/bathroom is spacious with balcony to relax and enjoy the sea view from up hill. Each bungalows are located far from each other to ensure privacy and surrounded by beautiful garden. Lunch and dinner are great with fresh fish and fruit (however breakfast needs improvement). The backyard is huge and you can see rooster and domestic pig passing around.

The main compound is the restaurant a.k.a hang-out place which is basically a large verandah overlooking mangrove beach. You can see the owner, bu Wileke, usually sitting at the back of bar table eager to answer guests question there. There are only 5 bungalows, while you have 3 kitchen staffs, 2 lovely owners, 2 dive guides with dedicated boat (and a dog), so you can be sure the guests are well taken care here. The dive is simply amazing, well.. this is Bunaken!

PS: This place is not for luxury-seeker as it doesn't have aircon (only fan) and the electricity went off on day time. They said they use solar power to generate electricity. You also have to be kind to many insects (and gecko) coming near you. Those looking for modern comfort can check the hotels downtown in Manado.

Room Tip: Bungalow on higher slope has better sea view
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Tommy_Wijaya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Macau, China
Level Contributor
40 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 July 2013

We stayed 12 nights and can't say enough about the kindness and generosity of everyone at Cicak Senang and their dive shop.

Everyday their chefs prepare the most delicious Indonesian food. We never tired of the meals.

The dive masters have dove on Bunaken for more than a decade and are incredibly knowledgable and safe. They adjusted themselves to our style of diving and were very accommodating, while finding us many special sea creatures. The boat only takes out a small number of divers daily so the boat crew and divers are able to get to know each other and enjoy each others company.

The bungalows are situated on a lush hillside overlooking the water and Sulawesi in the distance. They were quite comfortable and clean. We brought a mosquito net so we could leave all the windows open and enjoy the breeze.

Lastly, Willeke and Jerry are so welcoming and genuinely nice. They felt like family by the time we left and we truly can't wait to return again in the future.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Heather D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Valletta, Malta
Level Contributor
202 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles 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!
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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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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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 15 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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