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“Let's start with the positive things...”

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Paganakan Dii Tropical Retreat
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 10 July 2010

Let's start with the positive things about this place: the rooms (we stayed in a chalet) are just fabulous! Not like any other place. You can slide away almost all walls, so you feel like being in the middle of the jungle while still in your bed. The open air bathrooms are also quite an experience. The Paganakan Dii boosts an attractive open air communal area with comfy cushions. It's a good place to meet fellow travelers.

Unfortunately this place has downsides as well:
- the service is slooooow. Sometimes you'll have to wait 10 minutes just to ask a question at reception, while there no other guests and there are four members of staff doing nothing than chatting with each other. Patience is needed! Some of the staff members are okay though, but some of them did nothing but eating out of their noses all day long.
- we had to wait at least an hour for our food (lunch/dinner) to arrive. Not once, but every time we ate here! (3 times)
- half of the menu was unavailable during our stay. Not only the food, but the drinks as well.
- we had to wait well over 3 days for our laundry, and it was still humid when we collected it (so we have to wash or at least dry it once again at the next hotel). It's also rather expensive.
- The night before we had reception book us a taxi for 7:00 in the morning. We asked reception if it was possible to collect some of our luggage (which was in storage) and pay in the morning. They said this would be fine. At 7:00 there was someone from reception waiting for us, but she had no clue we still had to pay and the luggage storage was locked and she didn't have the key. She woke someone else from staff who tried to help us, but something was wrong with the bill (they lost one of the receipts I guess). After half an hour it was finally sorted out. The taxi was already waiting for us since 7:00, so of course we had to pay more for the ride to the airport.

In short: this place certainly has a lot of potential. Considering it's beautiful setting it could be a wonderful plaxe to spend some days. But when we were there it looked like it was rather mismanaged. There are lots of things they could (should!) improve on. Instead of expanding the place (they opened a couple of new chalets this week), they should make their service more reliable first. For now, I can't rate it higher than 3 out of 5...

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3  Thank GalapogosNL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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380 - 386 of 505 reviews

Reviewed 25 June 2010

this place is an absolute gem! It was so cheap I didn't think it would be even half as good as what it looks online, but it was even better than it looks! We had a chalet which was fab, with the bathroom outdoors (although there was no hot water, not that you need it really!) you get spectacular views over the valley. The food was really good and cheap too! Definatly the best place in sepilok for value and getting close to nature, with hamocks for star gazing this place is a special quiet retreat.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Tilly0319
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 May 2010

The Paganakan Dii is a lovely place to stay for a few days of rest and relaxation with some nature tours thrown in,

We stayed in dorms during a quiet week, so had the 12 bed dorm to ourselves which was great, although I am sure it would have been different if it had have been full.

The dorms were clean and modern and well designed, although they could have done with lockers or a safe to keep valuables in.

The staff were fantastic and helped us with everything. They advised us on tours and onward travel.

Transfers to and from the Orang utan sanctuary in Sepilok are also included in the price which was a bonus.

The location is fantastic as you are on the edge of the rain forest, however this does mean lots of bugs at night time, but its not a problem (and I hate bugs!)

The food was was ok although a little over priced on some dishes.

We have recommended the retreat to many people since our stay, who have all given us great feed back, especially on the private chalets.

The owners also own the Nak Hotel in Sandakan (about 20 minutes drive away from the retreat) which has a lovely restaurant and bar on the roof top. We ate here once and would love to go back again. Great food, lovely staff and beautiful decor.

I would highly recommend both the retreat and the hotel.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Misstravellingmack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 May 2010

Initially skeptical about this arrangement, I totally changed my mind.
I stayed for 2 nights at PaganakanDii and I was fine.
The staff is extremely kind, eat well and with great prices.
It 's wonderful to shower in the bathroom and outdoor living so close to nature!
In addition there is the possibility of day trips or overnight in the jungle toward the river Kinambatang, an experience that recommend it!

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Pearl_of_Labuan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 May 2010

We stayed for one night at Paganakan Dii in one of their bungalow type rooms and it more than met our expectations. The room was large & clean & air conditioned with a comfortable bed with mosquito net (which we did not use). The outdoor shower was a highlight. It had all mod cons yet you were in total privacy while overlooking the jungle.

The staff were helpful & friendly and after returning from Sandakan one morning on a local bus Anton drove down from the lodge to pick us up saving us a long uphill walk. Very much appreciated.

The location is excellent and the the retreat runs daily shuttles to the Sepilok orangutan conservation center. It also provides very good value for money while providing a very different experience to your normal hotel type accommodation.

We would highly recommend Paganakan Dii as a place to stay.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Gary59_10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 April 2010

We stayed here for 4 nights and found it truely relaxing and a good centre for the Orangutan Centre, the RDC and the river trips. We stayed in one of the cabins and found it very comfortable and loved the outdoor bathroom - its not everyday you get to shower in a rainforest! The breakfast was simple but good and the main social area was comfortable and had a great view of the forest canopy. The staff were very helpful and friendly and the free ride to the Orangutan Centre was a bonus. Best of all was how reasonably priced the accomdation was. Overall a great place to stay whether backpacking , with family or, as we were, on Honeymoon.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank NellieBee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2010

we stay in Paganakan Dii only for one night. Anton was very friendly and helpful the food was great and cheap. location is amazing your balcony is ON the forest it self and is enough to stay there for 10 minutes to see an incredible number of insects and animals. we loved the room, air conditioning and toilet. even if is not a 5 star hotel is the perfect compromise between the adventure and the comfort. we wish to spend there more time. Loved it!!!

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank AgataHK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Paganakan Dii Tropical Retreat

Address: Mile 14 | Jalan Labuk, Sandakan, Sepilok 90000, Malaysia
Region: Malaysia > Sabah > Sandakan Division > Sepilok
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Speciality Lodging in Sepilok
Price Range: £11 - £29 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Paganakan Dii Tropical Retreat 2.5*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Paganakan Dii is the perfect retreat to experience Nature in its most serene and natural state. Built on a site high above the surrounding foliage, the combination of cool longhouses and cosy duplex chalets makes for an experience worth a thousand images. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Paganakan Dii Tropical Retreat Hotel Sepilok
Paganakan Dii Tropical Retreat Sepilok, Sandakan Division

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