We stayed here in September 2007 and had an amazing holiday. The resort is very quiet and only has 10 - 15 rooms. At times, we were the only guests in the resort on a particular day, so we had the pool, bar and restaurant all to ourselves.
The staff were very friendly and attentive, but without being at all intrusive. We felt that we had the place to ourselves, but as soon as we needed anything, someone magically appeared. All the staff were great, and Novel's cocktails are legendary!
We mainly chose the location for the scuba diving, and we weren't disappointed. As the resort was so quiet, we were the often the only people on our dive boat, and we were able to decide where we wanted to dive and at what time, so we were able to make our own schedules. It was about a 30 minute boat trip to the many coral dive sites at Bunaken Island, and there was local muck-diving at about 10 - 15 minutes away in Bethlehem, were we saw frog fish and ghost pipefish. Travelling to our dives sites we saw pygmy whales and Dugongs.
The resort also organise several excursions. We went on two trips, which I would highly recommend. The first involved climbing a volcano with amazing views over North Sulawesi, visiting a local market (not for the faint hearted!), local pottery makers and carpenters and other local sights. The second was to the National Park, where we saw Tarsiers, which are the world's smallest primate, and also Black Crested Macaws.
Food at the hotel was good, and plentiful. You soon realise you cannot eat every course at every meal - there's so much of it. The main restaurant is just across the river from the rooms and bar / pool area, and there is also a "Jungle" restaurant which is a 10 minute walk up the steep cliff face serving local Indonesian food, with amazing views across Manado Bay towards Manado Tua. The hotel also organised beach barbeque nights.
The rooms were beautifully done, in local wood and stone with large 4 poster beds. They were very comfortable and were very clean and well maintained.
We had a fantastic time in this resort, and would recommend it to anyone looking to visit the area.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Cottages & Rooms for Scuba Diving. ... more less
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