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“Excellent Instructors”

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Ban's Diving Resort
Ranked #5 of 49 Hotels in Koh Tao
Certificate of Excellence
Calgary, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Excellent Instructors”
Reviewed 9 August 2014

While the standard rooms, resort, and restuarant were fairly average (less the bar, which is actually quite nice in the evening with live music), the instructors make this dive resort a truly phenomenal experience. Specifically, my Open Water group was led by a girl named Manya who was always enthusiastic during both classroom and dive sessions. She was able to quickly and calmly assist me when I had begun choking underwater after performing a regulator skill incorrectly at 10 metres deep. She immediately defused what could have been a very dangerous situation. The other instructors, Marcel, Rory, and Shane were very entertaining and knowledgable, and they were supportive when I had experienced sinus issues while descending. While the facilities and equipment may not be anything to get excited about, the staff truly make this the best diving resort in Thailand.

Room Tip: The private rooms are simple but functional. Be aware the dorms have around 15 beds per room.
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Brad M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (158)
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English first
United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 August 2014 via mobile

Myself and my partner stayed at bans so he could complete his advanced open water dive course.

We stayed in a divers room and payed an extra 200baht a night for me as a non diver.

The room itself was adequate, nothing special but the upkeep was rubbish. The mosquito net around the window had been ripped and simply taped up with black masking tape that was falling off, the cupboard and desk had definitely seen better days and although the bathroom was clean it stank.

When telling the reception manager about these problems the only option she could provide was moving into one of there proper guest rooms and although offered at a discounted price due to the dive course was still out of our budget. We did get to see some of the other rooms and they were beautiful! The new block which is also at the top of the hill has the biggest rooms.

The resort itself was a perfect location, right on the beach and the restaurant was very reasonable. Although at the higher end of the price point the 'ocean pie' is not to be missed.

The service in the restaurant is very poor. Make sure you say hi to a waiter as you enter otherwise you can end up sitting there for half hour without being given menus.

The pools are if decent size but don't bother booking a room near the one in the garden as it is always used for try dives.

My partner had a good experience diving with them, initially was worried about the size of groups but they broke off into smaller ones.

One thing I liked was that they have an instructor for every language.

All in all an ok stay.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank joandrik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
114 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 August 2014 via mobile

Let me start with the room: we decided to pay a little extra to upgrade to an air con room (you get a fan room free with the OW course). It was VERY basic. The two single beds were the thinnest of mattresses, and all walls/windows are so thin it is noisy. The bathroom was disgusting - absolutely foul. Our room - and in fact the whole resort - smells of poo. Apparently this is because they use the waste to fertilise the gardens there. I hope this isn't true, but it perfectly feasible given the smell.
The OW course: this itself was well run, luckily we didn't have a huge group, and because one of them was newly qualified we had two instructors between 8. The sessions were all good and I would recommend the diving here, though I expect it is much the same in any diving resort.
The resort and restaurant: the restaurant gave nice food but was very hectic and disorganised. One persons food would come within 10 minutes, and another person would be waiting for 40. Always very busy.
It's annoying that they say there are swimming pools at the resort for guests to use, but this is never possible as they always are filled with diving lessons.
We left happy with our OW certificates, but couldn't help but feel that Ban's is just a big, commercial machine that gets as many divers willing to pay as possible through it's doors. There's nothing nice about it as a resort.

Stayed July 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Augustuscalv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cork, Ireland
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2014 via mobile

Loved the place and I didn't even go diving ! Great memories of the local nightlife . Lovely themed rooms very clean ! Nice pool even do the divers get preference . Nice beach very scenic with tasty restaurant . Handy lil shop . Nice in reception even if busy . Ko Tao in General nicest Thai island iv been to

  • Stayed September 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Diarmuid S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 31 July 2014

I visited Koh Tao in july 2014, and stayed at Ban's Diving resort for 6 days. Let's start with the hotel. The room was clean and looked nice, though the Aircondition wasn't able to cool down the whole room which made it a bit annoying with the heat. When you wanted to get your room cleaned and/or have some bed sheets changed you had to specifically ask for this, it wasn't a normal routine. The hotels room are located either at the beginning at the hotel or on the other side of the road, either way you can't have a bad leg, because you'll have a very bad time with all the steep "hills" and stairs. The two pools that are on the site are good pools, one is only for learning to dive another is for relaxing. The relaxing pool which is located near their resturant Darawan is a sweet pool though it is also used for diving training and that can be rather annoying when you're coming home from a dive and you can't just jump into the pool because there are divers training. In adittion, the pool can also be very dirty which also is a bit disgusting. If you're eating breakfast, then it is a limited but good food selection. The waiters/staff are very rude, in the form that they keep staying on their mobiles, and it's so obvious. Now to the diving. The instructors are really cool people, chilled and just here to make your diving experience a good one. The gear is good eneough, of course it's better to have your own gear but yeah it's good gear. So in conclusion, this is a good place to stay at if you're coming to get your diving certificate.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Seb F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 July 2014 via mobile

I was recommended Ban's because it was the best known diving center in Koh Tao. However, my experience was not the best... my husband and I checked in and asked for the room with air-con for £12, the room was alright but the loo was with the sewage open! It smelled horrible! The huts in just 3 mins walk, in front of the beach, for less, are much better than this.

Anyway, we thought I'll be doing my Open Water course therefore we won't be spending much time in these rooms. I was in shock, I asked my course to be in Spanish because it's my mother tongue AND I didn't want to be part of those 18 people group for English Open Water course with just one instructor in charge...(that's right...I counted 18 people and 1 instructor doing the pool work...)
Nonetheless, being handed between 4 different Spanish instructors is not great either, luckily (I think) one apprentice (dive master) decided to teach me, he was good in the sense he taught me every single detail about my course. Although, impersonal and unfriendly did not make the diving an joyable experience. Additionally, I could be wrong, but I didn't think a Dive Master was allowed to teach without an Instructor present (?).

Fortunaly, I did my advanced open water course in an amazing diving center on the same island just a couple minute walk North up the beach, Scuba Junction, which compensated this bad experience. If you want to learn PLEASE go there instead. Not the factory that is Ban's diving.

Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank Medusina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviewed 18 July 2014

Overall I had a brilliant stay in Ban's. I did the open water diving course and got free accommodation with the package.

The accommodation is very basic which is fair enough considering it is free, but I had to ask staff to clean the room and change the bed sheets, etc (in which they were a bit hesitant to do so). The basic accommodation has no air con (just a fan) , so I recommend to upgrade just for comfort!

The complex has two really nice pool areas. It is very clean and well kept. The diving course is well run and has brilliant instructors. The open water course is 4 days long. The first two days of the course you get most of the theory out of the way and learn the basics of diving in one of the two pools. The final two days you dive out into the sea - it is spectacular!!

The resorts bar and restaurant is superb. Great food, great atmosphere and the bar (called the fishbowl) is full to the brim most nights.

Room Tip: Make sure you get a room with air con.
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sean M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ban's Diving Resort

Property: Ban's Diving Resort
Address: Haad Sairee, Koh Tao, Koh Tao 84360, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Koh Tao
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Koh Tao
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Koh Tao
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Ban's Diving Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ban's Technical Diving is operated out of Ban's Diving, Koh Tao, Thailand. Ban's Technical Diving is an award winning DSAT, BSAC, ANDI Technical Instructor Diving Facility. The only Tech Center on Koh Tao (and one of few in the world) that offers DSAT Technical Diving Intructor Courses. Deep Wreck Diving, Cave Expeditions.-Nitrox, Deep, Wreck, Gas Blender, Compressor Operator, Rebreather, Equipment, Emergency Oxygen, Technical Decompression Diving, Cave, Cavern......... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ban`s Diving Hotel Koh Tao
Bans Diving Hotel
Bans Diving Ko Tao

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