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“heaven on sea!”

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Nabucco Island Resort
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 20 July 2011

paradise exists!
charming and clean bungalows with stunning views, restaurant with varied and always delicious meals, superb diving on amazing divesites provided by dive center with modern and well functioning equipment, and, maybe most important of all, a very very nice and professional staff and management! rainer the manager even got out of his bed personally at 5.30 a.m. to make it possible for us to dive "big fish country" ... a dive we'll never forget!
need I say more? just go there!

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with friends
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3  Thank Marisa064
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (122)
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63 - 67 of 122 reviews

Reviewed 31 July 2010

This is a very special and unique place surrounded by real unspoiled nature which I would say you will not find in Maldives or Bali for example. But if you are after a 5 star luxury honeymoon place with butler and jacuzzi then this will never be the place for you.

Having traveled around Kalimantan I can say the quality of the service is very good, and the German couple running the island are doing a great job, training local staff, encouraging them to learn (you can see the guys studying their biology books in between meals) and most important they are happy doing their job and the food is great. I would say it feels like a family run business.

Diving and/or snorkeling around Nabucco is so beautiful and most important you are alone! No other boats, no tourists, just you, the sea and your fellow divers. However it is true that the lodges are made out of wood so you can listen to your neighbour. Maybe I am deaf but this is a diving place and people go to bed early and wake up before sunrise and as per my own experience everyone was quite and I slept like a stone.

This is truly a unique place for unspoiled nature lovers.

  • Stayed: August 2009, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank axelm71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 September 2009

This is a diving resort located in a small island in front of Kalimantan east coast, so small that there is only the resort and it takes 5 minutes walking to do the tour. Me and my friend had a great time there!

The diving spots are amazing, and the diving center is run professionally and good equipment, and we had good dive masters. This is not always the case in inonesia! Moreover, as far as we agreed with other divers of the center, they were flexible on the diving spots for the next day and even last minute changes. The big fish country and kakaban (non-stinging jelly fish) are a must!! And when we were there it was very easy discussing after the dives with the other divers on a sunset terrasse with a nice cocktail.

The bungalows are simple but nice. I think all of them are facing the sea (with great colors both on sunrise and sunset, its magic waking up there). It is usual in Indonesia to have outdoors baths, with high walls for privacy, and its actually fantastic having a shower seeing palm trees. We had nice food, some local specialities (without the too spicy part). We never got hungry, that is a lot taking into account we were diving, but the food is not on buffet thing, but you know, throwing food for the sake of choosing,,,, in such a small resort,,,so far from markets and cities,,,
The alcohol and drinks are paid appart, and prices are in line with indonesian prices. It's a muslim country with small alcohol distribution.

you have to take into account where you go. It is not a luxurious hotel (they don´t meant to be one neither), and they are diving oriented...the spot is difficult to reach (that is part of the beauty!). The closest airport don´t have much frequency, and yes, the companies going there are blacklisted. But at that time, ALL indonesian companies were blacklisted!!! After that there is a nice boat ride (3h depending on weather). Also this means that logistics are complicated.

I still think is expensive for the standards, but the place and the dives are great.

  • Stayed: May 2009, travelled with friends
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1  Thank jakartian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 September 2008

Rooms:
The resort has 17 bungalow of 2 rooms each.
If the other room, in the same bungalow, is occupied, as it was the case with us, then forget it!
The wall separating the two rooms is such, that it is practically non-existent, from an acoustic viewpoint.
You can hear EVERY single noise coming from your neighbor room, it is almost as if there is no wall at all between the rooms. You hear them walking, talking, breathing... there is absolutely no intimacy.
The toilet and shower are in an open-air bathroom. Here again is communicant with the neighbour's bathroom.
The bed are single. If you want a double sheet (for 2 bed together) they don't have it. If you want them together you have to put them on your own.

All these things are very depressing in particular if you've decided to have a romantic stay...

Restaurant:
This was also the nightmare.
Breakfast: is “à la carte” but in fact you can chose only ONE SINGLE ITEM from the carte (i.e. a toast OR a pancake...).
Lunch: they advertize it as "a la carte", but in reality you only have the choice between 3 dishes. (i.e.: tuna sandwich OR nasi goreng OR fruit portion). The fruit is considered as a one of the choices: If you chose a sandwich you CANNOT have a fruit. If you want both you must take HALF portion of the sandwich and HALF portion of the fruit! Or to pay for an extra (6 euro) for the fruit. Unbelievable!
Diner: ONE menu for everybody. No choice! If you don’t like it, well …. Starve!
Everything below average!
NO beverages are included in the package price, and all prices are in euro (i.e. 2EUR water, about 55EUR for a bottle of wine).
They have a strict eating timetable! If you want to eat outside of it, there is no way you can. If you are not on time for dinner at 7:30 pm, they come and grab you out of your bungalow. Everybody MUST eat together!
Remember: There are NO other restaurants on the island!
Worse than everything else: there are rats in the restaurant at night...this was terrible.

Diving:
Very nice spots for diving but the hotel was not fully equipped. 2 clients of a big group couldn't have regulators because they were all rented out to other clients on the island.
When you come back on the boat from diving there is nothing to drink (water, tea or coffee) and neither to eat (coconut etc).


Management:
All these issues have been repeatedly raised with the manager but instead of solutions we have been offered a lot of ridiculous excuses such as:"Our backer has left the island for 1 week” ... “Yes we have a lot of coconut trees but nobody is able to take them” … “yes there is no buffet because we want you to stay healthy and slim” “the buffet would be too expensive for us” “we can give you fruit at lunch time with your sandwich but we will remove the fruit portion of the breakfast" ...
Never in our life we have been treated in this way!
What an arrogance!

Travel time and hassle :
From Jakarta or Singapore you take a "blacklist" airplane to Balikpapan. (2-3 hours). Then from Balikpapn to Berau another blacklist plane (1hour). Then a taxi and then a boat during about 3.30 hours to get to the island.

CONCLUSION:
Forget it! We absolutely do not recommend the place as you can imagine.
Such a long travel, with black-listed flights and unconfortable boat to get to an island with such a poor and military management, average food, being hungry during the day, basic and old bungalow, no privacy, expensive extras... all of this just for diving?... I would definitely recommend another island or the Maldives, it's far more better and spots are even nicer.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Check-in / front desk
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
16  Thank amy_travel_judge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 days ago
Google Translation

Room Tip: Scegliete un bungalow sul mare!
  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank claudiadg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Nabucco Island Resort

Address: Maratua Island | Berau District, East Kalimantan, Indonesia
Region: Indonesia > Kalimantan > Central Kalimantan
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 20 Hotels in Central Kalimantan
Hotel Class:3 star — Nabucco Island Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 17
Also Known As:
Nabucco Island Hotel Central Kalimantan
Nabucco Island Resort Central Kalimantan, Kalimantan

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