Archive for June, 2013

More Downbelow Instructors now qualified to teach Nitrox Course in Sabah

Sunday, June 30th, 2013 @ 09:00 Courses, News


Strike (Downbelow Operations Manager & Downbelow Instructor) & Mel (Captain & Downbelow Instructor) took advantage of having resident Platinum PADI Course Director Richard Swann around by furthering their education and participating in the Enriched Air Nitrox Speciality Instructor course.

By taking the program with a course director they will immediately be able to teach the PADI Enriched Air Nitrox speciality course.

Great job guys! Continuing your education is a huge benefit to both instructor & student.

New Divemasters Now Going For IDC Asia

Saturday, June 29th, 2013 @ 09:00 News


It was a big day for Karen Pym and Chris Jones as they completed their PADI Divemaster course in the sunny Gaya Island, Borneo. They are now professionals in the world of diving!

On hand to personally congratulate them was Downbelow Manager and IDC Staff Instructor Paul Jones.

They won’t pack their bags yet as their educational journey will have to go through another important step and that is the PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC) happening next month.

The instructor development course will do exactly that: develop the candidate into an instructor. Once the candidate is ready, he or she will sit for the PADI Instructor Examination (IE), a standardised 2-day evaluation of the candidate’s abilities by PADI Instructor Examiners from PADI Asia Pacific.

However with close mentoring and highly experienced trainers from Downbelow, our candidates will not face too much difficulty in passing the IE.

The candidates can take comfort by checking our records – we have 100% passing rate!

Coral Re-planting for Damaged Borneo Corals

Friday, June 28th, 2013 @ 10:50 News

Coral Re-Planting in Borneo

Last Sunday morning was among the best we had, resident Platinum PADI Course Director Richard Swann, Timmy (Downbelow local Divemaster Trainee) & Captain Along placed all of the planted corals from the previous day’s “Coral for Life” incentive program on our artificial house reef.

The damaged corals were snagged by an illegal fishing net on one of our popular dives and were collected and re-planted by the wonderful kids from the Darul Bakti Orphanage during the program.

While we took care of the planting, our international Go-Pro interns returned to the dive site and removed the net completely.

So between us, we have minimised the impact & had fun underwater at the same time!

Great thing to do on a Sunday morning.

Clear and Sunny skies over KK Sabah

Thursday, June 27th, 2013 @ 16:18 News

no haze in kk

We have received some emails recently from concerned visitors who were wondering how badly the haze has affected us! Some clients are even considering not coming at all!

Downbelow Managing Director Richard Swann decided to take a few snaps with his iPhone today to show everyone life is still wonderful in sunny Sabah.

This morning conditions have cleared up nicely & as you can see we have sunny blue skies around KK & the Downbelow Dive centre.

Kick back guys & enjoy your holiday.

Young Diver Completes Internship with the Downbelow Office KK

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013 @ 14:00 News

intern at downbelow office kk

The always-busy office team gets an extra pair of helping hands thanks to 15-year old Maxime from Kinabalu International School (KIS) who is here for a week to experience a working environment as part of his school syllabus.

We are always happy to help anyone in their quest for knowledge and we are proud Maxime choose to complete his internship with Downbelow. He is a certified PADI Advanced Open Water diver with more than 70 logged dives.

For his tasks in the office we are rotating his work among the departments so he can see how the different teams work together. On his first day he was assigned to the I.T. Department and saw first-hand how our websites and social media presence is maintained. Today he is kept busy in the Admin Office as pictured above.

So far he’s coping up well! Keep it up Maxime!

Snorkeling Joy for the Kids at our IDC Dive Centre Borneo

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013 @ 11:25 News


Fun, fun and more fun during our “Coral for Life” program, wholly sponsored by Downbelow Marine & Wildlife!

Last Saturday we welcomed the kids from the Darul Bakti Orphanage in Kota Belud to the Downbelow 5 Star IDC Dive Centre to learn about coral and how to protect our ocean & marine environment.

We started the activity at our dive centre with a brief powerpoint presentation introducing the 60+ participants to the underwater world of coral, how it lives and what threatens it.

Then everybody enjoyed a snorkeling session, coral reef planting & a beach clean up which actually turned into lots of splashing & jumping around as the young ones couldn’t resist jumping into the warm waters of the South China Sea.

Our Go-PRO interns were a huge help and thoroughly enjoyed themselves assisting the island team ensuring all ran smoothly and safely.

It was also great to see Joanne, Wan, Ana & Jeff from the head office on the island who all put so much effort into making the day such a success.

Coral for Life” is a Downbelow initiative created to form appreciation & awareness for coral life.

During the program participants learn about the role coral plays within the environment, they also get to see coral in its natural environment while snorkeling and they re-planted broken coral that would otherwise perish. The treated corals are then placed in their new homes by the Downbelow team on our artificial house reef located in the bay just in front of the dive centre.

So the message is clear – lets help coral live in the oceans as we shout “Coral for Life”!

Big thanks as always to our awesome Downbelow Team for putting on a great, safe well organised day!

Giving New Life to Corals in KK Borneo

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013 @ 09:46 News


The day before the scheduled arrival of more than 50 kids from the Darul Bakti Orphange to our dive centre, Richard asked all of our pleasure divers if they could collect any broken but otherwise healthy corals they see on their dives.

This is because one of the activities arranged for our special little guests is to let them experience part of the coral re-planting process. The kids from a local orphanage here were specially invited by Downbelow for a day of fun and knowledge.

So the lucky selected coral pieces will have another chance of survival when the kids give them a new home on our artificial reef. Once they flourish we will return them to their place of origin!

That day will be a special day indeed with loads of love and the conservation message being shared.

Sabah Dive Festival Promotion: Experience Divine Diving at Layang Layang Island, Borneo

Friday, June 21st, 2013 @ 11:42 News, Promotions

Layang Layang Island Dive Resort Sabah, Borneo

You will be so happy you are reading this! This is your chance to scuba dive Layang Layang Island for their Sabah Dive Festival promotion. You will have the chance to go to the most stunning dive sites on the wall with the 2,000m drop where viz is usually between 30 – 60m.

With a promotional price of only MYR 2,735.00 from the original price of MYR 4,400.00 this is a deal of a lifetime. That is a whopping 38% discount!

This offer includes 5 nights stay with twin share accomodation, 12 boat dives and all meals! Only a minimum of 2 person is required and valid for the dates between 23rd – 28th July 2013.

Never heard of Layang Layang Island before? It is an isolated island paradise where it lies on its own in the South China Sea and perched on the edge of an atoll that rises from the depths 2,000m below.

The unique outcrop that is Layang Layang, consists of 13 corals reefs, offering mind boggling underwater scenery, and provides the staple of Layang Layang’s offerings; a diving holiday like no other.

This great deal excludes return flights, insurance and personal dive equipment.

Contact us today to book your place or if you have any enquiries on this offer.

New Qualified Divers in KK Sabah

Thursday, June 20th, 2013 @ 17:50 News

qualified divers from borneo

Congratulations Raymond and Irene – both of you are now certified PADI Open Water Divers!

A big pat on the back to Downbelow instructor Mohd Fauzi a.k.a. Pablo for a job well done!

As qualified divers they have the freedom to go diving anywhere in the world with a buddy independent of a professional to a maximum depth of 18 metres.

Do you want to be a qualified diver as well? Consider our PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centre located on Gaya Island within the Tunku Abdul Rahman Park – TARP in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah.

It is an ideal venue for learning to scuba dive or continuing with your dive education, with both confined shallow, sandy areas right in front of our dive centre which are ideal for skill practice and colourful open water dive sites full of life just minutes by our fast speedboats.

Wonderful day of snorkeling fun at Tunku Abdul Rahman Park Malaysia

Thursday, June 20th, 2013 @ 16:31 News

fun day snorkeling in borneo with downbelow

What a wonderful day for a session of snorkeling fun at the Tunku Abdul Rahman park.

Picture above shows all of our guests who joined our snorkelling safari along with Downbelow instructors.

Just about anybody can participate in the sport of snorkeling regardless of age, skill and physical fitness. That is because snorkeling is one of the easiest, most fun and most popular ways to see the underwater world and not to mention very in-expensive as well.

It’s often said that “theres nothing to it !” The truth is there are a number of skills to learn which make snorkeling easier and more enjoyable. We offer various snorkeling programs catering for the non swimmer, beginner, intermediate and advanced snorkeler.

Contact us if you have any enquiries on our snorkelling programs.