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Koh Tao with Leo - Sairee Cottage Diving

17 Oct 2017

Marcel Van De Berg has been on Koh Tao now since 2007 and still loves every day on this beautiful Island.

“I always wanted to live on a tropical island and when I did a PADI Open Water Diving course in 2003 I knew that I wanted a career in diving. At that time I didn’t really know where to go in the world, but after hearing from so many people that Koh Tao was the place to be, I packed my bags and travelled to Koh Tao!”.

Once Marcel arrived on Koh Tao, every day became a better day for him.

“Koh Tao offers many great things like lots of bars and restaurants, jungle trekking, rock climbing, cliff jumping, many different water sports, stunning beaches, amazing sunsets and most importantly some of the best diving in the world!”.

What is the concept of the Sairee Cottage?
Our concept is to try to give some of the best diving experiences to our customers by creating dive programs that suit them the most while keeping the relaxed atmosphere at the Dive Centre.

What do you offer?
At Sairee Cottage Diving we offer all the PADI Diving courses like: PADI Open Water Diver, Advanced Open Water Diver, EFR, Rescue Diver and many PADI Specialty Courses.

On top of that we offer extended PADI Divemaster, PADI Diving Instructor (IDC), MSDT and full time Instructor Internship Courses at Sairee Cottage Diving.

One of our most popular diving package is the Zero to Hero Divemaster or Instructor Package, where we take people from being inexperienced divers to experienced Divemasters or Dive Instructors. This program is uniquely designed by myself and our DM Mentors Gaz Jameson and Maddy Barker ensuring some of the highest quality in the Dive Industry.

What is different about your diving experience?
At Sairee Cottage Diving we thrive to give some of the best diving experiences on Koh Tao. Our fun diver program is led by legendary Divemaster Gal Wright who is one of the most passionate divers in the Thailand with thousands of dives under his belt. At Sairee Cottage Diving we have a separate boat focuses on giving you the best fun diving experience. Every day we go to 3 different dive sites on
Koh Tao with our comfortable dive boat. We leave at 08:00 in the morning after most of the early boats go out and come back at 14:00 to enjoy the rest of your day.

We have a second boat that leaves in the afternoon, just focussed on beginner diving courses like DSD try-out dives and the PADI Open Water Diver course. By having separate boats for beginner and experienced divers ensures the best diving experience for both parties.

We also have a dedicated boat for our Divemaster program and our Dive Instructor program so can select the best training dive sites for Koh Tao for the Divemaster and IDC course at Sairee Cottage Diving.

What is the atmosphere like?
At Sairee Cottage Diving we try to limit the amount of students and fun divers to ensure a very relaxed atmosphere. At Sairee Cottage Diving we always have enough people around for you to socialise and have a good time, but still small enough to get personal attention.

What uniqueness does your centre bring to Koh Tao?
At Sairee Cottage 5 Star IDC Centre we aim to train some of the best Divemaster and Diving Instructors. The PADI Divemaster and PADI IDC course at Sairee Cottage Diving is uniquely designed to teach beyond the minimum dive industry standards. Instead of just focusing on passing the Divemaster and IDC (IE) exam we focus more on extended dive risk management training, customer service training, marine conservation, different dive techniques and most importantly we help our Divemaster and IDC candidates to find work after completion of their courses with us.

What are your hopes with Sairee for the future?
We are always looking for new opportunities to increase the training quality at Sairee Cottage Diving. We would like to grow, but in a slow and relaxed paste to ensure the quality of Sairee Cottage Diving.

What do you enjoy about the island of Koh Tao?
I personally love the sheer beauty of Koh Tao, it’s amazing beaches, sunsets, reefs and all the nature that Koh Tao offers, but mostly I love the people on Koh Tao. It doesn’t matter where you go, it only takes a short time and you will be chatting with a new amazing person.

Koh Tao is especially good for learning how do dive and to teach diving. Because of the high quality of teaching on Koh Tao, I did most of my PADI courses here, then worked as a diving instructor on Koh Tao and now I am a PADI Platinum Course Director running the Divemaster and PADI IDC Course on Koh Tao at Sairee Cottage Diving.

And leave us with the Sairee Cottage Diving philosophy…
The Sairee Cottage Diving philosophy is that anyone can learn how to dive with the right positive teaching attitude as we focus on safety, marine conservation and lots of fun while trying to give you an amazing diving experience.

We also strongly believe that a great attitude makes someone to become one of the best Divemaster or diving instructor and we teach that every day in our PADI Go Pro courses.

Photo credit by: Peach Snaps Underwater Photography and Helen Stockings