Bora Bora Beach Resort
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TravelPod Member ReviewsBora Bora Beach Resort
It was a breath taking sight. It was also a wonderful place with a great view!!
It was great waking up and seeing, and hearing the beach.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Bora Bora Beach Resort
Great Value for Money!!
We had read several reviews about this hotel as being an excellent value and decided to stay here for 3 nights during our recent trip. Along with this review, I have included some photos of interest.
If you are looking for a special, unique, 5star, secluded private hotel, this is not the one for you. However, if you are looking for a hotel that is in an excellent location, above average amenities, clean rooms, a nice pool and beautiful beach all at a price that won't break the bank then this is the place for you!
Relative to a lot of the other hotels on BB, this is a bargain! The hotel is split in half by the road - all the rooms are on the "garden" side of the road and the pool, restaurants and check-in are on the "beach" side. The room was quite nice - actually exceeded our expectations. The bed was our least favorite part of the room - while it was big enough for us, it was a bit softer than we like. That said, the mini fridge, TV and airconditioning were excellent. We were on the ground floor and didn't feel like we were on display as some has said. Even when we say out on our little porch area to eat breakfast or read, we rarely saw people walking on the garden side of the rooms. I loved how there were fresh flowers in the room when we arrived - it gave it a festive feel! The bath soap and shampoo were with the local tiare scent which was nice. Our shower wasn't anything special - a European style hand held that had to be held because the mount was broken.
Many other hotels in this area are split in this same way - given how close the road is to the coast. We only ate at the hotel restaurant once - it was a bit pricy, but then again, so is breakfast at most of the hotels in this area! There are many other options on BB, some of which I mention below. The bar area is actually a great place to relax, next to the pool. We loved sitting on the beach - the view is really lovely.
When we arrived we were welcomed with a cold drink and hand towels. We were given a map and our room was pointed out to us. We didn't ask for help, as we only had a wheelie bag apiece, so don't know if that was an option. The lobby had a sitting area and 2 computers for internet - at 500 francs/15 mins a pretty typical price.
One of the best things about this hotel is its location. It is on the main island, so you can take the shuttles into town if you want or just walk from the hotel to a handful of restaurants and the supermarket. We loved the supermarket - it wasn't even a 5 minute walk and supplied our breakfasts for 2 of the 3 mornings we were there and afternoon ice cream snacks! The prices were quite fair. There were a few restaurants within walking distance -to the left a pizza place that was only open 1 night, the bounty (we ate lunch and diner there) and if you really walk a lot Fare Manuia, beyond the hotel Matira (which has a restaurant too) - to the right, restaurant patoti (I think that was its named) and the new sofitel which supposedly will have a chinese restaurant when it opens. Of course, many shuttles will come and pick you up as well (like Bloody Mary's).
The staff at the front desk were pleasant. Housekeeping did a good job of keeping the rooms clean. The pool and beach areas were well maintained. For a fee there is a shuttle to/from the main town when you arrive on the island.
We felt we were able to experience a lot of what Bora Bora has to offer while being at this hotel. I would recommend this to anyone who would like a solid hotel at a fair price. I have paid far more for hotels that have far less to offer!
Mediocre at best- value property
Recently stayed at Novotel Bora Bora. Clean but very basic property with basic amenities. All rooms are located across the street from Lobby/pool/restaurants/beach etc...As a 6'2'' 205lb man the beds were not the most comfortable. Had to carry all of my own luggage to my room- not fun. Beach is ok- nice view of Sofitel Motu. Pool is very small but again nice view facing out from the property. Typical Polynesian foods- pricey but ok. Probably a good value for people cutting corners to be able to enjoy Bora Bora. Bartenders and waitresses hardly spoke English- not unexpected. Typical slow service- but whos in a rush when in French Polynesia? All in all not bad- would not go here on honeymoon or any special occasion. This place is for friends or family wanting to visit Bora Bora on a budget.
Exceeded all expectations
When my friend and I stayed at this hotel in March 2005 it had recently opened, consequently we found it very difficult to find any info or reviews of the property before we went. Needless to say it was with some trepidation that we set off on our 'dream holiday'. The reason we booked the hotel was because it was the only affordable resort style option on the island. Any reservations we may have had went out of the window as soon as we arrived. The hotel is a delight in every way from the contemporary style, spotless bedrooms to the decked pool area with views of Sofitel Motu and Tahaa and Raiatea. Restaurant was good, everything was clean and new and their was an air of stylish sophistication which belied the price range throughout. I wanted to keep this amazing discovery quiet but one year down the line I see the secret is out. Well done Novotel Bora Bora, can't wait to return!!
Great value in an ideal location.
My boyfriend and I spent 4 days at this resort and were extremely satisfied with our stay. Upon our arrival in Bora Bora, we were promptly picked up by a friendly driver who transported us to the hotel. Driving up to the property is quite underwhelming, since the lobby is small, dimly lit, and very close to the road. Also, the stretch of road nearby the hotel and thoughout the Matira area is unfortunately strewn with a significant amount of litter. However, once you walk through the lobby onto the beach, the hotel more closely resembles a 4 star property, with a nice stretch of white sand, lovely lagoon views, and no trash on the beach. The resort could stand to have a few more beach chairs, since we ended up having to rest on the sand several days due to a chair shortage. With the arrival of multiple guests on the same flight, hotel check in was somewhat slow, but we eventually were escorted to our room across a small road. Less than a 3 minute walk to the beach, our room was very clean, well air-conditioned, and comfortable. We did see some ants crawling up the wall in the bathroom and called the front desk to see if they could provide some insect spray. They replied that spray was "not allowed" on the island, but we could pick up some other substance to put in water to drive the ants away. We decided to leave the ants alone, since they weren't anywhere near the bed or the small refrigerator under the desk. The only other inconvenience we encountered is that the hotel does not have an ice machine, so you must take a plastic bag (no ice buckets are provided) to the bar and ask them to give you some ice. One of the bar staff seemed somewhat annoyed by our repeated requests for ice, but all the other staff were quite accomodating.
We spent our time using the kayaks provided by the hotel, paddling over to a nearby motu for snorkeling. We also kayaked around Matira point over to Matira Beach to snorkel nearby the Hotel Bora Bora, which has an amazing number of fearless and colorful fish on its reef. I also completed my Open Water Scuba Diving certification through Nemo World Dive Center which is located right next door to the hotel. My instructor, Sebastian, was very professional, witty, warm, and enthusiastic... a great fit for beginner and intermediate divers.
Aside from the litter along the road, the location of the resort is ideal in that it is nearby a decent food market and La Bounty restaurant, which had excellent poisson cru and fair prices. There is also a great snack stand (Sunset Pizza) nearby that makes tasty crepes and pizzas. This place was extremely popular, so it is best to order your pizza and walk back to your room or the beach and pick it up later since it is hot and there are alot of insects in the area!
On New Year's Eve, we dined at Top Dive, an exquisite "New French" restaurant on the other side of the island (they also provide free transportation). Upon our return to the hotel, we watched the Polynesian show with music and fire dancers until midnight. The performances were spirited, and the resort staff seemed to take great pride in the party they were throwing for the guests. It was the most unique and delightful New Year's Eve I have ever spent. Overall, this property delivers great value on such an expensive island. I hope they continue to make efforts to keep the property clean and encourage others in the neighborhood to dispose of their trash properly to help preserve the beauty of this amazing place.
A Great Deal
It's rare that you feel you got more than you paid for but that's how we felt about this hotel. We got a great deal on the internet (the hotel is owned by Accor Hotels so go to their website) for about $130/night which included breakfast. This was a non-changeable, non-refundable deal. The hotel ended up being at least a 3+ star (maybe 4 star hotel) so the price was a real deal. All of the hotel rooms are garden rooms while the reception area and pool are on the beach side of the road.
Our first impression, however, was not so positive. We were told that we would be picked up at the ferry dock but when we arrived, no one was there. We waited in the heat (no shade and no open bathrooms) for someone to come pick us up. Finally, about an hour later, we took a cab to the hotel. The driver told us that this hotel often forgets to pick up their guests from the dock. The woman at the front desk blamed us for not having called to remind them and then told us our reservation did not include breakfast. Fortunately, we had a print-out of our reservation and could show her that it did include breakfast. Later she apologized (sort of) for being so argumentative. So, lessons learned:
-Call the hotel the day before to make sure they know what flight you'll be on so they know what time the ferry will arrive (when you fly in, you're shuttled to the main island via a ferry). Get the name of the person you talk to.
-Bring a copy of your internet reservation confirmation.
Other than that, our stay was just about perfect. The rooms are large, have lots of nice wood (reminded me of hotels in Hawaii) and were nicely decorated. Each room has a balcony or patio looking out into the garden. Each room also has a day bed (single bed against the wall) which we found that we used a lot to sit on. Air conditioning is good and there is a small refrigerator in the room. The reception area has an activities desk with a binder describing the various activities you can sign up for (conducted by outside vendors, not the hotel). The hotel is not at all pushy about the activities. Also in the reception area are some couches for relaxing and 2 computers for internet usage, one with a French keyboard and one with an English one. They are a bit slow. The cost to use them was about $20/hour but the cybercafe in town charged $24/hour. Just outside the reception area is a nice pool and the beach, which had chaise lounges. People probably don't swim much at this beach because a lot of boats come in here. Next door is a dive shop. Across the street is a small boutique where they also rent bikes and cars. We rented bikes for the approximately 5 mile ride into town to buy groceries, etc. You also can take the hotel transportation which leaves at specific times (we never could figure out exactly when) during the day and costs $5 each way. Within walking distance of the hotel are a couple of restaurants. However, it is very dark on the road so bring a flashlight.
Posted on the reception area bulletin board is the daily activities list. And here's where we felt we got more than we paid for. The first night, they had the "Tahitian Mamas" doing some singing and dancing in the large bar after dinner. They invited the guests to dance with them and gave each of us a fresh flower lei. They showed us all the baskets and hats they had made with (ti?) leaves and then presented each of us one as a gift. They managed to involve everyone in the room.
The next night was a demonstration of making (plus, of course, tasting) the national dish of poisson cru (raw fish in coconut milk). Again, the man doing the "cooking" involved many of the guests in the process.
The next night there was a Tahitian dance (including fire dance) performance by men and women out on the beach. Again, many of the guests were asked to participate.
All of these daily activities were free to guests of the hotel. It is possible, however, that this is a temporary thing. The Sofitel Hotel, next door to the Novatel but owned by the same company, is currently closed and undergoing renovation. It may be that these are activities which would normally have been held at the Sofitel which is a higher-end hotel.
Breakfast normally costs about $25/person but it was included in our nightly rate. It was a whole buffet each morning with cereal, fruits, pastries, hard boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, bacon, pancakes, etc. Note: the hotel does not offer ice anyplace (except in drinks you order from the bar).
We would definitely stay here again, particularly if we could get such a good rate.
Keep it quiet
We stayed 4 nights and as a travel agent I like to try different properties from budget to deluxe(see my review soon on Le taha'a-private island). This is champagne on a beer budget. Nice room, nice people, nice beach. Activities all around..walk 5 minutes for the jet ski tour and save $40 over hotel price. Walk 2 minutes to the market for fresh bread, cheese, wine and whatever. Hotels pick you up for dinner like Bloody Mary or walk to Patoti(spelling is close) for an authentic french repas. This is the real deal. If you can snag a reservation across on the Sofitel Motu-the food and view are excellent at fair prices. Don't think twice-it's alright here...........
Just got back from Bora Bora >We stayed at the Novotel for 5 days and all I can say is the place is fantastic. We were welcomed with a cocktail and chilled facewashers. The staff are just so great, very friendly and helpful. The place is located on the best stretch of beach on the island, great views, snorkling , and free activities like snorkling gear, kayaks and nightly shows like tahitian dancing and singing etc.Food was also very nice at the resort restaurant which is situated on the beach. Pool area and the beach is so lovely and the views breath taking. All the shops are minutes walking distance as well as most restaurants. All activities are booked by the staff at your own request .Rooms are clean and very comfortable set in beautiful tropical surrounding.
Would highly recommend this resort. It is cheaper and will not break your pocket, but the service and staff make you feel and treat like in a 5 star resort
Can't wait to go there again!!!
Can we keep it a secret!
I read the reviews listed here before our trip and that is what convinced me to try it. The price was a determining factor too. I was nervous that it would turn out to be awful since it is so inexpensive compared to most hotels on Bora Bora. It was much better than expected. The room was very clean, comfortable, and quiet. The beach, pool and amenities are right across a small street. The staff was very friendly and helpful. I want to go back again.
A stylish and excellent value!
I have mixed feelings about writing this review as I feel like this wonderful hotel/resort is our own secret discovery. However, I had been dismayed not to find more information on the Novotel Bora Bora Beach Resort when trying to plan our trip and had vowed to write a review when we returned home. My husband and I live in northern CA and only met one other American couple at the hotel as the clientele was mostly french. We are discriminating travelers who are used to staying a Four Seasons, Ritz Carltons, and similar level properties. We travel extensively and recent destinations included Vietnam and South Africa. We wanted to make a quick escape on a budget (since we had exhausted most of our travel budget for the year) and only booked this trip 3 days prior to departure through(---). I figured that being in Bora Bora would be fabulous enough to make up for not staying in luxury accommodations.
For those of you who are trying to plan a vacation to Bora Bora you are probably more than aware now of the high cost of rooms there. Also food is very expensive. We were more than pleasantly surprised on our arrival to the resort hotel. Not only was it built/renovated in 2003, but it was designed and decorated in a very stylish manner. You won't find any plastic beach/pool/patio furniture here (that's one of my pet peeves and standards for where I will stay - furniture has to be wood). Every room has a terrace or a balcony with a table and two chairs and a view of beautifully landscaped tropical grounds. If you insist on a water view then this place is not for you, but the view of the grounds and surrounding coconut palm covered hills is still very beautiful. The rooms offer air conditioning (a wall unit - like most of the islands accommodations) that can be set on a remarkable quiet and efficient setting, a queen size bed, end of bed table/storage unit, desk, chair, very ample closet and shelf space, a remarkably quiet fridge (we usually have to unplug our refrigerator because of the noise and didn't have to this time!), bathroom with a shower (no tub), and a built in sitting area/sofa/bed. The rooms are warmly lit with tasteful light fixtures (no florescents). The public areas are also very stylish (no clunky, cheap bamboo furniture) in a simple and modern fashion. All the buildings have palm thatched roofs and the public areas (restaurant, pool, bar, reception) are located on the beach. The 2-story buildings where the rooms are located (80 rooms total) are across the street from the public areas. This was of concern to us since my husband is very sensitive to noise and we didn't want the intruding sound of traffic from a road. Fortunately our room was set away from the road and although at times you could here some traffic, it was not disturbing. The road is not large, was not that busy, and people can't or don't drive that fast. We spend most mornings enjoying coffee and croissants (from the next-door Le Tiare Market) on our balcony and were not bothered at all by road noise.
The service: The staff was fantastically friendly and helpful from the moment we arrived until the moment we departed to their smiles and waves. They helped make our stay even more special. All our transfers from and to the airport and check-in/check-out went seamlessly. That said, if you are looking for a full-service hotel with room service, cold towels and spritzes on the beach, and an ever-hovering staff then this hotel is probably not for you. The price reflects a less high maintenance vacation where you may have to occasionally ask for fresh beach towels or walk-up to the bar to order a drink.
The location: The location of the hotel was very good - convenient and quite picturesque. It is especially nice for those of you who want to dine out or purchase food (cheese, fresh baguette, croissants, juice) etc. from a store as the Le Tiare market is practically across the street. Also one of the better, lesser expensive restaurants on the island (Le Bounty) is also located next door. Other restaurants will pick you up from the hotel free of charge. The hotel is also on one of the nicer beaches of Bora Bora with fabulous snorkeling off a nearby motu (be aware that the beaches - meaning the actual sandy areas - on the main island are not that fantastic in general, but the colors of the sand and water and the palms are beautiful). The hotel offers free kayaks which you can take to the above mentioned snorkeling spot known as the coral gardens (it's like being in an aquarium). I have never seen so many fish and we have snorkeled many times in the caribbean and also on the nearby island of Moorea. We also rented a little boat 2x from the vendor (Guy and Maguy's) on the hotel's beach and went around Bora Bora's lagoon picnicing on motus and snorkeling in fantastic spots (about $150 per/day - expensive, but worth it). On these trips we saw a turtle, rays, and manta rays) There is also a respected dive outfitter (Nemo's) next to the hotel.
The food: We had a few buffet breakfasts (the only type of breakfast available) at the hotel and they were good with scrambled eggs (the kitchen gladly cooked them more well-done for me), sausage, cheese, sliced meats, yoghurt, cereal, tropical juice (not fresh squeezed), chocolate and regular croissants, different breads, raisin pastry, tropical fruit, fruit salad etc. It's not fancy, but the price was actually was not that bad (about $20 US Dollars) per person compared to the breakfast prices at other hotels (I know this sounds expensive, but trust me that for Bora Bora it's not). My bad eating experience at the hotel was at lunch when I had a huge, but cold and not very tasty croque monsieur (french hot ham and cheese sandwich). It was so dissappointing that we decided to spend our food money elsewhere for lunch and dinner since dining out was comparably priced or less (i.e. La Bounty). However, the setting of the restaurant and of the bar at the hotel are wonderful - overlooking the beach, water, a couple of motus, the reef, and islands in the distance.
Overall, our experience at the Novotel Bora Bora Beach Resort was excellent and we highly recommend it. It offers wonderful value for your money in Bora Bora.
i stayed whit my husband 3 days at the novotel bora bora and it has exceded all of our expectations. its a terrific hotel for the price, and a excelent cost - benefice. ITS IS NOT THE MOST LUXURIOS HOTEL AT BORA BORA, but permitis escape to the hight cost of the island, and make possible for midle class stay in a beatiful building, well decorate, in a wonderful beach at this magical place. So if you can't pay 500,00 or more per night, stay at this very frendily and confortable hotel
TripAdvisor Reviews Bora Bora Beach Resort
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