Yasawa Island Resort and Spa
Photos of Yasawa Island Resort and Spa
TravelPod Member ReviewsNorth Star By EVRentals Steamboat Springs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews North Star By EVRentals Steamboat Springs
Major problems -- stay elsewhere
Stayed at Yasawa for the second half of my honeymoon in March, 2005. (First half was at Royal Davui -- in a totally different league.)
To be fair, there were a couple of positives:
1) A beautiful island, beautiful beach/location
2) Very pleasant attitude from the staff
Now, for the many problems (in no particular order):
1) The food was shamefully bad. I can't emphasize how disappointed I was. The amazing part was that they had the raw ingredients, but simply did not know how to cook anything. The soups were bland. The sauces completely missed the mark. Vegetarian options (for my wife) were minimal. Given that superb food was said to be a selling point of the resort, I inquired about this. (The food was so sub-par that it was really not just a matter of opinion.) The manager -- who was very nice/professional, admitted that the quality of the cooking was lacking because the prior chef had left & they just had locals cooking. (Note that the locals weren't cooking local food -- which might have been good -- but were trying to recreate the prior chef's food, and doing a very poor job of it.) I take it from the last post that there is a new chef, so this may be a different story now, but be forewarned!
2) The rooms were -- as one past poster wrote -- dingy. It was really too bad, because the location is so great. The pictures on their website/brochure give a very misleading picture about them. They are large, but everything is run down. In our room, the A/C didn't work originally, the bathroom door didn't close properly, the faucet didn't shut off, one of the outlets didn't work, and the hot/cold water in the shower were switched. None of these (other than the A/C) were huge deals, and all were eventually dealt with, but at these prices, it was disappointing. Furthermore, even if all of these problems weren't there, the rooms were just not what you would expect from a 5-star resort.
3) We had the very unfortunate situation of a GI-viral outbreak occurring during our week, which was very poorly handled by the staff. Though I don't blame them for the original outbreak (which, while unfortunate, can happen anywhere), they handled it terribly. After a couple of guests were ill (which they knew about) with the same GI bug, one would have thought they would have made an announcement to guests/staff that there was a bug going around & to be extra-careful with hand-washing, etc. Instead, they made the conscious decision not to tell anyone (as confirmed later to me by the manager), only to literally have a third of the resort come down with it by mid-week (including my wife). This was not a matter of mild GI upset, but violent vomiting, etc. (I leave the details to your imagination.) As a physician, I was appalled with this, & took it up with the manager, who said she "didn't realize" that hand-washing was so important to limiting the spread of an illness like this. Unbelievable. Even after our conversation, all they did was put a little notice about it in 8-point font at the bottom of the daily circular. No announcement was made, no discussion was to be had (other than among the angry guests).
4) This one is much more subjective than #1-3, but there was something very fake about the attitude of the place. It's hard to put my finger on exactly, but my wife & I both felt it. It wasn't that people weren't friendly, but just the opposite -- it was almost like being at Disneyland. I compare it to our stay at Davui, where everyone was just as friendly, but it felt much less saccharine & more genuine. Again, this is getting nitpicky, but was how I felt.
In summary, if I had to do it all over again -- I would stay at Davui in a heartbeat, and wouldn't dream of going back to Yasawa. It is a shame because it could be a wonderful/magical place, & I really expected it to be so. It just wasn't.
Amazing - wish we hadn't had to leave!
My husband and I stayed at Yasawa Island Resort in Oct 05 for his 30th birthday, and the trip was absolutely perfect.
The location of the resort was idyllic - on a private island, long white stretch of beach in front. We often walked along the beach and didn't see another soul.
The bures were right on the beach with stunning views out to sea. They were huge and luxuriously furnished. They are a little dark inside (but certainly not 'dingy' as someone has commented). We didn't spend a lot of time in them during the day anyway, and when we did they were quite cool because of the lack of sunlight (although there is also air-con)
The food was delicious - especially since most of it is flown over from the mainland. The freshly caught snapper was probably the best meal I've ever eaten.
The staff were wonderful - always smiling and saying 'Bula'. They were never too intrusive, but equally if you needed something they would be more than happy to help.
It was certainly nothing like a 'summer camp for adults' as someone has stated. Yes, there are a few acticites planned each day, such as guided snorkelling trips, or a guided walk into the local village. But it is enitirely up to you whether you do these or not - absolutely no pressure either way. And if there's something else you want to do that day instead, just ask a staff member and they are more than happy to arrange it.
Overall this was a fantastic luxury trip and I cannot think of a single thing I would have changed. The accommodation, staff and food are without fault.
As for activites, there is plenty to do if you want to (swimming, snorkelling, kayaking, diving, village trips, even basket weaving!). Alternatively you can just sit back, relax and watch the beautiful world go by in complete seclusion.
Would I go back? Possibly, but I feel there are so many places in this world I'd like to visit, I'm probably more likely to try somewhere new and different next time. But I wouldn't hesitate to thoroughly reccommend Yasawa Island Resort to anyone.
Decided to stay for four days at the conclusion of our two week honeymoon in Australia and New Zealand based on the positive reviews and 5 star rating.
First, let me state that Yasawa Island was quite picturesque and that the resort is located on a nice long, secluded section of beach.
Aside from this however, the resort proved to be a disappointment in nearly all respects. The rooms while large were dingy. The food selections were very few and poorly executed. One meal might be a decent risotto and the next lobster cooked to the consistency of mashed potato. The non-native staff was uniformly aloof. Thank God they had a decent wine selection to help diminish our frustration. My wife commented that the place had the feel of a summer camp for adults; hardly a luxury experience.
This resort is 3 stars at best, which is absurd given the price. Having stayed at multiple Aman and Four Seasons resorts (many of which were cheaper), I can honestly state the Yasawas Island Resort doesn't come close in their accommodations, food or service. I only wish we could have known this before ending what was otherwise a fantastic trip on such a disappointing note.
Pity about the food
After much anticipation my wife and I headed back to Yasawa for our third visit. There is no doubt that this is a very nice place, great rooms, great people, but the food was a very big let down this time. It was interesting to speak with other guests there who also felt the same way.
While the presentation and service was good the food quality and selection was very poor. The food was over cooked most of the time, lacking in any inspiration or natural flavour. Such a disappointment. We complained after the first meal and the acting Manager (unfortunately cant remember her name - but very nice and professional person,) said they would try to improve. Alas to no avail. After a couple of nights we, on their invitation, resorted to telling them what we wanted and they prepared it especially for us. Full marks for the effort however the kitchen still showed the lack of basic skill in prep, flavour and cooking skill when the meal was presented.
At the end of the day we will not go back unless we could be assured that there was dramatic improvement in the Kitchen (and without a good review from a trusted independent reviewer how could you know?) It has really ruined a lovely place that is staffed by lovely people.
In a property of this quality there is a reasonable to high expectation of food well prepared and planned. (Certainly when you consider the effort that Garth the owner goes to provide one of the best wine cellars in the Fiji Islands - five stars for that !) And yes my wife and I do place a high value on food quality, but remember that this is one of the top resorts in Fiji and a member of SLH, (Small Luxury Hotels group,) so I do not believe that we are being too rough on the property.
Returning to Yasawa Island Resort
My wife and I have stayed at many 5 star resorts including Vatulele, Fiji searching for the "perfect island resort". Last year we spent 10 nights at Yasawa Island Resort and were so impressed that we have decided to make this our annual vacation spot. The accomodations, staff, food, grounds, beach, pool, hiking, snorkeling and island topography were superb. After an 11 night stay at Vatulele, in my opinion, Yasawa Island Resort is superior in all respects.
We're Going Back!
I've had the pleasure of staying at Yasawa twice in the last two years and have enjoyed it so much I plan on making a return trip in six months. Yasawa is without a doubt the best resort I have stayed at within Fiji, it is by far the most luxurious, has the best location, the best staff and the best facilities. The food is excellent and all included, a part from, as another review said the chips and chocolate in the minibar (although all non-alcoholic bevearges are included that are in the minibar) but with so much excellent food on offer, why fill yourself up on chips when there is a divine room service menu? The activities provided by the resort are also top notch. I would recomend doing the trip to the blue lagoon caves atleast once, if not for the boat trip alone. Also the quality of the snorkeling just off the southern end of the resort is high, however if that's not to your liking the staff will take you by boat to another destination. The private picnics are brilliant, being dropped off on your own strech of beach or own private island for the day, just you and a cornucopia, until you're ready to be picked up. As for the "turn the power off at noon" story, I can assure you that it's never happened while I have stayed there. The only power outage we had was for a few minutes one afternoon while the generator was being tested or repaired it was hardly a trouble.
So in short, if you want a quality holiday in heaven where your every wish is catered for, go to Yasawa. Yes it's a little expensive, but worth every penny. If you want a cheap holiday where you can eat all the free potato chips you like, I suggest you stay at an airport motel.
Loved Yasawa Resort
We visited Yasawa Resort in 2004 and had the most amazing time. The resort is very remote and idyllic in its location. The deluxe bures were all similar and all beautifullly appointed. There are so many places to relax in or out of your bure it becomes a difficult choice. The food was amazing and we travel 5 star ALWAYS. The service is very good for Fijiian standards which we have found is usually always very high anyway, considering the villagers from Yasawa are hired and trained, they do a great job. They could probably relax around guests a little more, however this is probably indicative of their eagerness to please and assist. The privacy at Yasawa is brilliant, we only saw people if we wanted to which was great. I would suggest that if you are going over there make sure you ASK for what you want early on. They arent mind readers and we discovered at the end that they are only too happy to do for you whatever you wish for. An unscheduled boat trip or a last minute picnic basket or even if you missed the truck to go to the villiage, they will always help to make sure you get to where you want to go. We are hoping to go back again this year and will probably mix it up with a visit to the Coral Coast for a bit of fun, which is always great. We fully recommend yasawa island resort for total relaxation or for daily trips and activities - its up to you!
I only recommend that you DONT HESITATE TO ASK!! And make sure you get a deluxe bure, they are the best and closer to the beach.
We spent the week 7 January 2005 - 17 January 2005 at Yasawa Island Resort. There is no doubt that the resort was a 5 star resort 2 years ago. Unfortunately there are some of the equipment that need some upgrading.
Although the website clearly states that all food and non alcoholic bevarages are free, just take note that all snacks taken from the mini bar are NOT FREE! Another thing that you don't expect from a 5 star resort is that they switch off the electricity between 12pm and 2pm (the warmest time of day), to save energy. So noooo aircon during that time!
All in all I think that YASAWA ISLAND RESORT IS SO OVERPRICED and you don't get what you expect from a 5 star resort!!!
Exceptional exclusive resort, best kept secret!
After reading the other review posted I remembered we meant to submit one also-we spent our honeymoon at Yasawa in January 2003 and have never forgotten our wonderful experience there. Traveling to this remote island was both enriching and rewarding.
We flew to the island along with the owner and his wife - who did not reveal who he was until we guessed it based on the tremendous greeting he received and the amount of luggage he was allowed to bring over (note a luggage weight limit). The plane landed on what looked like the only grassy open area on the island. We were greeted immediately by the super friendly and warm staff who then took us in a van to the resort.
There are so many great things about this hotel, to start, our room was almost 2000 sq. ft. with private hammock, outdoor seating areas, and 2 showers-one outside and one in! The decor was fit for any interior design magazine-asian influenced simplicity. Room service was available if the 3 courses didn't keep you full. The food was excellent and the wine list tremendous! The hotel took care of our every need. The staff was friendly and truly respected the guests, to a level I have never seen at a resort. They were almost like our friends vs. serving us, but still serving us at the same time! Every morning at breakfast we received a nice list of optional daily activities and excursions. The beach in front of the hotel had some rougher surf so they bussed us to the other side of the island for our excursions. We had a private lunch on the beach of our choice-we selected paradise beach which was truly a paradise.
Yasawa is an outstanding 5 star resort hotel that I would say was our most wonderful experience yet - and we have been all over the world to various exclusive hotels from the maldives to the carribean. If you are looking for an experience you will never forget look into this. We hope to return some day!
We went to Yasawa over a year ago - june-july 2003. i was surprised that there were no reviews so i thought i'd do a belated one...
Yasawa was amazing. i honestly don't think any other holiday will ever match up to it! the resort itself is beautiful. it had recently been renovated when we stayed there. the decor of the bures was simple and elegant. the size and layout were perfect too. we were litereally steps away from the beach, which we somehow always seemed to have to ourselves.
The staff were ridiculously friendly, by the second day they all knew our names, and would stop what they were doing to say hello (or bula!). and it seemed really genuine! it sounds really cheesy but we felt like part of the family. i was almost in tears when it was time to leave, and i'm not a sentimental kind of person.
We did our padi open water course which was also fantastic. the scuba diving was great and our instructor was helpful and a lot of fun.
The food was varied and consistently good. the trips were well organised and very flexible.
I can't fault it at all - apart from the 2 days of bad weather - but that's not their fault!
I only wish there had been more guests closer to our age (late 20's), most of the other guests were a lot older...
TripAdvisor Reviews North Star By EVRentals Steamboat Springs
Travel Blogs from Yasawa Island
... to end with a bang so we headed to another late bar until approx.....your guess of what time we got home at is as good as ours!! On arrival at Grahams apartment where we were staying for the last night, we all mutually decided the best way forward was to forgo any sleep and stay up all night. Clearly this was not the best strategy and we suffered terribly the next day!! Fortunately for us we were too busy nursing our sore heads to get ...
... heat until someone informed us that the big boat had broken down. It had done the same yesterday when it dropped people off, but we assumed it would be ok because they had fixed it. Unfortunately we assumed wrong, and the same problem happened in the same place! So we were told that we would be dropped off at the closest island until it was fixed. So, all the little boats drove over to an island that had little shade, and we sat and waited. We were ...
... them, and then when they had finished I went back to the room to grab something, and on the way back started talking to 4 of the children from the choir. They then asked if I could buy them so crisps, and I couldn't say no! So I went to the bar and bought a packet of crisps each and took the back to them...they promised to get me a necklace tomorrow, however I'm not sure that will happen!! Oh well. It was then dinner time, and we ...
... diaries. Afterwards we used our included vouchers to have a massage, we had 30 minutes each and it was amazing. Neither of us have ever had a massage before so it was our first experience. It then meant our backs were really oily and so was our hair, so we went back to the dorm to have yet another cold shower! We slowly got ready for dinner and went to the main dining area at about 6 o'clock where we sat with a couple of others until dinner was served. After dinner, there was ...
... on what to see when we are there, and they are even on the same flight as us out of Fiji. After dinner us and the German couple joined two guys from Singapore and Vancouver to make a team for 'Fiji Survivor' quiz night. It was such a laugh, with questions about Fiji that we would NEVER know the answers to. We still came second though and won a bottle of sparkling wine which we shared after the quiz which was great.
We slept so well ...