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“Beautiful resort”

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Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Maharepa
Certificate of Excellence
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Beautiful resort”
Reviewed 2 June 2012

I stayed in May in a luxury beachfront bungalow. The bungalow was a good size and I was more than happy to have a beach view rather than spend the extra to have an overwater bungalow. The bedroom and bathroom were very clean except the glass doors in the shower which led to a small garden had some soap scum on them. Housekeeping seemed to be a little bit disorganised but I didn't worry about that as I was in paradise. All staff are extremely pleasant and helpful and there wasn't any problem with language. When I arrived I had to wait a few hours to check in but there is a bathroom near reception where I changed and I went to the beach for a couple of hours and had lunch and a cocktail at the restaurant.

I was on my own and wondered whether there would be a lot of honeymooners there but the guests were a mix of honeymooners, older couples and families with young children and I did not feel out of place.

The grounds of the resort are beautiful and well kept. Buffet breakfast and dinner were included and the variety and quality of all meals was excellent. Some reviews have complained about the price of food but for a quality hotel I thought most prices were standard. A few things were too expensive but I suspect that is due to having to ship them in, such as a Magnum ice cream at the beach bar was nearly US$10. Other items were very reasonable - I had lunch in Pure restaurant one day and a beautiful salad that filled me up was about US$15 (cheaper than a cocktail at about US$18).

I had a massage at the spa which was very good but I thought it was overpriced for what I got.

I did not use the pool, which looked quite small, as the beach is beautiful. I spent most of my days at the beach where the water is crystal clear and snorkelling gear (which is easily obtained free of charge from the hotel) is not needed to see the beautiful fish. I saw a few rays at the hotel beach and also a moray eel.

The highlight of my trip was doing an around the island boat trip through the hotel where we stopped to swim with rays and black tipped sharks. We also stopped a few times spotting dolphins and moored at another beach to snorkel. The trip lasted nearly 6 hours and was wonderful.

Moorea is a beautiful island, it really is paradise, and I had a fantastic time. I would recommend the Sofitel and would stay there again.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled solo
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1 Thank pinkpaisley11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 May 2012

After staying at the Hilton/Bora Bora with a trickle of water for a huge rain-shower head, the great water pressure of the Sofitel was great! Facility is gorgeous, room is comfortable, staff is accommodating for late checkouts. Stay in a bunglow 204, 206, 208, 210 (the even ones) otherwise you'll face another bungalow. The even bungalows have unobstructed views. At US$700/night it was the best value for an OWB among the Hilton Bora Bora, Kia Ora Rangiroa, and Inter Continental Papette

Room Tip: Even numbered bungalow e.g. 202, 204, 206, etc.
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank PaulinLA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Irving, Texas
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 May 2012

The Sofitel is very expensive, so one would expect top rate service. The setting is beautiful, and the water is so clear and calm. We could snorkel right off of our balcony which we thoroughly enjoyed.
However, we were very disappointed in the service.
We arrived via the ferry from Tahiti. We had to take a cab to the hotel ($20.00 to go one or two miles!), because the Sofitel does not provide a shuttle service, a fact that we found surprising for a luxury hotel.
We arrived early in the morning. Our room was not available, which we expected since we were so early, but the hotel did not have a courtesy room where we could park our suitcases, shower and change. We had to sit in the lobby for 5 hours. (There is a bathroom with a shower off the lobby which we ended up using, but it was very small and awkward as people kept knocking on the door.)
The room was adequate in that it was clean, the bed was comfortable and the amenities were sufficient. The lighting, though, was very poor. We also kept bumping our heads on a shelf behind the bed that was in an awkward place. The floor was very slippery, especially when wet.
We requested to be placed in one of several specific rooms, but the Sofitel was unable to accomodate us even though we had made reservations 3 months in advance.
Housekeeping was ok; on the first day, we asked that we receive a couple more towels every day, but we had to call each day to get them. The housekeeping staff was friendly, but a bit rigid, schedule-wise and disorganized. For example, I asked the housekeeper to return in 10 minutes since we were still in the room, and she said she couldn't do that.
The food was adequate, not spectacular. The wait staff, for the most part, was friendly but not well-trained, at least not as well as one would expect in a luxury hotel. Food was extremely expensive, but we expected it would be.
The most annoying event that occurred was when we tried to book a cab back to the ferry at the reception desk. The reception staff had an outdated ferry schedule (!!), and the only reason we did not miss the ferry (and our flight!) was because we had picked up a ferry schedule earlier at the pier. The reception desk told us that their schedule was the accurate one; it took alot of "back and forth" and a call to the ferry desk (at our insistence) to finally convince the staff that their schedule was wrong. (BTW..the cab fare is still $20.00 when arranged by the hotel.)
The beach was very nice. Towels and chaise lounges (no cushions) are provided for free, but be prepared to pay for any activities like kayaking, etc. There are no umbrellas on the beach, but there are trees if you prefer shade.
The pool was pretty but very small.
The staff speak English well enough, especially at the front desk, but the dining room and housekeeping staff are not fluent..not a big deal, but certain things did get lost in translation for us; if you have to plan something complicated, and you don't speak French, be sure to ask for someone who can speak English fluently.
In summary, we were disappointed considering the amount of money we paid to stay at the Sofitel. The setting is beautiful, though, and it really does look like all those postcards; just don't expect to be treated like the well-paying guest that you are...!

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank Anne L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 28 May 2012

Sofitel Moorea Beach is conveniently located near the ferry terminal. It is advisable to pre-arrange transport to hotel as the local taxi fares are not cheap. The bungalow we stayed in is nicely placed near the beach with great views of the reef and the nearby beach. The inside area is well spaced with the bathroom located behind the partition at the back of the bed. The bathroom area has plenty of room but the shower area needs seem renovating to bring it up to standard. This may not be the case for all bungalows. However one down side of the stay was the poor reception for the internet.

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
82 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 May 2012

Lovely room (luxury over-water bungalow), with a great rainfall shower in the bathroom and a quick post-snorkel fresh water rinsing shower on the deck. Direct access into the lagoon off the private deck, lots of younger fish swimming in this area. Fabulous infinity pool by the bar and restaurant. Plan on going back and spending more than the 3 days we spent precruise.

Room Tip: Stayed in a luxury overwater bungalow, absolutely fabulous especially if you like to snorkel off of...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Ian M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Olivier D, General Manager at Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort, responded to this review, 27 May 2012
Dear "AlanMacD"

Thank you for posting your comments, we are glad to see that you enjoyed your over water Bungalow, and that you had a great snorkeling experience.

We are looking forward to have you staying with us again.

Best Regards

Olivier De Ronseray
General Manager
Sofitel Ia Ora Beach Resort Moorea
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort

Property: Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort
Address: B.P. 28, Moorea, Maharepa 98728, French Polynesia
Phone Number:
Region: French Polynesia > Society Islands > Moorea > Maharepa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Maharepa
Price range (per night): ₹ 22,588 - ₹ 62,208
Hotel Class:5 star — Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 112
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort is located on the North-East Coast of the island, just 5 minutes away from Temae airport, Vaiare ferries docks, the 18 holes international golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus®. This landmark hotel is built on the longest and most beautiful white sand beach of the island, within a protected marine area maintained by the CRIOBE®.From this hotel, guests have a unique panoramic view on the lagoon and the island of Tahiti. The hotel offers a wide range of accommodation with a total of 113 Luxury Bungalows located in the gardens, directly on the beach or over the water. Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora has the only Luxury Beach Bungalows on Moorea that have unobstructed views of the island of Tahiti, located directly on the beach. Historically, this hotel is the first of the island that built bungalows over the water. Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora has now the largest Luxury Overwater Bungalows in Moorea (83 sq. meters).Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora also features 1 Luxury Villa with 2 bedrooms (150 sq.meters). It has 2 bathrooms, 1 lounge, 1 deck and 1 outdoor jacuzzi®, with a direct access into the lagoon and panoramic views of the island of Tahiti.Dine in Polynesian authenticity at the Pure restaurant with outdoor terrace dining offering complimentary and traditional dance shows every night or choose the barefoot elegance of K restaurant, gourmet dining, feet in the sand experience, with a unique dance show.For light snacks and exotic cocktails or premium alcohols while admiring the view, try the Vue bar overlooking the infinity pool, the lagoon and Tahiti with weekly live concerts. For light snacks and exotic cocktails during a farniente day on the beach, only steps away from the lagoon, try the Beach bar. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Hotel Maharepa
Sofitel Moorea Beach Resort
Sofitel Maharepa
Maharepa Sofitel
Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort Maharepa

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