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“Top spot for a romantic getaway” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Manuia Beach Resort

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Manuia Beach Resort
5.0 of 5 Boutique Hotel   |   PO Box 700, Arorangi, Cook Islands   |  
Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Special Price
20% off room rate
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Arorangi
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Top spot for a romantic getaway”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2013

First time visitors to Rarotonga (and Manuia obviously). Loved that it was child free and only a maximum of 24 couples staying at any one time. The last unit to be refurbished was completed while we were there (late May 2013) so al units now looking great. Highly recommend the Beach front units (1-6) although units 7-12 would also be OK (1 row back). Units 19-24 are a bit close to the Office/car park so avoid if possible. Snorkelling is great right off the beach in front of the Resort. Snorkelling equipment provided by the resort if needed. Would highly recommend snorkelling opposite "Fruits or Rarotonga" about 7km east if you like bigger fish/deeper water but Manuia was great especially for first timers who can touch bottom at most times if required. Take bread with you too for a close up experience with the fish. Even saw a couple Moray eels which just sit there and look at you ! Restaurant is good too with great lagoon views over the beach to the breaking waves on the coral and sunsets to die for ! Awesome. Also loved the outdoor shower, the friendly helpful staff and the fact the only TV is in the Guest lounge. No phones in the rooms but cell reception good if required. Unlimited filtered water on tap from the restaurant which you can use to fill up the provided water jug in your fridge. Tea and Coffee making facilities in each room but no cooking facilities ensures you are eating out each day ! Highly recommend the Manuia Beach Resort to any couples seeking a quiet romantic holiday ! Oh, and not a rooster to be heard :-)

Room Tip: Rooms 4 and 5 have a path between them which is the main walkway to the restaurant/Infinity pool for...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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249 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (115)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Hamilton, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2013

Our first visit to Rarotonga and we could not have felt more welcome. From the 2 Managers through to the rest of the staff they were all friendly, helpful, and most importantly made us always feel like we were on holiday. We are counting down the days until we can come back and enjoy again. Being a smaller resort you never felt crowded and it was easy to meet other guests and feel just like a big family

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Top Contributor
88 reviews 88 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2013 via mobile

First time to Rarotonga, and Manuia was recommended by our travel agent. I jumped on trip advisor and saw the great reviews so booked it. As has been said the rooms are excellent. We would often come back after a days activities and just sigh with relief when opening the doors, they have been that well refurbished. We stayed in a garden suite and to be honest would prefer those to the water view apartments. The pool is great. The beach is picture perfect, though there is better swimming spots around the island, mainly around Muri, the Rarotongan resort, and for snorkelling - opposite the 'Fruits of Rarotonga' which had an abundance of sea life.

In our 7 days there we drove around the island two,three times. Probably only saw one other resort ( little Polynesian) that caught my eye as being better, but rooms start at $530 a night and quite honestly - for what Manuia offers you'd be crazy going somewhere else. Manuia is well located, well known, close to town and car/scooter hire plus have good connections with the local dive company 'big fish' which I also found excellent as a diver. The two buses the circle the island ( one clockwise the other anti clockwise) stop directly outside Manuia' entrance once an hour. Just note that the anticlockwise bus stops at 4:30pm which is the one you'd get going to the good restaurants in the south.

I've rated it 5 stars because it fulfills everything you want in accommodation and more. The owners were away during most of the time we were there. Personally we found the restaurant attached to manuia disappointing. Compared to some great restaurants like Vaima, the Sands and Tamarin House, Manuia's restaurant didn't compare. Great for a breakfast, cocktail or bar food, but not for serious dining. Which is a bit of a shame because the location and views from the restaurant are stunning. The other slight neg was information from the office like bus times, and pick up times, flight info at times was incorrect. But, if you do your research you'll be fine!
Rooms were cleaned everyday, air conditioning was great, bathroom spacious ( due to outside showers which were fantastic). Every other guest we spoke to said if they came back to Raro they'd return to Manuia. There are some tired looking resorts on the island, in particular Edgewater, and in my opinion the Rarotongan. Wasn't that impressed with what I saw at Club Muri and Moana Sands either, but that's just an opinion.
When we return to Raro we'll definately be rebooking at Manuia.

Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2013

Laurie & I stayed at Manuia Beach from the 18th - 23rd May. From the moment we arrived until we left is was perfect. The beach restaurant was great, they even cater for gluten free requirements ( cant get GF pancakes back in NZ for breakfast out in a café) but no problem for mama in the kitchen!!!! Thank you. We loved the quiet and the rooms are very comfortable. It took us a day to work out what was so different from other holidays, it was the quiet from not having any families with small children around. we left ours at home! Teenagers, that is.
With the resort being down a long driveway, there was no road noise and just a short walk within the resort to get to the beach, lagoon or pool & restaurant. The outdoor showers were really cool.
We loved cocktails by the pool as the sun was setting. Beautiful.
Thanks Richard & Staff we will be back again. Laurie & Christine

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2013

What an incredible place! we had a wonderful honeymoon, the no kids policy is great, beautiful rooms, the outdoor showers are very cool, the staff is fantastic, Kura! what a lovely woman :) We are going to miss her. You also get extra sun on that side of the island and the sunsets are unbelievable! Lots of coral with tropical fish on the beach, very nice infinity pool too! Thanks Alex and Loren, we will be back one day.

Room Tip: Room 11, almost at the front but more private and quiet as front ones are close to the restaurant an...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Palmerston North, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

We stayed at Manuia from 18th to 23rd May 2013 and loved it! The people there were absolutely fantastic, the staff could not do enough to meet our every need. The accommodation was every thing one could expect or imagine. The private outside showers in each unit with hot and cold water was such an enterprising idea and novel experience. The bed was comfortable, the unit clean, private and really comfortable with air con and fan. We loved the Island night as it was quite different to others offered, and Kura was amazing with her knowledge and ability to unite everyone in their cultural activities - she made everyone feel like family. Richard, one of the owners made our whole stay a personal involvement in being there and because of this, everyone who was staying there felt special and bonded as if we had known one another forever. We will return to Manuia - we have stayed on another resort previously and have visited other resorts, but this is definitely number one! Bryan and Barb NZ

Room Tip: We liked to have accommodation on the calmer side of the island with a bit of distance from the reef...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Napier, Hawke's Bay, New Zealand
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

Thanks to the team of staff at the Manuia Beach resort..... such a title as resort must deliver and this place does. The new owners have re-decorated and expanded, this tropical R18 (as in no children) is perfect. The staff are great ..... we love you Kura (she's makes that place hum). the gardiner has passion and love for his garden. Only fault was the local rooster down the road!!!! Management are fab... we couldn't complete our shopping as the shops are shut Sunday's and we flow out early hours of Monday. Loren had purchased what we were after and posted the goods back to us before we got home 4 hours later..... Now That's SERVICE. We will be back... Many thanks Andrea & Simon

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Manuia Beach Resort

Address: PO Box 700, Arorangi, Cook Islands
Phone Number:
Location: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Rarotonga > Arorangi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Arorangi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Manuia Beach Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Your Polynesian Paradise at Manuia Beach Resort awaits you... Marvel at the magical sunsets over a sparkling blue lagoon, while lounging on your sheltered, white sandy beach fringed with swaying coconut palms. Wander through the tropical gardens on your way to the beach side infinity pool. Rest your elbows on the pool edge and soak in the view across the beach, through the lagoon onwards to the waves crashing on the barrier reef beyond. Sip a refreshing tropical cocktail delivered to you from the Beaches Restaurant and bar, or enjoy your Polynesian inspired meals in the restaurant while you trail your toes through the sandy floor. Manuia Beach Resort - your Cook Islands resort accommodation - is set right on the beach in private and peaceful surroundings on the sheltered sunset coast of Rarotonga. You will love the authentic Cook Islands style accommodation, with the coconut thatched suites complete with island style decor and modern amenities such as air conditioning. Walk through the sandy path down to the water and be stunned by the beauty of the poolside area. The infinity pool, Beaches Restaurant and Bar with its relaxed authentic Polynesian cuisine, loungers set invitingly facing the beautiful lagoon, and attentive local staff, will all set the stage for your dream Rarotongan get-away. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Manuia Beach Boutique Avarua
Hotel Manuia Beach Boutique
Manuia Beach Resort Rarotonga, Cook Islands

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