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“stay somewhere else” 1 of 5 stars
Review of The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa

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The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Aroa Beach, Aroa Beach, Cook Islands   |  
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Free Night In Paradise
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Aroa Beach
auckland
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“stay somewhere else”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2007

The garden rooms are like shanties. They are dirty, very old and run down. You will need to waste big money to get a newer room of a reasonable standard. The lagoon and restaurant facilitys are ok. Attended a wedding here, which seemed to be an enormous waste of money for the low quaility services they provided. e.g. Most of the buffet wedding dinner was taken away before anyone could get seconds, and then later appeared in the resort cafe for sale.

  • Stayed November 2007, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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707 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (202)
Date | Rating
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  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2007

Well what can I say,we stayed here in July 2002,which was a while ago but it seems as though nothing has changed.I was 6mths pregnant and when we arrived with a plane load of other people they had forgotten about us and we had to wait 2 hours before our rooms were ready.The aussie manager didnt even offer me anything even though i had been cramped on a plane for hours and desperately needed to lay down. Ocean view room was okay,however being in hospitality myself I had never come across such rude,hopeless and lazy staff.My husband had to wait nearly 15 minutes at the poolside bar,just for a pot of beer.They knew you where there but tried to act as if their conversations where more important.The manager even mentioned that because the cook islands is relatively knew to tourism within the last 15 years or so that is very hard to find islanders that want to work let alone enjoy the jobs.Also the cook islands are not that hot and the pool was absolutely freezing and so i was lucky to see maybe 3 people even in the water,as the beach wasnt very appealing with topless girlys laying beside my rounded frame.All in all a hopeless resort and overpriced for its star rating,probably would choose something like phuket or fiji next time at least its warmer and hopefully the staff wont have attitudes.Also forgot, it was quite windy when we went, for about 3 days which was horrible near the sand flying beach,however you cannot whinge to mother nature.

  • Liked — beautiful beach and fish feeding
  • Disliked — extremely rude and lazy staff
  • Stayed July 2003, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2007

Location, Location, Location... The rarotongan had it all.
My stay was short, i was in rarotonga for business and a my travel agent suggest the rarotongan, i wasn't too fussed, i didn't even have time to look up the reviews. But i'll be glad to write one, the location was 100% we had great sunsets for the 3 nights that i was there. because of my short stay i didn't get to use all of the free facilities and activities which they offered, but i did make an effort to go night snorkeling and make good use of the cocktail hour "island Girl" was my favourite, a little pricy as it's designed for two i think, it came in a huge glass. Overall my room was very tradtional, newly renovated and had a balcony with a view of the lagoon. Overall 10/10 and i'll be back for sure.

  • Liked — Beachfront views and sunsets
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2007

We visited Rarotonga in 2004 and then again in 2005-6 for New Years. After staying at 3 resorts around the island, there’s only one place I’d go back to, and that’s The Rarotongan Beach Resort and Spa. We loved the friendly service, our room and all the facilities. It well deserves its 4 stars.

We found it to be the place which most successfully balances the expected modern comforts and luxuries of an international resort with a wide variety of cultural activities that allow you to really immerse yourself in the Rarotongan culture and interact with the local people.

While I could write pages about this place, I’ll try to keep it short and cover just a few stand-out features:

RESORT FACILITIES:
All facilities you expect from a 4-star resort: pool, gym, spa and beauty salon, beachfront restaurant with lots of variety, stylish rooms and free access to kayaks, snorkels etc for the lagoon. As some people have noted, the food can be a bit pricey, but I understand that this is due to the expensive nature of shipping all food onto the island (even the local supermarket is more expensive than at home) and the quality is far better than some of the other restaurants around Raro.

RESORT ACTIVITES:
The resort is set on a sandy white beach and turquoise-blue lagoon against a green mountain backdrop. Its extensive activities program is a stand-out feature, which I felt the other hotels really lacked. I tried nearly all of the activities but my favourites were the lei (flower headdress) making, the village walking tour and the snorkelling (there is even night snorkelling for those who like to live on the edge!). The resort also holds regular buffets with traditional music, dancing and fire acts. For those brave enough (or dobbed in by a friend – like me!) you can also have a go at the traditional dancing on stage with the performers!

STAFF/SERVICE:
The fine service of the staff stands out as a particularly impressive feature, especially compared to other resorts in Raro. The islanders have a lovely combination of easy, unaffected politeness and respect for foreigners as well as an understanding of Western culture which makes them delightful to deal with. Stress-free, kind and hospitable, their desire to help you extends past their motivation for a pay cheque. You can tell the staff here love their jobs, and were very patient and attentive. They are all very switched on and seem to have a good feel for when guests appreciate the laid-back island attitude and when efficiency is important.

FOR YOUNG PEOPLE:
I found it to cater well for young people, such as myself, with loads of different activities (all free). Many catered to young people specifically, such as the nightlife tour. It's a very sociable environment too, especially loving the weekly cocktail party with free drinks!

FOR WEDDINGS/HONEYMOONS:
Weddings seem to be very popular at The Rarotongan. I saw part of an actual ceremony whilst there on my stay. Looked very professional and well-organized with lovely little island touches like floral leis on the couple and guests!

FOR FAMILIES:
Free kids club (with the most ginormous flat screen TV I have ever seen!) and loads of activities for children.

For us, Rarotonga has a unique landscape, environment and culture you will not experience anywhere else, and we would highly recommend The Rarotongan to anyone wanting the ideal base from which to explore all the things the island has to offer, starting with a great beach and the most amazing snorkelling I’ve ever done anywhere! We’re actually thinking of going back this January, fingers crossed!

  • Liked — Location, staff and facilities
  • Disliked — Mozzies when we forgot to close the flyscreen at night!
  • Stayed January 2006, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tauranga
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2007

Like the other recent reviews I was abit worried about staying there after reading some of them. It turned out to be an awesome place to stay & the rooms were great, staff were friendly. The facilities were the best, with free access to all beach gear and the lagoon was the best snorkling we saw on the island. We stayed in a garden room and it was very nice and air conditioned, the rooms were made up everyday and there are safes etc to store your valubles if you please.

I would stay here again & the rarotongan far exceeded all of my expectations. The only fault I could find was the food and drinks were abit pricey - but this is to be expected in a resort on a very small island.

Highly recomended.

  • Liked — The Lagoon
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 18, 2007

Well, we expected the worst having seen the reviews here but were pleasantly surprised. When you read some of these reviews its as if we were in a different place.
We were greeted at the airport by very friendly staff and given garlands which was a nice start.We had a garden room which although small was very clean and had everything we needed.I would reccomend an upgrade to a bigger room. The staff were very friendly and although slow were very helpful.This is a very laid back island where nothing is done fast but it suited us to be able to unwind and relax. The rooms were cleaned every day and properly too. The sheets were changed every day which I thought a bit wasteful but they were. If you read other reports they say that the rooms are not cleaned well. Well ours certainly was and we could not fault it.The entertainment was excellent and the food was first class although a bit slow in coming but that is Roratonga for you. We compared the prices with the local restaurant and found the restaurant was dearer.
The activities once again were slow and never started on time but they were good and the staff very friendly.
I think it all depends on what standard you are looking for. If you want a 4 star hotel of international standards and expect to be looked after with top service then this is not the place for you. Do not forget you are in Roratonga here and everything runs on Raro time. Obviously there are hotels on the island that cater for people who want the ultimate luxury but you pay for it.We met a couple who were paying $500 dollars a night at another hotel and they were disgusted with the service.
Anyway we were more than happy with this hotel

  • Liked — Laid back atmosphere
  • Disliked — No tour desk
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wellington
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 31, 2007

After booking our accommodation at The Rarotogan I was a bit worried after reading all of the reviews on here but very glad I didn't change my mind!

I found the Rarotongan a great resort!
We stayed in a beachSIDE deluxe suite which is exactly what we wanted. It was nicely done up inside and only a few metres away from the beach (not directly on the beach).

All of the 10 movie channels were great when you were just wanting to relax out of the sun.

Breakfast was great each morning with a good selection of toast, fruits, cereal and muffins etc.

I loved that there way always something going on. The Island Night show was great I would recommend it!!

All the staff were friendly and willing to help out :)
Yes the meals were a tad expensive but no different from the other nice restaurants around the island.

If we were to return to Raraotonga we would stay here again for sure!

We also stayed at Palm Grove for a few nights, I have posted a review.

  • Liked — Great snorkelling off the resort, perfect setting all round
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa

Address: Aroa Beach, Aroa Beach, Cook Islands
Phone Number:
Location: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Rarotonga > Aroa Beach
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Aroa Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 156
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Rarotongan Beach Resort And Spa
The Rarotongan Beach Hotel Aroa Beach
Rarotongan Beach Resort Spa
The Rarotongan Beach Resort & Spa Rarotonga/Aroa Beach

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