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“Fabulous food, nice nannies, epic excursions, superb service” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Aquana Beach Resort

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Aquana Beach Resort
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   PO Box 238, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 43 Hotels in Port Vila
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Fabulous food, nice nannies, epic excursions, superb service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2013

We stayed with out son and family including 16 months old bub. Every time we had finished feeding bub, there was a nanny suddenly there to take her while we enjoyed our meal. The nannies were amazing. The chef is amazing also. We have stayed in many resorts over the years and owned our own restaurant but the food here is outstanding. Prawn salad with fresh coconut and raw mango is the bomb. The excursion to Eton beach was wonderful. Surely a preview of what heaven must be like. We asked for a special table for our son's birthday and had a fully decorated tent on the beach. It is an excellent resort for families especially with young children.

Room Tip: Waterfront rooms best. Cabin 8 the top
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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169 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (58)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2013 via mobile

We had a great stay, very professional family friendly place. 2 young kids, 15 months and 3 years had a ball too. I had read reviews of children asking for the nannies as soon as they woke, I thought our son would never do that and sure enough at 530am the morning after arrival he was asking. Nothing ever too much trouble.
Food great, service great.
Kerryn behind the bar was awesome, she was picking coral out of my foot at 9pm, using first aid kit. Always making great cocktails and organising events for each evening.
Tours and buses were always booked with ease.
Great location and free bus to town daily.
Is not as cheap as some places but when in need of a good quality holiday this is where you want to stay.
Thanks aquana team for making my 30th birthday week a time to remember

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

This is the best place we have ever stayed for a fantastic family holiday that is great for kids and adults alike. As mentioned in the many positive reviews, it is a family-run business and this is reflected in the friendly and attentive atmosphere of the resort.

You can be as busy or as relaxed as you like, lazing by the pool, taking out a kayak, checking out the fire dancers that perform weekly or taking the highly recommended local village tour.

The food, cocktails, bungalows and service are great. Many thanks to Marcel in the kitchen for being so accommodating with food that wasn't on the menu and for taking the time to make lasagne with the kids one night.

What can I say about the nannies. Just perfect. These lovely women whisk your kids away and genuinely love spending time with them. Many of them are mothers themselves and our kids adored them.

Overall, a really great experience from the moment we contacted Fabiene in the front office while still in Australia to organise a tour to Mount Yasur volcano (a must for all visitors to Vanuatu) to being greeted by Rita at 2am on our arrival, then chatting with Hugo about how he built the property and the history of Vanuatu.

Highly recommended, particularly for families. Stayed for 10 days June/July 2013.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 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.
Ballarat, Australia
Top Contributor
108 reviews 108 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2013

We decided on Aquana Beach Resort for our second trip to Vanuatu in as many years as we were after a smaller, quieter property having stayed at Iririki Island previously. The reviews on Tripadvisor look promising and we certainly were not disappointed - it lived up to all our expectations and them some.

Whilst you could write volumes on why it is so good, in a nutshell it is the experience - the food, its people and the ambiance which were all a delight and its location nestled in a quiet lagoon at the foot of Eratap Village adds a stand out brilliance and nu-Vanuatu authenticity.

Marcel and his team have constructed a comprehensive menu that frustrates in that you struggle with the decision whether to try new items on the menu whilst wanting to repeat what you had at the previous sitting. After a week we can definitely report it is all delicious and if you don't put on several kilos a week you aren't really trying!

The resident owners ensure that you are relaxed, informed and happy without living in your back pocket and the staff are 100% committed to making your stay an absolute joy. Whist our child was in her late teens so we didn't need the resident nannies, they are committed, caring and fun loving and obviously enjoy their work. They even engaged our daughter and took her off to experience local culture and explore the local walks and rock pool. Wait staff are extremely friendly, attentive and competent and we utilized the massage services and kept going back - absolutely brilliant!

Aquana Beach Resort is located behind Eratap island so it is protected from the waves and there are some tidal restrictions getting out to the ocean side for snorkeling on surrounding islands, though nothing that is too problematic. They organized an outrigger and crew member to take us to a nearby island to snorkel which was great but we also used their free kayaks to check out the great reefs nearby and were amazed at the numbers of fish we saw. We also took the local tour to Eratap Village which was also organized by the resort and had a very enjoyable time seeing how the village operated and even meeting our tour guides' family which was a fantastic experience. This was followed up by local basket making and the like and a feast of local food which provided a comprehensive and thoroughly enjoyable cultural experience that should not be missed.

Aquana Beach Resort is about 25 minutes out of town and half the journey is on main road with the other on a bumpy dirt road through the village. The trip provides a great insight into village life and the enjoyment of traveling in Vanuatu is seeing the people which overcomes any lack of comfort from bumpy tracks.

In all Aquana provides a unique package that breaks the starchy, overly polished and commercial feel of larger resorts. We were delighted with the standard of accommodation and all the resort facilities and overall the whole package is nothing short of superb. Credit should be paid to the owners whose vision in developing the resort over recent years was enlightened and magnificent in reality. Very well done...we will definitely be back, and hopefully soon!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 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.
Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2013

We just had a week at Aquana Resort. Our family travelled with another family and we had side by side beachfront bungalows – which were immaculately clean and spacious.

By the end of the week we were all thoroughly relaxed and wanted to stay longer. We did the village tour – not expensive and well worth the trip – especially for the kids – was good for them to see the school and walk through the village. We also did the outrigger and kayaks over to another island – 10 mins away – great coral viewing! The boys [big and small – small over 6 years] went out for an afternoon in offroad buggies – they had the best time. There was different entertainment every night – be it marshmallows over the bonfire or Tribal Dancing and Sand-drawing and the Fire Show was the best we have seen and so intimate – I have never seen it that close - was amazing! The Massage lady was great too – we fit in a couple during our stay. My daughter had her hair braided by one of the nannies too - $20 and it is still in now a week and half later. [no knots and brushing for me so I am loving it too!]

What really ‘makes’ this resort is the babysitting – knowing your kids are looked after at any time of the day [7am-9pm] The first morning they walked out of our bungalow [after a delayed flight arriving at 2am so we were tired] and the nannies took them off our hands to have a sleep in and collect shells. With a start like that to the holiday we were soon aware of what all the fuss was about with this resort. I have stayed at many hotels and have never experienced this with the babysitting, it is a great idea. We stayed at another large style resort in Vanuatu last year and after this experience I would never do that again – regimented kids club times and large plan resort is now not for me. Aquana has 14ish bungalows and it was just perfect I don’t think they plan to extend much more – maybe a few more – aside from the babysitting the size was also very appealing to us. Combined we had a 10, 6, 4 and 2 year old. The older 3 have all said best holiday ever – my 2 year old isn’t talking much yet but he had a great time – was more hesitant going to the nannies than the older kids at first but next time he will be fine – it’s just the age! And yes there will be a next time! For sure!

Last but by no means least, the food – Marcel is a brilliant chef! The food night after night was to die for and he offers a very extensive menu and has special nights where he adds something a bit different. [Seafood chowder my fave] It really was beautiful – not expensive but not cheap. Same as home really – which is what I have always expected on holidays to Vanuatu and Fiji.

Aquana know what they are doing and they mean business! They are onto a good thing – you will not regret your stay here. I would defiantly recommend to families. Couples beware of children. If you don’t like kids around don’t stay here – it is a family friendly resort – just the way we like it. Thank you Aquana!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 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.
Griffith, Australia
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2013

My wife and I recently stayed at Aquana Beach Resort Vanuatu and we we’re both extremely impressed with the hospitality, service, and overall ambience of the resort.

Food is fantastic, cocktail’s (made by Willie) are precious and delectable and the overall location and surroundings are picturesque.

Firstly, hospitality and service: Nothing was a hassle for Marcel, Burgett, Hugo, Ros, Valarie and Co. Due to a delayed flight we arrived at midnight. Because of this, we were upgraded to a beach front bungalow as we’d been travelling all day long. The airline also lost our luggage so the team at Aquana took on the initiative to follow up with the airline daily so we could enjoy our holiday and not waste our trip chasing our luggage.

Secondly, the service from all the staff (apologises but I only remember a few names) is second to done. They were always intentive, patient, and accurate with all orders/requests.

Finally, the location was fantastic. Being located 30mins out of town was wonderful. The daily resort bus runs you into town (Port Vila) or you can walk 400m up the road to the local bus stop and catch a bus to your destination. In addition, being out of town created a peaceful environment at the lagoon. No jetski’s, speedboats, or other tourist activities happening here. Just you and the peace and quiet of the lagoon. I might add, you can access a few uninhabited islands from Aquana with live coral. The far island is the best, about a 20min canoe.

Aquana Beach Resort has a great communal atmosphere. In the week we spent there, we got to know the owners, employees and other guests. Marcel and the team really drive a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. In the week we stayed there, we attended three activities put on by the hosts, traditional dancing, and Kava tasting; fire dancing and more dancing and sand painting.

This resort is suitable for couples or families. The staff look after the children letting the parents relax and enjoy their trip. The ladies adore the kids and vice versa.

With so many countries to visit my wife and I have decided to visit Vanuatu again and this decision was largely influenced by the outstanding service we experienced from the entire team at Aquana Beach Resort.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cromwell
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2013 via mobile

Fantastic welcoming accommodating staff with spacious bungalows. Excellent kids club which isn't a normal kids club - kids are fully supervised by nannies all the time, they can do what they want; be in and around you or not. You can fully relax brilliant. The snorkelling a short kayak away is magnificent, with lovely live coral and great fish life.

Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Aquana Beach Resort

Address: PO Box 238, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
Location: Vanuatu > Efate > Port Vila
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Port Vila
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Port Vila
#4 Romantic Hotel in Port Vila
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Aquana Beach Resort 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Opened in 2012, Aquana Beach Resort has become Vanuatu's leading three and a half star family friendly boutique Resort and this has largely been due to the unique childcare approach it has developed and the quality of the food from it's very popular casual dining restaurant. Located 25 minutes from the International Airport and only 15 minutes from the town centre, Aquana is situated in a large lagoon surrounded by groups of deserted islands and pristine reefs. Aquana has a 150 meter long man-made beach great for children to be able to play free from danger and for adults to relax on and soak up the sun. Aquana consists of 16 bungalows all located within 30 meters of the lagoon front and a hot a la carte and a continental breakfast are both included in the room rate and the resorts idyllic surroundings provides the perfect location for weddings and functions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aquana Beach Resort Vanuatu/Port Vila

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