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“Mixed bag at Christmas/New Year” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Iririki Island Resort

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Iririki Island Resort
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Iririki Island, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #29 of 46 Hotels in Port Vila
Auckland
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Mixed bag at Christmas/New Year”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2012

My 11 year old son and I had Christmas away together on our own, as my husband had to work. We chose the Resort on the basis it would be family friendly, and hopefully there would be other children around for company. We arrived Christmas Day and were due to leave New Year's Day. Got to say, bit of a mixed bag, but overall would probably stay again as I think some of the issues were seasonal. We booked one of the family apartments overlooking the pools so we could see who was out and about. The receptionist tried to put us in an ocean view room because they were ready but the pool view rooms were not, which would have suited me, but we agreed we would hold out for the room we booked. Therefore we spent time by the pools until check in time at 2pm. That time came and went, and in the end we had to plead with one of the cleaners to let us in to a room as we needed to get out of the heat and have a rest. They were lovely and accommodating as they could see my son was wilting. The room cannot be faulted, all you need for a family stay and more. Huge room, huge balcony, and still seaviews, albeit out the kitchen and bathroom windows. The pool complex is also a great attraction for families, although is in need of maintenance in places, quite a few sections of edging stones/tiles missing. It also didn't appear very clean but we put that down to it being Christmas and possibly they were out of their usual maintenance schedule. It did improve slightly, including the gardeners coming back to work and tidying up all around the resort as it was a bit unloved. There was an unfortunate incident with someone pooing in the pool the first day too, which no one seemed to bothered about but I insisted Management deal with the matter. They said they had closed that pool for 24 hrs, although we saw no signs, and they are all joined together anyway, so wouldn't do much good. We did see them transporting a couple of buckets of pool chemicals towards the maintenance area, and told us they would have the pool company test the water next day. So after checking it was ok, we went back in too. There was still the other pool at the other end of the island if we wanted to trek down there - different ambiance there, used to be the adults only section. So really nice, but not a "fun" pool. Service was quite chaotic, but again, we put that down to Christmas, and you can forgive anything when the staff are so friendly when they do get to you. Another Christmas related issue for us though, was that we realised on the first day that there were a lot of visitors to the resort. Some were obviously tourists, but there were a lot of large Vanuatu families there. Again, lovely friendly people, but when we enquired, we think we were told that families of staff were allowed to come during the Christmas period. So facilities that we had paid for were being used for free by locals. I don't want to be a scrooge, but when they ordered drinks and plates of chips by the tray load, it meant we were waiting for very long periods when we wanted things. The day before we left, the Cruise liners started coming in too, and after our experience of our last full day with being absolutely thronged with cruise liner "types" (there is a reason I don't cruise) we were again at the bottom of the heap when it came to service and sunbeds. Not to mention the lack of consideration by the visitors. It seemed all of them were smokers, and there were probably over a hundred of them just at our part of the island that day. There was only one place Wifi was available, the customer service reception/pool bar at the far end of the island) for our Ipad, and only wired connection for laptops in the rooms, so they really need to get up to speed with technology. Apart from the resort, we liked Vanuatu and was surprised how many activities there were to do outside if you wanted. Also liked how close the town is, making it easy to get supplies. So, if you are not looking for luxury, and are aware it is a family resort (plane loads of guests arriving after midnight and excitedly whooping it up while looking for their rooms), but want a convenient well appointed resort and you are able to walk distances in the heat (to get to breakfast, various restaurants, reception/ferry, this could be for you. As I said, despite my grizzles, would probably come back.

Room Tip: I would have the seaview room over pool room next time, more peaceful, and you have to walk quite so...
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gmiririki, Guest Relations Manager at Iririki Island Resort, responded to this review, April 8, 2014
Thanks for spending the time to review us on TripAdvisor

We value feedback from all our clients, we are sorry that your review was not replied to earlier
Hope to have you back again soon to enjoy Iririki Island Resort once again

Warm Regards
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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854 reviews from our community

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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
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (274)
Date | Rating
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  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
sydneye13
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2012

Our ocean view apartment was spacious and clean with wonderful sunset views, however the linen and towels desperately need a good bleach. Our bedding was not changed at all during stay and we had to ring reception every other day for fresh towels.

The whole resort has a friendly feeling with wonderful happy staff although the general feeling is a little run down in most areas. Food quality is good, we could order rice and steamed vegetables for our 20 month old daughter however this is not on the menu.

The 'family' pool area is needing some TLC - chipped and broken tiles, nails sticking out of the wooden bridges and is seemingly available for open use. One particular day we had to leave the area as it was so over-run by people not staying at the resort. The local boys were 'bomb' diving in the pool right by the swim up bar. The music in that area is also SO LOUD and unfortunately it's not relaxing music at all, makes it a bit hard to chill by the pool when you have bad loud music being pumped through the dodgy speakers - a few of the speakers seem broken so all you can hear is muffled bass.

All this aside our overall experience was good, I must say the highlight of our stay was having Belinda take care of our daughter while we caught up with friends for dinner, she was absolutely amazing and our daughter loved spending time with her.

The staff no matter where you were, either at breakfast, by the pool, or just walking around the resort were always happy to help and very quick to give you a smile. Something we miss now living back in Australia.

Room Tip: The Deluxe Ocean View Apartments are great, spa on the deck and gorgeous sunset each afternoon.
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
gmiririki, Guest Relations Manager at Iririki Island Resort, responded to this review, April 8, 2014
Thanks for spending the time to review us on TripAdvisor

We value feedback from all our clients, we are sorry that your review was not replied to earlier
Hope to have you back again soon to enjoy Iririki Island Resort once again

Warm Regards
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra, Australia
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2012

I was only on Iririki for a wedding and we had lunch at a resturant which was only open for us and it was great! With very beautiful views and lovely, friendly staff.
The wedding was on the beach at the end of the island and, wow, what a beautiful setting! clear water and soft white sand, perfect.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
gmiririki, General Manager at Iririki Island Resort, responded to this review, January 23, 2012
Dear AussieGirlEV,

Thank you for taking the time to write your review for Iririki Island Resort & Spa Vanuatu.
Iririki have been facilitating weddings for over 20 years and we really enjoy seeing couples come back time and time again to celebrate their anniversaries and bring the kids.

I am so pleased you enjoyed your time on our island and hopefully we can look forward to welcoming you back soon!

Best Regards,
Nathan Bucknall
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BRISBANE
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
63 helpful votes 63 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2012

Ok, so why is this hard to rate...
On arriving we initially had booked a Fare and an Ocean front Apartment. The fare had seen better days...it was like staying in a school camp that hadn't been touched for years. We upgraded after one night to an ocean front apartment and they were like chalk and cheese. The fare had this falling down around you and mould everywhere, whereas the ocean front apartment was immaculate and almost new.
This is where the hard part of reviewing comes in. We also saw other guests fare's and they were lovely, clean and almost new. This lack of consistency is why I think the reviews of Iririki are so all over the place.
The one thing that they have is the Vanuatu staff. It is easy to fall in love with their charm and hospitality and their constant smiles...I couldn't work out how to get them in my bags to bring them home. Some to mention would be Malon (I did try to fit him in my bag!!), Barnabas, Dixon, Thomson, Edith, Path, John, Vanessa, Joe, Serah, Kennelly....too list only a few that made out holiday what it was.

Highlights apart from the staff were The Watermark restaurant was very good time after time - a seat on the deck offer lovely views. The snorkeling off Snorkelers Cove was great - about 100m out and the fact that you were a short little boat trip away from the P&O people in Villa was a relief.

Something to note though....you are on 'island time' when you get to Vanuatu...so if you are looking for speedy service....head to another country...you won't like it here.

There are a few things that were irritating....dozens of Aussie bogans from the Holiday Inn would flood the large pool during the day (they can pay to have day use of the facilities) - this was uncomfortable particularly how they treated the staff.
The Bali Hai pool which was supposed to be for people 12 and above was full of kids some days - no one seemed to police that.
2 meals at Mitcheners were bad then good - again consistency is an issue.
The furniture in the apartments needs furniture stoppers on it to prevent the noise resonating tot he lower apartments.

Something to note is that during our stay the hotel has changes hands. The new owners have some big plans for maintenance etc... so as far as encouraging those that might have had a few issues, I'd say give it another try.

All in all will I go back -yes. When - I wish today. Its the people that make it.

Room Tip: The ocean front apartments are much newer - but note you can hear furniture moving above you
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gmiririki, Guest Relations Manager at Iririki Island Resort, responded to this review, April 8, 2014
Thanks for spending the time to review us on TripAdvisor

We value feedback from all our clients, we are sorry that your review was not replied to earlier
It is important for us to get feedback from our guests, so that we can continue to improve our standards

Warm Regards
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
aussie traveller
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2012

Not what I expected from a 4 star resort. Decided to move to a different resort.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
gmiririki, Guest Relations Manager at Iririki Island Resort, responded to this review, April 8, 2014
Thanks for spending the time to review us on TripAdvisor

We value feedback from all our clients, we are sorry that your review was not replied to earlier
It is important for us to get feedback from our guests, so that we can continue to improve our standards

Warm Regards
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2012

We stayed at Iririki Island Resort in September 2010 and it was a fanastic place to stay. We stayed on the no- children side of the island and booked a garden room. We were surprised to be put in a beautiful room with views of the water. The balcony was great to sit and relax on. It was a simple room but very nice. The restaurants and night entertainment was also great. While we were there we saw two traditional dances while eating dinner and a band or singer every arvo. Port Villa is very old and still very third world, we didn't expect it to be so run down but the people were amazing and so nice. The tours were great and there was amazing places to see. Probably not the best place for shopping and you could get bored if you stayed too long but for a relaxing getaway it is perfect.

Room Tip: Choose a room on the adults only side if you don't have kids. Great place for kids though.
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gmiririki, General Manager at Iririki Island Resort, responded to this review, January 15, 2012
Dear RyLou S,

Thank you for your feedback.
Please note that Iririki is now a family friendly island. There are no longer facility restrictions to guests under the age of 12.

On behalf of all us at Iririki Island Resort & Spa Vanuatu, thank you for choosing to stay with us and we hope we can look forward to welcoming you back soon!

Best Regards,
Mr Nathan Bucknall
Acting General Manager
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Katoomba, Australia
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2012

On arrival for 6 nights Dec 2011 the receptionist was on the phone, handset held together by sticky tape. Originally booked garden fare but having looked inside, decided to take up the offer of a reduced price upgrade to luxury apartment. Which was spacious and clean. However the state of the linen and towels let it down, very old, worn and slightly grubby in appearance, pillowcases badly frayed. Our bedding was not changed at all during stay. The whole resort has a feeling of being run-down, repairs are needed everywhere and things that have been done are obviously on the cheap. We had paid 'half board' which entitled us to dinner vouchers but on two nights Micheners had a buffet and we were informed this was not included. Drink prices are expensive and we were asked on two occasions to sign for beverages we hadn't had. (It is wise to keep your own tally of daily charges). Food quality is good. The 'family' pool area is hazardous - chipped and broken tiles and is seemingly available for open use. Local teenage boys doing 'bombs' and backflips into the main pool meant that relaxing within was not an option. The 'adults' (often had children in it) pool was closed for New Tears Eve preparations. The beach area is pleasant, the water clear but you are in a shipping harbour. A location like this does have the potential to be something special, a bit of local style injected into the bland apartments wouldn't go astray, along with much better maintenance and attention to detail. Our overall experience was disappointing, we usually holiday in Fiji at this time of year but decided to try something different. Given Iririki was our first experience in Vanuatu we are not inclined to returning.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gmiririki, Guest Relations Manager at Iririki Island Resort, responded to this review, April 9, 2014
Thanks for spending the time to review us on TripAdvisor

We value feedback from all our clients, we are sorry that your review was not replied to earlier
Hope to have you back again soon to enjoy Iririki Island Resort once again

Warm Regards
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 Iririki Island Resort

Address: Iririki Island, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
Location: Vanuatu > Efate > Port Vila
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#9 Spa Hotel in Port Vila
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Port Vila
#12 Luxury Hotel in Port Vila
#17 On the Beach Hotel in Port Vila
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Iririki Island Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 135
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Traditional Fares - On a Private Island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Iririki Island Hotel Port Vila
Vanuatu Iririki Resort
Iririki Island Port Vila
Iririki Island Resort Vanuatu/Port Vila

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