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“Relaxing Holiday” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Fatumaru Lodge

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Fatumaru Lodge
3.0 of 5 Boutique Hotel   |   Walter Lini Hwy | PO Box 1359, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #12 of 46 Hotels in Port Vila
victoria
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Relaxing Holiday”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 27, 2009

We stayed in a self-contained seaside room; it was close to town, 10 min walk or 2 min bus but still a peaceful and quiet location.
Our room had a great view over the bay and was self-contained so we could cook a few meals our selves to keep the costs down.
Kayaks are free to use and we enjoyed going for a paddle around the bay.
All the staff were very friendly and helpful, we would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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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232 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    115
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See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (53)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2009

Fantastic location & lovely hotel. We stayed in a self contained seaside room which was beautifully furnished with our own private balcony. Situated on a very peaceful little bay just far enough from the city centre to be quiet, but also close enough to walk to the major shopping district. With amazing fresh food markets close-by, it is great to have your own cooking facilities.

Excellent staff, always smiling & very friendly. More than willing to help out with booking tours etc. Kayaks are available free from the hotel & it is well worth having a paddle around in the bay.

If you enjoy privacy & you want a relaxing holiday, that isn't all about staying at a resort, Fatumaru is perfect :)

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blue Mountains
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2009

We had a very disappointing experience at this establishment. There are much nicer places on Vanuatu at a lot less price, don’t be conned by the publicity the place gives itself.

Despite negotiating directly with the manager over a price in Australian Dollars and paying him into an account in Australia in Australian dollars I was sent a bill for a levy, a shortfall in the exchange rate on the amount I paid him and for transfers to and from the establishment, none of which was raised in the negotiation over price prior to my arrival. To add insult to injury the manager didn’t come near us during the ten days we were there to raise these matters with us, we got an email and an invoice two days after returning home!

This was our experience: -

1. The accommodation was described as a studio apartment, it was in fact a Hotel room with a fridge, microwave and a two-ring bench top cooking appliance.
2. The plumbing was pathetic; it was not possible to get a consistent flow of water in the shower. The pipes stuttered so much they would wake the dead.
3. The rooms were not provisioned properly and the crockery, cutlery and cooking utensils looked like they had been acquired from a charity shop.
4. The walk to the” city centre” is not 10 minutes but in fact more like 20 minutes, the return journey up hill for the last quarter.
5. Relax on our private white sandy beach the site claims, that is not a beach, it is artificial and is tiny, look to the left and right and see what it really is.
6. They tout that Broadband Internet Access and wireless is one of their SERVICES, they don’t mention that for me to have access to wireless internet for the duration of my stay would have cost me A$125, a figure that will get me internet access in Australia for 4 MONTHS and I suspect at least that in Vanuatu.
7. They claimed that there are 5 channels on the satellite TV, we never received more than 2 and most times only 1. We complained but it was never fixed and we were told, incredulously that it was a problem at the TV station!
8. The guest information booklet contained poor information and in an amateurish manner.
9. They hire DVDs at the same price, and higher, than they can be purchased in town. Maybe that explains the poor TV service and the disinclination to fix it when things go wrong.
10. The 8 rooms on the waterfront are so close together and the acoustics so bad that if anyone coughs everybody is woken up.
11. They offer loan of hairdryers, the first didn’t work changed it for another one that didn’t work, gave up.
12. Not sure what they call rooms being serviced each day, they certainly weren’t cleaned each day.
13. The previous may account for the fact that we had regular visits from large cockroaches, in the bathroom, in the air-conditioning system and on our bed.
14. The condition of the room was old and tired; it was long overdue for a complete redecoration. Paintwork is dirty and peeling, bench tops are worn out, particularly the bathroom. The shower was substandard.
15. My wife was accused, by their security guard, of stealing a piece of fruit; he claimed to have seen her steal it. Strange he didn’t say anything at the time he claimed to have seen her but left it until some time later.
16. Given the above the place is outrageously overpriced.


Having stayed at a variety of hotels, apartments, pensions, hostels throughout the world, on all continents I consider this, at the price, amongst the worst I have experienced. I did stay in a room in Paris once that was described as a cross between a Moroccan hash house and a brothel, it was worse but I was a student then and the room cost me the equivalent of A$1 a day.

We put all of these points to the owner, he didn’t seem to care.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pascal0164, owners and managers at Fatumaru Lodge, responded to this review, June 11, 2009
Dear Readers,
May we ask you some indulgence toward this review as someone comparing Fatumaru Lodge to a “1 dollar Brothel” may have a different objective than just sharing his trip experience with his fellowship travelers!!
Our booking conditions are available on our web site and in our reservation confirmation. We charge 25 AUD for return airport transfer in a private bus, 12,5 AUD per day for wireless internet and 6AUD for renting a DVD.
As we live on site and are available 7/7 24h/24h, should one quality issue be mentioned to us during a 10 days stay, you could imagine that we would have immediately addressed it.
We would like to remind all readers that Fatumaru Lodge was build in 2004 and has only been opened for 5 years. We have been elected the best small boutique hotel of Vanuatu last year and are the Author’s choice for the Lonely planet guide.
Pascal and Patricia Gavotto
Owners and Managers
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hobart
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 2, 2009

We stayed at the lodge after reading the reviews of other trip advisor comments. We found the lodge to be very noisy and very unclean. You could hear every noise between all the units, people snooring and children talking and crying. You expect all these things to take place in a hotel, but you don not expect to be able to hear every thing said by other travelers. The general up keep of the units it not good. the cupboard doors in the kitchen are broken and the wardrobe and kitchen cupboards are filthy, you did not even want to put your things in them. I dont think the units have had a coat of paint since they were built. As for the beach, well it is not a beach it is a man made structure on the edge of the river, you would not want to swim in it as is dark brown, proberably only good for a paddle in the canoe.
There was a spare bed in the unit, and the bed cover on it was filthy from the previous people it was covered in stains from previous people.
The Bathroom water heater had wires coming from it, it definatley would not be passed in Australia for safety. The bathroom toilet area did not have a ceiling in it, so there was no privacy when you went to the toilet, as the people in the bedroom area could hear you.
The units are very close to each other and does not allow for privacy, also when you sit on the deck you can not see over the rail for the view. over all this motel is over priced and dirty.

The staff at reception are very good and are doing their best. Its time for an overhaul of the property

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 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.
pascal0164, Owners and managers at Fatumaru Lodge, responded to this review, June 11, 2009
We would like to take the opportunity to comment this “unflattering” review:
• Noise :
These guests happen to stay above one family who did have a party the night before and like in any hotel of the world you could hear it. In the morning our Front office Manager made sure with these “indelicate neighbor” that this party will not happen again and she offered the guest to move to another seafront unit to prevent any additional disturbance.
The hotel is built with 24 cm wall made of concrete blocks based on Australian standards and is located on the waterfront with absolutely no neighbor.
• Tired and dirty :
The hotel has been build 5 years ago and cannot be classified as tired.
We have a general room inspection upon every new arrival.
The room are serviced every day, the dedicated house-girl works at least one hour in every room every day.
We have travel agent inspection every month.
It could however have happened that something when wrong. As we leave on site and are available 7/7 24h/24h, should one quality issue be mentioned to us we would have immediately addressed it.
• Beach : Fatumaru lodge is in town and Port vila is not built on a beach. We managed to organize a small white sandy beach on the seafront which is very unique for Port vila. The Fatumaru Bay water is amazingly clean and swim safe for being in town. However like in any tropical country when the tropical rain happen the color of the water turns brown for couple of hours.
• Ceiling in the bathroom: this is the same design as the Meridien hotel which is a 4 star hotel with international recognition and most of the guests love it.
Amazingly these guests stayed in another hotel for the rest of their stay. This hotel is not on the water, , is not self-contained, has a neighboring village of 2500 inhabitants, is more expensive than Fatumaru lodge and they loved it!!. The same week, we had a guest coming from this same hotel complaining about the noise and saying how peaceful and clean is Fatumaru Lodge !! it is a taught job to please everyone !!
We would like to remind the readers that we won the Vanuatu Award for best boutique hotel last year and are the author’s choice for lonely planet tourist guide.
Pascal and Patricia Gavotto
Owners and Managers
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 24, 2009

We stayed at Fatumaru Lodge for 10 fantastic days everything was just perfect-location, privacy, rooms, view,and above all the hosts. so thank you for the best time,Nick, Miri, Tom and Kai.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with family
    • 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.
canberra
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2009

everyday at Fatumaru lodge was just an other day in Paradise, the staff and the proprietors where excellent there service was more than could be asked for, They could not do enough to make your stay a memorable experience, I picked this Hotel from an intrenet serch and was more than happy with the result.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Brisbane
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2009

Just recently two girlfriends and I went to Vanuatu to celebrate my birthday. After lots of googling accomodation we finally decided on Fatumaru Lodge. The e-mail communications I had with Elizabeth, Emily and Pascal (the owner) were prompt and professional. They answered all our questions and concerns and then some! We found the Lodge to be in an excellent position only 10min walk to the town or jump on a B bus any time. Their recomendations on tours and places to eat and drink were all great. Nothing was too much trouble. All the staff were very friendly and the accomodation was fabulous. We had a self-contained two bedroom apartment so we could cook our own food which is great and keeps your expences down as the food in restaurants can be very expensive. We stayed 7 nights which was heaps when you are on Island time. Vanuatu is a place where you go to do nothing but relax and relax we did.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
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Additional Information about Fatumaru Lodge

Address: Walter Lini Hwy | PO Box 1359, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
Phone Number:
Location: Vanuatu > Efate > Port Vila
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Port Vila
#10 Romantic Hotel in Port Vila
#13 Family Hotel in Port Vila
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Fatumaru Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Waterfront boutique hotel offering spacious and comfortable self-contained apartments with a panoramic view on Port-Vila Bay. Decorated with Melanesian craft each room is different. Swimming pool, Jaccuzzi, private beach and air conditioning. Close to town center. Ideal for family and couple. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fatumaru Hotel Port Vila
Fatumaru Lodge Vanuatu/Port Vila

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