If an overwater bungalow is on your bucket list and if you can swing the price (we got a stay 3 nights, pay for 2 deal) do 3 nights at the end of your trip to top it off in style.
The bungalows are lovely, one large room with a large open bathroom area. There are sliding doors to enclose the bathroom area and the toilet is separated by a door and ventilated to the outside. There is no tub but there is a nice rain shower. The best part is the roomy deck with stairs leading down into the lagoon. The lagoon is perfect for a “private” dip (the bungalows are only about 30 feet apart), weather and currents permitting. Our first day the water was very calm and clear but each day after that the currents ran a bit stronger so be prepared. Bring your snorkel gear or use the hotel’s gear. Fins are helpful.
There is a small unstocked refrigerator in the room so save yourself hundreds of dollars (sorry, Sofitel) by self-catering a bit. There is a large grocery store a ways down from the ferry terminal (if you are exiting the ferry terminal parking lot, turn left and about a half mile down it’s on your right). The fresh pastries in the back right-hand corner of the grocery store are excellent!
The Sofitel itself I felt it was not up to the usual Sofitel standard in some ways, and here they are: 1) The front desk staff seemed a bit snooty and tired of covering the same ground with each new arrival. 2) At checkout I asked if they sold ferry tickets and there was just “no” which surprised me because I was able to purchase them from the Intercontinental in Papeete for my trip over. My experiences with Sofitel in other locations had been so favorable I really did expect some sort of help – at least an inquiry as to what my plans might be to determine how they could help me. 3) On arrival there was a plate of sliced fruit as a welcome gift that had clearly been sitting there for some time as it was warm and mushy. 4) I noticed bits of trash and cigarette butts on the property.
I don’t doubt that anyone would enjoy their stay here but if you’ve been to Sofitel in Siem Reap, Ho Chi Minh City, Chicago or Queenstown…don’t get your hopes up and think you’ll get the same level of service or perfection in Moorea.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort is located on the North-East Coast of the island, just 5 minutes away from Temae airport, Vaiare ferries docks, the 18 holes international golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus®. This landmark hotel is built on the longest and most beautiful white sand beach of the island, within a protected marine area maintained by the CRIOBE®.From this hotel, guests have a unique panoramic view on the lagoon and the island of Tahiti. The hotel offers a wide range of accommodation with a total of 113 Luxury Bungalows located in the gardens, directly on the beach or over the water. Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora has the only Luxury Beach Bungalows on Moorea that have unobstructed views of the island of Tahiti, located directly on the beach. Historically, this hotel is the first of the island that built bungalows over the water. Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora has now the largest Luxury Overwater Bungalows in Moorea (83 sq. meters).Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora also features 1 Luxury Villa with 2 bedrooms (150 sq.meters). It has 2 bathrooms, 1 lounge, 1 deck and 1 outdoor jacuzzi®, with a direct access into the lagoon and panoramic views of the island of Tahiti.Dine in Polynesian authenticity at the Pure restaurant with outdoor terrace dining offering complimentary and traditional dance shows every night or choose the barefoot elegance of K restaurant, gourmet dining, feet in the sand experience, with a unique dance show.For light snacks and exotic cocktails or premium alcohols while admiring the view, try the Vue bar overlooking the infinity pool, the lagoon and Tahiti with weekly live concerts. For light snacks and exotic cocktails during a farniente day on the beach, only steps away from the lagoon, try the Beach bar. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Hotel Maharepa
- Sofitel Moorea Beach Resort
- Sofitel Maharepa
- Maharepa Sofitel
- Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort French Polynesia