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“If you want paradise you've just found it!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Akaiami Paradise

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Akaiami Paradise
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PO Box 3, Cook Islands   |  
Hotel amenities
South West Rocks, Australia
19 reviews 19 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“If you want paradise you've just found it!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2012

We stayed on AP for 3 nights from 11 September 2012. From the moment that owner Mama Ru Ru picked us up from Aitutaki Beach Villas - welcoming us with beautiful fresh gardenia laes from her own lush garden we were in heaven. Sydney, a wonderful host and son to Mama, piloted the family boat over to one of the most special places on earth. We were one of only 2 couples on the island - the other couple at Gina's (who we did not meet - only waved to on their daily kayak jouney to other gorgeous secluded islands).
AP is the original lagoon aerodrome for the glamourous flying boats of the 1950's and 60's. Interesting memorabilia adorning the walls of our huge house was a link to a wonderful bygone era. The more than spacious lodge contained 2 four poster beds, a full kitchen and dining are big enough to hold a ball. The bathroom had plenty of hot water and the tank water was delicious and safe to drink.
Now to the gardens, lush and tropical and the white sand pristinely raked every day by Sydney our host who also prepared the most delious parrot fish bar-b-que for dinner on our first night. The beach is right in front of the house and perfect for swimming. No coral and like a gigantic swimming pool. There was good snorkelling on the other side of island a short walk via a level track from the house. D spent 2 days fly fishing for the rare and elusive bone fish with guide Butch Leone, a very knowledgeable ex pat American - great fun. I spent a day fishing and touring with Sydney on gin clear waters with cloudless blue skies and caught a huge trevally which Sydney expertly cooked in banana leaves on the barbie for our dinner that night - yum!
Make sure you go to one foot island - it has a bar that opens when a boat arrives with about 6 tourists - just perfect for that cold beer.
Several people had said that the mozzies on Akaiami were ferocious, but we found them no worse than anywhere else on Aitutaki. Perhaps because of the owner's obvious efforts to keep the grounds clean and well maintained. We saw none in the house and with liberal applications of repellant had no problem in the evenings when they were most active.
Everything about AP defies belief a wonderful view everywhere you look, especially in the evenings with that soft sunset light. AP is good fo your soul.
Well done AP we'll definitely be back and will tell everyone we know.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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.
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7 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room Tips
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Munich, Germany
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2012

We were at the Akaimi Lodge for one week as part of our honeymoon in 2006. I will not write a long review because it isn't necessary. The place is absolutely fantastic! We were on our own for three days, only in the company of the inconspicuous Pare (the Island's keeper), and sporadic visits from his son sidney. They were both great and very helpful. One night Pare cooked for us (for green, and this was not prearranged). Also, Sidney tools us to fish, again for green and simply because he thought we were going to feel bad about being on the beach on a cloudy day. Pare also invited us for his birthday party. It was one of the most memorable trips of our lives.

However, if you want to typic resort stuff, being served food, and have set activities for you, do not go.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland, New Zealand
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2010

Ok, I've been to Aitutaki SEVEN TIMES, so I know a bit about the place!

Akaiami Paradise is absolutely unique. It is situated on the breathtakingly beautiful Akaiami motu (island), and is a 5 minute boat ride from the mainland across the amazing Aitutaki lagoon.

I am literally going to struggle to describe it's beauty, so I'll try and sum up by saying that if you have ever dreamt of sandy white beaches, luke-warm and gin-clear lagoon, coconut palms waving in the breeze, and isolation as well as comfort, this place is for you.

If you want absolute luxury with big screen tv's, pools, bar, room service etc, then either stay home, or go somewhere like Rumours. At Rumours though you'll pay $1800 a night for a location that is no where NEAR as good, and in fact is on the exact same beach as a NUMBER of budget hotels where you pay only $80 a night.

The complex has been handbuilt by part-owner Sydney Marsters, and is very quaint and luxurious.

Sydney is an amazing host - very friendly and helpful, he'll do everything he can to make your trip memorable and a once-in-a-lifetime experience. He even offers a unique lagoon cruise away from the daily crowds on islands such as Tapuaetai (One-Foot Island), and will take you to places very few tourists have ever seen.

The main room (where we stayed) has been furnished with older quaint furniture, some of which has been handbuilt by Sydney from recycled furniture. He has also used old fashioned fittings to create an atmosphere that is totally unique.

He also has 2 or 3 bungalows a little closer to the beach on the side. They are very cute, clean, and cosy.

All of the buildings are absolute waterfront.

Sydney will show you around the island, tell you about the history of Aitutaki, show you the wildlife, husk you drinking nuts, give you samples of local foods, and even take you on a giant coconut crab hunt (The only person in Aitutaki to offer this). He'll even take you fishing if you want. (You may actually be woken up by the fish splashing in the lagoon in the morning, there's so many around!)

No matter where you stay - consider at least a NIGHT at Akaiami Paradise. It is NOT the best accomodation as such on the island (The Pacific resort is far more plush, and has swimming pools etc), but it is a FAR BETTER location, and for LESS MONEY.

In my opinion, considering the unique location and amenities, it is the best place to stay on the island. You can pay more and less at other places, but none of them have quite the same magic as motu Akaiami.

You may not want to spend you whole time there (since it's only accessible by boat therefore limiting your ability to explore), if it's in your price range make sure you stay at least a night or two.

Don't be tempted to stay in the basic accomodations on One-Foot island - it's beautiful but gets crowded with tourists during the day.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 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 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2008

Aikaimi is a little motu in the Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands. It is a paradise. The beach is spectacular and the water is a still, warm bath with a friendly resident puffer fish who comes to visit from time to time. The accommodation is rustic and comprises a large lodge (on the site of the former TEAL Lodge), which has a 4 poster bed in the bedroom and another one in the very large lounge/dining room plus a kitchen and a shower room. Then there are a couple of beach huts (one is a kitchen/dining hut and the other bedroom and bathroom) linked by walkway. The lodge has an ecclectic mix of furniture and whilst not designer it is perfectly adequate for a Robinson Crusoe style holiday. The owners are fabulous and make every effort to make the stay great. We were collected from the airport in Aitutaki and taken to the local shops to buy provisions and then a boat ride across the lagoon to our private island paradise. Sydney and his father run the place and have built it up and do a fantastic job. Mamaruru lives on the mainland and is very welcoming and kind. We were given some delicious bananas, papaya and guavas upon arrival. Sydney and his father went out and caught fish and we were given a fantastic plate of fresh filleted queen fish and mullet which lasted us the week. The papaya was the sweetest ever tasted and I could have believed that it was perfumed. We are a family of 2 adults plus our 2 year old daughter who loved it as much as we did. There's a kayak for use and some floatation things - the inflatable turtle was a huge success with our little girl. Sydney took us out on a lagoon cruise for a day and we went to One Foot Island and some other little desserted motus. Then some snorkelling. We fished off the boat and had lunch. Never has coconut milk tasted so good. On our last night we were treated to a bbq on the beach. we spent our days exploring the lagoon in the kayak, sitting in the water on chairs reading and relaxing and enjoying the absolute "peace of paradise". If you want to try something different and unspoilt then this is it. An island to yourself. There was a honeymoon couple there for 3 of our 5 days but you didn't notice anyone else being there (they might have noticed our 2 year old though!!!) I have been to some beautiful spots in the world by way of comparison (Bora Bora, Tikehau, Barbuda, British Virgin Islands, Maldives etc) and this is my favourite place. It may be because there are no sharks in the lagoon! It's a get away from it all place that's very Robinson Crusoe but has life's necessities such as a solar heated shower etc... The only annoyance are the mosquitoes. Just bring repellant and a good bite remedy. I'll take the mosquitoes over sharks anyday. Pack your swimwear, suncream, sarong, good book and some treats to eat and escape for a while. It's not glitz but the location and beach are natural wonders. It's our third trip to Aitutaki in 2 years and we'll be back there again next year for sure.

  • Liked — Privacy
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Akaiami Paradise

Address: PO Box 3, Cook Islands
Location: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Aitutaki
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 13 Specialty Lodging in Aitutaki
Number of rooms: 22

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