We recently enjoyed our second holiday at The Navigator on Muri Beach. We chose to return due to the incredible location and the wonderful accommodation and facilities on offer. We weren't disappointed.
A stunning vista from every direction greets you as you walk onto your own private deck/patio. The hardest decision you will make is to swim or snorkel in the lagoon (dive shoes recommended) or enjoy the view from your own crystal clear swimming pool. Alternatively, soak up the sun on your own white, soft-sand beach or bask in the setting sun on the deck.
If you like to cook for yourself, the residence has full cooking facilities and a BBQ on the deck. We took vacuum packed meats, cheeses and dips (all allowed through Cook Island customs, so long as you have an itemised list) as we love to BBQ. Otherwise there are wonderful dining options within 2 minutes walking distance including the Flame Tree, Pacific Resort restaurant and Beachcomber as an alternative. The CITC supermarket in Avarua has everything you need and don't forget to buy fresh produce from the roadside stalls of local families - delicious!
And, if you are of a mind, check out the happy hour every day on the beach at Pacific Resort from 4.30pm!
The other reason we chose The Navigator was because of the wonderful service and passion of the owners, Joy and John. Needing to cancel our booking 4 times because of family tragedy and natural disasters, John and Joy were accepting and very obliging. When we almost cancelled a 5th time, due to more earthquakes, they were so supportive, despite the fact that they would loose bookings and revenue, offering change of dates and even a refund if that would help. A tsunami warning at 6am (as a result of the sad events in Japan) had John on our doorstep, offering to evacuate us, even though the Cook Islands suffered no impact.
When my significant other succumbed to a mystery virus, John drove half way around the island to take us to the hospital, waiting 2 hours to offer assistance and support. That was after Joy organised Laurence from Sokala Villas (next door) to come and offer support while we waited for John.
There is no doubt that the Cook Islands, and Muri Beach in particular is one of the most beautiful destinations on earth. What sets it apart is the warmth, hospitality and caring nature of people such as Joy, John and Laurence that makes for an incredible experience.
Did I mention the island dogs - they are the most courteous, friendly and unassuming animals you will ever meet. They love company and will be your friend for as long as you are staying, if you let them. If dogs are not your thing, quietly shoo them on their way, and they'll find other 'softies' to befriend. If you want to do something for the island dog population, give a donation to the Esther Honey Foundation at the Avarua markets every Saturday. Spend time at The Navigator and your life will be improved out of sight, forever. Thanks you John and Joy. D&C