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“Great location, good choice of sea and land activities.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort

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Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   BP 6, Nunue, 98730, French Polynesia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #16 of 18 Hotels in Bora Bora
Denver, Colorado
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Great location, good choice of sea and land activities.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2013

My wife and I just spent three nights at the Sofitel Marara Beach Resort on Bora Bora. We booked the stay through Expedia but fell very lucky with the room which was an over-the-water bungalow in a quiet part of the resort. The views were exceptional as we looked out across the lagoon to the two private motu's about a mile or so away, one of which is also managed by Sofitel.

The resort staff are very friendly and helpful though the bar and restaurant service was a little slow at times (island time). The restaurant was a convenient choice with a good breakfast buffet but I don't recommend it for dinner. The menu was pretty unimaginative, the choice limited and the food pretty bland for what it was. There are much better restaurants nearby so do ask the staff for local recommendations.

The resort offers many different activities, both on land or at sea. As my wife and I are both keen snorkelers we opted for a 'full-day eco tour'. This consisted of a snorkeling trip to a local reef known as 'The Aquarium' where there is sea life aplenty to view, a stingray feeding experience and an outer reef shark experience. All a great deal of fun. After these aqua adventures we headed to a quiet motu for a locally cooked lunch which was delicious and lessons on how to get the best out of a coconut and also several different ways to wear a pareo (sarong) as worn by the locals. The tour guide/boat captain was excellent and kept us all fully engaged for the day's activities.

Plenty to do here and I can highly recommend this resort for couples, friends, familes, anyone really. You can get away from it all and just relax or opt for some of the resort activities to compliment your trip.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 68, excellent views and over the water for easy lagoon access. It is a good five...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 7, 2013
Thank you to highlight all the strenght of the resort in your comment, breakfast, Eco tours, ambiance, over water bungalow... and... friendless of our staff. i herad all what you wrote and 2013 is there to continue to improve all to give you more than what you expect
Happy new year!
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822 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (87)
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English first
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 26, 2012

We stayed at the Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Private Island Resort for our honeymoon in February 2012 and had the best time! The service was exceptional, the friendly staff always went out of their way to make our stay a pleasant one.

We recommend the Private Island for the beautiful overwater bungalows, the island has a beautiful lookout back towards the main island and also of the outer reef, the snorkelling around the island is beautiful, so many colourful fish and interesting coral. Free kayaks were well utilised by us as we explored the surrounding waters.

Concierge staff did their best to recommend day tours, we really enjoyed the snorkelling with stingrays and sharks and jet ski round trip tour of the island. We also did a 4x4 tour to the highest point of be island which should not be missed!

The restaurant on the private island is only open on select nights, but to get back to the main island island is no trouble. The friendly boat drivers were never too far away to take us to and fro. We enjoyed the themed Polynesian nights and the buffet always had something interesting and new to try. We also enjoyed eating out at surrounding restaurants which are within walking distance. Breakfast on the private island was beautiful, I have never tasted such amazing tropical fruit! Happy hour on the private island was also great, there was nothing better than sitting on the deck with a cocktail and watching the beautiful sunset after a hard day of relaxation!

The day spa on the main island was pricey but thoroughly worth it, our couples massage was pure bliss!

A trip to Bora Bora is a once in a lifetime experience, we hope to go back one day, maybe for our 10 year annniversary! We would without a doubt stay at the Sofitel again, the friendly smiles of the staff along with a heartfelt 'maruru' will always stay with us! PS: Make sure you don't return without your Tahitian Black Pearls!

Room Tip: Definitely request to be on the Private Island!
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 1, 2013
Thank you for sharing your great experience at Sofitel Private Island. Bora Bora is a magic destination and we hope to share again our paradise with you in 2013
Happy new year to you and all your loved one.
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Sedona, Arizona
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2012

First off there is a reason this place is SO expensive... it's worth the splurge! We had a great package deal from CostCo and decided to make our trip to Tahiti worth our time getting there by staying an extra week in Bora Bora. Well worth our investment. Over all the resort is a grouping of beach-side and over-water bungalow (more like studio apt's see photos) with the over-water ones' being simply amazing with views through the floor down into the water. We spent 6 days in the beach-side bungalow and splurged the last night with a more expensive but well worth it over-water bungalow. If you plan to go to Tahiti be sure to make extra time to sit back and enjoy the amazing sites from either.

Even MORE amazing was the QUALITY of food the Sofitel Bora Bora breakfast and dinner buffets. There are simply NO WORDS to describe how AWESOME the food is (at the time it was $68.00 to eat the dinner buffet.) With a different "theme" each of the nights we ate food from the gods and rolled our eyes at how simply astounding the food tasted and even was presented on the buffet. This place is worth flying all the way there JUST for one night of their food! Being on the ocean the fresh seafood was where we now say the term "Bora Bora GOOD" when we eat somewhere... (in fact we've never stated that since we've returned.)

  • Stayed January 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 1, 2013
It was great to have you with us last December; thank you for sharing your great experience and i wish you a happy new year!
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Banner, Wyoming
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2012

Nov. 2012 stayed at the Sofitel while vacationing on Bora Bora. They were gracious and accommodating. Staff was professional and informative. They arranged transportation and tours and were efficient. The hotel is beautiful and lush. It is walled from the busy street so guests feel safe and peaceful. We stayed in a bungelow close to the beach and could quickly walk to the beach and be snorkeling with many beautiful fish in a matter of seconds! The food was good and there was a relaxed,socially welcoming atmosphere. There were activities at the hotel as well as many tour opportunities. It was informal, yet very classy. I highly recommend this hotel and we were given a reasonable rate that made staying their affordable!

Room Tip: The bungelows over the water looked like fun, but all the bungelows were situated so they felt priva...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Didier L, Responsable réception at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 1, 2013
This is exactly what we want to provide a smart casual exeperience at Sofitel Marara side where you feel home with a great service and entertainment in a beautiful environment. Thank you for your great feed back and Happy new year! we really hope to have you back.
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Westport, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2012 via mobile

Apart from the expense if you can get there you gotta try bora bora. The sofitel is a great middle of the road resort. Excellent food- excellent service and a wonderfull location. Try the over water bungalow. Just magical. Definitely recomend the swim with sharks and sting rays trip. Wow!!!
Good dairy just down the road for bits and pieces.
save your pennies and just do it!!!

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 1, 2013
Than you for your great comment and i hope many of your riders will follow your advices!
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Williston Park, New York, United States
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2012

From the airport it's a scenic boat ride along the coast of Bora Bora until you get to the resort, with beautiful views of the islands the entire time there. After arriving at the dock you're greeted with a conch shell horn sounding, a fruity beverage, and a cool scented cloth to wipe your face off with. The time to wait before my room was ready was a bit longer than I would have liked (~20 minutes), but the views of the lagoon and pool area easily helped pass the time. Staff memorized my name and addressed me personally each morning when I went to breakfast which was a nice personal touch.

When I was being walked to my room I was pleasantly surprised to find out I had been upgraded from a partial overwater bungalow, to a full overwater bungalow. If you're looking to save some money (Bora Bora is EXPENSIVE) the partial overwater ones are just fine as most are completely over the water anyway. Downside to the upgrade was a miscommunication regarding which room my bags were supposed to be delivered to. A call to the front desk and an hour later my bags were finally found and provided to me.

Resort was very quiet, other than at meal times or when exploring near the beach area I only ran into other guests twice. Lots of privacy on the main island, so again, no need to spend the extra money on the private island if budget is a concern. I actually found the private island a bit creepy as it was completely deserted. Had an encounter with an octopus while snorkeling just a few feet from the beach and no one was around at all to assist me if things went badly.

The bungalow I was in lacked a bit of privacy compared to some of the others as the staircase going down into the lagoon had an opening with no door looking out onto the boardwalk, whereas other bungalows had a privacy wall blocking the boardwalk area. I had 2 separate patios to lounge on, but didn't like the setup as I had to walk through my bungalow to go from one to the other.

Another downside was the security of the bungalow. There was no lock on the patio door from the boardwalk - only on the room itself. Meaning if I wanted to jump into the lagoon from my patio I felt I had to hide my room key and any valuables on the lounge chairs while I swam as anyone could have walked onto the patio and taken things. Not a major concern as there were very few other guests around, but it would have been nice to have a lock on the patio door.

Internet connection was SLOOOOOW, but that was everywhere within my trip to Tahiti and not unique to this one resort. Would have been nice if there were free computers available in the reception area for people to use so you don't have to spend half of your hour just waiting for a single page to load up to send an email back home.

The buffet breakfast was great, lots of variety and a good start to the morning as you view the beautiful lagoon while you eat. Having to pay $10 to travel to the motu was a downer, would have been nice to travel there more frequently for snorkeling but the price adds up quick. Water was fairly shallow and I ran into a very friendly octopus just a few feet from the beach who latched onto my legs. I was the only person swimming around the lagoon, complete privacy and great views of a school of barracuda's and beautiful coral reefs with fish.

Only other complaint was that my flight back home was late in the afternoon but I had to check out of my room by 11am. There was nothing to do after checking out aside from sitting at the bar and reading a book for 3 hours until the boat took me back to the airport. Since the resort was so empty it would have been nice if I could have had a later check out where I could swim in the lagoon one more day and relax in my own room before flying out.

Room Tip: Make sure you're in an overwater or at least partial overwater bungalow. It's on the opposit...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled solo
    • 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
    • 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.
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 1, 2013
You gave us a important information so For all the readers, i really suggest to book a late check out from your travel agency if you want to keep your room until late when your flight back is at night. room in many categories may be fully booked and check in tile is 2 pm he latest that is the reason why the check out time is at 11 am. that will help to enjoy another full day with activities and your own room. a transit room are also available for a shower before leaving.
Thank you for choosing Sofitel for your holidays.
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Additional Information about Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort

Address: BP 6, Nunue, 98730, French Polynesia
Location: French Polynesia > Society Islands > Bora Bora
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in Bora Bora
#10 Luxury Hotel in Bora Bora
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Bora Bora
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 55
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort is located on the island of Bora Bora in the heart of the exceptional Matira Bay. The island of Bora Bora is encircled by a protective necklace of coral. Breathtaking lush mountains provide a dramatic backdrop for the luminous turquoise, lapis and aquamarine of the sheltered lagoon. There is something truly unique about Bora Bora, with its sugary sands, rugged mountains, vivid blues, lush greens and soothing lagoon waters that make it the most romantic destination in the world. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach And Private Island Hotel Bora Bora
Sofitel Bora Motu Private Island
Accor Bora Motu Private Island
Bora Bora Sofitel
Sofitel Motu Bora Bora

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