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“Way too big” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Sonaisali Island Resort Fiji

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Sonaisali Island Resort Fiji
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Sonaisali Island Coral Coast | P.O.BOX 2544, Viti Levu, Fiji   |  
Hotel amenities
Caloundra, Queensland, Australia
Top Contributor
126 reviews 126 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 51 cities Reviews in 51 cities
91 helpful votes 91 helpful votes
“Way too big”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014

Been 20 years since my first visit and how the place has changed.So many extra rooms,bars and so on.now has shopping.For me a disappointment.
The place has still some redeeming features.The pool,now extended vastly,is excellent ,nice swim up bar with ok seating.Along the shoreline it's still good to relax with a few Fiji Bitter beers.The entertainment is unchanged with lovo,Meke ,local singers etc.Rooms are ok without being outstanding,as is the food.Sraff are friendly and sometimes a bit too much Fiji time.
The resort is close to Nadi town,10/15 mins ,with the airport around 30mins.
A good spot if you want to travel the coral coast.
Still,if you want a place to stay and relax it's not too bad.For me though,I'm not returning.
The launch trip across the river may be a bit daunting for the frail.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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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1,205 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (302)
Date | Rating
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  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014

We stayed for 10 nights at the end of June in an ocean view bure. The bure was very spacious and we loved the shutters and large deck. The bed was a bit on the soft side for me, but still comfortable.
All of the staff were very friendly and genuinely pleased to see our grandson each day. We never did manage to teach him to say "Bula" though every person greeted us this way.
The gardens are beautifully maintained and we loved waking up to hear the coconut trees being 'pruned' Very novel to watch!
The views from the restaurant are beautiful, over the pool to the ocean.
The short river crossing was very pleasant.
Beware if you book through Booking.com - as we did. Although I had received confirmation, on our arrival there was no booking for us. Thankfully I had printed our confirmation and there were rooms available. One of the staff told me there are often problems with Booking.com reservations.
The pool looks lovely but was too 'refreshing' for me, our grandson grazed his toe on his first visit as the bottom is very rough and chipped in some areas. After this we used the beach instead. I think the black sand must have put people off as we were usually the only ones there. Their loss as the sand is soft and the water warmer than the pool. Small waves were safe for our grandson as it is shallow for quite a way. We were saddened by the litter on the beach, unsure if it had washed up or been left by previous guests, but it wasn't cleared during our stay.
The first few days of our holiday were very peaceful, then a junior boys rugby team - and their dads- arrived. Everything then seemed to be geared for the rugby boys. Sunday roast buffet was cancelled, for the rugby boys.
There seems to be a shortage of cutlery which made meal times interesting, watching staff trying to locate items for guests. We were given forks to eat our desserts with one evening as the rugby boys had the spoons!
We mentioned to several staff that the boys were very noisy at night running around the accommodation shouting, each time the staff smiled and said "soon they will be tired" We pointed out that they disturbed our sleeping grandson, to be told that they come every year. My husband told some of the boys to be quiet one night, which they then were, only for the dads to come along half an hour later shouting for the boys to go to bed. Maybe if they are booked in every year they should all be placed on one side of the resort to minimise noise for other guests - we weren't the only ones with a small child.
There are no baby change facilities in the main buildings and the play park doesn't cater for infants, no baby swing and either a much repaired small slide or severe drop big slide.
It was nice to be invited to drinks with the management team, but sadly we were on an excursion and so missed it.
Taxi fares are displayed and are reasonable, however we didn't like being dropped at a shop in Nadi to be then given hard sell as we passed through to the Main Street. Once in town it is easy to catch a public service bus. We took a west bus to Denarau Island for only $1:15 each. Very easy to use and a good way to see the area.
SIR is somewhat isolated, it's 3 km to the main road and then about 15-20 mins to Nadi, by taxi.
We didn't have any issues with Mosquitos, which we had read might be a problem.
We probably won't stay again because of the location, but during our stay the resort was advertised on a scoopon deal, this would have been great as there were lots of extras thrown in for a much cheaper price.

Bula vinaka

Room Tip: All seemed ok, just avoid the rugby boys!
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

Sonaisali resort at first seems very nice, everyone is nice and you see your room and think it looks nice, but as time goes on during your stay you see that things kind of deteriorate. The people are always nice, but the service couldn't be any slower than it is, when they say Fiji time they mean it. the rooms seem very nice but you may notice after looking around that there are bugs and sometimes the occasional gecko. Another downfall is that the water takes up to 15 minutes to get warm. The best part about this hotel is the pool, the pool is really nice with an amazing view of the ocean and its surrounding islands. If you do decide to go here make sure to sit outside for the beautiful sunset.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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.

Travelers are raving about these Sonaisali Island hotels

Canberra
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

I'll preface this review by saying that the resort is in the process of being sold, with the new owners due to commence in a couple if months with plans for upgrades and extensions.

Having said that, the resort is lovely, but obviously needs a lot of TLC. The bottom of the main pool is very rough, the wooden decks are uneven and warped and the bures, while spacious, have a lot of broken things in them. Our TV was broken, the shower broke, there was limited hot water (we ran out most days) and when we notified staff there were problems, only minor things were mended.

They had not enough towels so for 4 of the 7 days we stayed there, we were without towels until after lunch and the activities coordination left a lot to be desired, especially considering the premium they were charging for some of the tours.

However, the food at the Plantation Restaurant (the fine dining option) was sensational and not really that much more expensive than the main area. The service was rather slow, but then that's "Fiji time".

Overall, it's a lovely resort, it just needs a good spruce up, which I'm sure it will get once the new owners take over.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2014

We just got back from a 7 night stay at Sonaisali and loved it! It was my wife, son, nephew, sister in law, and I (all over 18).

The staff was truly warm and hospitable. We had a lot of fun singing and dancing with the staff during music hour after dinner.

True, everyone's on Fiji Time there, so if you want things done "now" you do need to specify as such. I learned this early in the week and was able to adapt/adjust. And the times I did ask for something "now", I was accommodated straight-away.

The food was hit/miss. Lunch and dinner off the a la carte menu were fabulous!!!! Breakfast was decent and the buffet dinners were so-so.

The resort is kind of out of the way, which can be a good or bad thing. We went into town and Denaurau a few times to change things up. We did the all inclusive package and had no issues with our account at the end of our stay.

The manager accommodated us a late check out on our last dsy, as official check out time is 10am, but our flight back to LA was going to be in the late evening.

Overall, a fun and memorable stay...would definitely return.

Direct feedback for the staff: love your warmth and friendliness! But please work on promptness. Many of us, like me from America, aren't used to Fiji Time. If the staff as a whole can get better at that, your resort will be more successful.

The manager mentioned that the resort will be undergoing a renovation over the next 12 months. I hope to see it when it's done!

Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
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Sydney, Australia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2014

The hotel stay overall was great. The staff are extremely welcoming and go well and beyond to make families feel right at home. The resort is designed for families, offering many daily activities (at cost). We stayed in the beach front hotel room and were very pleased. The views from the hotel are spectacular, especially at sunset.. If you decide to do an island hopping tour (FJD 125) through the hotel, make sure you to ask to go to Cloud 9, it's a floating bar in the middle of a clear blue reef. The only thing I can fault is the remoteness of the resort, which is beyond their control. Although the hotel makes it accessible to do many activities, getting to those activities is quite expensive, looking at around $60-70 AUD return for a couple to Nadi centre and Denarau. Perhaps the hotel could offer more dining options for guests, maybe offer fresh sandwiches, wraps and other food in the gift store, rather than having to dine in the restaurant for every meal. Nevertheless we had an enjoyable stay and would highly recommend the resort to families who wish to stay and absorb the hotel facilities. For young adults however I would recommend staying in Denarau, there are many more activities and a great nightlife.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
Doncaster East, Australia
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2014 via mobile

I stayed there for a week I was terrible because it was summer it was like 38° degrees and the fridge did not work. The room had creatures the shower was cold. The only good things that came out of my trip was the pool and the sea cruise. I fell sick over some food that I ate and was out of it for 2 Days, on the plane ride back the 6 hour plane ride I could not do anything it was terrible. I would not recommend this hotel for more than a night.

Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
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 Sonaisali Island Resort Fiji

Address: Sonaisali Island Coral Coast | P.O.BOX 2544, Viti Levu, Fiji
Location: Fiji > Viti Levu > Sonaisali Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Sonaisali Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sonaisali Island Resort Fiji 4*
Number of rooms: 123
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
25 minutes from Nadi Airport. Award winning traditional accommodation comprises 123 rooms/bures. Two world-class restaurants with cuisine inspired by the best of European, Indian, Fijian and Asian Influences. 4 Bars, Large lagoon style pool with swim up bar, horseriding, tennis, volleyball, water sports, surf tours, shopping tours, snorkelling trips, dolphin watching trips, jet skis, sunset cruises, Spa Centre, free Kids Club, games room. Green Globe 21 certified. Perfect for Weddings and Honeymoons. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sonaisali Island Resort Fiji Hotel Sonaisali Island
Hotel Sonaisali Island
Sonaisali Island Hotel Fiji
Fiji Sonaisali Island Resort

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