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“Great hotel and staff” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Muri Beach Club Hotel

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Muri Beach Club Hotel
Ranked #4 of 5 Hotels in Muri
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
31 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Great hotel and staff”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2013

I chose to go to Rarotonga, Cook Islands for my birthday. I had never been there nor did I know of anyone who has visited. I can honestly say that it was the most relaxing vacation I've ever had. Our cell phones from the US don't work there which was a joy to find out.
For anyone who isn't prepared the island leans toward the expensive side...not crushingly expensive but nonetheless above average in price. It has to be since there is no industry on the island. This didn't scare us away and it shouldn't keep you from visiting. (For the cheap folks going to the island there is a place on the west end where you can get a $5 burger...either hamburger or fish burger, no frills but tasty.)
It appears that most visitors come to the island for a week. We wanted more time there so we spent 2 weeks on Rarotonga. We never made it to Aitutaki but we will next time we go.
Free to guests were the snorkeling gear and sea kayaks.
Dana greeted us warmly at the reception desk upon arrival on Monday morning. We had reserved a room the night before arrival upon suggestion from the ANZ vacation desk. (We actually could have saved tremendously by not doing that.) We got to our room and the a/c was already on. It was a large room with 2 queen beds. To my pleasant surprise the room was above my expections.
Freddy and Gina were in the restaurant and quickly became 2 of our best friends during the trip. They always had a warm greeting for us and were very accomodating to our requests. They were a very good source of information as we started our two week vacation.
We received a letter on our door for a meet and greet with the managers one evening. There was a lot of valuable information shared with us. Erika (the Operantions Manager) was a wealth of knowledge. She has her hands in many aspects of the operation. She also leads a snorkeling tour at the marine reserve which is free to guests.
I was amazed to see how UNcrowded the beaches were during our entire visit with the exception of one day. This was when a cruise ship came into harbor. The hoardes of people gathered quickly at the beaches and took the chairs and chaise lounges from the guests' beachfront balconies. This was really rude of them but since I wasn't beachfront, it didn't affect me. Truth be told, I was glad when they boarded the ship again and the island returned to its normal peaceful self. Thankfully the MBC Hotel has an age restriction so that nobody under 18 years of age is permitted. This was one thing that we loved. There was never any loud screaming at the pool or restaurant. The food at the restaurant was very good. Breakfast was included.
Being that we never thought we'd be going back we made it a point to eat at as many restaurants as we could in the 2 weeks we were there. There were only a couple of things that kept me from giving MBC Hotel a 5-star review. There were 2-3 days when we didn't get beach towels or fresh towels in the room by the end of the day. We went to the front desk and the problem was resolved. We never mentioned this to Erika until the evening we were departing as it wasn't that big of a deal. We never met a stranger while on the island. Everyone was exceedingly pleasant. If we ever had a question for anyone they were glad to help out. We will be returning next year for another 2 weeks and I'm already looking forward to it!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Helpful?
4 Thank Patrick Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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479 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (173)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2013

We stayed for 8 nights and had a wonderful time. The staff are mostly friendly. Erica the operations manager is great.Make sure you do her snorkeling trip- it was a highlight. Also the manager's cocktail party is great. It was informative and also a way to meet people. They provided lovely snack food and drinks.Make sure you use happy hour as drinks quite expensive. The Snickers cocktail is yummy!The pig n prawn night is great- especially the spare ribs. The seafood and especially the lamb kebabs on the seafood night are great but massive serving 2 of each. We doggy bagged and used for a picnic. The breakfasts are great - different choices every day. The Polynesian night is very good. if you book online you get 10 % off. It is cheaper than other places. There was a shortage of beach
towels often but just ask. Recommend Polynesian rentals for bike hire as the bikes at hotel a bit old and more expensive. Hotel provides snorkels and masks but take rock shoes. The best rooms are the upstairs room. we were in a garden room closest to pool rooms and still had a view of the pool. it was great being an over 18 resort as the pool was really relaxing! Qoverall a wonderful stay!! I would have liked to see a small gym available.

Room Tip: Ask for an upstairs room - better views
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank JudynWalter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Matamata, New Zealand
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

It was our first time to Rarotonga and we stayed 6 nights here and absolutely loved it. The staff were always wonderful and accommodating. They took our bags to our room. We had a Garden room and enjoyed sitting out on our back deck relaxing. They have some great food in the restaurant. The snorkelling is great down in the lagoon I saw lots of beautiful colour. We found the staff at the hotel to be very friendly and accommodating. I can't wait to go back and I will stay here again.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 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
Helpful?
3 Thank kecaro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TAURANGA NZ
Level Contributor
81 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2013

Not at all what we expected as we chose this hotel from trip advisor member comments thinking it would be pretty good - and it wasn't. The room was ok but not good given the price. The breakfasts were included in the package and we think they would be equal to the worst breakfasts we have had any where in the world. Tinned fruit, packets of cereal a little bit of fresh fruit and what ever it was each day in the warmers we didn't wish to try. Food & alcohol expensive. The hotel motor bike hire rates are more expensive than most and the bus transfer fees to and from the airport were more expensive than a taxi?? The 5 to 6 dogs each day running around the beach right in front of the hotel where you are to sit is not good. The staff were either exceptional or extremely average. This is the 4th time to Raro, a great holiday option but would not recommend staying at Muri Beach Club Hotel.

Room Tip: Any on the top floor - wouldn't want a ground floor unit
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank MEANDMEX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
daenajktktoa, Operations Manager at Muri Beach Club Hotel, responded to this review, May 3, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to post your comments on Trip Advisor.
Although we are always delighted to read positive reviews, we are likewise concerned to read a review such as this, which seems totally negative and, with respect, in some instances less than accurate with regards to some of the information provided.
Cost of Transfers verses Taxi :-
All of the accommodation establishments on the Island use the Airport Transfers provided by Raro Tours, because their service is without question cheaper than using a taxi. The minimum fee [after some considerable negotiation] is invariably in excess of $40.00, and if one requires a taxi for a flight late at night, this fee increases considerably - whereas, the Airport Transfer System works out to be only $20.00 per person, regardless of the time of day.
Tropical Breakfasts :-
The cost of our Tropical Breakfasts are indeed included in our room rate.
A typical Tropical Breakfast on the Island offers a range of different breads, the occasional pastry, local fruit, cereals, jams, juices plus tea / coffee. We are the only establishment that offers a range of hot options [see further] including eggs prepared in various ways - free of any additional charge to our Guests. In addition to this, we have a separate a la Carte Breakfast Menu which offers unusual and exciting menu choices that are also gluten and / or lactose free.
Our standard weekly complimentary hot buffet section is as follows :
Monday : Scrambled Eggs, Sausages, Grilled Tomatoes, Danish Pastries.
Tuesday : Poached Eggs, Fish Cakes with Hollandaise Sauce, Rukau [young Taro leaves - an equivalent of 'Island' spinach...], Paw-Paw Muffins.
Wednesday : Quiche with tomato/cheese/onion, Baked Beans, Sautéed Mushrooms, Croissants.
Thursday : Poached Eggs, Pancakes and Grilled Banana, Grilled Tomatoes, Savoury Muffins.
Friday : Scrambled Eggs, Hash Browns, Cajun Chicken Livers, Danish Pastries.
Saturday : Poached Eggs, Tempura Pineapple with Hoisin Sauce, Bacon, French Toast.
Sunday : Frittata with cheese and onions, Sauté Potatoes, Grilled Tomatoes, Pineapple Muffins.
Our full range of Breakfast Cereals areindeed all packaged, for hygienic reasons. The inclusion of tinned fruit, in addition to our delicious organic local tropical fruit, is deliberate - as this is more often than not specifically requested by our European Guests, who have developed a taste for [exclusively] tinned, sugar added, fruit.
To date, these additional complimentary options have met with very enthusiastic approval from our Guests. However, we regret that you apparently found our range of breakfasts provided to be " ...the worst breakfasts we have had anywhere in the World..."
Re. your reference to the Food and Alcohol being expensive :-
As we are situated in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, any items not grown locally and imported, are indeed a lot more expensive than say, the average supermarket in NZ or Australia. These cost factors are further compounded by the rigorous tax levies that are imposed by the Cook Island's Government [for the purpose of protecting the commercial interests of our local farming families]. These levies range from 25% to 75% [on any items that can indeed be grown / produced locally.] Further to this, there are considerable loadings on the import of alcohol, soft drinks, tobacco and 'luxury' or electronic products.
In addition to the cost of Food and Beverage items, is the considerable cost of the Island's Diesel-Generated Power, to chill and store Bar and Kitchen Stocks. It is widely accepted that the cost of power in Rarotonga is between 3 to 5 times more expensive than the cost of power in NZ and Australia.
The aforementioned factors are simply the unavoidable costs of our logistical position on the Planet, and are often dubbed ' The cost of living in Paradise...'
Re. your comments to the effect that the ".....hotel motor bike hire rates are more expensive than most..."
Firstly, it needs to be pointed out that the motor bikes hired via the assistance of the Hotel Reception Department, are not owned by the Hotel. We act only as a conduit for the hiring of same, by allowing the vehicles to be parked in our grounds and taking the bookings / fees on behalf of the owner.
What we do provide, absolutely free of charge for the benefit of our Guests [and more as a duty of care than anything else], is the free use of motor-bike helmets; although there is no legislative requirement in the Cook Islands to wear same]:- plus the provision of free motor-bike driving lessons, as a prerequisite to the hire of motor-bikes to any of our Guests - regardless of whether they hold a current license from another Country. The cost of both of these initiatives is borne by the Hotel, as a gesture of genuine goodwill towards our valued Guests.
The costs of hiring a motor-bike via the Hotel Reception are as follows :-
$20.00 per day for a single-seater 50cc. [this is $4.00 more expensive than the nearest competitor]
$25.00 per day for a two-seater 125cc. [this is $3.00 more expensive than the nearest competitor]
If hiring for 3 days, the 4th day is free of charge. [a similar discount is available from the nearest competitor].
When taking into consideration these rates, it is important to note however, that the other local motor-bike hiring businesses require a $200.00 to $500.00 deposit, and there is no such requirement when hiring through the Hotel. Additionally, the other hiring companies close at 4pm on week days, and 2pm on weekends. Whereas motor-bikes can be hired from our Hotel Reception Staff - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with the additional convenience of there being no requirement for our Guests to pay a deposit.
Re. your comments on the local dogs :-
The dogs you are most probably referring to, are dogs owned by our immediate neighbours, some of which have enjoyed the beach that runs in front of all the Hotels situated along the magnificent Muri Beach Area before this Hotel was even built. These dogs are well looked after, very friendly and spend most of their days paddling up and down the shoreline in a fixated state of mind - in the hope of finally catching one the myriad of brightly-coloured fish that populate our Lagoon.... Three of these dogs are particularly popular with our Guests [as can be seen from the numerous blogs that have been posted about them....]. These being :- 'Shaggy' who delights in hitching a ride, on anything that floats .....in his daily quest to make it to the nearest island for the 'free' BBQ lunch that is put on by the Captain Tama's or Koko Lagoon Cruises. Then there is 'Shadow', who follows Shaggy everywhere in obvious adoration of her friend; and is occasionally permitted to join Shaggy with his chosen 'Guest du Jour...'. Finally, there is 'Trypod', a young male that had the misfortune of being hit by a car, and when found had no apparent owners - so the Esther Honey Animal Protection Foundation,[ who provide free medical assistance to all lost / injured animals on the Island] kindly put him back together again [minus one back leg]. The Management at the Muri Beach Club Hotel are still looking for Trypod's rightful owners, but in the meantime he has been recuperating well with our Guests and Staff providing him with lots of love.....
We regret that you did not enjoy the sight of these dogs, and their daily playful antics.
Re. your comment that "The Staff were either exceptional or extremely average ."
It is company policy to continually train our staff, by means of specific training programmes, as well as 'On the Job Training'. As we have staffing requirements that are effected by Seasonal demands, we do experience the need to induct and / or train new staff on an almost permanent basis. Clearly the difference between our experienced staff and 'staff-in-training' was obvious to you, and we sincerely regret that this seems to have been the case. As we have not received any comments on our 'How Do we Rate' forms [that all Guests are encouraged to complete upon check-out] to this effect, we thank you for bringing this matter to our attention now, and appropriate action will certainly be taken.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2013 via mobile

Beautiful scenery and location! We stayed for a week for our anniversary , had a good time! Here are some suggestions: don't rent a scooter from the hotel way to expensive when you can walk 5 mi and get it two times cheaper. Snorkeling is a must if you like the water so take the boat trip , if you enjoy hiking the hike with "Pa" is amazing, educational and you learn the entire history of the island. Also the locals are very friendly and willing to help you around the island, I asked about the cemeteries that are in their front yard, they believe their loved ones should be close by, they do several spiritual ceremonies for their deceased ones.. Very neat the whole Island is very family oriented And spiritual! We had great weather March15-20 oh one more thing bring Mosquito repellent!!! Or you'll be scratching all over!

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Missygin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canterbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
26 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

We stayed here for 10 days and really enjoyed it. The staff were all very friendly and helpful. We had a garden facing downstairs room but that was ok as it is only a minutes walk from the pool and a couple of minutes from the beach. Though a beach facing room would have a fantastic view of the lagoon, The rooms are large, 2 double beds, plenty of space, small fridge and tea and coffee facilities. The breakfast is included, and there is a restaurant for lunch or evening meals - meals are not cheap - but no more expensive than other local places. Good for people who need gluten or lactose free diets, it is nice to find somewhere that offers healthy options. Great to have free use of kayaks, and the complimentary snorkelling trip organised by Erica is fantastic - she takes you out into fruits of Raratonga area where the fish are truly amazing. Hotel is for over 18's only. Nice to be able to have the use of facilities - and a shower, while waiting for airport transfer after check out.
There is not a lot to do on raratonga other than walking, sea based activities and a couple of cultural villages. however - if you just need to relax it is great - warm sea white sand plenty of sunshine, and some of the nicest people we have met.

Room Tip: it is probably wqorth paying the extra for a fantastic view from beach facing rooms
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank LDR53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2013

My wife and I stayed at the Muri Beach Club resort ("hotel") for 5 days in April 2013. We investigated a variety of places on Rarotonga, and this one seemed like a reasonable tradeoff between quality, location and price.
Our room was inward-facing (not facing the lagoon/ocean). An ocean-facing room would have been a bit nicer, but for us it wasn't worth the extra cost. The room was quite large and spacious. It had a half-fridge, which was useful, and a small patio, nice for sitting on in the evening.
The staff at Muri are one of the best features - they're uniformly friendly and helpful (except, surprisingly, for the lady who checked us in at 1 AM - she wasn't a good introduction to the place). The dining room is OK, but prices are fairly high (partly because everything is expensive in Raro), and we found there weren't many dishes we actually wanted to order. However there are other resorts quite close by with better menus, so we ended up using them quite a bit. At Muri, a decent breakfast is provided as part of the fee, a bit better than a typical "continental" breakfast, so that's a bonus.
The beach is fine, and swimming in the lagoon is easy, except that if you go vary far in you're swimming with a lot of sea cucumbers (aka "sea slugs"), not very enjoyable. Muri has a number of one and two-person kayaks for free use - but unfortunately (for me anyway) doesn't have any windsurfers. The inner pool at Muri is excellent - we probably spent more time there than on the beach.
We rented a scooter and buzzed around the whole island a few times, which we really enjoyed - just seeing the houses, activities, etc. Scooter rental is very inexpensive, and using them is quite safe even if you've never ridden one before, since the whole island has a 50-Km speed limit (40 for scooters). Helmets not required.
While you can go snorkelling at Muri in the lagoon, it's not very interesting. Much better to get the mask and snorkel from the hotel and buzz down to Fruits of Rarotonga, about 10 minutes by scooter, and snorkel there - the locals say that that is the best place to see the tropical fish and other underwater creatures, and we saw lots of them. Some pretty weird-looking.
Remember it is a small Pacific island, so 3-5 days is plenty. There is pretty much nothing to do there other than scooter around the island, sun-bathe/read, eat and sleep. We did try to do the cross-island walk but quickly gave up on the idea - partly because it started raining, but also because the "trail" was very poorly maintained, and quite difficult to traverse (at least as compared to DOC tracks in New Zealand). It was like a path through the jungle that hadn't been used for 20 years.
One thing that is worthwhile to take in is one of the cultural shows. These usually involve a bunch of young men and women in native costume, dancing, accompanied by traditional drums. Quite loud and colorful.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Sid H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Muri Beach Club Hotel

Property: Muri Beach Club Hotel
Address: P.O. Box 3050, Muri, Cook Islands
Phone Number:
Location: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Rarotonga > Muri
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Muri
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Muri
#4 Luxury Hotel in Muri
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Muri Beach Club Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Muri Beach Club Hotel's unequalled adult only resort location puts guests right at the heart of one of Rarotonga's most outstanding natural features - Muri Lagoon. The lagoon is the island's aquatic playground for superb and safe snorkelling and swimming. With other water sports like kayaking, wind surfing, kite surfing, sailing and glass-bottomed boat rides, there's always an opportunity to get out on the water and away from it all. With Motus (offshore islands) a stones throw away beckons you to enjoy its uninhabitated oasis..... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Muri Beach Hotel
Muri Beach Rarotonga
Muri Beach Club Hotel Rarotonga, Cook Islands

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