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“Comfortable and clean rooms - 5 star staff!”

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The Black Pearl at Puaikura
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 5, 2013

Room was fairly dated, but very functional and clean. Gardens, BBQ and pool excellent. The staff are simply fantastic. Rangi and Lotu were extremely helpful and went out their way to help. The cleaners and garden staff were also extremely friendly and helpful. The room may only be 3 - 3.5 star but all staff at Puaikura Reef Lodges were consistently better than we have experienced at any 5 star hotel!

Beach across the road was great for snorkelling and the bus was very convenient.

No hesitation in recommending Puaikura Reef Lodges.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Damian K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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182 - 188 of 308 reviews

Reviewed September 20, 2013

After reading the good reviews we were extremely disappointed with Puaikura Reef Lodges. The office staff were very friendly but that was about as good as it got. Upon arrival we discovered most of the window latches were broken so couldn't close windows properly, resulting in a stray cat jumping through the bathroom window. Between the non-closing windows and the door which had a fairly big gap even after being locked we were a bit concerned about security. The room was pretty basic which was fine, but the cleanliness definitely wasn't up to scratch. Room servicing was a couple of new towels, which were all stained, and that was it. The toilet stank of urine, which we think was from previous people peeing on the concrete floor, and I don't think the bottom of the toilet had been scrubbed in months. Worst of all was discovering we had bed bugs. My legs were a mess after a few days so we went and complained that we thought we had bed bugs. The girl from the office agreed the bites looked like bed bugs so came and had a look at our bed. She couldn't find any but said she'd have the cleaners do a full clean. All they did was change the sheets, they put the same pillows and bedspread back on, which wasn't going to fix the situation. In the case of bed bugs the whole room needs to be fumigated, as they get into carpet, headboards, luggage, everything. My partner and I tipped the bed up, and apart from it being covered in cobwebs and dead bugs, there was white powder on the carpet under it. Flea powder we are guessing? After going out for the day we were told they were going to upgrade us for our last night at their sister resort, pretty nice we thought. We were in our room waiting to speak to office manager when one of the cleaners barged in demanding to know if we were going to go. I said we didn't know the details and would decided after we had talked to the manager. She got quite snarky and said 'well it's simple, yes or no, we want to go home but have to wait for you' I replied once again that we would decide after hearing the details. She said 'just say no'. She wouldn't leave our room so I said we would see if the manager was back and she said 'don't say I said anything'. Against my better judgement I didn't mention the rude cleaner to the manager. She took us down the road to have a look at the 'upgraded' room but it was no better than where we were so we turned it down. If they spent a bit of money on room maintenance and took a bit more pride in their cleaning, it would be a pleasant place to stay.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Tracey184
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SunloverRarotonga, General Manager at The Black Pearl at Puaikura, responded to this reviewResponded September 22, 2013

Kia Orana

Our main focus is for our guests to have a wonderful stay and to exceed customers expectations is all areas. I am glad to hear that you enjoyed our spectacular location and that Lotu our lovely manager looked after you well.

I am extremely concerned with your untrue allegation of bedbugs. This was investigated immediately by our manager. Not only did we do this but we called our pest control expert to verify and were catagorically told that there was no sign of bedbugs at all. I would also like to point out that the white powder we use in the room is carpet freshner and this should have been vacummed away by the celaner. This was certainly not flea powder.

All other issues will be raised immediately with our cleaners and staff and it would have been appreciated it if you could have written to us in person so that we can rectify immediately the issues in a more positve manner.

I would respectfully urge you to remove this review as we consider it is a serious and unfair allegation which was actually untrue.

Thanks for your consideration in this matter.

Kind Regards
Sue Fletcher-Vea
General Manager/partner

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 19, 2013

Being across the street from the lagoon is really no problem at Puaikura Reef. It is conveniently located, has great views across the street to the sunset over the lagoon, and the rooms are large and clean. We stayed in a basic studio and it was perfect for the two of us. After coming from Atiu, it felt downright palatial! The staff were very friendly and helpful.

On the downside, there was a cat that came and howled on our porch at 3 am and wouldn't be chased off even with water tossed on him. There are also no screens on the windows so you do get more insects inside. It was lofty and airy, but the lack of curtains on the windows near the ceiling peek made it bright as soon as the sun came up.

Overall we were very happy and would stay here again.

Room Tip: Our room looked right out onto the pool, but that was no problem for either privacy or noise. There...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank JenGwin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2013

Visiting Rarotonga and Cook Island for the fourth time, means you will most probably stay in different places. And coming all the way from Norway with kids – now grown-ups – also means different needs over the years – by itself a good reason to try different places.
Puaikura Reef Lodges gives you all you need and much more to it. A friendly staff takes good care of you from the first minute you get there. They answer the questions you may have – or try to find answers if they don’t have them already. They will help you if you need help, and we really felt at home. The great staff took very good care of us right from the start.
The place itself gives you the feeling of space, peace and quiet. And also a good place to meet with other people and make new friends. And when you get up in the morning, you can just cross the road to get to the wonderful beach, take a walk, bring your snorkel-gear and off you go!
If you want to go to town, the bus-stop is right outside your door, and the island is actually so little that nothing seems to be far away.
We stayed in a 2 Bedroom Beachfront Cottage connected/associated with the Puaikura Reef Lodges – a wonderful place when you need space for four persons. Clean, nice beds and right on the beach. Extra bonus for the people working in the friendly shop just across the road where you can get what you need to get started. And petrol or diesel if you have a car or scooter 
Extra bonus: The unforgettable sunsets on this side of the island!
Conclusion: We would very much like to come back – and I am sure we will…

Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
5  Thank Mikkelikski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2013

Was really disappointed this was our thiird trip to Raro.
Definetly didnt get that usual Rarotongian greating we are use to.
Was dropped off at unit which was tucked under the stairs to an upper unit,
We were told ofice was closed until tomorrow and shown a number for emergency.
The first three nights no sleep as a rooster right outside theunit in the mangoe tree chhated to his mates all night.
We did get moved on fourth day which was a nice suprise.
I didnt find the staff very friendly apart from the groundsman Mani or Manu he was really friendly and keeps the grounds perfect.
The final straw was we nearly missed our flight as they didnt send our pick up we had to call the emergency number at 1am to ask and was told there was no pick up arranged.
Hey finally arrived at 1 25am we did make it to our flight but not the greatest end to a pretty average stay.

Room Tip: Not room 12
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank stephyuk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 4, 2013

My family recently stayed at Puaikura Reef Lodges for 10 days. We found the place to be very pleasant and relaxing, albeit quite basic.

We had originally booked a Standard 1 Bedroom Unit (room 11) however found this to be unsuitable as the bedroom was not fully enclosed from the living area (which was required for our 4 year old child) and the unit was small and dark, so we upgraded to a Superior 1 Bedroom Unit (room 8) for a small fee which was much bigger, brighter and closer to the pool and also the bedroom was fully separate from the living area.

We found the room to be clean and tidy, the only annoyance was that many of the lights didn't work. The rooms were serviced daily if you wanted (except Sunday).

The motel manager, Lotu, was fantastic, if you had a question or wanted something booked she'd be more than happy to assist.

Manu the grounds-keeper / security is great, he showed us how to open a coconut and much more and is a all round nice guy.

The beach across the road is great for snorkeling.

I recommend this place if you want somewhere quiet and relaxing with self-catering facilities (each room has a kitchen and there is a BBQ on site). Your own transport would be useful as the place is reasonably isolated from restaurants and the main centres, although the buses are very reliable.

I recommend that you do not book the Standard 1 Bedroom Unit as you will likely be disappointed, pay the little bit extra for the Superior - the difference in quality is huge.

Lastly, try to avoid the takeaway shop (Maori Cafe) and store next door, the service was shocking and they never seemed to have any stock. Stock up on food and drink in the main town.

Room Tip: We found room 8 to be very good.
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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11  Thank Shane8888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2013

We travelled as a couple and stayed four nights at the Puaikura Reef Lodges.

We stayed in room 7 - opposite the pool. We were very happy with the cleanliness of the room; spotless really! Seeing as there were only two of us - we had pleanty of room (two extra single beds were not used in the living room). The rooms were physically up -to-date; only the shower seemed a little run down - but it didn't worry us in the slightest.

The staff were amazingly helpful and friendly and helped us with booking anything we needed - this truely made our trip that much more enjoyable.

Location: GREAT! You are situated just across the road from a beautiful beach and there is also a small food shop/gas station/takeaways right next door to the lodges - which is a huge positive.

This accommodation definately has a 'family atmosphere' - and would be great for those travelling in a group. We enjoyed interacting with the other guests/travellers - but keep in mind that if you are looking for a less 'busy' style of accommodation, this may not be your cup of tea.

Overall we found this accommodation to be of a high standard, with cleanliness, location and staff being our main highlight of the overall rating.

Room Tip: We stayed in Room 7 - Opposite pool; great room! No aircon
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Natalie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Black Pearl at Puaikura

Address: | Kavera, Arorangi, Cook Islands
Phone Number:
Location: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Rarotonga > Arorangi
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 13 Specialty Lodging in Arorangi
Price Range: $109 - $196 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — The Black Pearl at Puaikura 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on the sheltered sunset side of the island, the Black Pearl at Puaikura enjoys an enviable location with a pristine beach across the road, safe for swimming and snorkelling; a magical spot to watch the sunset. A mere 15 minutes to downtown Avarua, ten minutes to the airport and twenty minutes to the eclectic hustle and bustle of Muri. Intimately set in tropical gardens around a central salt water swimming pool The Black Pearl’s 12 rooms are spacious with high vaulted ceilings. A bold, vibrant, sometimes quirky colour palette complements the natural colours of the island. All on the ground level each room has a private patio, a view of either the lush garden or sparkling pool – or both. Kitchen facilities mean you can prepare breakfast, a light lunch or dinner in between dining at a great choice of restaurants close by, many of whom offer a free pick up and drop off service. Or choose to use our poolside BBQ. The Black Pearl at Puaikura is a haven for those not wanting a large hotel with multiple bars and restaurants but rather an intimate environment where the emphasis is on personal service, a place where you can lose yourself in a tropical paradise, at an affordable price. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Puaikura Reef Hotel Arorangi
The Black Pearl At Puaikura Rarotonga, Cook Islands

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