We stayed in both the 2 and 3 bedroom houses at Palm Grove with two small children. Both houses offer pros and cons, but the main problem with them is that they are not particularly well maintained and a little tired. eg toaster was melted, windows in 3 br house had a number of broken latches, so couldn't be locked (but fixed promptly once reported), portacot was dirty and had big hole in its side, couple of holes in wall in 3 br house. Furnishing in both is quite good. Both come with BBQs and covered outside eating areas.
The "resort" itself was good - not a luxury resort by any means, but with a reasonable price given its presentation and facilities. On the plus side the gardens and pool are well maintained and the breakfast was pretty good. The beach was first rate, like many beaches on Rarotonga, so staying in the beach bungalows would have been lovely but not an option for us with the small kids.
Service was businesslike, and with the exception of a very friendly waitress in the restaurant, not particularly warm.
The clientelle at the resort is mainly 40+, and there was maybe only one other family with kids there at the same time as us. There was a small collection of sand toys availabe for kids, but apart from that the place is not particularly child friendly.
The houses themselves are surround by large lawn areas which make good play areas, but are separated from the road only by a kind of a hedge with gaps in it, so certainly not kid proof. The houses were far enough from the road as to not be annoyingly noisy. The biggest problem was the roosters in the morning.
Here's summary of the pros and cons of the two houses for those tossing up between them:
2 bedroom. Pros: Big living area. BIt further from road.
Cons: Hot water often was unusably cold. Aircon only in one bedroom, but we didn't need it in June. Kitchen a bit tired.
3 bedrooms: Pros: Solar hot water that was hot. Aircon in all three bedrooms. Nicer kitchen. Separate toilet.
Cons: Lighting was so dim in living area to be almost unusable. Smaller living area, but still reasonable size. Small bathroom.
Overall I would stay at these houses at Palm Grove again for a future trip, but only after having a look to see if I couldn't get something better. A bit of a disappointment after the other good reviews.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Set in the enchanting area of Vaimaanga on the stunning southern coast, Palm Grove enjoys the tranquility of one of the best locations on Rarotonga. 26 individual bungalows are scattered over 5 acres of landscaped beachfront and garden property. Bungalows are available in studio to 3-bedroom layout and feature kingsize beds, kitchen facilities, aircon, flatscreen TV, and private patio/balcony. Property amenities include our onsite restaurant and bar, swimming pool, guest BBQ, laundry facility, tour desk, and motorbike rentals. All guests receive complimentary daily tropical breakfast buffet and use of kayaks, snorkel equipment, beach chairs and beach towels. Welcome to Palm Grove, your private piece of paradise! ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Palm Grove Hotel Vaimaanga
- Palm Grove Rarotonga, Cook Islands