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“Adequate hotel for work trips, stay elsewhere on holidays”
Review of Honiara Hotel

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Honiara Hotel
Ranked #4 of 7 Hotels in Honiara
Port Vila, Vanuatu
Level Contributor
69 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
“Adequate hotel for work trips, stay elsewhere on holidays”
Reviewed July 11, 2010

Ill start by saying I love the Solomons. yes, its got social, economic and governance problems; but I am honoured to know a lot of local people who are friendly, warm, and most of all, committed to getting their troubled country back on track. This is the reason I have spent a lot of time in the Solomons over the past few years.

Yes - I love the Solomons, but I have to say I love it in spite of - rather than because of - the Honiara Hotel. Honiara has few options for accommodation, and all of them are costly. Expect to pay A$200 minimum to stay at a 3 star equivalent place (the mendana or the King Solomon). The Honiara Hotel alone offers most of the facilities a business traveller needs, at a lower price, and this must be why its constantly booked out. It surely isn't because of its musty, grimy, run-down rooms; or its overpriced food, or its indifferent reception staff.

A snapshot of the Honiara Hotel:

Location: Located in Chinatown, the HH is close to many NGOs and the Ministry of Health, making it handy for people working at any of these places. Its not close to the sea, but the upper rooms have a nice view out to the islands of Central Province, and its lovely to be able to watch the sun set from your balcony, should you be lucky enough to have one.

Rooms: Rooms vary in price, but all are musty and run-down. The upper level rooms can only be reached by several flights of stairs, but are closer to the pool. The ground floor level rooms are cheaper but have no natural light, tiny bathrooms and are quite dungeon like. My room also hosted a few nonpaying guests ie massive cockroaches.

Facilities: The pool is huge and great for laps - if you can get past the murkiness of the water and brave jumping in. Pre-paid wifi internet is available in most rooms and is a reasonable speed (for Honiara). The gym is a tiny dusty room packed with equipment, and I never saw anyone in there.

Food: There are 3 restaurants and they are OK, although very expensive. The best is Club Havana, a French restaurant that serves consistently excellent meals. Oasis is beside the pool and the site of the very mediocre breakfast buffet.

Service: Reception staff look harassed - probably because they are. But when i had an urgent problem to solve they couldn't have been more helpful. Cleaning staff are friendly and helpful.

Essentially - if youre working in Honiara and dont want to spend a bomb on basic accommodation, then the HH is for you. If you're on holidays, go somewhere nicer.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled on business
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank malolava
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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40 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 (20)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Cairns
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed September 29, 2009

Mid Sept 09 I stayed in The Honiara Hotel, paying 522 SD per night, approx 100AUD for a single room. It was filty. The first room they allocated me, the air con didnt work. I changed rooms and then the t.v didnt work. The bathroom (s) was disgusting as were the beds and towels. It was obviously the old section on the ground floor and possibly the newer section up the side of the hill would have been better, however, the cable train to take guests up to the higher room, wasnt working, which would have been a horrible hike in the hot conditions. The pool was closed for maintenance, very dissapointing.
The room I stayed in for only 2 nights, was just outside the club in the hotel, and the noise continued into the early hours of the morning.
In all, it was a horrible stay. When I returned to Honiara after visiting on an outter island, I stayed at the King Solomon for 600SD per night and it was totally different and a pleasure to stay there. For an extra 78SD per night, stay in the King Solomon.
I have never written a negative review on a place but feel strongly that I want to spare fellow travellers my experience in the Honiara hotel.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank cocos_cairns
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Honiara hotels

Fiji
Level Contributor
18 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed July 21, 2009

I have stayed at the Honiara Hotel twice, for short and extended periods of time. I have also stayed at the King Solomon and Casino Hotels.

Veer away from the 'cheap' rooms around SD$550/nigt at Honiara Hotel - their only bonus is that they are not up the stairs, they attract the very loud nightclub music until up to 3am in the morning, on Friday and Saturdays, are very small, very dirty, do not get any natural light, and the room light is not bright enough to work by.

The staff are courteous, the pool is nice, however full of Aussie and NZ expat forces on the weekend. The food at the pool resturant is very nice although you do pay the price. Access to Bumblebee Broadband in the hotel is very good, and costs SD$250/week - card can be purchased from reception. The hotel is popular with European and Pacific Islander aid/development workers and RAMSI expats relocating.

The larger rooms, around SD$750/night, are much better, and liveable, and some have nice balconies with good views. My problem was that twice, I was place in a room next to one of the families (there are many) who live in the hotel room permanently. They had many parties and many wontok coming and going from the room at all hours- making it very hard to sleep and stay asleep through a night! I

f you have the cash - stay at King Sol - the rooms ad bathrooms are nicer and you can sleep! King Sol is closer to the main 'town/street' while Honiara Hotel is at the back of China town - about a 35min walk between the two and either location is good depending where you work. Honiara Hotel however is better on all accounts than the Casino Hotel! A simple room with no view at Casino will set you back about SD$650/night.

Basically you are probably in Honiara for a cultural/work/holiday experience and none of the accomodation options are particularly wonderful, just some are more liveable than others. A new set of short term apartments are soon to open on the foreshore and appear to be quite nice, new and well positioned.

I saw comments about people not recieving help with their bags at Honiara Hotel - I recieved friendly help everytime I was there, so dont be put off to much by the stairs.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank PacificGem
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SYDNEY
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed June 26, 2009

As I said above. Honiara is honiara, I stay at the Honiara hotel for these 2 reasons only. A great big almost olympic sized pool which has a fantastic bar stocked with all sorts of goodies and a lovely girl who will squeeze me up a big jug of bush lime juice for after my laps of the pool.

The french restaurant is superb, who would have thought I would be eating beef tartare in Solomons. I did and its as good as any I have had in France. Man did I put on some weight in the Solomons.

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank FISHINGDAN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tokyo, Japan
Level Contributor
232 reviews
208 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 180 helpful votes
Reviewed March 22, 2009

I stayed here for four nights. I took the deluxe rooms with a balcony and the views from these rooms are very good. The A/C worked fine. The old funicular up to the pool area no longer works which means that it is a lot of steps to get to any of those rooms on the hill.

The food selection here is very good for the Solomons. The best deal is their Chinese restaurant where you can have good main dishes for below S$80. La Habana is a good upscale continental option. The breakfast leaves a lot to be desired. The buffet selection is insufficient and everything is quite overpriced.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank Zoglets
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blue Mountains
Level Contributor
16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed July 27, 2008

I have stayed at the Honiara a few times over the past five years. The staff are great, the two restaurants provide some good dishes and the bar is a place to meet interesting people.

The pool is open for non-residents and can be crowded at weekends but is usually quiet during the week

For travellers who have long stays then the best deals are the apartments with kitchens at the top of the hotel. The 122 steps to get to them will keep you fit if you cannot get parked in the upper car parks

  • Liked — The khen facilitiesitc
  • Disliked — 122 steps to the room
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank bjones45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
92 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
Reviewed October 13, 2007

After a bad experience at the Mendana Hotel, I decided to give the Honiara a try on my return trip. While there is some remodeling going on in the lobby and outside, it wasn't as intrusive as the construction at the Mendana. I asked for a quiet room away from the bar, pool, and construction, and was lead to a room up many flights of stairs. The hotel sprawls over a hillside and has several levels. I counted 115 steps between the lobby and my room, and there is no elevator! There is a strange little funicular for staff, but for some reason we didn't use it to haul my two heavy bags up the longest flight of stairs.

The room was musty smelling when I entered, but clean enough, with a good supply of toiletries but only one towel. It had a large balcony with a grand view of Iron Bottom Sound below. Once the a/c got going the smell went away; however, the a/c didn't stay on long enough to really cool the room down adequately. The hotel has a really nice pool, deep enough to dive into and long enough for some good lap swimming. The food at the main restaurant was, oddly, French, but quite good.

Staff were friendly and helpful.

  • Liked — Quiet neighborhood, away from the bustle of town
  • Disliked — Anemic a/c, and the very long climb to the room
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank azbuceadora
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Honiara Hotel

Property: Honiara Hotel
Address: PO Box 4, Honiara, Guadalcanal Island, Solomon Islands
Location: Solomon Islands > Guadalcanal Island > Honiara
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 7 Hotels in Honiara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 297
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