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“Probably the best option in Nuku'alofa”
Review of Waterfront Lodge

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Waterfront Lodge
Ranked #3 of 13 Hotels in Nuku'alofa
Certificate of Excellence
melbourne, australia
Level Contributor
57 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Probably the best option in Nuku'alofa”
Reviewed November 8, 2012

I stayed here for a week while working in Tonga and can recommend it. Rooms are spacious and clean, and the balconies are great for relaxing and watching the world (especially in room 1 where you overlook the water and boats). Should you wish to take a day trip to Fafa or other islands, the ferry i also right outside your door.

The restaurant at Waterfront Lodge is also a reliable option in a town where food can be very hit and miss. I ate breaky there each day, and had most dinners there too. Continental breaky was ok (given that you are in Tonga afterall), though the constant white bread was a bit much and the fruit servings were sometimes a bit underwhelmingly, small and not very tasty. I got around this by purchasing a pawpaw from the street stalls outside and asking the restuarant to slice it in half for 2 x breakies. Dinner options are good - I can particularly recommend the port steaks, massive and tasty; and the fresh fish, especially the curry options.

There's a Saturday market with all sorts of things right across the road - worth a stroll through for a slice of Tongan life.

A few minor issues with TV and aircon - if you have issues ask for assistance straight away, they'll sort it out.

Staff are particularly lovely, especially the gentleman who served us at breakfast time. A few conversations though indicated to me, however, that staff are paid very poorly - which rankled a bit given that the manager's brand new BMW was parked right outside. This probably more of a broader systemic issue though than one specific to Waterfront Lodge.

Overall - probably the best place to stay in the area, especially for longer stays.

Room Tip: Room 1 highly recommended for water views
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank samb1981
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gptonga, Owner at Waterfront Lodge, responded to this review, November 10, 2012
First of all, thanks for the good review, we try to do our best to satisfy our guest in a NOT easy Country to work in.
Regarding our payment for the stuff, that concern you, I just want to let you know they receive monthly more than 500.00 Top of wage, doing a waiter job or cleaning the room for every shift (6 hours work) in a Country where a Bank employee receive much more less...probably we're the one paying more in Tonga for this kind of job, don't worry...
Sorry, BMW is an 11 years old car, in Tonga cheaper than all the 4 big 4 wheel drive you surely saw driving around, is only in a good condition because we take care of our property, as you see and, after invest 1.5 million Top in this country, I believe is my business drive the car I want to ...
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162 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 (61)
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English first
New Zealand
Level Contributor
7 reviews
Reviewed October 15, 2012

A delightful place to stay each room has it's own balcony for those idle moments when it's nice to watch the daily life go by.

The continental breakfast provided with room was excellent and I would recommend Waterfront Lodge for anyone looking for a place to stay, Their attached restaurant is also hard to go past when you are hungry and want good food.
Thank you to all staff for helping to make our holiday so enjoyable, the ladies on daily room care were friendly and made us feel pampred, it was great.

Only thing I would say is if your TV is not working then ask straight away, we were in two different rooms from two different stays and both times the TV was not operational untill we asked for it to be fixed, you need a bit of world news even in Tonga.

Room Tip: Harbour view rooms overlook the road, port and local markets so not as good for sleeping as constant...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Magaret S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide
Level Contributor
48 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed October 14, 2012

Lovely overnight stop at the Waterfront between our flight in from Vava'u and out to Auckland the next day. Its clean and modern with a delightful restaurant but beware they serve Tongan size meals! The location is right across the road from the Saturday Market so you may not get to sleep in, but why would you want to when there is a local market to explore. We would happily stay there again. Thank you to the staff who went out of their way to make us feel at home.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DeDe61Adelaide
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
31 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed October 8, 2012

good location, good service, clean rooms, comfy bed, great to sit on the balcony and watch the world go by...
takes about 20 min to walk to the "centre" - nice relaxing walk... or catch a taxi
dinner servings were really big - 2 of us shared 2 entres and a main for dinner, and ended up taking most of the main back to the room for lunch the next day!
staff can help organise activities and dinner shows. highly recommend the one at Oholei - booking via hotel was slightly cheaper than via Friends Tourist Centre as well.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank alphaleo01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 7, 2012

I've been here 3 times while my husband has been working up here & the waterfront is a real treasure. The rooms are spotless, comfortable & airy with a subtle pacific flavouring & Daniella, Paki & Freddy run a seriously good lodge. They have high expectations of their staff & the staff do a fantastic job @ making guests feel welcome, with efficient and friendly service. The meals are great especially the dinners (the best I've eaten in Tongatapu).

I really recommend it If you are looking for a place to stay in Nukualofa and you want a place that has charm & characater & great staff to make your stay enjoyable. Our teenage boys really liked it as well!

Its in the heart of the wharf & the Saturday market so if you want secluded quiet place, it may not be for you, but for us there's always interesting things & people to watch from the balcony. Waterfront is also a good place for people who are working up in Tonga.

Room Tip: Rooms on the waterfront have great views from the balcony although they can be noisy when the doors...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Hana-Maree63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra, Australia
Level Contributor
33 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed October 6, 2012

Stayed here for two nights. Beautifully appointed, clean, restful decor, , good balconies and excellent value. Recommend one of the seaview rooms. Breakfast is freshfruit, yoghurt, cereal and toast. Staff helpful and very friendly.

Room Tip: Choose a seaview room
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank OKDE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
98 reviews
77 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
Reviewed August 31, 2012

A very nice hotel with comfortable rooms. Even though we never got the TV to work, there was not much else to complain about. The bed is soft and comfortable, free water, tea and coffee, nice pictures on the walls and a clean, well stocked bathroom with a luxurious shower with many shower heads. The staff is very friendly and welcoming, and the restaurant downstairs is extremely good (even though one has to be patient for the food. Don't worry, it's well worth the wait!).

The breakfast could be better, though. No cheese or eggs in sight.

The wi-fi is not free and works OK, although sometimes a bit slow.

A great place to stay in Tongatapu, with a beautiful view of the harbour.

Room Tip: Ask for view of the harbour.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Heidi3030
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Waterfront Lodge

Property: Waterfront Lodge
Address: Ma'ufanga, Nuku'alofa, Tongatapu Island 1001, Tonga
Location: Tonga > Tongatapu Island > Nuku'alofa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 13 Hotels in Nuku'alofa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Waterfront Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Waterfront Cafe and Lodge, the best private Tonga hotel, is located opposite Queen Salote Wharf, with the Nuku’alofa waterfront unfolding right before you. Just a 20 minute stroll to downtown Nuku'alofa and you will soon find yourself immersed in the sights, shops and markets of the Kingdom of Tonga capital city. The colonial-style lodge is packed with character and boasts a beautiful sea view, excellent services, high quality accommodation and arguably the most popular restaurant in the capital. The charming property is under Italian management and believes in paying special attention to each and every guest. The Waterfront Cafe and Lodge’s atmosphere is welcoming and homely, our staff is warm and friendly and every guest is treated with special attention which makes their holiday in Tonga even more memorable and their vacation so comfortable to make them feel at home. The Waterfront Lodge is internationally renowned not only to be the perfect hotel for your stay in Tongatapu but also to be a place of art where artists from Polynesia and the South Pacific often meet to expose their masterpieces. From our reception we can also organize tours of Tongatapu and packages to some of the top island hotels and attractions to ensure your Tonga holiday will be remembered as one of the best of your lifetime. If you are looking for your personal getaway to the friendly islands of the Kingdom of Tonga, welcome to the Waterfront Cafe' and Lodge, the best private owned accommodation you can find on our shore.World Class Tourism gives us 4 stars We have the pleasure to announce that the World Class Tourism for Tonga has recently judged the Waterfront Lodge & Cafe' as a 4 Stars hotel. This is indeed a great news for us and for all our new and returning guests. The unique accommodation, the casual atmosphere, the popularity of our restaurant and the smiles of our staff make the Waterfront Lodge & Cafe' the perfect stop over if you are visiting the capital or if your holiday takes you to one of the marvellous islands of the Kingdom of Tonga. Hope to see you soon. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Waterfront Hotel Nuku Alofa
Waterfront Lodge Tonga/Tongatapu Island

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