After reading lots of reviews of this place over the last 9 months I prepared my family by telling them it would be pretty basic. Pretty much like camping with walls...
I was very wrong and we had a wonderful 2 night stay. We stayed in the bungalow 11. It wasn't ready when we arrived but the greeting with fruit drink was very refreshing and we went straight to the beach. Our luggage was in the room and our keys given to us within 30 mins.
The bungalow was beautifully presented and spacious. A double door to the main bedroom, two beds in the living area, a sitting area, dining table and fridge and coffee/tea making facilities. Outdoor sitting area with double hammock and private steps down to the beach was a nice escape from the day-trippers on the beach. Simple and basic but lovely touches; table design, vases, flowers and towels changed daily. Adequate bathroom with toiletries supplied.
A lot of the island appeared to have building work going on and therefore we couldn't walk the full circumference.
The beach when we arrived was absolutely packed and we had a few doubts when we couldn’t even find four sun loungers. After finding two we left our belongings and ventured into the water down a coral steep drop. Two steps into the water and the reason for such a steep drop became apparent – hundreds of colourful fish were everywhere! Venture further over the coral reefs and it was so worth it. AMAZING fish and colourful coral. Having been to the outer reef at the Great Barrier Reef a few times, to see more variety, colours just a few metres from land blew me away! Of course there is the underwater post office and box for the unique postcard location which has to be done. One of the main reasons we chose to stay here for 2 nights was because the first resort we were staying at didn’t have a pool. We didn’t even use the pool at Hideaway Island as the sea was so clear, still and warm.
It is a fair way from Port Vila, which isn’t a bad thing unless you want to make the trip which is around $15 in a taxi each way.
Again after reading reviews wasn’t expecting much with the included buffet breakfast but there was plentiful, cereals, fruit salad, toast, muffins, fruit juice, (but no water) tea and coffee. Lunch and dinner menu reasonably priced (Vanuatu based) but pretty basic, average food. We enjoyed the Melanesian Feast, which was personal and prepared by the staff on the island. I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t authentic dress (the band wore boardies and shirts the dancers wore grass skirts over normal dress). The maids/entertainment staff told a few stories about the history of the dances they performed for us around a camp-fire. We were on the front row and couldn’t hear very well as the lady talking was very shy. The food was very nice but it would have been nice to know what we were eating. The staff looked extremely proud to share their custom and food with us. It was very different to the full on authentic costume, great food and party atmosphere of the Melanesian feast at Erakor. Hideawy was low-key, intimate and very sweet. The Managers small daughter was even involved in the dancing, which was lovely.
All in all, Hideaway is an amazing place to visit, the staff on the whole seem happy to be there and it feels like a family. We would love to go back and scuba some time but again wouldn’t stay much more than 3 nights purely down to the crowds and average food. The clean, basic rooms are also part of the charm and hope that they are not upgraded to be a higher star value as it would actually lose some of the appeal. Have a two resort stay if you want a little more action, entertainment and good cuisine
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- Also Known As:
- Hideaway Island Hotel Port Vila
- Hideaway Island Port Vila
- Hideaway Island Resort Vanuatu/Port Vila