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“Amazing snorkeling!”

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Hideaway Island Resort
Ranked #13 of 47 Hotels in Port Vila
Certificate of Excellence
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Amazing snorkeling!”
Reviewed March 27, 2014

My partner and I stayed at Hideaway Island Resort in June of 2013 for 5 nights. We had an amazing time there and really loved the snorkeling, which is the best I've experienced to date. However if you are looking for a 5 star, secluded experience with perfect sandy beaches, this is not the place for you.

For starters the beach is a coral beach so you'll need footwear or tough feet to handle that. I have noticed that this place is now listed as being for adults only. I am not sure if this was the case back in June, however the point is moot because there is a huge influx of day-trippers every single day, most of which is loud families with little to no respect for the coral. On several occasions we saw adults and children alike standing on top of the coral. Lunch service often took a while because there were so many people visiting each day.

Once all of the annoying children and day trippers left for the day, it was a much nicer atmosphere. They did movie nights and bonfire nights and other such things if people chose to get involved.

The room quality and service is probably equivalent to 2.5-3 star. For us we didn't mind how the room looked, as long as the water service worked properly and the bed was comfortable. The cleaning staff were very good and left us a very sweet handwritten note on our last day, thanking us for staying.

The food and beverage service could have been better, however it wasn't terrible either. The food was nothing to write home about, but it was still perfectly fine. Whatever you do though, avoid the wine. We had some on our last night and it tasted awful. Stick to the beer/cocktails or BYO drinks.

Overall, we really enjoyed our stay as our main objectives were relaxation and snorkeling, which we certainly did plenty of. I recommend going sooner rather than later to snorkel as the high influx of day-trippers is absolutely ruining the coral. Some locals told us that the snorkeling was even more amazing 12 months prior to us arriving. I can imagine it is only going to get worse as long as there are morons standing on the coral and carelessly coming into contact with it.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank candi996
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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614 reviews from our community

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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (151)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Hervey Bay, Australia
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed March 10, 2014

Just got home from wonderful Hideaway and we didn't want to leave. Mark and Sue are fabulous and made us feel very much at home. All the staff are friendly and bend over backwards to make your stay memorable and we made some great friends.We will definately be back. Thanks for a great time.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank gospig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wollongong, Australia
Level Contributor
43 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed March 2, 2014 via mobile

The service is great, swimming over the reef, so many fish, moray eels, stonefish, and other treasures. Then there was last night's dinner! Reef and beef from the blackboard menu, it was to die for, the chef, Joe Morris excelled!

  • Stayed March 2014
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Helpful?
Thank RussJenn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gatton, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2014

Once again the hideaway experience for me was fantastic!!! It was my wife's first time to Hideaway ( and in fact Vanuatu).

Stella and the hotel staff go above and beyond to make the stay memorable and relaxing.

A very big well done to the boys in the dive shop, particularly Joka and Brian. What theses. Guys don't know about their dive sites, isn't worth knowing!

Room Tip: Prepare yourself for relaxation at it's best
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank scubaguy68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tamworth, Australia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2014

Stayed in hideaway for just over a week and I didn't want to leave! The service was great, so easy to go snorkelling on the reef each day! Highly recommended, it's like living in your own little paradise!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jessica S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Te Puke, New Zealand
Level Contributor
25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed January 23, 2014

I have to agree with much of the previous review. We went as a family to relax and snorkel. It was the first time my husband had traveled although the children and I have been on several holidays around the Pacific. We stayed in a villa which on the surface and at first glance was very comfortable. The deck was great as was the huge hammock although we did notice the rings at each end of the hammock were pretty rusty and probably needed to be checked. The bungalows are nice and private and you do not get the 'goldfish in a bowl' feel you get with some resorts. Several of the lights weren't working and even though it was noted by the staff they were never fixed/replaced. There was no shower curtain in the bathroom which meant we had a wet floor a lot of the time unless we mopped it all up with towels (it was not designed with a drain in the main floor). The tap fittings in the shower were loose as well. Rats were obvious everywhere including running around our legs in the evenings so I think the eradication program could be an option. As the previous reviewer said, the snorkeling was great - better than Rarotonga and on a par with the Coral Coast at Fiji. There were large numbers of day visitors and while they are not supposed to go beyond the beach several times we had people 'visiting' us unexpectedly so make sure you keep things locked away if you are not around your room during the day. It really upset me as well though that they were not doing more to protect the marine reserve. Every day people were standing on the coral and taking shells from the area. I did hear someone get told off by one of the diving instructors for jumping up and down on the coral but that was the only time. Perhaps something could be developed so that as people arrive on the island they get brief educational information about the area and how to look after the reserve. We really enjoyed the bar food and while they menu was limited we were happy with it. The local Vanuatuan staff were great - cheerful, friendly and helpful. I was not overly impressed by the managers however. They have been there for around 6 months but were unable to tell me much about the local sights or tours at all and we were shocked at the very public dressing down a couple of staff were given in front of us as well as a staff member being fired. Perhaps they could find a more private forum for dealing with staff issues rather than the main foyer/reception area. While this review sounds rather negative it was a nice holiday and I do recommend it to others. From the other recent reviews it sounds like it is a bit of a mixed bag possibly depending on your expectations.

Room Tip: Go for the Villas.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Sarah C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide, Australia
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed January 19, 2014

Stayed at Hideaway to have a relaxing holiday and do a lot of snorkelling. We had one of the better accommodation available on this tiny island in one of the villas. On the surface it was really beautiful; spacious with a balcony that over looked the sea. The furniture was comfortable and tasteful, though only very sheer curtains on the floor to ceiling windows, fine as it was very private (unless the security guard decides to “check things are safe” as he peered in our windows and spied our siestas). Also the sun comes up around 5 am, little chance for a sleep in. There were broken door knobs, some missing all together, peeling paint work, a constantly flushing toilet (though that was eventually fixed), and a flat screen TV that wasn’t connected. We didn’t care about the TV but all the other things really became annoying. I have travelled a fair bit and am pretty relaxed about things, it comes with travel but when you pay more you expect your shower to have an intact tap.
Another couple who were staying in one of the bungalows had rats running around their room eating their soap and leaving little presents all over their stuff. They were moved but the excuse was it was mango season so there were a lot of rats around…it is an island the size of a large oval…I am sure an eradication program would be successful.
The snorkelling was good, though they note they are a marine sanctuary they are doing little to prevent or educate people not to stand on the coral. Loads of people from the cruise ships came every second day to enjoy the area but I felt it will be loved to death as evidence of people standing and breaking the delicate coral was very evident.
The food was fine, though became a bit monotonous (the Beach Bar across the bay had a far more interesting menu), and be sure to order a drink (other than beer) before you get thirsty.
One of the best things was the staff, as they were great and very friendly.
I did enjoy my time there and achieved some relaxation and snorkelling but the place is tired and needs a bit of maintenance, though the most important thing is that the reef needs far more protection.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Nellipot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hideaway Island Resort

Property: Hideaway Island Resort
Address: | Hideaway Island, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
Location: Vanuatu > Efate > Port Vila
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in Port Vila
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Port Vila
#12 Family Hotel in Port Vila
#13 Romantic Hotel in Port Vila
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Hideaway Island Resort 2.5*
Number of rooms: 44
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Hideaway Island Hotel Port Vila
Hideaway Island Port Vila
Hideaway Island Resort Vanuatu/Port Vila

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