For our last four nights in Port Vila we wanted to stay somewhere that would enable us to walk or bus easily into town so that we could use the supermarket, have some meals out and visit some of the pubs. We also wanted to do some self catering, so a kitchen was important. Also, I should mention that having a private outdoor area to sit and chat, have cups of tea or a glass of wine is vitally important to any of our holiday accommodation choices. We never like to feel that we are confined to our room or just the public spaces available to everyone. Seachange Lodge was so much more than we had hoped.
We were already in Port Vila staying in a motel that did not offer all of the above and we had no outdoor privacy......AT ALL! My birthday was the next day and I didn't want to wake up where I was, so we started thinking of all the places we know in Port Vila (We have been 6 times). We weren't necessarily looking for somewhere on the water, but it's always more preferable, and so lovely to sit and look at. Anyway, we rang Rick and Wendy and were assured of a good deal so we bundled our bags into a taxi (Rick had offered to collect us but we declined) and were sitting on their private deck within minutes. What an amazing view they have!
Rick gave us the grand tour of all the accommodation types and we would have been happy with any of them.......but........and it's a big but.......Rick offered us an amazing deal for the Waterside Chalet. Why wouldn't we choose it? Have a look at the photos, what you see is what you get. It's amazing. So, instead of waking up in a small motel room, we woke the next morning to a gorgeous sunrise glowing across the lagoon. Yes, that's the view from your bed! You can draw the heavy drapes if you want to sleep in, but we just locked the security screen each night and left the curtains and the glass sliding door open so that we had good air circulation and each morning when we opened our eyes the first thing we saw was the lagoon. They call it your home away from home. Oh, I wish it was my home.
Here's the serious stuff.
Some of the accommodation at Seachange Lodge is air conditioned, but not the Waterside Chalet and it doesn't need it in my opinion. We were there in mid January and never felt hot in our room. It's RIGHT on the water and there are fans, but we didn't even put them on to sleep.
The Waterside Chalet has a kitchenette with everything that we needed to make all of our breakfasts, some of our lunches and a couple of dinners. Au Bon Marche Nambatu is a few minutes easy walk for great shopping and alcohol purchases.
The ground floor is like a studio with a massive private bathroom, with a large shower space and a spa bath with a view. There are single beds up in the loft if you want to get away from each other, or put older kids. But keep in mind you will be overlooked by them, so no privacy. Also I personally wouldn't want to put children up there...but I am scared of heights.....so it might not bother you. (The Lagoon Lodge and Garden Cottage are ideal for families).
There is a lounge area and a TV, for DVDs only, nearer to the bed. DVDs are supplied and there are more up at the main house.
There is a kayak to use free of charge and a dinghy with an outboard motor that I think you just pay for the fuel you use. We didn't use it, but it would be great to motor up to Erakor Island for an afternoon, or dinner.
The Waterside Chalet and Lagoon Lodge are down a steep driveway and right on the lagoon, but Rick and Wendy have built a garden pathway to make the journey up the hill easier. The gardens are lovely with lots of beautiful plants to look at and there's a great view when you get to the top. I guess you could ask a taxi to come right down to collect you, and there is parking down there. The walk up didn't bother us though.
The other rooms are at the top, so no uphill walk, not on the water, but some have amazing views.
We loved our stay, it had everything we needed and we felt really spoilt and special.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A truly special place for special people, with an ambience you can't buy. Six units tucked away in an exotic tropical garden. It’s like visiting a friend's house instead of being in a commercial resort. From the Waterside Chalet, to the Garden Cottage that is ideal for two couples or a family group, to the single room studios, the care to detail makes Seachange Lodge that very special place. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Seachange Lodge Vanuatu/Port Vila