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“Relaxing, peaceful and private”
Review of Seachange Lodge

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Seachange Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Brisbane, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
57 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 97 helpful votes
“Relaxing, peaceful and private”
Reviewed March 23, 2012

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.

ACCOMMODATION
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.

Room Tip: The Waterside Chalet has a private jetty right on the water. It's very romantic.
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank kerryandjake
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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134 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Value
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (38)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Gosford, Australia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed December 23, 2011

We rented the chalet on the water plus adjacent rooms for our family of 8 in July. Accommodation was very clean and owners went out of their way to make our stay comfortable. Great family location if you want to be close to town yet have access to water , the lagoon is just there. Surprised to have some basic breakfast supplies to keep you going until you get a chance to do your own shopping. Everything you need is within walking distance.

Room Tip: The chalet on the water is best. You can wake up with the sun over the lagoon and have breakfast on...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank JohnL888
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
christchurch
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed December 9, 2011

he practically yelled at us. At first glance the place looked good. But as we (girl friend and I) were trying to clarify our bookings, the owner took it that we're bargaining, and started to relate us to the previous tenants who left without paying. That was very embarrassing and insulting for us. Then he yelled at us and even offered to book us a cab to leave. Good thing his wife came to diffuse the situation. There was also a stench of alcohol in his breath.

We didn't sleep well fearing he might barge into our room at night wanting us to leave or do something nasty.

Otherwise I think the rooms are well equipped. :-) clean... And has a beautiful garden. If you can put up with the service that is...

  • Stayed November 2011
    • Value
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    • Rooms
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Helpful?
6 Thank cheoksoon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane
Level 5 Contributor
45 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed November 14, 2011

Our group of 6 adults rented the Seachange Lodge, 2 bedroom 2 bathroom, Garden Cottage for 2 nights in June 2011.

Bedding was a queen, two singles and a futon double bed. All bedding was clean and comfortable, except I would recommend Seachange upgrade the futon double bed with a better sofa bed as it was a little too basic. The cottage presented very well and the owners were helpful to explain the area and answer our questions about, well, anything really.

Property: beautiful gardens, a small pool with amazing view and a jetty with watercraft for use. Also within walking distance is a supermarket and a terrific french restaurant.

All up a good stay and we'd go back again :)

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank ausmatt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Dover, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
70 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed October 2, 2011

I spent one night here on my way home from the islands.
Great spot, within easy walking distance to a supermarket that stocks everything you might want and buses are everywhere (very cheap) to get you wherever you want to go.
The kitchenette provides everything you need to be self sufficient & control expenses during your stay.
My little porch on the water with my own dock made me wish I'd stayed here sooner.
Nice room . . . clean & well appointed with everything you'd need. "Fun fur" bed spread was a little outdated but all in all I'd certainly recommend this location.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Mandyln
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kabul, Afghanistan
Level 6 Contributor
179 reviews
118 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 157 helpful votes
Reviewed September 20, 2011

We stayed here in October 2010 for three nights. We had flown from Europe and our peaceful room at Sea Change was the perfect place to acclimatise and get used to the time zone. Rick had stocked the fridge with milk and bread and there were enough tea bags to see us through. The kettle and crockery in the room meant that we were able to look after ourselves and that we didn't have to go out to eat when we didn't feel like it.

The room was in an absolutely beautiful spot, overlooking the bay. We took the glass bottomed canoe (a bit scratched!) out one evening, which was fun. Sea Change is also an easy walk to the main street of Port Vila and its restaurants and bars. It was also fine to walk back (even in the pitch dark) or to catch one of the shared taxi/buses in the town.

After staying here we flew on to Espiritu Santo, but made a mental note to stay at Sea Change on our way back through Vila.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank A_Flying_Scotsman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nelson, New Zealand
Level 4 Contributor
24 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2011

We stayed here for 7 days in the Lagoon Lodge down by the lagoon. The rooms were clean and comfortable plus the kids had a seperate bathroom which was great at night. The only down side was the dogs barkng at night.
The supermarket was only a 5 min walk and town was an easy 15 min. Very easy to get a bus from the front door.
Great to be on the lagoon though not really swimmable. The swimming pool was small but perfectly fine for the kids.
We borrowed the canoes and the dinghy to go over to Erakor resort and snorkelled there and had lunch which was amazing.
Wendy and Rick had lots of useful advice, including Le Lepa which was great. They even stored our bags while we went to Tanna for 4 days.
Thoroughly recommend this as a much better alternative than being right in town which is noisy but also still able to walk most places.

Room Tip: lagoon cottage is better than garden cottage in my opinion as right on the bay.
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank rospochin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Seachange Lodge

Property: Seachange Lodge
Address: Captain Cook Avenue, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
Phone Number:
Location: Vanuatu > Efate > Port Vila
Amenities:
Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 29 Specialty Lodging in Port Vila
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Seachange Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 6
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

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