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“Don't believe what you hear, it's nit great”
Review of Turtle Island

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Turtle Island
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Turtle Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 21, 2011

Its taken me a long time to bite my tongue and not come forth with my views and experience on turtle island. However, evanson's continued emails touting his resort as a 5 star finally annoyed me so much that I feel compelled to tell about my personal experience.
One may think that when they pay $2000/ nite on average that they will receive a truly magical experience. The Internet advertising and marketing by Turtle Island would clearly have led one to expect nothing less. However, my personal experience was that the '5 star' chef was really a local Fijian villager with no experience whatsoever. Now don't get me wrong, the only really good thing were the local Fijian people, but Evanson touts them as being qualified to do things they have never been trained or capable of doing.
The facilities have not been updated in 30 years. There is no gym. There is no spa. There is no pool. There is no A/C. In fact what there is, is what comes free, sunny weather and warm water.
In all my travels around the globe, I've never felt more cheated or disappointed than with my stay at Turtle Island. I brought my girlfriend here for a magical birthday experience but the magic was left wanting.
My advice would be to do your homework, and make sure you contact someone who has written a less than exemplary review as the negative reviews seem to 'magically' disappear. This would be the only magical thing about this falsely advertised, 2+ star resort.
Ps the snorkeling is great, but the 'Eco resort' marketing is also false as the coral is crushed by the irresponsible and uneducated actions of the Island staff.

  • Stayed: January 2011
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61  Thank Bullcra
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GM_TurtleIsland, General Manager at Turtle Island, responded to this reviewResponded October 31, 2011

Bula Bula,

My name is Alexander Weiss and I am the General Manager for Turtle Island. I have been the General Manager on Turtle Island since March 2011. I would like to address your comments that were posted on Trip Advisor.

Mr Evanson does not write emails to our guests and he would be the last one to claim Turtle Island is a
five star resort. Mr Evanson would not place a label on his island. We have thousands of guests who would say that Turtle Island is simply the most transformative and magical place they have ever visited.

• We are proud of our chef who is from the local village. She has been mentored by one of the world foremost chefs from Australia. We choose to utilize our local Fijians from the surrounding villages. We provide sustainable employment and your comments in your review seem to discriminate Fijians as a culture.

• Our local Fijian staff is the jewel on Turtle Island which has been trained at our local facility. Our guest rave about our staff.

• We do not have a gym or a pool. The guests that come to Turtle Island use nature as their gym and the crystal clear blue lagoon as their pool. It is a preference of the guest.

• Our bures do have air conditioning units over the bed which provides a comfortable temperature while sleeping. Our bures are constructed with louvered windows so that the South Pacific trade winds cool the bures naturally.

Trip advisor is a great venue in which all can post comments to fellow travelers. We do not feel your comments are based in fact and we encourage all readers to review all comments regarding Turtle Island. With 14 private bures and a 500 acre island managed by 70 Staff permanently on the island we are an exclusive experience. We are what we are which is a beautiful private beach resort for romantic people with and adventurous souls.

A comment was made regarding our beautiful coral reef. You must be confusing Turtle Island with somewhere else. Our coral is healthier than ever. Our Fijian staff is neither irresponsible or uneducated.

It is confusing to me that you would wait ten months to write a review of our island. Normally, our guest speak to us directly if they have an issue. You did not mention any of these issues while on the island and choose not to divulge your identity which places most of your comments in question.

Mr. Evanson created an Island which has enriched many peoples lives and we have a very large Turtle Island family who will verify this fact. We encourage you to be genuine with your identity and lets discuss all of your issues with your stay at Turtle Island.

With Kindest Regards

Alexander Weiss

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 6, 2011

When my husband and I were looking into Honeymoon (and tropical wedding) destinations, Turtle Island came up at once because we had both heard of it years ago and it had stuck in our minds as a 'maybe someday' kind of place. Though we researched some other resorts in Fiji, we always came back to this one because of the size of the resort (a maximum of 14 couples), the fact that it is all-inclusive (we wanted to truly relax on vacation and not think about the bill), and the sustainability efforts (the gardens)- all things that were in line with our ideal. Furthermore, we liked the idea of getting to mingle with other guests and having the opportunity to get to know the local Fijian people- so the concept of the group table and having a Bure mama was appealing to us.
I have had the good fortune to have traveled to some of the world's most beautiful places, and in comparing Turtle Island with places like Hawaii, the Caribbean, French Polynesia (Bora Bora and Vahine Island), Bali, or Thailand, there is simply NO comparison. What Turtle Island offers is a unique experience unlike any you will get anywhere else. From the moment your seaplane touches down on the turquoise waters of the lagoon, you are transported to an idyllic paradise where time stands still, and you are welcomed into the Turtle Island Family as though you are a relative they have missed but haven't seen in a while. It is a breathtakingly beautiful island, to be sure, but it is also so much more.

The staff does an amazing job and has incredible attention to detail. From the moment we arrived, we had every need anticipated and taken care of. We were immediately handed a wonderful tropical libation and escorted to our Bure, which was beautifully decorated with hibiscus on every surface. We were photographed entering our Bure (the staff photographer- Ray, snaps photos of the guests throughout their stay so the Bure Mamas can put together a beautiful memory book for you when you leave), and then had a few minutes with our Bure Mamas- Lu and Arei, to get acquainted and get some initial scheduling of beach days done. Though we could have planned to do much more: snorkeling, diving, fishing, crabbing, kayaking, we chose to spend most of our days relaxing and exploring on the island's many wondrous and beautiful beaches. We enjoyed private picnic lunches each day and then met up with the other guests in the evening for cocktails and dinner (though we did have one dinner out on the pontoon- which I highly recommend). After dinner the staff usually had some form of game, contest, or other entertainment, which we participated in and loved getting to spend time with the staff.

The highlight of our trip was, of course, our wedding. The staff went above and beyond our expectations in every way. The setting was absolutely beautiful: a grassy area next to the beach, which they decorated with all manner of flowers and even covered the paths in flower petals. There were so many details that made it special for us, such as having the other guests attend (they were given flower leis), having the staff attend and sing Fijian hymns, and have the service itself performed by a minister from the neighboring island. While we were out on a beach earlier in the day, our Bure Mamas decorated our Bure again with palm fronds, hibiscus flowers, and a sweet message on our bed with a giant heart made out of flowers, which they then cleaned up for us while we were at dinner.

The other guests honored us by going in together on a turtle for us- part of their turtle release program is auctioning off turtles that the island has purchased from fishermen. The staff paints a message on your turtle for you and then you release it back into the ocean- and the painted shell renders it useless to poachers, thereby saving the turtles life. We were thrilled that the other guests did this for us, and thrilled that we have a turtle out there roaming the south pacific waters with our names on it.

Another part of the trip we loved was getting the chance to spend time with other guests. We truly laughed so hard every day at the dinner table, sharing stories from our day, and look forward to catching up with our new friends when next we return to Turtle Island.

This was, without a doubt, the trip by which all other trips will be measured. The setting was breathtaking, the service and people warm and amazing. We honestly felt like we were leaving family behind when we left, and think of our Turtle Island family often. Bula Bula Everyone, and a heartfelt Vinaka for the best trip we could have hoped for.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank Tania H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 18, 2011

My wife and I are just back from our 12th visit to this very special place. For a peaceful vacation in an idyllic location there is no better in our view. The island has many private beaches and a beautiful lagoon where the accommodation is located. Food is good quality as is the selection of wines and spirits.
Accommodation is spacious and spaced a reasonable distance from the next Bure. There is a large spa in each Bure and a well stocked bar with guest preferences. The most important assett of Turtle is the friendly and dedicated staff (of which there are many) who all know guests by name and go out of there way to ensure your stay is memorable. This in our view is 5 star holidaying but it is not the same as staying in the Hyatt or Aman Resorts. It is definitely for those wishing a quiet relaxing holiday away from the crowds. It is easy to make new friends if you wish as guests travel to the island from all over the world.
I also read the 2 'terrible' reviews in this website and cannot agree with the writers comments at all. To us the Island offers everything for a relaxing holiday that we require.

Heather and Gordon.

Room Tip: Bure 10 to 15 quieter. Bure 1 (most expensive ) but fabulous elevated views. All Bures facing lagoon...
  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Gordon F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 7, 2011

If you are looking for romance and privacy, there is no greater resort in the world. Alex (GM) makes sure that all of your wishes are met. Our Bure Mama Tokasa was a sweetheart and attended our every need. The best part of the resort is the private beaches. They brought us whatever we wanted for lunch and left us on our own. They supply you with a two-way vhf radio should you find the need to call for anything. Our bure, #9, was perfect. It is constructed of walls of glass that gave the impression of living in the wilderness while permitting the gentle Pacific breezes to caress us in our 4 post bed at night. The only complaint we had was the fact that the weather did not cooperate on the first 2 days which forced us onto the dreaded 6 hour ferry ride to the island since the sea plane could not fly in the inclement weather (understandably). I suggested to Alex that they charter a private boat for those rare times so that the guests could go directly to the island instead of stopping at every other resort prior to Turtle Island. Regardless, my wife and I will definitely be back!

Room Tip: Check with your travel agent. Some bures have been updated. Even though ours wasn't, it was sti...
  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Bill S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2011

My wife and I went to Turtle Island for our honeymoon and it was perfect. The staff was amazing, our bure was perfect, the food and drinks were great, and the island is incredible.
As others have said, you find that time simply slips away at Turtle Island. Next thing you know, it is middle of the afternoon and you have not done much -- a perfect vacation.
We went scuba diving, did the sunrise breakfast on Long Beach, spent a day on Nudie Beach, snorkeled, spent several days on the main beach with our blue rafts. We even attended another couple's wedding -- so beautiful.
I was able to go sport fishing one day and the fish I caught, they cooked for our lunch on the beach!!
We found ourselves intrigued by the staff and wanted to know more about them. They are all amazing, wonderfully friendly people. Oh, we miss Arthur's voice. (If you have meet Arthur, you know what I mean.)
The entire staff was helpful, friendly and wonderfully gregarious. It was a nice treat to be around such happy people.
We recommend Turtle Island to anyone looking for the perfect vacation, one where you don't need an agenda and you simply want to relax and enjoy.

  • Stayed: July 2011
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5  Thank brices123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2011

Was a truly unique experience.... kids club was the best we have ever experienced.
The friendliest staff ever, felt like one's own private island.
Attention to detail was superb.. Ask and they will provide !
We loved it and cant wait to go back

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with family
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5  Thank FussyBrit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2011

Turtle Island was the most relaxing and romantic vacation that we have ever enjoyed. Starting from the begining when we departed from the Sea Plane and were greeted by the staff in the traditional Fijian manor with smiles and being carried off the plane. Our Bura Mama made us feel as though we were the most special people in the world. All of the staff from the owner, the manager and the cooks and bartender were there to make sure that we were having a perfect vacation. Scuba Diving, horseback riding, snorkeling, walking on the beach, sailing, kayaking, fishing were all available and all inclusive. Relaxing on the beach, the food, the drinks but most of all the romantic feeling and the warmth of the people.

Go to Turtle Island Resort, you won't regret it, you will love it.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank karana68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Turtle Island

Address: Yasawa Islands, Fiji
Phone Number:
Location: Fiji > Yasawa Islands > Turtle Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Turtle Island
Price Range: $1,782 - $2,543 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Turtle Island 5*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Turtle Island - located in the Fiji islands. You have found one of the most unique all-inclusive private islands in all the world. Be one of only 14 couples sharing the most beautiful and lush 500 acre private island resort… where each couple can have their own private beach and is assigned a dedicated personal concierge, your bure mama. We provide our guests one of the most intimate, private and romantic experiences. Your private island includes private beach picnics, romantic private dine outs, spa treatments, horse back riding through the winding island trails or on your own private beach, scuba diving, champagne sunrise breakfasts, an amazing and friendly Fijian staff is ready to make all of your dreams come true. This exclusive private island paradise awaits you and your partner for a romantic week to remember. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Turtle Island Hotel Turtle Island

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