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“Bula Bula”
Review of Turtle Island

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Turtle Island
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Nanuya Levu
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 30, 2007

We had the absolute pleasure of visiting our Fijian family for the second time in January to celebrate our 15th wedding anniversary (Our first visit to Turtle was for our tenth).

Our concerns (mine mostly) that we might not enjoy ourselves as much as the first time evaporated as the float plane landed and we saw the welcoming committe on the beach waving and holding cold drinks for us. As the engines died, we heard the singing ... goosebumps in the tropics! Two brave warriors carried me ashore, leaving me husband to wade after us ... and we were just in time for breakfast!

Our week melted into sun drenched days at one of the private beaches, laughter around the communal supper table, a romantic dinner on the floating dock, the wedding of our new friends (congrats G & M!), horse back riding at dawn, snorkling the reefs, singing on the mountain before dinner, being embraced into the community that is Turtle Island.

From a service point of view - just ask and it will be given. For Choc-aholics like us, fresh brownies every day in our fridge along with a bottle of champagne if the one we were working on was empty. The pristine white sand beaches were kept that way by a crew of hard working staff before we arrived at the beach. The food was delicious, scrumpious, extravigant (get the picture?) The staff are the heart of the Island - gentle, fun loving, delightful people to meet and befriend.

Turtle Island is the ultimate romantic vacation. To try to discribe the experience is impossible. To discover it for yourself is a dream come true!

  • Stayed: January 2007, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank highlifelady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 23, 2007

What a great experience. Turtle Island is a wonderful place. The staff really make this island resort special. The bures and beaches were also comfortable and beautiful. The meals were great and the different dining settings really made things interesting. We were married on the Island and it was everything was had hoped for and more.

  • Stayed: April 2006, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Beerboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 22, 2007

We stayed for nine nights in late April and had a wonderful time.The beaches were wonderful, the burres very nice and in a wonderful setting in the jungle just back from the beach. I was certain I would hate the communal meals, but we met so many fun people from all over the world that we had a great time with. The staff were the warmest, most gracious people on the planet. You are living with them in their environment and they do their upmost for you to have a great time. As anywhere they are not there to be treated as servants and are deserving of common courtesy and respect. Yes, it is a tropical island with bugs and humidity and there is an island time pace somewhat, so if you need a sealed, air-conditioned, fawning all over you atmosphere, then you might want to look elsewhere. But if you want the most beautiful setting, private beaches, exquisite snorkling and luxury "adult camp with rum drinks" and a chance to totally unwind and relax with your partner and have a great time meeting new friends, then I would absolutely recommend Turtle Island. If you have an over-inflated opinion of yourself, snap your fingers for service, complain about a few minutes wait, bugs, etc. then don't go. There was one couple who fit the above description, and were avoided like the plague by everyone else. I don't think they would have a wonderful time anywhere.

  • Stayed: April 2007, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank sunvalleySeattle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 5, 2007

My husband and I spent our 8 day Honeymoon at Turtle Island Resort and had a lovely time.
The staff was incredibly warm and very friendly as were the property managers Ron and Margaret.
The rooms were comfortable and our Burre Mama was incredible..the food was satisfactory..not the best, not the worst..although dinners were very good. You'll love it if you have a hearty appetite..the portions are quite large..especially lunch. I prefer smaller portions..but most would love the large portions of food.
The singing is amazing..everyone sings..the staff have lovely voices and you can't miss the children's choir..very heartwarming.
Our Bure #5 was fine, although perhaps one closer to #1 would be better. In fact, if you have a choice..choose #1. The view is incredible. Our Bure though, was right on the beach..and close to "dock lady"..and the meeting areas..the room was beautiful and the jacuzzi very well maintained.
Our Bure Mama Torika is one of the loveliest persons that my husband and I have ever met..and I truly hope that we will have the opportunity to meet again.

Undoubtedly, this resort is not for everyone. We had just come back from 8 days at the Four Seasons Maui and flew directly to Fiji..there was a definite difference.
Turtle Island is very laid back, no makeup necessary ladies..and don't even think about blow drying your hair. This is a place where you go to relax..completely relax. Flip flops or barefoot is the normal foot attire.. This is a very casual environment.. Nothing glamorous...and for the cost you may think glamorous is what you'll receive. If that's what your after, this won't be the place for you. Now, there is a schedule to everything, but everything is set at very reasonable hours.
My only fear about booking Turtle Island as our Honeymoon destination was that my husband is a News junkie..CNN on all day and night..! I couldn't imagine how he was going to feel about not having tv, radio, or newspaper..etc..
He did just fine. After a day and a half..we were lost in the peace of it all. I slept better than I have in years. We played backgammon, scrabble...and I was able to read 3 books.
If your goal is to relax then this is the place..it's quiet, the people are lovely, ..the service is perfect and you leave feeling a certain peace that is undescribable.

The cons: there are a few..I personally would have liked to see a better selection of wine..It seems all they served were Aussie and New Zealand wine..which were lovely..but I would have liked to see other wines represented.

I have no problem with bugs..and won't even kill one..but there are bugs.. I laughed when I read other reviews complaining about bugs..but I suppose there is a valid reason for concern. We failed to take repellant..thankfully, it was provided., but it didn't work all that well. My husband and I were covered in bug bites!!. The odd thing is that the bugs aren't really visible..it's not like one would imagine. So, take some potent stuff and I'm certain you will be fine. We didn't have a problem with the bites until we came home..the morning after our return home we each had 3 bites that were very infected~ we could barely walk. A quick trip to our doctor, one week of anti-biotics.. and we were cured.

Con 3: It would be better to have an IPOD speaker base vs a cd player. Carrying CD's in is a bit inconvenient.

Biggest Con: I wish we would have been told that we were going during rainy season. We specifically asked about weather and we were told it was not rainy season. I don't know that it would have changed our mind about going to Turlte but I don't appreciate being misled. Due to rain we were unable to go fishing, have dinner on the pontoon, and we were unable to go horseback riding, we only had one private beach day which was cut short because it started to pour down rain. We were able to get passed it..but I would have rather known the truth up front.

What I have told our family and friends is this....I certainly recommend Turtle Island. It's not for everyone. If you need a Four Seasons/Ritz getaway..then Turtle isn't for you. But, if you can really let your hair down..if you're ready to ultimately relax, unwind and let youself be loved then Turtle is your place. This is the place where a couple who perhaps needs to reconnect should go.

Massages are excellent: Lomi lomi massage is quite good
Laundry service is amazing
Fijians are the most friendly people I have ever met
Quiet and romantic
Dinners are lovely..the Aussie Chef is very good
Bath products are very good
Jacuzzi is well maintained
Ron and Margaret run the property beautifully

  • Stayed: February 2007, traveled as a couple
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19  Thank mrsgeorgie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 7, 2007

We went to Turtle Island for our Honeymoon in January and found paradise! Paradise was made up of not just the crystal clear blue water lapping on white sands but also of the delicious creations from chef Joseph, the bubbles of free flowing champagne, the warmth and beauty of the Fijian people who call Turtle home, the relaxing, earthy vibe of 'Turtle time' and the whole experience of being there.

We arrived on the same day as the new managers Ron and Margaret. They certainly hit the ground running and proved themselves not only to be excellent managers but also wonderful caring people too.

My husband and I adored our time on Turtle and shed tears when it was time to leave. Not being a fan of crowds, we loved the fact that there are only 14 couples allowed on the Island at any one time. Living in a big city it such a luxury to have a whole beach to yourself! In addition to this, the fact that this was put in place to preserve the environment, makes it even more special. All too often I have seen a beautiful place ruined by overcrowding, lack of sustainability and greed. God willing, Richard's forward thinking will not see this happen to Turtle.

We both felt that spending time on our honeymoon with other couples who had been married for years and even those who were honeymooners themselves was a brilliant way to start our life together as a married couple. It served to bring us even closer and so excited about our future together. We were even lucky enough to be part of a renewal of vows ceremony. The ceremony was truly beautiful and what an inspiration to us, just newlyweds.

I agreed that Turtle Island is not for everyone. If you are a lover of natural beauty, romance, good food and wine, the simple life and don't tend to sweat the small stuff, then Turtle is for you.

Turtle Island really got under our skin and will remain in our hearts and minds for years to come. And yes, we too have booked our return!

  • Stayed: January 2007, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank BREACBD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 5, 2007

I too feel compelled to comment on the previous poor review and concur entirely with the subsequent 'balanced response'. My partner and I were married on the island. We spent a truly magnificent 2 weeks there, met wonderful people, both staff and guests and have booked to return. Our wedding was everything we hoped it would be and more and the memories we have taken away more than compensate for the price tag. We had no trouble at all in ordering anything and it was always delivered promptly and with a smile. There was an excellent choice of wines, which were never in short supply. The food was excellent and plentiful and if we didn't fancy the menu of the day we only had to ask for something else. The staff were extremely accommodating and friendly and nothing seemed to be too much trouble. Management of the island had just been taken over by Ron and Margaret, who had only arrived 5 days prior to our arrival. Given that fact I think they did a wonderful job in catering to the needs of their first group of guests (and their first wedding).

No, Turtle Island is not the Waldorf Astoria, we are not greeted by obsequious gloved and hatted attendants, transported in limousines or called sir or madam. Neither are we suffering the arrogance of the big cities, the traffic of New York, the pollution of Bangkok, the hawkers of Bali, etc. etc. As for the price tag, yes it's significant, but then again so is a very average 2 star hotel room in New York. Everyone is called by their first name, we don't wear shoes if we don't want to, we can eat and drink what we like, when we like and go where we like when we like.

In summary, the Fijiian staff are genuine and sincere people, the location is idealic and the service excellent. A holiday is what you make of it and we made this one the best one of our lives.

Stayed: January 2007
5  Thank mellykelly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 10, 2007

My Partner and I have just spent two weeks on Turtle Island and we had such a fantastic time. The Fijian staff are such wonderful people and the Managers Paul & Amanda are so accommodating and they run the Island with great proffesionalism and such warmth, they catered for our every needs. Joseph the executive chef was a chef of very high quality and would have no problem cooking anything we required.
The Island is the best place in the world that we have been to and would not hesitate in going back again. You have to try it to believe it!

  • Stayed: November 2006, traveled as a couple
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Thank Snoopy51
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 > Nanuya Levu
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 Nanuya Levu
Price Range: $408 - $502 (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 Yasawa 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, horseback 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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