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All reviews natural pool piscine naturelle low tide fish paddle boats new caledonia stunning location table tennis food quality oro bay meal times tropical paradise end of the day pine trees stayed for nights crystal clear water great resort
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Reviewed January 29, 2012

We last visited the Le Meridien in 2007. We loved the surroundings but the food was very disappointing. Given its close proximity to Australia we thought we would give it a second chance and were pleasantly surprised by the improvements to the menu and food quality.
We stayed in a cliff top bungalow with beautiful views over the Baie d'Oro. The rooms are very large, a little dated but very well maintained. Staff are friendly and most speak English.
We took one of the yellow paddle boats out to the sandy beach on the other side of the bay and made the trip around the corner and found more beautiful islands and aquamarine water. We spotted three turtles on 2 separate occasions both within metres of the paddle boat.
The natural pool is a must do and is only a 15 minute walk from the Resort. Stay clear of the blue ocean kayaks they are back breakers. The stand up paddle boards are great fun at low tide (you can step off rather than fall off!).
The staff arranged a hire car for the day (8400 francs) and we visited the main points of interest. Half a day would suffice as the island is small and sparsely populated. The ocean temperature at the Resort is much warmer than the beaches on the other side of the island.

New Caledonia is now an extremely affordable destination given the current exchange rate. Make the most of the duty free shopping at the international airport - about 20% cheaper than Sydney.

Room tip: Cliff top bungalows are very private and quiet.
Date of stay: January 2012
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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5  Thank tanyasydney2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 18, 2012

Wow! What a beautiful place! We stayed four full days and three nights and couldn't have been happier. The location is stunning and the resort is beautiful. Everyday we would eat a beautiful breakfast on our balcony, relax, do some activities and enjoy everything the resort has to offer.

It is the perfect blend of total isolation and a beautiful resort. The idea here is to relax, prices are high, as the island is remote and almost everything has to be imported. Luckily heaps of activities are free so we enjoyed kayaking, paddling boarding, paddle boating (pedalo), snorelling, volleyball, bike riding.

We walked around to the piscine naturelle twice and it is a MUST. The lagoon and beach surrounding the resort are beautiful and you can kayak or pedalo out to other beaches and even take a prepared picnic. The beach changes with the tide, and you can wade at least a couple of hundred metres out and explore by foot!

A wonderful place for people who either want to relax or make their own fun (exploring, water sports, swimming). Don't forget sunscreen because the sun is much stronger than Noumea (some say its because of the beautiful white sand)

Room was beautiful and well kept, the grounds are well kept and turn down service adds the touch of luxury you expect.

Room tip: being a Starwood Preferred Guest is advantageous in securing a better room!
Date of stay: January 2012
  • Trip type: Traveled with family
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3  Thank awalk2504
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 8, 2012

As other reviewers have said, the location is absolutely outstanding!!! We have travelled a lot and this equals Bermuda and Moorea (Tahaiti) in our view as one of the best beach hotel locations we have seen.

Our room was excellent, overlooking the pool, and the lagoon. The food in the restaurant was good, and again as others have said, when they remember your order, or that you have sat down. The new Maitre d' is trying to lift the standard of service, but I fear he is battling a very lay-back culture, not inclined to see the need for 5 star service.

Free wifi to rooms would be a real benefit, at the moment it is only in the reception/bar area.

This is a place to go and relax. The "piscine naturelle" is a 15 minute walk, and is fantastic. It really is like swimming in an aquarium with the fish, and alone almost makes staying at Le Meridien a worthwhile trip.

Avoid however the beach restaurant around the corner (Kougney) - not part of Le Meridien. The advertise cheap lobster meals on the beach. Our lobsters were small and overpriced! Read my separate one star review.

Do take the time to spend a morning on the Baie D'oro in a Pirogue (outrigger sailing boat). The hotel arranged this for us and it was a delightful highlight of our trip. Just Louis our Kunie Captain, and the two of us cruising over the crystal clear water, spotting turtles, dolpins and big rays as we glided past the cupcake islands. Thank goodness for digital cameras or I would have run out of film after the first 20 minutes.

We would also like to say that the hotel reception staff were very good, especially the Japanese lady who met us at the airport and had the best English language skills of all, certainly a lot better than our French skills.

Remember this is an outpost of France, so French language skills will help you considerably. This also means that if you are from a country like Australia, you might get a surprise when the couple on the table beside you chain smoke between courses during dinner. Smoking and eating are not mutually exclusive here, and it would not have worked to ask to change tables because other than the Japanese honeymoon couples, we were in a non-smoking minority.

The only time we felt uncomfortable and not relaxed was during one lunch period when we struggled to find a table because the restaurant was over-run with day trippers from a P&O Cruise ship. They were loud, noisy Australians and made us disinclined to let anyone know we were also Australian. This is probably good business for Le Meridien to sell lunch to day-trippers, but it did disrupt our otherwise relaxing break.

We must mention the grounds. Clearly the ground staff take great pride in their work. The grounds, the pool area and beach were all very well presented, and maintained daily.

In summary, we will return to Isle Des Pins and stay at Le Meridien, it is one of the most spectacular islands in the world, and the location of this hotel is hard to beat.

Room tip: They all look good, but if you want to step out onto the beach from your room ask for a beach side bungalow.
Date of stay: December 2011
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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4  Thank horsefish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 29, 2011

Wenstayed here in dec 2011. The location is easily one of the most beautiful i have stayed in and I am an experienced traveller. I fugured this is probably the most beautiful island in new caledonia. And you pay for that.

The hotwl is in a stunning location. Staff are friendly and respectful and generally forget what yiu had asked for. Reception is better but the restaurant is almost shambolic. The hotel have employed a french manager for the restaurant to help improve service. He is super efficient and has just a touch of that arrogant frenchness ( am married to a frenchman so dont take offence please)

Food in the restaurant is ok. You will think it overpriced but i went to a few other places and they were similarly priced.
Information on the island was severly lacking. Basically here if you do not arrange your own transport you are stuck paying 25 aud to go anywhere. So decide early if you wish to rent a car or a moped.
The piscine naturelle was magnificent. Rounded off a very romantic holiday.
Nice stay, thank yiu le meridien
My tip for other travellers. Book early to get value for money for the accomodation. Do a couple of excursions, decide about transport and sadly accept the food and the price that goes with it. Try to understand that getting anything to the island is an epic journey hence the price tag,

Room tip: We stayed in the most basic room and it was one of the nicest I have stayed in. We stayed in room 51
Date of stay: December 2011
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Claudia L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 28, 2011

I had read all the reviews and had properly adjusted my expectations to "island time". In fact I was looking forward to slowing down to island time. The rooms and setting are as many have written before--glorious. We were there for the very busy Christmas period and expected slow service from the kitchen. The new restaurant food and beverage manager, Dieder, was constantly pushing the staff to deliver service that seasoned travelers come to expect in 5 star hotels. The food was fantastic and we felt very well looked after.

Our children had the flu which allowed my wife and I a romantic time without children and we felt like many of the other couples there. It was very much a mix of couples and families and everyone seemed easy going and friendly.

We wanted to change our flights back to Noumea and the concierge personally went to the airport to make sure we were properly ticketed. We really enjoyed all aspects of this hotel and the Spa "massages" were great.

make sure you go to the natural pool for a snorkel. well worth the walk!!!

Date of stay: December 2011
  • Trip type: Traveled with family
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1  Thank RobT469
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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