My husband and I spent 7 night at The Pearl and it was exceptional in every way. A gorgeous setting, wonderfully friendly staff, terrific service. (and a big shout out to Samantha at Tahiti Travel Planners for putting everything together—having all the transitions, pickups, etc arranged was wonderful and it all ran absolutely smoothly).
Because flights from the US arrive and depart at odd times, we wound up getting to the hotel at 9 am (an hour earlier even than our itinerary anticipated, since we were able to catch the earlier ferry). We’d been in transit 30 hours at that point, and were tired and the kind of grimy you only get from long travel. The staff were incredibly accommodating and allowed us a transit room for the day, so we could shower and take a brief nap until our room—a premium overwater bungalow, which was absolutely worth the extra cost—was ready. The overwater bungalows are great—we’re big snorkelers, so being able to come and go from our own dock on our schedule was huge. The glass panel in the floor was big fun, especially at night. The snorkeling right along under the bungalows is excellent—including a giant moray eel we ran into 3 times, and two white eels we’d occasionally see peeking out of the coral, and spotted eagle rays, not to mention the hundreds of fish—and if you swim across the deep channel, there’s an extensive shallow “flats” area with coral heads and lots of fish, rays, etc. Just be mindful of the tide and the current, which can be very strong. (also, if you snorkel from your dock, leave a note for the housekeepers—they locked us out one day, not realizing we were in the water) Someone else mentioned construction—they were re-thatching one of the bungalows while we were there, but we didn’t find it too distracting, they never started too early and were very careful to keep the walkways clear.
The restaurant is good---a varied but not huge menu, and the prices are about what we expected knowing almost everything has to be shipped in. The breakfast buffet (included with our room) was excellent, tons of choices including made-to-order omelets (my husband fell in love with the pain au chocolat). The bar menu is also very good, more casual and available longer hours. However, there are several very good restaurants within walking distance, and others will do free pick-up/drop off for you; we felt perfectly comfortable walking at night, though you might want to bring a flashlight, as the streetlights turn on and off seemingly at random. There is a small business district within easy walking distance, which includes a supermarket (we bought a bottle of vodka at duty free in LAX, and then bought tonic, limes, OJ, beer, etc. at the market) where you can pick up snacks and things for a light lunch. The only excursion we did was the ray & shark feeding trip and that was fantastic, something you should not miss.
The staff were all very welcoming, helpful and warm. One of the most telling things about an establishment, I think, is seeing how they deal with difficult guests. There was one gentleman who overlapped our stay who kept making these loud grand announcements (“I’ve rented out X, the whole nightclub, anyone who wants to party come with me!” “I’m going to buy this whole hotel and fire you, you’ll see”) and the staff dealt with him very deftly—always respectful, but making sure he didn’t bother or disrupt the other guests unduly. It was a difficult situation but I was very impressed with their response.
On our final day, they allowed us a very late check-out (4 pm instead of 11 am) which made an immense difference to us, allowed us one final snorkel and just a nice relaxing departure. We were extremely grateful for that accommodation.
Wi Fi access is expensive (about $20/day or $70 for 5 days) and getting connected is twitchy, often the network simply wouldn’t show up at all—the “sweet spot” in our room was at the foot of the bed—and we’d frequently get bounced off. If you need reliable connectivity for work, this may be an issue for you. (my only other minor quibble is that I like a firm mattress and the bed was very soft--but also enormous)
During our stay, we had a drink at the Hilton and dinner at the Intercontinental, and for us, that just underscored the fact that The Pearl was the right choice for us—to me all Hiltons feel basically the same, and I don’t want to go halfway around the world to stay in a hotel that feels just like the one Peoria, you know? The Pearl is luxurious, gorgeous, intimate and extremely well run—we couldn’t have asked for anything better.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Moorea Pearl Resort & Spa nestles on the island shore, just by the village of Maharepa in an ideal location, between the majestic Cook’s Bay and the Gulf of Moorea. It’s very convenient, at just 10 minutes from the airport and 15 minutes from the ferry terminal, and with boutiques, restaurants and a small shopping center close at hand. The style of the resort is a tasteful combination of the traditional and the contemporary with a powerful sense of Polynesia. There are 28 over-water bungalows built over the lagoon on piles, 8 more bungalows on the beach and 28 spread through the beautiful grounds with their own private pools and little gardens. The remaining 22 rooms and 8 duplexes of this 94-unit resort are in a small building. Whichever accommodation you choose, you will have air-conditioned comfort (the bungalows also have ceiling fans), an outside terrace, mini-bar, hairdryer, safe, flat-screen television and DVD player, I-pod dock and WiFi. From your hotel base we will be happy to arrange a full range of exciting excursions and activities and of course you can relax at the resort where you’ll enjoy one of the largest infinity pools of the island. Each bungalow has a sunny outside terrace with comfortable loungers. From the over-water ones, there is direct access to the lagoon. The premium over-water bungalows are especially well situated, close to the coral reef ledge so you can immediately swim off and discover a fascinating world of colored fish and exotic corals. Near the over-water bungalows, we have developed our own coral nursery- To’A Nui - a coral regeneration project and part of our commitment to protecting the fragile environment that surrounds us. This site encourages the proliferation of marine life whose beauty is so easily enjoyed with simple snorkeling equipment. You will find a luxurious and convivial resort on a human scale, offering a warm welcome to honeymooners,romantic couples, families, nature lovers and scuba-divers. We have two restaurants - The Mahanai - and the acclaimed gourmet restaurant - The Matiehani. The Autera’a is a perfect terrace bar for sipping your favorite beverage. Other facilities include a bar, two meeting rooms, a boutique and a full range of activities and excursions both on land and on the water. We also have a dive center, a Polynesian tattoo facility and a spa. The Manea Spa specializes in massages and treatments using traditional Polynesian methods and 100% natural products from the island’s flowers and plants, including the famous monoi oils from the coconut palm. Thespa has a hammam, Jacuzzi and the "Rumi Avai" where you can discover the pleasures of our unique aquatic massages. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Moorea Pearl Resort And Spa
- Moorea Pearl Hotel Maharepa
- Moorea Pearl Maharepa
- Moorea Pearl Resort & Spa
- Manava Beach Resort & Spa - Moorea French Polynesia