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Plantation Island Resort
Reviewed December 1, 2010

Just spent the last week at Plantation and had the most relaxing holiday ever. How could anyone in their right mind complain about this wonderful place. We did the 4 Island hop and Plantation was the best by far. Food was great, cocktails even better and the prices were excellent. The staff were absolutely fantastic and their easy going personalities made us feel right at home. The only problem i have is that we didn't stay long enough!!!! Thanxs Plantation Island Resort and your wonderful staff for making our first o/seas trip such a good one.......We will be returning next year

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled with family
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4  Thank mel552274
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 26, 2010

The Island is absolutely gorgeous and the accommodation was great. My 4 year old had a fantastic time at Kid’s Club. We enjoyed the water activities like kayaking, fishing and snorkelling.

But…where are the smiles?

My smiles were not returned by the staff at Plantation Island Resort. Fiji is renowned for it’s friendly people. The staff here are not happy. I observed many holiday makers smiling when greeted by staff, but their smiles were not returned. You could see the instant disappointment.

The gardeners and housekeeping staff were quite friendly and did smile.

I stayed on the island for 7 nights early July/August 2010. The staff on this island give this place a really bad vibe. This bad vibe rubs off on your guests. Management should do something about staff morale. I’m sure these people are over worked and under payed.

I would love to come back to this island but only if the staff morale improves.

  • Stayed: August 2010, traveled with family
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Thank susansjunk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 17, 2010

Don't stay in the Hotel Rooms! They were hidous and the service was non exsistant. We spent most of our days at Musket Cove (near by resort), where we were treated so well and they had lovely facilities. Beautiful location, but thats it

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank pipijo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 14, 2010

After a wonderful realxing week at the Shagri-La Fijian we arrived at Plantation Island in shock. The entire 'resort' is completely rundown. You could see how this place was nice a few years ago but there has been no money spent on maintenance in a long time. We were not expecting a 5 star resort. When we booked with our travel agent we asked for a family friendly island... BIG MISTAKE! We only lasted 1 night and knew we could not stay in that room another. We asked to be moved to another room and offered to pay the difference, but we were told the 'resort' was fully booked. The manager offered to move us to a 'BEACHFRONT HOTEL ROOM' which was exactly the same as the room we had with a water view... Still a dump! She said there was nothing else and our only choice was too leave. They offered us no help in finding alternative accomodation. We called Eunice at Captain Cook Cruises and she said they would be happy to come rescue us. 5 minutes later, the manager from Plantation called us again and said she had magically found another room for us. It was too late, we had already booked and paid for the cruise. We spent a wonderful 3 night cruise around the Yasawa Islands followed by a couple of fun relaxing nights at the Raddison Port Denerau which were both fantastic. It cost us a fortune but it was worth saving our Fijian experience from disaster.
In our 24 hours of holiday hell, we experienced the most stomach turning revolting food I have ever been served.
Our agent booked us the standard 'HOTEL ROOM',.... BEWARE~!~ What a dump... a relic from the 1950's. The A/C barely worked, the floor was dirty, the fans were noisy and the 'bottled' water provied in the room was opened and apparently refilled from 'who knows where' each day. The room was not of a 3 star standard and I have stayed in backpackers that were a better standard. It was like we were trapped in an old Elvis movie! The sheets were pilled and had old blood stains on them, the bed was as hard as a rock, there was no water pressure in the shower and the gardens outside our room were so poorly cared for they were just sand. We had to walk through dirt to get to our room. One other guest commented 'You're out the back of Beirut' because it's all sandy. NOT NICE!
As for the resort, it was so delapidated, the stuffing was coming out of the cushions in the dining room chairs, the roof over the bar was falling in, there was scum around the edge of the pool so thick people were writing their names in it and the lifesaving ring was missing. Another guest commented to us he had been there a year ago and couldn't understand how the place had gotten so bad so quickly. He was covered in sea lice bites so badly he needed an adrenalin shot. Stairwells leading up to the top story of the hotel were blocked off, as was the viewing platform above the watersports and shop because they were unsafe. The hotel manager said this was recent and temporary but it looked permenant to me... they had been painted over!
The cocktail glasses hanging over the bar were opaque and covered in scum so we only drank bottled drinks for our stay.
As for the food, where do I start? One staff member proudly told me they reuse the butter from the dinner tables at breakfast where I found it floating in a bowl of water.. Gross! The buffet food was inedible so we thought we would order from the ala carte menu at lunch before we were rescued. The burgers were soggy. How do you make a burger soggy??? The bun was wet. The fish was dry and looked like it had been refried several times. The 'club sandwich' was made from tin ham and pureed chicken between 2 slices of toast. We were charged FJD$91.00 (not refunded) and we had to send it back.
While we were waiting to be rescued, we witnessed a young girl being swept out on a kayak while a watersport employee in uniform watched without rendering any assistance. My husband helped pull her onto the jetty while another guest on a kayak helped her mum. Thankfully the tearfull girl was shaken but unharmed... and the employee didn't even bother to check how she was.
There was no apology for this horrible experience, just a letter from the manager, Hannah, full of excuses. This is not the place you go to to be spoiled and to relax. You even have to pay a deposit for a beach towel... I've never heard of such a thing. I am sure Hannah will respong to this with another list of pathetic excuses, however,

IF YOU HAVE BOOKED A HOLIDAY AT PLANTATION ISLAND.... GOOD LUCK!

Do yourself a favour and cancel, call Catain Cook Cruises... you'll have a much better time.
Specialist Holidays were no help either. We got a refund for 2 nights accomodation.. A total of $200. What a joke. I would never book a trip through them again.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with family
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9  Thank happydays015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PIR-management, Director of Sales at Plantation Island Resort, responded to this reviewResponded November 22, 2010

I am not the manager of the resort, but I did investigate your complaint rather extensively when you originally sent it to us through your travel agent.

The result of that investigation was that your expectations were that Plantation would be at a standard similar to a 4.5 to 5 star hotel. You had just spent a week at the Shangri-la Fijian Resort, and the first thing you said to our customer services officer, Miri, was that you were expecting Plantation to be of a similar standard. I don't know why you thought this as your travel agent told you, more than once, that Plantation was not the same standard as the Shangri-la. You chose to book the lowest standard of accommodation that we have available (which costs about half the price of a Shangri-la room), yet expected the same features, facilities and comforts as a 4.5 star hotel. Subsequently the products/hotels you booked after leaving our resort were of a 4-5 star standard and were also twice the price.

We were extremely busy the week that you arrived on the island as it was the middle of peak season school holidays. The resort was very full, and the only other accommodation that we had available was a beachfront hotel room. When Miri offered this room as an alternative, you would not even look at the room (because it was not the cleanliness or state of the room that you took issue with, but rather the facilities and features - despite the fact that we clearly advertise all room features on our website). Miri conveyed your dissatisfaction with this solution to our resort manager, Daven. Risking a possible overbooking situation, Daven agreed to give you an upgrade to a Deluxe Garden Terrace room at no extra charge. This was only 10 minutes or so after your initial discussion with Miri, but in that time you had already made alternative arrangements. Your comment to Miri was that you had expected to have been upgraded - for free - in the first instance.

As for your complaints regarding the food - you did not raise any issues regarding the quality of meals while you were on property. If you had raised your concerns about the meals with the waitress, then those meals could have been re-made to your satisfaction or deducted from your bill. Instead you chose to raise your food issues in the complaint letter sent two weeks after you left the property, by which time it was impossible for me to substantiate your claims. This was the case for many of your other complaints.

As for the sand.... you tend to get a bit of that being on an island!! We have 7km of beach, and the hotel rooms are very close to the beach - hence their appeal. We provide foot basins outside the rooms to rinse sand off before entering, and many of our guests choose to go barefoot around the resort because they like the feel of sand between their toes.

I'm glad you posted a few photos of your room because what I can see is a clean, well kept room that was provided as we advertise it to be. As I have mentioned in previous reviews, the upholstery and furnishings look a little dated (the rooms were refurbished 18 months ago but to local taste I'm afraid!!). We will be changing the look of the rooms toward the end of the year, but we have no interest in becoming a 5 star hotel. We don't promise fluffy duvets, TV's or designer furniture in our rooms. We do provide spacious rooms that are clean and comfortable, and we charge an extremely reasonable price for them. People who choose Plantation aren't looking for 5 star creature comforts - they are looking for great value in a spectacular location. Obviously you did not spend enough time researching your holiday destination, as if you had, your expectations would have been more realistic. The only guidance you gave your travel agent was a "great family resort" - which is what we are.

As for your refund - we only charged you our standard cancellation fees along with the food and beverage that you consumed. It only came to a $200 refund because you were booked on such a cheap deal (stay 7 pay 5, F300 food and beverage credit, all meals for 5 days for $250, free meals for kids, free boat transfers etc). You were not entitled to the meal deals, credits or free nights because you did not meet the minimum stay requirements.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2010

We stayed a while ago now. Absolutely loved Plantation Island Resort. So much to do, but can also do nothing. The service was fantastic, the shows and waiters were so much fun! We loved our bure! Islands are definitely the way to go! Food was just fantastic. We had the very best time, and so reasonably priced! Was so cool to be able to have dinner at Lomani Island Resort, an adults only resort where we had dinner on the beach and were serenaded by lovely locals. Our son had a blast and made friends so easily! Hammocks by the water was great, and the water was truly perfect. Could have stayed much longer. Recommend island holiday over Denarau. So much more relaxing.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled with family
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1  Thank antoinetteNZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 1, 2010

Where do I start? Firstly to the people with the bad reviews, you wouldn't know a good time if it bit you on the bottom! This place is amazing. Sure, it's not five star but it doesn't profess to be . What it is though is a beautiful place with amazing people who make you feel so welcome and pretty much all the facilities anyone could want including plenty of free ones. We have 4 children ranging from 1 to 9 and I have never seen them have such a good time as they did on Plantation Island.
Like a lady above, our daughter also got an ear infection while on the island (by the way she only swam in the pool once so I'm doubtful it was from that) and the nurse (Sereana) came into the clinic at 10:30pm at night, diagnosed her, gave her antibiotics straight away and refused to charge us until she'd had a couople of follow up checks to make sure she was ok. We were concerned being on an island that this type of care wouldn't be available but we've never felt more confident and reassured in her care than we did with Sereana.
Our accommodation was a 2 bedroom bure and was very comfortable with a king size bed in the main bedroom and plenty of room for a family of 6. Housekeeping came every day and changed towels and sheets if required as well as a quick clean and sweep. Who really spends much time in their room anyway? This type of holiday is more about making the most of your beautiful surrounds than hanging out in you room.
The food was fine and catered for everyone and even a fussy 1` and 4 yr old were always satisfied. Like another lady suggested, a buffet lunch probably isn't necessary. You'd probably be bettter off getting some bread and spreads etc from thesupermarket as there is more than enough food at breakfast and dinner to keep you going.
We did not see much of the pools as we chose to spend most of our days swimming in the beautiful Fijian waters and while the slide pool was a little cloudy, the other two seemed fine.
Activities were fantastic and not a day went by without something to do. We did not have our children in the kids club but they were still more than welcome to join in on the theme nights, t-shirt painting, movies, cultural activities and the lovely ladies were always happy for us to stay and watch..
Reccommendations:
*As it is a tropical Island aeroguard is a must as the mozzies do come out at night. Take what medication you need but if an emergency does arise the nurse is fantastic and very re-assuring. (Aeroguard, bite cream etc are all available on island)
*The dolphin cruise is a definate and I suggest the 3 island hop available through the dive shop as opposed to the 4 island hop through the boat bure if you have young children as it is amazing but not as long. There is also a free scuba lesson and if you are confident after the lesson they will arrange a real dive which is unbelievable. The free snorkelling off the outer reef is also great and just as good as the Sunflower reef snorkel which you pay for.
*The shell village was interesting and a good place to pick up some souveniers. Not really any cultural activities there just a chance to see how the people live. While its great to buy souvenirs from the locals there's also some great stuff at the airport and Denarau which is cheaper for exactly the same stuff. (For anyone that likes Pandora stuff they are a really good price at the airport duty free)
* Be careful when swimming around the pontoons as this tends to be where the sealice live so stick to the ladders when getting on.
* If you intend to get the kids hair braided take some leave in conditioner cream or spray and put it in each morning and night as it helps to keep it neat and not too dry.
What made the holiday for our family apart from the perfect weather and water was the staff. You will never come across a better bunch of people and they were all very welcoming and more than happy to help.
This is a great holiday destination for families and after 15 nights we left with a tear in our eye's and a promise to return.
Thanks to Sami, Freddy, Solo, Thomas, Mat, Va, Susan, Josh and a very special thanks to Suzie, Kata and most of all Sereana for all your help at meal times.
Archie and Lilly say a big Vinaka to you all!!!!!

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled with family
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6  Thank 6Fijilovers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 1, 2010

This was our third trip to Plantation Island. We booked our holiday back in May and I admit we were a bit nervous whether we had made the right decision as there were some bad reviews back then (the main complaint being the smell of sewerage). Our travel agent even recommended we pay a bit more & go somewhere else.

I am glad to say we made the right decision by sticking with Plantation Island.

There was a slight whiff of something as we got off the boat & occasionally during our stay, but nothing that would put you off holidaying here.

We felt the watersports were good value for money. We did the free snorkelling at the sandbar & also took a private charter to the reefs off of Navini Island (a marine reserve), good value at $150 for approx 2 hours (just my husband & I and the driver). Banana boat ride $10pp, semi submersible $22 per adult/$11 per child. Snorkelling at the reefs off of Plantation Island $11pp. I would think these prices would be hard to beat at any other resort.

My only gripe would be the price of food at the snackbar. I thought $28.80 for two punnets of chips & two small toasted sandwiches was hugely overpriced.

The service was good, didn't have to wait too long for anything, apart from the babysitter who on two occasions was half an hour late (not a biggie though, we weren't in a rush).

We had a poolside room which was spacious and appeared clean. However there was a fair bit of mould on the grout in the shower. We did have to clean up a spillage on the floor at one time, and when we wet some toilet paper & wiped the tiles, the paper came up pretty dirty. So I do wonder how often the floors get washed or are they just swept on a regular basis?

We were quite successful in keeping the food bill down. We bought snacks & spreads from NZ and stocked up on cereals, fruit, cheese, yoghurt, salami, butter etc from a supermarket in Nadi the night before catching the boat to Plantation Island. Each morning I bought fresh cheese rolls from the supermarket on the island (next to Anandas). We only ate at the various restaurants on the island for dinner, self catering for breakfast, lunch, morning & afternoon tea. Our food/beverage bill at the end of our six night stay (after a $300 credit had been deducted) was just over $300, which wasn't bad for a family of 4.

To sum up, we had an awesome time. My six year old son cried when he had to say goodbye to Tether (not sure of spelling?) - his favourite babysitter. The highlight for me was seeing both of our sons (6 & 3) snorkelling at the sandbar. (All that practising in the bath had paid off!).

We will be back, can't imagine trying any other resort. I have already recommended Plantation Island to a friend who is looking to go on a pacific island holiday next year.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Buster123NZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Plantation Island Resort

Address: Plantation Island | PO Box 9176, Fiji
Phone Number:
Location: Fiji > Mamanuca Islands > Malolo Lailai Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Malolo Lailai Island
Price Range: $146 - $544 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Plantation Island Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 165
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled on the 553 acre island of Malolo Lailai, part of the Mamanuca Group of Islands, Plantation is surrounded by 23 acres of tropical gardens, coconut palms and white sandy beaches that front a beautiful sheltered lagoon. Plantation offers several accommodation options to suit most budgets, and is great value for families, students and fun loving couples. Most of the activities are complimentary including the 'Coconut Kids Club'. Come experience the friendly Fijian hospitality! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Plantation Island Hotel Malolo Lailai Island
Plantation Island Malolo Lailai
Island Plantation Resort
Plantation Island Resort Fiji/Malolo Lailai Island

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