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“The only 2 tourists on the island!”
Review of Atiu Villas

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Atiu Villas
Ranked #1 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Atiu
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“The only 2 tourists on the island!”
Reviewed March 6, 2014

A wonderful 3 days, but not the place if you want sophistication, restaurants and spas! The island has a population of only 478 and at full capacity can accommodate 40 tourists (although this is rarely attained)
My daughter had been working as a volunteer vet on Rarotonga for 3 months. I went to join her for 10 days at the end of her time there. After a wonderful week on Raro, walking, cycling and snorkelling we caught the little plane to Atiu. Roger met us at the tiny airport and garlanded us with beautifully scented frangipane and gardenia lei (called ei in this part of the world), to welcome us to the island. As others have explained, Roger gives a fascinating potted history of the island on the route to the villas, which are charming, A-framed wooden chalets set in a stunning garden all created by New Zealander Roger and his wife Kura, whose family come from the island. Plentiful fruit in the fruit bowl and a well-stocked fridge and food cupboard at local prices. Possibly worth bringing a few basic salad/veg supplies from Raro for lunches.
After an afternoon chilling by the pool, the remaining two and a half days were spent actively exploring the island both on our own on one of the scooters for hire and on tours arranged for us by Roger. We walked through forests filled with coral (! it's all to do with the geology) and ferns to see cave-dwelling swifts which echo-locate like bats; sat with locals and drank their home-brewed drink (delicious); saw the reintroduced lorakeets; had a picnic, beautifully presented on woven leaves, on the beach with local celebrity George and visited the coffee plantation run by German-born Jurgen, Coffee is currently the only island export although it was explained to us that historically there have been various attempts at exporting pineapples, tomatoes and black pepper. The beaches are stunning and empty and we also (eventually) found the beautiful coral garden, which makes for pretty impressive snorkelling. On our return flight to Raro we were almost overwhelmed by the scent of the numerous ei presented by families to departing islanders. A memorable stay!

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Taralyn_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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86 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Veendam, The Netherlands
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 6, 2014

We had wonderful times here in 2010. We did swim in the fine pool, ate in the restaurant, made triops on the island on the motorbikes we did rent on the property. We made a tour to the coffeeplantages. It was unforgettable.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank 347Hans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed December 15, 2013

We spent 3 nights at Atiu Villas while on our honeymoon in the Cook Islands. We’re so glad we visited Atiu, in geographic terms, it is very different to Rarotonga and Aitutaki and with less than 500 people on the Island, it has a really natural and laid back feel.

The Atiu Villas are cute little A frame cottages surrounded by beautiful gardens and a lovely, refreshing, blue pool. The accommodation isn’t 5 stars, but it is clean, inviting and comfortable, everything you need on Atiu.

Roger, Kura and the staff were all lovely and accommodating; we received an informative overview of the island from Roger on the first day and he and his staff happily arranged various tours for us including a Kopeka Cave tour, Atiu Island Coffee Tour with Mata (a 100% Atiu owned and operated business where Kura personally grows, hand roasts and produces her own coffee & also provides a delicious morning tea!) and a Tumunu visit. We thoroughly enjoyed all of the tours and all the meals we had in Kura’s kitchen. Basic grocery supplies are also supplied in the Villas so you can cook yourself if you feel like a quiet night in.

We loved the flexibility of hiring a scooter whenever required and adventuring around the island. A cute little cat called Frazzle (who is owned by Roger and Kura) took a liking to us and camped on our balcony for the duration of our stay, as cat owners, it was nice to have a furry friend on our doorstep! Atiu is a beautiful little gem in the Cook Islands; make sure you visit and that you give Frazzle a pat for us!

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Michelle G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
Reviewed November 27, 2013

Can't say enough about the people here, from Roger and Kura to all the other staff who made our few days on Atiu tremendous, I wish I could remember all their names. Perhaps my favorite moment was while waiting for our ride to the airport, sharing a breakfast of PawPaw, bananas, and shredded coconut with the entire staff. So friendly.

The bungalows are great. All you really need on an island of 500 people. Didn't want for anything. The pool is an excellent cool off for when you just need a break from the afternoon heat.

Roger did his best to make sure all of our wants were met. He made all 3 of our tours happen, an Island Night, and most importantly perhaps....the taste of Tumunu and the famous bush beer.

I hope to see it again in my lifetime.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank James C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed November 2, 2013

We spent our honeymoon at Atiu Villas in 1988 and returned here for our 25th wedding anniversary. Very pleased that we did! Roger and Kura welcomed us warmly and arranged an island night for our anniversary day - it was beautiful! The village of Mapumai has a group of people of all ages who sing and dance to island themes. Some of the dancers are about 5 years old and just amazing; in fact the whole performance was very professional but much more intimate than island nights elsewhere in the Cooks.

We enjoyed many of the tours on offer and also the chance to re-acquaint with hire motor bikes after 25 years! We then had the freedom to explore all the little back roads on this lovely little laid-back island. Meals provided by Kura were very tasty and we enjoyed them on several nights. One afternoon we fished on the reef with Andrew, the barman and his family - barbecued the fish for dinner down by the pool.

The birds were one of our interests and we managed to see and photograph all of them. The Rimatara Lorikeet re-introduced from Tahiti was tiny but spectacular, and the Rarotongan Flycatcher, recovering from near extinction on this rat-free island a real treat to observe on tour with Birdman George.

All-in-all the best sort of holiday - relaxing, interesting and special. Thanks Roger and Kura!

Room Tip: Villa No 6 is nearest to the pool and very quiet.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank CaraAdelaide
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
University Place, Washington
Level 4 Contributor
19 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed October 3, 2013

A friend and I stayed at Atiu Villas for 3 nights at the end of a 3-week trip to Cook Islands, and wished we could have stayed longer. The villas are spacious, comfortable, a rustic style but very attractive. The refrigerator and cupboards are nicely stocked with basics, snacks and goodies at prices such as you would find at the local store.The grounds are beautifully planted with a great variety of lush flowers, bushes, palms and other trees, all well-kept. The pool provides the perfect cool-down after a hike or tour. The ocean was visible in the distance from the porch of our villa. Wi-Fi is available at no charge up to a certain maximum, which I forget, but is certainly adequate for sending and receiving email. The host, Roger, and his staff are all welcoming and helpful. We especially enjoyed very personable Jackie, who met our arrival flight with leis and an informative tour of the island on our way to the villas. Roger and/or Jackie will arrange any tour you'd like. A jeep, scooters and bicycles are available for rent at reasonable prices. An island night was organized for the evening of our arrival, something no visitor should miss. Ina, the cook, prepared a scrumptious assortment of foods, and the music and dancing of the people of the local village was joyous. It's not a "show" in the polished, commercial sense at all; it's more the people practicing their tradition. The youngest dancers were ages 3 & 4, adorable as well as talented. On our departure we were again presented with fresh, fragrant leis and Roger saw us off. If I'm so lucky as to return to Atiu, I'll definitely choose the Atiu Villas.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank BarbaraJS2451
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
29 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed September 11, 2013

Atiu is a small island, and comparatively less of a tourist destination than Aitutaki or Raro. That said, Atiu Villas is a beautiful place to stay, lovingly maintained by hosts Roger and Kura. This is the kind of place you go if you want to socialise with other guests, and leave material distractions behind for a few days. An absolute must-do experience is to eat at Kura's Kitchen, the perfect way to finish out a day after exploring caves and sight-seeing.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Zoom-Au
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Atiu Villas

Property: Atiu Villas
Address: 7 Box | Areora, Cook Islands (Formerly Atiu Motel)
Location: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Atiu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Atiu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Atiu Villas 3*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Atiu Villas is located on Atiu Island at the edge of a central plateau overlooking a tropical garden, pineapple fields, jungle and has distant views down a valley of the Pacific Ocean. The villas are built in the native style out of polished native timbers of mango, mahogany, red peanut, cedar and coconut in 6 well separated villas and includes a villa suitable for families. A tour desk, restaurant, bar, entertainment area, swimming pool, floodlit tennis court, property wide free Wifi, rental bicycles, scooters and car are all available on site. ... more   less 
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