One of our bucket list locations was French Polynesia...so this year we made plans to visit Bora Bora and Tahiti. We were sort of expecting Bora Bora to be some over developed, overly expensive tourist trap. What we got was the best vacation location we have ever been to...
We picked Hotel Maitai, mostly because of cost..and while the reviews were mixed, it seemed like a reasonable place. We paid for meals (as we had heard that eating is very expensive there).
A quick word about cost. We were quoted a total cost, that was exactly what they charged us...not one extra item. You fly in, you get on the free boat to the main island, they pick you up and you are there..you repeat when you leave. Not one hidden cost, no extra fees. Only extra charges we had were 4 very fancy and very well made drinks at the bar.
We reserved one of the over the water rooms, and got one (#108) that was one of the shallow water locations. Ok, that sort of sucked until we found out that there was an octopus living under us....and he provided endless fun watching him.
Was the place perfect? No...they never changed the menu.. so if you don't like perfectly cooked fresh fish every day, one could get bored really quick. Their breakfast precooked eggs, to be honest, sucked. But they had lots that was really, really good, and some things, like their deserts, were to die for. But if you are going to Bora Bora for the food, you are missing the whole point of going there.
Our room was nice, and yes it would take a while to cool down when you got there (assuming you wanted to run the air-conditioning).
And the wind blows towards the side of the island we were on, so they have stuff to clean up every day, and the water, while reasonably clear, is much clearer on the 5 star resorts (on the fringing reef, so the wind blows away from them).
But I cannot say enough good things about the people... amazing. Helpful, timely....overall, the nicest people I have ever met. Every hotel in the world could learn something from these people.
I found them honest to a fault, caring and each member of the staff took personal responsibility for whatever you asked for. It took a couple of days to get used to them rather bluntly answering any question you had. And they made a point of worrying about you. One day my ride to the dive shop was late (two minutes)...the desk insisted on calling to find out when they would be there, and I never said a word (she was 4 minutes late due to guests that were late getting to the pickup point).
Was it noisy during the day? Don't have a clue.. I was out diving every day, and my wife was out visiting the sites.
Diving, by the way, is some of the nicest I have ever seen...however, the standard diving is to go see over feed sharks and then see some rays.. but the fish life is some of the best in the world (I say this after over 5,000 dives in over 25 countries). Not the best coral, but more species of animals than I've ever seen.
We got yelled at one day for not locking our sliding door...as it turned out they were seriously worried about someone taking our camera gear....the lecture was deserved and very heart felt on their part.
The island is, to say the least, the perfect tropical location...perfect water, dramatic island, and not over run with people.
For the very first time, we cannot wait to go back there. My thanks for a wonderful time
Oh, and I would suggest you skip Tahiti... what an ugly money sucking island.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC