Just got back from an excellent week-long vacation at the Virgin Cove Resort in Samoa. I snooped through a lot of posts on this site before booking (thanks travelers!), and thought I'd give my opinion, and some updated information.
First of all, I would absolutely stay at the Virgin Cove again, and would recommend it whole-heartedly, for anyone who is not a strict luxury island traveler. If you are open to nothing but five-star luxury, this is probably not the place for you. This is in NO WAY meant to be criticism of the resort, however. I strongly agree with another poster that you buy isolation and beauty when you book at this place.
My boyfriend and I paid 275 tala (about $100 USD) a night for what the resort calls a "secluded fale." In my opinion, these, or the beach (not garden) bungalows have the best location. They are set apart from the rest of the resort, and essentially 5-6 units share a very long private beach. Most of the time, people respected the area right in front of our fale. The stairs of our unit led right down to the beach.
The fales are simple, but clean and pleasant. Our sheets and towels were changed by very friendly staff daily. We had the Honeymoon Fale, which was a bit smaller than the other fales, but had neighbors on only one side. It is the only fale with an actual door, if you care. (We didn't, although we did use it one night when the wind was quite high.) We had one power point, and a cabinet to lock our valuables in if we chose. (We had a luggage lock, but the resort has locks available if you want them. At no time did I feel like I was not secure, and I felt I knew most of the staff and guests at the resort while I was there.)
It sturck me that even the simple fales, in another part of the resort, were pretty nice compared to what I was seeing in other parts of the island. These still have some space between them, and lovely beach views, as opposed to being crammed in side to side with only a foot or two in between (like I saw elsewhere.)
The beach is lovely, although there's not much of it left at high tide. Shallow, but deep enough to swim. There's really not much traffic there. Yes, there is a charge to use the private road. For resort guests, it is a one-time charge if you have a rental (none if you are a passenger.) I don't think it's very high. Maybe 10 tala? We didn't have a car. But it keeps it from being a high traffic area for beach-seekers, and that's pretty sweet.
The bathroom facilities for most guests are shared. I followed a lovely little (swept daily) path to a little building with two flush toilets. The facilities were clean. The sink is outdoors, with a mirror and hot and cold water and electric lights under a roof. The shower is open air, surrounded by volcanic rocks, and cool water only. (It was so warm that this is the temperature I would have showered at anyway,)
The resort offered one free activity each morning (a chance to husk a coconut, try ava (kava), weave a basket, etc. The bar was open all day for drinks and snacks.
A few items that I can update from previous posts:
KIDS: As of September 2010, kids were clearly welcome at the resort. We saw at least four families with children as young as baies and as old as teens. It doesn't seem like there's a lot for kids to do there, however.
FOOD: In my opinion, unpretentious and tasty. Breakfast was included in the price, and was hearty. It wasn't a menu, but just brought to your table. One egg, in some form, on some form of starch (toast, french toast, pastery), four kinds of fruit, warm cereal in some form, a bread basket, coffee and tea. For each lunch we were able to choose from two items, priced anywhere from 15-25 tala. The dinner menu had two appetizers, each about 10 tala, and 4 mains, from 25-40 tala. The menu changed daily, and the staff went daily to the market for fresh food. On Saturday night, we had a Samoan meal and watched the Fia Fia performance, which was excellent. Every other night there was live acoustic music.
Of 28 meals my partner and I ate during that week, we had only one "miss", and one so-so meal. Otherwise, it was great. It was simple, but very tasty. They aren't pretentious people. They'll list "chicken pasta" as the menu item. They could have said "coconut-milk infused curry cream sauce on a bed of angel hair pasta with scallion, carrot and cabbage salad and lime vinegrette." Because that's what we got. Don't go for the fancy, Go for the lovely.
HEAT: The fales are comfortable. We did use a small 15-cm cheap fan we brought along one or two nights, and were glad to have it. The mosquito netting blocks a surprising amount of the breeze coming through.
Anyway, I liked this place a lot. Yes, you are paying for the setting, although everything else is lovely as well. Good luck! Have fun!