Ah, the beautiful Royale Takitumu.
We booked this trip and this accomodation via Air NewZealand. Not so impressed with Air NewZealand - it was 'fine' for economy travel I suppose. The flight from LA is long and the seating cramped. Sleeping impossible. Anyway who cares, the flight is minor compared to the vacation!
I read up on the reviews etc from the Royal Takitumu and they were all quite good, but I was still unsure exactly what to expect. This place was wonderful, really exactly the style of accomodations we love! Where to start ....
Very private - there is no sign on the road to indicate it is even there - understated elegance and unpretentious. We were warmly welcomed by Rongo, with a lovely tropical fruit drink. Our flight came in very early (before the official check in time), but it was no problem to leave our bags in the office and return later in the day. The bus service is reliable so we hopped on a bus and went ot check out 'town'. We returned later, took our bags and checked into our villa, a beautiful beachfront paradise. It was soooo quiet, I thought we were the only guests! We stayed 5 days in total and there were only 2 or 3 other couples we saw/met. We walked on our beach and there was literally no one else around. Perhaps the time of year but we really welcomed the seclusion.
The villas are really lovely (there are only 10 in total), the grounds very beautiful, clean and well manicured. Our villa (#10) was beachfront, had a lovely grassy area in front and a wonderful sandy white beach complete with hammock, kayaks, etc. The villas are well outfitted with a lovely spacious kitchen and living area, CD player (no TV which is perfect I think), a telephone. Bathrooms are huge with jetted/soaker tub, toilet and bidet, hair dryer. Bedroom is comfortable, air conditioned, has everything you need.
Staff are very helpful. We found out the owners are fellow Canadians also (with lineage to Cook Islanders). Amber really was very helpful and we enjoyed chatting and finding out about her family and how they built this wonderful resort.
The resort is in the area of Titikaveka, known to have the 'best' swimming & snorkelling beaches on the entire island. They are right. We spent literally hours and hours snorkelling and we tried various other areas but the BEST was right out our front door.
One really nice touch was that in your villa, the Kitchen is large, has a refridgerator and microwave, supplies for coffee and tea, and they also get you started by providing Milk, Bread and a bowl of local fruits. This was very handy for newcomers arriving without a good idea of where and how to get supplies right away.
Although we ate most lunch/dinners out - breakfast was always at our villa and on the deck each morning. It was wonderful to take in the warm breeze and ocean waves each day and a perfect start was breakfast on the patio.
About the island of Rarotonga - it is a cool island. Aside from the high cost of living (food, gas, etc....very expensive by our standards. A box of cereal is $10, six small yogurts for $9, gas $2.30 per litre) and eating in restaurants equally as expensive, so we mostly ate out. Dinners count on $100/per couple, Lunch about $50/couple. We rented a BMW convertible and had a blast driving all over the island. We went to island night at the Rarotongan Resort - it was very good, well worth it - great show and good buffet style dinner.
Tamarind House has great reviews - our meal there was 'ok', but the ambiance is very nice. In town I recommend for lunch Cafe Salsa which we went to a few times - great food, just be prepared to wait...and wait....and wait...service is slooooow. The fish & chip place is good, nice and breezy down by the marina. Found it really cute that the chickens run amock everywhere, even through the restaurants. Also the local cats find there way around - I thought it amusing that the Fish and Chip shop had their own local kitty who hung out in the Kitchen, no doubt eating any fish scraps that fell to the floor.
We left Rarotonga for 6 days on Aitutaki at the Etu Moana - another spectacular location and accomodation setting (read my reviews on Etu Moana also). Although different, both the Royale Takitumu and Etu Moana were on the same scale in terms of being a '5' - outstanding accomodations, superior with all the amenities expected in a private villa style resort.
It was a once in a lifetime trip for us. Many wonderful memories - see photos attached!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Royale Takitumu provides our guests with a truly relaxing, intimate, beachfront holiday with a distinctively authentic, Polynesian Cook Islands experience. Ten individual, private bungalows boast breathtaking views of Rarotonga's finest white sand beach. Royal Takitumu is a small, secluded private resort, located close to nearby sites, shops and restaurants, with services you expect from a large resort. Royale Takitumu embodies the wonderful and unique aspects of this island paradise. Royal Takitumu - Genuine. Natural. Cook Islands. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with TripOnline SA, Agoda and Booking.com so you can book your Royale Takitumu reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Royale Takitumu Hotel Titikaveka
- Royale Takitumu Rarotonga, Cook Islands - Titikaveka