I stayed at the Shangri-La Beach Cottages (No 5) from May 19th to June 3rd (14 nights). I was making my way home after having been living in NZ for 10 months and decided I wanted a real treat of a tropical holiday. Despite having seen a brilliant travel show about the Cook Islands, I still had a hankering to go to Tahiti. However, once I'd done my research, I soon realised, in my opinion, I wouldn't have got good value for my money if I'd gone to Tahiti. I felt the Cook Islands were equally as good and even though it is pricey there, it's way less expensive than Tahiti.
Having again spent ages reviewing all of the accommodation on Rarotonga (Aitutaki was way out of my league in terms of staying there), I decided on the Shangri-La Beach Cottages. I felt this was the best value for money and in the best location in terms of being situated on Muri Lagoon. I wasn't expecting too much when I arrived at the cottage but I must say, I was pleasantly suprised. The cottage was a lot bigger than what is shown on the actual website. It was very clean, basic but good range of cooking/dining equipment. The bathroom was nice with the jacuzzi bath.
The site itself is situated on Muri Lagoon which is by far the best spot on Rarotonga, particularly for water sports and sunbathing. The sea water is crystal clear and the beach is spotless apart from the stray coconuts which have dropped from the trees!! (I think we can all live with that!)
There is a tiny convenience shop/petrol station next to the cottages but you are better to use the hourly bus service which goes either clockwise/anticlockwise into the main town where the supermarket is.
It's a very peaceful place and Elliot Smith (the owner) has strict guidelines about noise. Elliot is a real character (originally from New York) and that is being kind!
I have to say, I spent a lot of money on this holiday but to be honest, it was a once in a lifetime moment. I would have kicked myself if I hadn't gone. If you want utter bliss, tranquility and the mother of all chill out holidays, this is the place to go. It's definately worth the money for that bit of paradise. If you want something completely reclusive though, I wouldn't recommend this place as it's private to a degree but not total privacy. You can get complete peace elsewhere on the island but I was on my own and I would have gone stir crazy without my fellow holidaymakers.
One final piece of advice, I stayed there for 14 days. Personally, I felt this was too long as there is very little to do on the island. Even when it did rain, you can't just pop on the TV to relax. The TV only has a local channel and it starts broadcasting at 3pm! If you are into churchy/religious stuff, it might be your thing but it wasn't mine!! So bring plenty books!!!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Absolute beachfront on Muri. This intimate boutique resort offers 20 beautifully decorated deluxe self-contained villas and apartments. These well-appointed units feature air-conditioning, Jacuzzi spa baths, insect screens, TV/DVD, in-house movies, Wi-Fi internet, IDD telephones. And all of this is set amongst tropically landscaped gardens. When not enjoying the stunning views from the beachfront deck, enjoy lazing by the large swimming pool sipping tropical cocktails. The resorts beautiful poolside Polynesian style cafe & cocktail bar which is surrounded by tropical gardens is al-fresco dining Island style. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Muri Beach Hotel Muri
- Muri Beach Resort Rarotonga, Cook Islands