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Vara's
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Reviews (149)
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A TripAdvisor Member
Oxford
219
Reviewed 1 September 2005

This is actually a warning to anyone who has been fooled into thinking about staying here. Rarotonga is such a beautiful Island Varas Beach House can change your opinion.

I opted to stay there, as it sounded pleasant enough for the price we were paying. How wrong could I have been? This was by far the most disgusting place I have ever stayed in all my life. We arrived on a Sunday to find the place had not been cleaned, as the cleaner does not work that day. The place was infested with ants everywhere. There were empty bottled all over and left over food, the furniture was so dirty and old you just didn’t want to sit on it, there was no way you would make your own food in there as the cutlery had obviously never been cleaned. I was meant to be staying on the island for 10 days but lasted 3, as it was just not liveable. During those three days, there was no hot water, bearing in mind it wasn't the hottest time of year and I had paid for hot water. They promised everyday to get it sorted but couldn't be bothered. The bed I slept in had a hole in the mattress with obvious bed bugs. I used my sleeping bag the whole time. I lost count of how many lizards were in there. Just to add to it, to get to the main road it was a 10-minute walk along a dark dirt track with animals roaming. When I asked for a refund, the receptionist tried sending me to the town to find another lady who deals with it. What sort of business is this !!!! There is plenty of other accommodation on the Island, some a little more expensive, but it is worth it if you want to enjoy Rarotonga.

  • Stayed: July 2005
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    • Rooms
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9  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
UK
118
Reviewed 16 August 2004

Having stayed in many tripadvisor hotels in the past, we decided to stay at Vara's and it was the worst mistake we have ever made. We booked over the net, and were told we had hillside accommodation just up from the beach. The bungalow was miles from Vara's, and a long way from anywhere else! This wouldn't have been too bad apart from the fact that the next day when we went to Vara's to pay, we had to wait around to be shown in to see the owner's daughter. They "forgot" to inform us that we couldn't pay by card, so we were told to get the bus in to town to the only ATM and then back again to pay. They also forgot to mention the cancellation fee that we had to pay because we decided we couldn't stay there any longer.
The bungalow itself was disgusting, we had to go out and buy cleaning things, in order to make it liveable. Ants and insects all over and I doubt that it had been cleaned when the previous people left. The bathroom was filthy and the sheets were so stained we didn't sleep in them. Although it was self contained you couldn't use any of the equipment or pots because it was all so dirty!
Its not as if this place was even budget accommodation as we were paying $NZ120 per night and we spent the first 2 days of our stay looking for somewhere else to stay. Finally moved to Manuia Beach Hotel, which was only slightly more but in a completely different league.

18  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 July 2004

We stopped off in Rarotonga for one week during a multi stop trip back from Australia. We stayed in budget accommodation called 'Vara's' on the Island's north east shore - to be honest the accommodation was dreadful. In booking (we booked over the net) we were assured of private facilities; when we arrived our room was private, but the rest of the 'cottage' wasn't - it was shared facilities - which in itself wouldn't be a bad thing if we'd been told initially! The place was very dirty, one rule of Vara's was that you removed your shoes; we had to keep our shoes on because the floors were so dirty, plus you had to avoid the Gecko poo! :) The sheets stunk of, well, sweat to be honest, and other's peoples sweat at that! Yuk! The hot water ran out after two days of a seven day stay - not such a problem in such a hot climate but very disappointing!

The Island itself was OK but lacking in nightlife, well, lacking in life to be honest. If you weren’t holed up in one of the purpose built resorts then there really was little of interest once the sun went down. The people of the Island were dreadfully rude. They really gave you a strong impression of antipathy which was a shame; most shop owners really couldn't be bothered to give you the time of day. I would qualify this by saying that if you chose a holiday in one of the above mentioned purpose built resorts then maybe your impression and/or experience would be different, but then it depends if you want to be cooped up there for 7+ days; many people hired mopeds to zoom round the island (you have to 'purchase' a Cook Island driving license for NZ$20) which looked fun, but wouldn't be enough to keep you amused for more than a few hours. We were told other Island's that form part of this group are different and my advice would be that if you are thinking of heading to The Cook Island's, think twice before choosing to base yourself in Rarotonga.....

12  Thank LukeTheGooner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2015
Google Translation

  • Stayed: February 2015, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 August 2013
Google Translation

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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