Common areas of the Holiday Inn Resort in Port Vila have been renovated extensively within the last 5 years. This makes dining in the main restaurant or having a few quiet drinks at the bar quite nice and relaxing.
Firstly, to the rooms. We stayed in a 1 bedroom suite, overlooking the golf course. The room was spacious, clean and had a daily room cleaning service. The room came with a bar fridge and a safe (for all those valuables when travelling abroad). As our room faced the golf course, it was quiet and relaxing to sit on the balcony in the evening breeze, cold beverage in hand.
In the open plan reception/bar area, they have live music some nights and is otherwise good for their bar meals.
Heading down to the 2 pools, the significant downside was that there was no shade over either pool, which meant that unless you wanted to get burnt to a crisp in the 38 degree heat, you'd have to wait for shade from the buildings to come over at around 3-4pm or so.
The poolside bar is also great. You can sit next to the pool or on the sand next to the adjacent lagoon. Again, with minimal shade though, the heat coming off the sand during the day makes it uncomfortable when trying to enjoy the breeze and serenity of the lagoon. At night, the lagoon's beach comes alive once a week for a fire show (free of charge), complete with fire twirlers and fire breathers - amazing stuff, especially when you're so close to the action to feel the heat coming off the sticks.
The in-house restaurant is also good, but a little steep on price though - the cost of convenience I suppose. It's open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The breakfast was by far the best, for the heat of March anyway, since you could sit outside and overlook the lagoon from your perched position and with a slight cooling breeze, it's really nice. The food is fresh, there is plenty of it and the staff just can't do enough for you.
There is also an associated casino, located in a separate building at the head of the entrance driveway. We're not gamblers, so we didn't venture to the casino but from talking to others in the Resort who did make a donation to the Casino's CEO holiday fund, they tell me that it's nice, a little small, but otherwise ok.
The resort is about 5 minutes drive from the centre of Port Vila, or anywhere really, since it is an island after all. Don't be tempted to dive anywhere yourself in Vanuatu though. The roads (if you can describe them as such) are bitumen bits with potholes that could swallow a family of elephants. When being driven anywhere by taxi, hold on since the "norm" is to swerve all over the place to dodge the potholes - scary stuff if you've never experienced this sort of crazy driving before.
In summary, the Holiday Inn Resort is clean, quiet, relaxing, has a good location and is quite reasonably priced. We'd be happy to stay there again if we ever head back to Vanuatu and have recommended this place to friends heading over from Aus.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Overlooking the serene waters of the Erakor Lagoon, Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu is set in vibrant natural surroundings. Meaning “the land that always existed”, Vanuatu is a holiday destination made up of 83 tropical islands located northeast of New Caledonia. Immersed in cultural richness and native splendour, the islands hold crystal blue beaches, coral reefs, hot springs, exotic rainforests, and stunning waterfalls that are some of the most beautiful in the world. The Vanuatu hotel’s Erakor Ballroom and Valea meeting space provides exceptional indoor and outdoor meeting facilities, and the accommodation resort also features a unique Namele Day Spa, two luxurious outdoor holiday swimming pools, and the newly refurbished Palms Casino. The views from the rooms include lush gardens, blue lagoons, and a golf course. The hotel boasts 5 dining areas. Breakfast, buffet and à la carte dinners are served daily. There is an extensive wine list from New Zealand, Australia and France. Get to experience the perfect Vanuatu holiday with island lifestyle at Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu Hotel Port Vila
- Port Vila Le Meridien
- Le Meridien Vanuatu
- Le Meridian Vanuatu
- Holiday Inn Resort Vanuatu Port Vila