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“Picture perfect”

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Paradise Cove Resort
Ranked #1 of 47 Hotels in Port Vila
Certificate of Excellence
Fitzroy, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Picture perfect”
Reviewed 25 January 2012

Paradise Cove's promise of good coral off the jetty is a bit of a stretch and I feel that new and updated brochures should not use this lure to entice visitors .. there might have been live coral there a year or two back, but much has been destroyed by cyclones. We prefer our coral live, coloured and unbroken. However, we really enjoyed the evenings at Paradise Cove - the dinners were lovely and the atmosphere made you think Mitzi Gaynor and Rosanno Whatsit, however the spartan breakfasts left a lot to be desired. The fruit salad consisted of a third of a bruised unpeeled banana, wafer thin pineapple and squashy papaya - for heavens sake, the markets is awash with perfect cheap fruit - the toast tasted like left over rusks and the coffee and watery juice virtually undrinkable - maybe we should have brought our own - but ummmmmm... isn't breakfast part of the tariff? The bungalows are well spaced apart, and the living area roomy so we were mystified by the cramped dark bedroom which had no netting or flywire to keep the gazzillion mosquitoes at bay. We couldn't open the double doors and and had to rely on the fan for to move the alr around as well as plastering ourselves with Eau de Rid at night.
Paradise Cove is a bit out of the way, the road there is very rough and on a couple of occasions the bus drivers were reluctant to go there. Road repairs are imminent so that's only a very minor quibble. Paradise Cove makes the most of its location - it is in a very pretty setting - there's a jetty where you can have a romantic candlelit dinner, and the gardens are immaculate - we believe the resort is about to undergo a major maintenance programme - may I suggest the owners repaint the bedrooms? A light colour ... not Mission Brown!
The hosts are welcoming and the staff attentive and happy, so that went quite a long way in diminishing our disappointment regarding the coral which is the very reason we chose to stay there in the first place.
As we traveled around Vanuatu we couldn't help wondering, where is the tourist dollar going? Inter Island airfares are expensive, there's a departure tax every time you move from one island to another, there's a lot of donated NGO money spent on infrastructure that should be the responsibility of their own government - accommodation is not cheap, food relatively expensive and everything seems to attract some kind of tax... I really don't think enough is being done for the locals.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
14 Thank denmother62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (121)
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English first
Sydney, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 January 2012

My wife and I had a week at Paradise Cove on our honeymoon and absolutely loved it.

All the rooms are separate cabins with plenty of personal space, an airy bedroom and living room, private courtyard with hammock and lounger and a kitchenette. The site is very green and peaceful. There is fantastic snorkeling off the jetty (where the boat also picked us up from for our dive trips).

It is a little out of Vila (a 15 or so minute trip on a really rough road) so if you are planning to go into town every night it may not be the right place, we went in a couple of times in our week and it was no problem.

Everything is managed out of the big open air covered bar lounge and dining area looking out over the water (with a second dining area 10m down the hill on the absolute waterfront) which is a nice communal environment.

The staff are fantastic, relaxed and friendly and ever helpful. They took the time to recommend different trips depending on what we were looking for, and followed up with the operators to make sure it all went smoothly. The maintenance staff and housekeeping staff all know you a little and add personality to the stay.

When we were there we noticed that a lot of the options in this price range were a hotel type building so you didn't get the island feeling we did, and Paradise Cove faces west so it is the only place we found where the sun sets over the water.

We'd definitely go back.

  • Stayed April 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank Ian H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 January 2012

My wife and I just soaked up six most peaceful days in Vanuatu at Paradise Cove Resort. We were looking for comfort, quiet, privacy, warmth, good food, good snorkelling and friendly but not intrusive staff. We got the lot and more. The resort has just 10 bungalows and caters to a maximum of 30 guests. It is about a15-20 minute ride from Port Vila, the main town which I found unimpressive and a little third worldish but the resort itself was embedded in lush jungle foliage and fronts onto a huge bay which itself opens to the ocean. The snorkelling right in front of the resort is great and if you need a change of scenery just walk for 15 minutes to Honeymoon Bay for an alternative experience on a long sandy beach. Ask any of the staff and they'll clue you in to what is good.
The managers, Belinda and Andrew, hinted that Vanuatan beef was the great and it was. I had some of the best steak I can remember. The fish was superb too. For my vegetarian wife the choices were a little more limited but their salads were excellent and the pizza pastry had a uniqueness to it. I'd go back in a heartbeat.

Room Tip: All bungalows have garden locations. A couple might get a glimpse of water but none have direct wate...
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank Andrew R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 January 2012

If you are looking for a beautiful setting, peace and quiet just to do nothing, then this is an amazing place.
Set 25 minutes drive from Port Vila only 10 bungalows are nestled in stunning grounds.
The staff are outstanding and nothing is too much trouble. We spend an "exhausting" morning snorkelling, lazying and reading in the shady beach area, so I walked up to the restaurant (20m away) to order lunch, only to be asked if we would like it served down where we were already lying on the lounge chairs.
The Bar and Restaurant is on site, overlooking the water, while not cheap, has an extensive menu of delicious food making it possible to dine each night for a week long stay. Bungalows are clean and comfortable with ceiling fans but perhaps just a little tired.
The Jetty makes access to snorkelling so easy - no current or tide, with so much to see and so close - Yes, we actually did find Nemo!
The road to the resort makes this not recommended as a place to base yourself to see other areas of the island or frequent trips into Port Vila - 20 minutes of under 10km/h trying navigate around many and sometimes large potholes - but having visited the Port Vila town once seemed enough for us. Having said this, there are lots of day trips available to be booked at the resort. The Waterfalls are lovely but for us the Blue Pools was OK. There is a sandy beach about 15 minutes walk from the resort ... well worth the visit.

Room Tip: Rooms closer to the the Beach may get a little more breeze as the gardens are so lush
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  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank MABris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane, Australia
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 December 2011

The hosts and staff at this small resort can't be faulted, and the setting is excellent too. I had read about the good snorkelling prior to our visit, and the easy access to the reef and variety of fish species were as expected, including a small white tip reef shark. For novice snorkellers there would not be a better place to experience the underwater world for the first time, with no stong currents or large tides.
The road from Port Vila however is a challenge to cyclists and drivers with many large potholes: this deterred is from making the short journey into town more than once a day.
The room was spotlessly clean but was obviously a liitle "tired" with a small bathroom and ill-fitting patio doors'
My wife described Paradise Cove a s a "home from home". No higher praise........

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank Lostwallet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level 6 Contributor
203 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 92 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 November 2011

My husband and I (late 50s), along with our daughter in her late 20s, stayed at Paradise Cove Resort for 5 days. We chose this resort after looking at reviews on Trip Advisor, and we weren't disappointed. There are ten units in the resort, set out as five semi-detached villas in tropical gardens. While you can't see the sea from your villa, the gardens are beautifully maintained, and your balcony comprises deck chairs and a hammock. On the beachfront, there are deck chairs and dining facilities, along with a jetty from which to launch yourself for snorkelling or kayaking (free of charge). When you visit a foreign country, I feel it is special to stay in a resort that celebrates the local culture, as Paradise Cove does. Rather than a bland, modren villa that could be anywhere in the world, the units have thatched roofs; a high stud; timber beams, posts and floors; and flowers in every room. For visitors who haven't been to tropical countries before, you must bear in mind that you will share the environment with bugs and insects - that goes with the territory, and you shouldn't be alarmed. We saw few bugs while there, so I imagine the resort sprays to keep them at bay. Paradise Cove sits almost out on its own, which is both a blessing and a nuisnace. The blessing is the peace and solitude; the nuisance is the terribly pot-holed, dirt road for half the journey from the airport and Port Vila township. Personally, we found the road tolerable for the peace. The units are set back from the road, and with only one resort beyond Paradise Cove, there was little traffic. The staff was freindly and helpful, and the owners, Andrew and Belinda, keen to ensure we had the holiday we wanted. We had dinner at the on-site restaurant on our first night, but while the food was nicely presented and tasty, it was over-priced. Having said that tough, we felt all restaurants in Port Vila were too expensive, and the Paradise Cove meals were probably in line with that. A note about transport: when you arrive at Port Vila airport, as you come through the arrival doors into the terminal, look for a sign on your left that gives the bus fares you should expect to pay to each resort. To Paradise Cove the sign states 3600 vatu. A bus is a van with a 'B' on its number plate, and 3600 is for the entire van no matter how many occupants. While bartering is not part of Vanuatu's culture, there is fierce competition for customers, so when you go outside the terminal you will be pounced upon. You can stick to the printed 3600 vatu at that stage, but because Paradise Cove is some distance away, along a poor road, we found we were often asked to pay extra if we went into town. Usually the bus fare is 150 vatu anywhere, but we were asked for 200, which we felt was fair enough given the road and the time it takes to negoitate it. Remember, this is a poor country. When we are in these places, we like to support the local community. While we don't like to be ripped off, we will help the people who are willing to help us.

Room Tip: The villas number from the beach back to the road. Number 1 is nearer the beach, while number ten is...
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with family
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Helpful?
8 Thank Cadarnle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
69 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 November 2011

Enjoyed 8 wonderful days, great food, snorkelling, private jetty makes water access so easy. Snorkelling was amazing, and watching ships and boats passing by from lounges, very relaxing. My Birthday dinner, staff set up the table, chairs, potted ferns, lamps & candles on the jetty. Nothing was too much trouble, Managers, barman, table attendants, cleaners & gardeners, all were welcoming, happy, helpful and efficient. Bungalow was great, self catering which we did for lunches and some dinners after trips to market in town. Steaks and fish in restaurant were brilliant, happy hour was happy!. Can't speak highly enough of this place and will return. No noisy parties or air conditioners, fans in lounge and bedroom were good. Our own patio with lounges, hammock and table made staying 'home' so attractive. The gardens are lovely, and frame the thatched bungalows beautifully.

Room Tip: All bungalows set so nicely in the gardens, plenty of low lighting for walking home after dinner.
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank acford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LaraPiera, Manager at Paradise Cove Resort, responded to this review, 24 November 2011
Thanks so much for your wonderful response... you arrived as guests and left as a friends. We all look forward to welcoming you back one day; hopefully in the not to distant future. Lukim yu... from all the Paradise Cove Resort family.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Paradise Cove Resort

Property: Paradise Cove Resort
Address: Paradise Cove | Pango, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
Phone Number:
Region: Vanuatu > Efate > Port Vila
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Port Vila
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Port Vila
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Port Vila
#1 Family Hotel in Port Vila
#3 Romantic Hotel in Port Vila
#6 Business Hotel in Port Vila
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Paradise Cove Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This private and intimate small resort is located 15 minutes from downtown Port Vila. It offers 10 self contained One and Two Bedroom villas in a well established tropical garden by the ocean. The beautiful reef offers great snorkeling and diving opportunities with an easy access from the private beach and jetty. Under an iconic traditional roof celebrating the Melanesian architecture, the restaurant serves the best fresh local ingredients prepared with a Mediterranean touch. With a relaxed atmosphere Paradise Cove Resort provides a genuine tropical island holiday. Please note that the access by boat to our private jetty is strictly limited. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Paradise Cove Hotel Port Vila
Paradise Cove Port Vila
Paradise Cove Resort Vanuatu/Port Vila

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