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“Unknown Tropical Gem”

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Wananavu Beach Resort
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Rakiraki
Certificate of Excellence
Sydney
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Unknown Tropical Gem”
Reviewed 23 September 2010

My husband did a lot of research to give me the perfect holiday. Most travel agents he approached in Sydney did not know anything about Wananavu. He was a bit nervous, but decided the reviews on tripadvisor should be good enoug.
This place not only surprised us, but exceed expectation. The staff, food, facilities and setting is fantastic. We got a free upgrade to the beach after 2 days with the most perfect views. Most of the water equipment hire is free & due to the small size of the resort - was always available.
If you are into your water sport and diving - this is the perfect place. No phones, no TV, no internet - back to basics. Perfect getaway!

Not a place for people who want the shopping,nightlife & entertainment.

Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank BobMZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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593 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (203)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Melbourne, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 September 2010

Bula. My husband and I took advantage of a special on Wotif Fiji and stayed at Wananavu for 4 nights. We had a beautiful Ocean Bure with a hugh king size very comfortable bed which gave us a spectacular view of palm trees and sea. My sister found out about our pending holiday and decided to join us so they had the bure next door. We were picked up at the airport as part of our stay and so our fantastic holiday began.
We arrived to welcome drinks and once settled gathered at the restaurant for dinner. Our meals were included with our accommodation and we ate far too much but enjoyed the variety and tastiness of all our meals. I like the fact that they used food from their own garden as well as seasonal produce.
All the staff were fantastic. They were always friendly, ready to have a chat and it was a joy to be around people who knew how to laugh. There was a lot of laughing. You would pass the laundry and hear laughter. The staff learnt your names straight away, were friendly and attentive. They replenished our water glasses frequently (beautiful tasting water), which helped because I have never drunk so many cocktails in my life. We even spent a day at the restaurant playing scrabble, drinking cocktails and laughing with the staff.
The restaurant looked over the water, had some shade with ceiling fans contributing to a very relaxing place to play scrabble. Canoeing was good one morning, the day spa gave good relaxing massages and facials and there were plenty of activities to choose from. No tvs or radios but an ipod played western music in the restaurant as well as the live Fijian music accompanying lunch and dinner. We love the fact that they sing the farewell song to the group of guests on the last night of their visit so we wrote our own song and sung it to the staff.
Australians all let us rejoice for we all love Fiji. With golden smiles and sea for miles we never want to leave. Its land abounds in coconuts they are falling everywhere, the staff at Wanananvu have a lot of love to share, a cocktail spree for morning tea, Fiji the place to be.
I am looking forward to coming back.
After staying at Wananavu for four nights we travelled to The Sofitel 20 mins from Nadi. The 5 star resort cannot compare to a smaller resort like Wanananvu. The Sofitel staff were friendly, but did not know your name, it was hotel style accommodation and the cost of meals and alcohol was nearly the same as in Australia. I would recommend Wananavu to everyone, I could not speak more highly of any holiday destination than this one. So enjoy your stay, I know you will and I look forward to reconnecting with this place again in the future.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank dican64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 September 2010

What a wonderful place to relax. The staff were all very friendly and the resort was kept beautifully clean. The food was okay. Only two meals out of 21 were not good but that was because they were too salty. We were unlucky enough to have bought stolen money at Travelex, Sydney airport which was only discovered when we decided to have an adventure on our own and headed off to do some shopping at a local town. The police were very understanding and after taking a statement and all our money let us go. Within 5 minutes of leaving the police station Ben the resort manager was in town checking that everything was okay and asking if we needed some money or a lift back to the resort. Nothing was too much trouble. We were lucky to stay at the resort when it was quiet and for a lot of the time it felt as though we had the resort to ourselves. Wouldn't recommend it to anyone with young kids but for anyone else it is wonderful. Will definitely be going back.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank debbiekit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
VIC, Australia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 September 2010

Wananavu is set in the beautiful Sun Coast, and whilst the grounds are beautiful and the location unspoilt, the resort leaves a lot to be desired. To be honest, it is in dire need of a makeover...from the bures, the broken air-conditioners in the bures, the swimming pool, the restaurant, the menu options (I agree with another reviewer that breakfast was by far the worst meal of the day)...what a horrible and poor choice of food! The staff whilst very friendly seem a little insincere at times and are very keen to up-sell consistently when it comes to activities, drinks from the bar, items from the boutique. After a while constantly saying "no thanks" becomes a bit tiring. Whilst the area is famous and renowned for one of the best diving spots in the world, I would suggest staying somewhere else. Not a pleasant stay and I have stayed at a few 4 & 5 star resorts in Fiji. By far the worst.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
3 Thank jess_b1410
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mackay, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 September 2010

Myself and my now husband decided to get married in Fiji - we were after some thing low key, some thing relaxing and stress free and some where our family would be able to stay at knowing there would be children(ages 18, 14, 13, 12 and 10).
After reading many reviews and doing a lot of research we decided on Wananavu - and we are so very glad we did!!

The drive from Nadi airport is about 2.5 hrs, the last 15 minutes or so is pretty bumpy.
On arrival the staff knew our names from day one - and i think only once forgot my name in the 8 days we were there.. A special Shout out goes to Joe our driver, Anistie, Ma and Vulo in the bar/restaurant and of course Ben and Rachel the resort managers who were always warm and welcoming.
We stayed in Bure 50, right on the beach with our own little pool and we had family stay in Bure's 40 and 41(both 2 bedroom Bure's with beach front views)
We had planned for our wedding dinner and tribal dance to be held out side by the activities hut - how ever in the 8 days we were there, the only day it decided to rain was of course our wedding day.. our dinner was moved up near the restaurant and decorated just as nice as what it would've been down by the beach.
The staff were there to hand out umbrellas and the canape's we had organized and were there to wait on us hand and foot to make our day stress free as possible and nothing was a hassle or problem to change things around due to the weather!

We went fishing, island tour, snorkeling, medication talk, fish feeding and village tour with horse riding - my younger brother is highly autistic and i was quite worried how he would go in a village with different customs to home... Sulo(not quite sure on spelling) was more then happy to take him riding around like mad cowboy up the hills - for this i was quite thankful for!
The crafts the ladies put out for us to view were quite interesting yet wonderfully made at the same time - and we had no problems at all getting through customs!
I had also read bad reviews on RA Diving - this made me not want to go diving - how ever my now husband talked me into it - besides the fact they picked us up an hour later then what we were told - it was FANTASTIC!
They were so patient and kind and i know ive said it above - but nothing was a problem to show or teach a couple of times!! I would defiantly recommend to go diving.

I highly recommend Wananavu to every one if they were after a stress free, no t.v, no phones(though my iphone did work), no internet, delicious meals, and a nice sunny beach to relax on type of holiday!

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank teggs_c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mackay, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 5 September 2010

We (myself, son 18, son 14, daughter 12) have just spent 5 nights at this beautiful resort. We did not pick it as we where tagging along to my son’s wedding and I am very glad that they picked Wananavu. There are so many things I could say about what a great job they all did and it will be hard to remember them all. Probably the one thing that really stood out was that after the very first time we meet the staff they remembered our Christian names immediately, and it wasn’t just us as everyone was greeted by their first name. “Bulla Peter” still echoes in my memory from the fantastic staff in the dining area. The managers, Rachel & Ben where fantastic, lovely people to chat to, and to me it seemed like nothing was a problem in helping my son and his new wife in organizing their special day. My other 3 children all enjoyed themselves immensely with plenty of activities to be had or just lazing in the pool. The room we stayed in was great, a fully self contained 2 bedroom beach front villa.
Just to give you an idea of service given at another resort. After staying at Wananavu, we went to a resort on Denarau Island for 3 nights so that my son and his wife could have time to themselves and when a request was made for some more milk at 7.00pm on the 3rd night we were told that they only give us milk when we book in and then no more. I also at 4.30pm on the 2nd day tried to book a trip for the following day but couldn’t because the “person who does that goes home at 3.00pm every day” and this was at a resort which had 24 hour reception.
Wananavu – Beautiful place, beautiful people. Vinaka

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank peterc_mky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tauranga
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 August 2010

This was our 2nd stay at Wananavu, the last being 5 years ago.
The charm and friendliness of the staff make you feel something special is all around you whilst you are there. They are genuinely happy to see you and as the reviewer above stated, address you by your christian name within a few days of arriving.
The resort is well off the beaten (beaten being the operative word) track, a 2.5 hour drive by taxi from Nadi airport, which is a huge benefit to those of us who just don't like being surrounded by masses of other tourists whilst on a restful break. If any of the Wananavu management ever read this, please don't upgrade that road. It is a hilarious quirk that always gets us animated again after the long journey.
We took advantage of a special deal Wananavu was running for the winter months where your partner stays and eats free of charge. A pretty amazing offer for such a boutique style of resort, which made staying very much more affordable for us.
On arriving at our bure, we realised that space was going to be too compromised for ourselves and our 2 year old toddler so decided after one night to upgrade to larger accommodation. We paid for an extra night in the new accommodation, the management then decided to upgrade us to the larger bure free of charge....a rare thing these days, which we really appreciated.
With respect to the food, I disagree with the previous reviewer on two points. There is a daily changing lunch and dinner menu and I suspect she had opted for the limited meal plan (which explains both the fried fish and Americanised menu complaints). Within the daily changing menus there was a large variety of typically Fijian and Indian meals, including a curry of the day and a vegetarian meal of the day. The fijian meals had a strong focus on fish and seafood, but certainly not in an overly "fried" direction.
One suggestion I would like to see taken up would be an easy to assemble Spaghetti with tomato and thinly shaved cheese on top- incorporated into the kids menu. My daughter had this one night toward the end of our stay in Fiji when we dined in Denarau, having stayed at the Sofitel (check out my fairly scathing review of this, so called 5 star, hotel) for 2 nights and she LOVED it.
My only other quip about the food is that the chef/chefs could not cook rice properly if their lives depended on it. I was a chef for 20 years and it really is a basic requirement. You know...chef school 1.01 stuff.
Waking up to bird call, geckos chirping and the gentle sounds of nature rising for the day is a treat, so much nicer than waking up to the vaccum like silence of a hotel room.
There is so much to love about Wananavu, the staff share stories about their own families readily, you always hear either laughter or song somewhere in the background. So what if it only has dial up internet? That is the beauty of it.....in a world where there is so 'much in your face' technology, this place deserves 5 star status simply for the lack of it.
And the bed sheets deserve 10 stars all on their own. Simply marvellous.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
1 Thank missdiscotek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Wananavu Beach Resort

Property: Wananavu Beach Resort
Address: Volvoli Rd, Rakiraki, Viti Levu, Fiji
Phone Number:
Region: Fiji > Viti Levu > Rakiraki
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Rakiraki
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Wananavu Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 34
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The real Fiji! Perfect for romance; fabulous for diving excellent for culture. 34 deluxe bures nestled along the beach and amongst tropical gardens. A real island experience with mainland convenience. Located 85 scenic coastline miles from Nadi International Airport. Great food, fantastic staff, unparalleled views, world class diving & snorkeling; amazing village tours and a perfect wedding venue. This is a true Fijian experience and is, as the name suggests, Wananavu, translated loosely as Awesome! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Wananavu Beach Hotel Rakiraki
Wananavu Beach Rakiraki
Wananavu Beach Resort Fiji/Rakiraki

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