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Plantation Island Resort
Reviewed 25 May 2012

I am absolutely horrified by some of the recent comments written by some previous guests to the Island. We travelled there with a 17 & 15 year old. We stayed there in late March (for our third visit in 3 years) in which time the cyclone hit. We managed to get 5 days of perfect weather and the rest, well the cyclone. Even though the weather was awful our rooms were cleaned daily and new towels were supplied. The meals were still great and plentiful. And as for the staff, WOW. The were absolutely AMAZING. They were always smiling and made time for a chat even though most of them were worried about their young children on the mainland. How guests can say that these horrible things about the staff is mind blowing. In our 3 trips there we have never had a problem, maybe it starts with the attitude that you treat them with. Their professionalism was outstanding. The activities were limited once the bad weather hit but what do you expect during such times. We have stayed at 5 star resorts in Fiji and the atmosphere at these resorts has nothing on Plantation Island. We will be back again next year to have another relaxing and fun filled holiday. Travellers go with an open mind, great attitude and your sense of fun and you will have the holiday of a life time.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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12  Thank BrisbaneBuffy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 21 May 2012

This was my second time staying at Plantation island. I had read all the reviews and was surprised by how contrasting they were. I think that highlights how different people are and maybe not so reflective of the resort, I think the average rating gives an accurate reflection. Plantation island is a 3 star resort, if you want top quality food, service and facilities then this is not the place for you.
If you are staying at Plantation island then I have the following tips to make your holiday more enjoyable. If you have an infant bring all their food, no supermarket on the island had any infant food which amazed us. Use the babysititing service at night so that you can go to either Lomani ( ask for one of the tables on the beach but book it beforehand) or Ananadas which are lot nicer than the main restaurant. The new convention centre has a great restaurant Black coal sea and we had lunch there every day which was quiet and the food nicer than the main restaurant. The chalk board has great meals for the kids rather than choose from the menu. If you can pick the location of your room, check the site map and do not pick accommodation near one of the main tracks/roads. Every day starting at 6.30am tractors would drive pass our room and it seemed constant and not what we expected staying on an island. The food from the main restaurant was unfortunately pretty average so I would not pre-pay for a meal plan, that way you have flexibility to use any of the restaurants on the island including Musket Cove ( the meal deal does give you a credit for Lomani and Ananadas). Some of the staff were fantastic but unfortunately some looked like they did not want to be there, our babysitter was awesome and the kids loved her. Overall we had a good holiday but next time we will try another island.

Room Tip: Use the site map to stay away from the main tracks/roads!
  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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7  Thank OzzieChris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PIR-management, Director of Sales at Plantation Island Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 22 May 2012

Bula OzzieChris! Thank you for your constructive feedback. We are striving to improve the resort experience for our guests, and your feedback will help us to achieve this goal. You have hit the nail on the head in terms of describing the resort - we are a 3 star resort in a 5 star location. Our accommodation and facilities are very basic and designed to cater for families and budget conscious travellers. We do recognise that some of our facilities and accommodation could do with a facelift, and we are working on this.

Your comments regarding the infant food are surprising as we do stock baby food in the supermarket, so I will check up on this. The baby food in Fiji is in general very limited, and you can usually only buy 2 or 3 varieties of jarred baby food in the whole country! Having raised two babies on the island, mostly I fed my kids food pureed by the kitchen. This included mashed bananas, papaya, mashed potatoes with vegies, clear chicken vegie soup, even dahl soup! We will be sure to add this information to our menus so that future families are aware that we can provide pureed baby food for infants. Kids 2yrs and under eat for free at our restaurants.

We do have a lot of restaurant choices on the island for meals. The main restaurant offers nightly themed buffet meals and a set menu, and is great for family dining. This restaurant is where the action is, i.e. Bula Time and live band. We have also recently opened the Black Coral Restaurant which is more quiet and great for couples or a quiet family meal. This restaurant is ala carte only. We also have Ananda's restaurant which is by the beach, and has a very casual, relaxed feel. This restaurant is great for affordable curries, steaks and seafood, and has happy hour priced local beers and spirits. There are also two offsite restaurants at Lomani and Musket Cove resorts, which are only a 5-10 minute walk from Plantation.

It is unfortunate that you didn't speak with customer care regarding the noise disturbance as we could have moved you quite easily to a more quiet area of the resort, and this would have made your holiday with us a lot more relaxing and enjoyable (we have very few rooms with main roads near them). The 6:30 tractor would have been for the kitchen rubbish run in the morning. I will ask management if they can replace the tractor run for this with a golf buggy cart which will be a lot more quiet. We are a large property and we need to use small tractors for carting rubbish, goods and garden waste. Most of the time these vehicles won't be in the main areas of the resort or around the rooms (as all of our services are at the back of the property). Mostly these are used during the day while our guests are out and about, however I will ask maintenance to be mindful of the frequency and times they are using tractors to enter the property so as not to disturb the guests.

We are glad you enjoyed your holiday with us, and hope that you return one day to see all the positive improvements that have been made.

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Reviewed 21 May 2012

This was our 5th time on a Pacific Island holiday "with our family". We like to try a new destination each time as life is all about new experiences. But unfortunately we chose Plantation Island Resort. After reading so many good reviews we felt confident that Plantation sounded pretty good.

The resort is extremely run down and we felt like just another number.” I get the impression that a lot of the positive reviews are being generated by families that have never stayed/experienced anywhere else before”.

“All we can say is that honestly there is a lot nicer accommodation available and these alternative destinations are making an effort to reinvest in their establishments”

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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5  Thank TEGILLY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PIR-management, Director of Sales at Plantation Island Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 22 May 2012

Bula TEGILLY! We're sorry that you didn't enjoy our resort. Perhaps we weren't the right fit for you?

We have been spending a lot of money updating the resort over the last 18 months. Already we have completed the following refurbishments:

- completely renovated 2 Bedroom Bure accommodation
- soft refurbishment of the Beachfront Bures and 1 Bedroom Garden Terraces
- complete renovation of the main restaurant
- retiling and refurbishment of the kids swimming pool (we are the only island resort in Fiji with a kids water slide!).
- added a new playground to Ananda's Restaurant
- Opened the new Black Coral Restaurant for ala carte dining.
- purchased new stand up paddle boards, kayaks, snorkelling gear and other resort equipment.

By July we will have completed the new boatshed/mini-mart/snack bar and soft refurbishments for our other grades of accommodation (i.e. Studio Garden Bures, Poolside Rooms, Hotel Rooms).

It is true that there are nicer accommodations available in Fiji, but these hotels will most likely be not in the most ideal locations or they will be a lot more expensive. We are essentially a 3 star resort in a 5 star location. What you are paying for is 7km of white sandy beaches that are free from crowds and hawkers (you will never have to get up at 6am to reserve a deck chair on our island or be hassled into buying cheap souvenirs!). You are paying for beautiful, clear, protected lagoons teeming with fish that is totally safe swimming - even for toddlers (there is no better way to introduce the kids to nemo!). You won't find a more affordable island resort with the same extensive facilities and activity options in Fiji. At the end of the day, the people who go home raving are the ones that "get" what we are about - unpretentious, affordable and totally relaxing. We're not perfect, but we do listen and we do strive to make every guest's experience with us the best that it can possibly be.

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Reviewed 18 May 2012

I would not receommend this resort. We stayed in the "newly refubished" one bedroom villas. What a joke.....no sign of any refurbishment! The Shower was flithy!
The food is well below average. We ate mostly at Lomani, which is much better.
Be very careful around the top pool....the wood planks have all rotted and some have not been replaced...a death trap. Weeds all around the pool..
The staff have no customer service, they could not careless.
The main bar needs a good clean as it stinks!
Sharing the beach with a huge noisy Tractor moving sand and truck whizzing down the beach to pick up the sand... think the resort should have been closed!
We will never go back. Not sure how it even gets a 3 star.....

Room Tip: A room as far away from Plantation as possible.
  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Jdehlsen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PIR-management, Director of Sales at Plantation Island Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 20 May 2012

Bula Jdehlsen! We are sorry that you did not enjoy your stay with us. The 1 Bedroom Garden Terrace accommodation that you stayed in was refurbished in November 2011, but it has not been completely renovated. This means that all of the fabrics/furnishings were replaced, but the bathrooms and structure were not worked on. The bathrooms did have a "deep cleaning" over Jan/Feb and all our housekeeping staff also underwent an extensive training update over a 4 week period in Feb/March. We are sorry if the accommodation did not meet your expectations and we have passed on your comments to our executive housekeeper to see where we can make improvements.

Since your stay we have opened another outlet called the Black Coral Restaurant which has received rave reviews. This restaurant is ideally suited to couples such as yourselves who prefer a more intimate ala carte dining option. Our main restaurant is still operating for American Buffet Breakfast, Buffet Lunch and themed Buffet dinners. In addition to these restaurants, there is also the option of Ananda's Restaurant, Lomani's Flame Tree Restaurant or even the outlets over on Musket Cove.

The damaged decking around the adults pool is a recent issue that we will be addressing shortly. We have recently completely refurbished the kids swimming pool, and in addition we have a third swimming pool near the tennis courts/putt putt that our guests can use. These pools are in addition to the really big swimming pool right in front of the property... the Pacific Ocean : )

We apologise for the noise caused by the beach rebuilding work. Due to the extreme weather conditions we experienced in early January and April, we lost an incredible amount of beach on the "200 block" side and it was quite critical that we rebuild this part of the beach. Although it was only a small section of the beach that was affected (20m or so), we are really sorry for the noise and disruption that this work may have caused.

We do care very much about customer service, which is why we have a full time customer care officer on the island. Babu is available to all guests on extension 1234, and sees that our guests are having the most enjoyable experience possible. We take all feedback we receive very seriously as it helps us to improve the resort for our guests.

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Reviewed 18 May 2012

Stayed 8 nights with one of our teens and two primary aged boys. Resort catered for everyone. The Kids Club is great for parents so they can have a break too. The Fijians are awesome with the children too.
We had lovely weather, and the water was great for snorkeling in as there are so many species of fish to see.
The food was lovely, the atmosphere relaxing... Especially enjoyed the breakfasts, miss those hot pancakes and maple syrup and the lovely fresh fruit. Eggs cooked while you wait..

  • Stayed: May 2012
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1  Thank ANG070
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 May 2012

We have just returned from 7 nights on platation island. We were travelling with our 6 and 9 year old boy for our first overseas holiday with kids.
Overall this was a wonderful holiday. We were lucky to have fantastic weather and this showed off plantations true natural beauty, the water really is as crystal clear and blue like the post cards.
We received great service, welcoming song, necklaces, easy check in. We were very happy with our beachfron bure which was spacious and comfortable and in a great location. The resort was doing ground works on the beach front to repair damage done by recent storms while we were there and customer service suggested they move us further along the beach front so our holiday would not be affected, this was greatly appreciated.
Our kids enjoyed the pontoon, kayaks and most of all snorkelling both out the front of the resort and out at sandbank and bringham reef which I would highly recommend.
The location of the restaurant is great situated right on the beach and our kids would run and play with the other kids as soon as dinner was finished. The evening kids club was basic but well used by our kids the younger one especially enjoyed it. Michael was great.
The food was average. We made a mistake with the buffet meal deal .. 3 buffets per day is too much and you cant transfer your vouchers on this deal. The kids did not really like the lunches and we would have liked some other options which are offered on the 1/2 and full board meal deals.
We got a babysitter and had dinner at Flame tree restaurant at Lomani resort for our 10 year wedding anniversary and this was fantastic. The food and service were both excellent and I would highly recommend it.
My husband surfed most days getting the 6am boat. This was very convenient however it would be improved with 2 boats so that a choice of reefs could be offered.
Some areas for improvement - kids club in the day was a gloomy place. The ladies here do not seem to be suited to this job as you barely get a bula out of them and they dont seem to interact with the kids at all. We were there out of school holidays but there didn't seem to be much on for the older children eg 9 and up. 1 day there was beach volleyball. This and similar activities would have been great on some more days.
Overall this resort suited our family . if you want to relax, snorkel, surf and are not too fussy about food and organised kids club activities in the day you will enjoy this tropical paradise.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank Megsapix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 May 2012

There was nothing "Soft" about the "Soft Refurbishment" that was mentioned on their site which and was to be completed by start of April but was not when we travelled at the start of May.
You would expect this to be maybe some painting or carpet changes, NO... it was a re-tilling of the kids pool and demolision and rebuild of the mini mart.

I am sure the resort was amazing 20 YEARS AGO as that is about how long we think the last 'refubishment' took place. Everything was outdated and was broken. Both pool tables were out of order, the games room was locked up, the 'adults pool' (which was being used as the kids pool while the "soft refurbishment" took place) had rotted decking and boards that were not secured well and flicked up in your face when you stepped on one end and there was building rubbish left everywhere aound the pool. The 3rd pool was disgustingly dirty to the point where the water was cloudy.

There was only a handful of staff who were happy to see us, the rest seemed to be obligated to help us and say "bula" - no feeling at all

For a country that prides itself on being on "fiji time" and being a relaxing place to visit, Plantation Island has sooooooo many processes in place that it made your head spin. You had to line up to present your meal voucher to get another voucher to go to collect your food, you couldn't go to the bar to get a drink, you had to order it and then wait for the waiters to bring them to you (once they found you that is !). To get a massage or get your hair braided, you couldn't just walk into the spa/salon to see when an appointment was available, you had to go to reception and get them to call the spa/salon and make an appointment, they would give you a receipt with your appt time on it, then you needed to go to the spa/salon and fill in another form for the actual treatment

From the moment we stepped off the boat the staff member who greeted us "hearded" us into an area and gave us the drill in a monotone that would put anyone to sleep, she had obviously said the speach hundereds of times and it showed. When asked a question to clarify something that was said, we got a roll of the eyes as if it was a hassle for her to repeat it.

There was only a couple of nights where the dinners were interesting - the stir fry night and the Indian night, other than that the meals were average and lacked variety

We never had enough towels - and house keeping was non-existant (we asked for more towels numerous times and they never arrived)

Best part of the resort was the Island Hopping Day trips - well worth it

Very dissapointing end to our holiday in Fiji - we will never go back to Plantation Island.
We also stayed on Coral Coast (at The Naviti Resort) which cost us the same amount and was all inclusive (including drinks!) and we had an amazing time there.

Room Tip: Garden Bure was run down
  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank Hobbsiet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PIR-management, Director of Sales at Plantation Island Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 21 May 2012

Bula Hobbsiet! We are sorry that you didn't enjoy your stay with us in May. Unfortunately the kids pool re-tiling was quite urgent for safety purposes, and so adequate notice was not given to the sales and marketing department to pass on to our travel agent partners. This kind of renovation is not the norm, especially during peak season, and we are very sorry if it disrupted your holiday. We did send out a notice for the boatshed/minimart/snack bar roof construction, and yours is the first complaint we have received regarding this project. We have temporarily relocated the mini-mart, boatshed and dive shop so there are no disruptions to services (snack bar menu is running out of the Black Coral Restaurant), and we are mindful that noisy construction work is done off site or during the day while everyone is out and about. We have completely surrounded the work site in coconut leaves so you wouldn't even know what was going on! This project is expected to be completed by the end of June. The boatshed is the only major construction project occurring at the moment.

We do endeavor to have all our equipment in good working condition. Last year we replaced most of our equipment (e.g. putt putt clubs, tennis racquets, kayaks, snorkelling gear). We even completely re-felted/refurbished the two pool tables! Unfortunately with so many kids visiting us, they like to put things in the coin slots which of course renders them out of action. The technician who fixes them has to come from Nadi, so no doubt it would have taken a few days to fix during your stay. The machines in the games room have all been damaged in the same way beyond repair which is why the room is locked. At the moment we are looking at turning the games room into a movie room or "hang out" room for teenagers, and if we put gaming equipment in there it will be the indestructible kind :)

The rotten pool decking is a new development, and may have arisen due to the unprecedented amount of rain we received from January to April. We are currently assessing the situation, and if the decking needs to be completely replaced, adequate notice will be given to our travel agent partners and through our facebook page. Our three swimming pools are cleaned twice daily, but I will pass on your feedback to maintenance regarding the cloudy water in the third swimming pool and I will ask our assistant managers to follow this up.

regarding procedures on the island, unfortunately we do have to have a few due to the size of the resort, but we do review these on a regular basis to try and improve our guests' experience. We are currently trying to do away with the voucher system through upgrading our hotel software. This should hopefully happen in the next few months. The salon doesn't have a point of sale machine, which is why payments need to be made through reception prior to services. I will ask management if there is any way we can rectify this by putting in a point of sale machine. The island briefing is considered by some to be passe, but we get complaints if we don't do it (definitely a case of you're damned if you do, damned if you don't!). I will ask reception if they can spruce up and condense the spiel so that it is more palatable for those who don't want the whole 9 yards, and maybe introduce a more in-depth resort briefing for guests who would like more information.

Regarding the meals, it's a shame you didn't try our other restaurant outlets at the resort!! We now have a total of 3 restaurants including our brand new Black Coral Restaurant. Guests also have the option of dining at Lomani's restaurant (without kids of course!) or Musket Cove's restaurant. Our island in fact has the most choices for food and dining options that any other island in the Mamanucas.

We're sorry that Plantation didn't meet your expectations but we are glad that you enjoyed your time in Fiji and the island hopping. Your feedback is appreciated, and hopefully you will make it back to our shores one day to see all of the improvements we have made.

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Additional Information about Plantation Island Resort

Address: Plantation Island | PO Box 9176, Fiji
Region: Fiji > Mamanuca Islands > Malolo Lailai Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Malolo Lailai Island
Price Range: £108 - £399 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Plantation Island Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 165
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled on the 553 acre island of Malolo Lailai, part of the Mamanuca Group of Islands, Plantation is surrounded by 23 acres of tropical gardens, coconut palms and white sandy beaches that front a beautiful sheltered lagoon. Plantation offers several accommodation options to suit most budgets, and is great value for families, students and fun loving couples. Most of the activities are complimentary including the 'Coconut Kids Club'. Come experience the friendly Fijian hospitality! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Plantation Island Hotel Malolo Lailai Island
Plantation Island Malolo Lailai
Island Plantation Resort
Plantation Island Resort Fiji/Malolo Lailai Island

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