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“Snobby staff”

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Aitutaki Lagoon Resort & Spa
Ranked #6 of 10 Hotels in Aitutaki
Reviewed 18 July 2014

We didn't stay here mainly due to checking out tripadvisor before choosing our accommodation.
But as two couples we know loved their stay here we were keen to eat at their restaurant and check it out (in the hope that we might come back to Aitutaki one day).
We took their boat to the island and entered the reception area as we were told we had to do.
The staff who greeted us however were rude and snobby. We asked politely to see the menu for the restaurant and her exact words were "you would need to be escorted to the restaurant and as it's only to look at the menu I'm not going to waste my time doing that". Even if that is that case (although there were 4 staff there and none seemed to be doing anything) she could have been less rude. I have always found Cook Islanders to be some of the most friendly people I have met so was quite shocked.
I had also read that the beach was beautiful and had FOMO, but we saw the resorts beach later in our trip and had nothing to worry about as it was no better than the rest of the island.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Service
2  Thank Tessa A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 15 July 2014

The Aitutaki Lagoon Resort and Spa absolutely provides the best view of the gorgeous lagoon of Aitutaki. Imagine a vista of a multitude of blues in the water and the sky with a huge white, sandy beach and palm trees and hammocks swaying in the gentle breeze. The place is serene and peaceful with few other tourists cluttering your view. Our Beachfront Bungalow afforded this gorgeous view through huge picture windows on the front of the bungalow with a large deck. Everything was clean and in working order. The outdoor shower was delightful!
However,I would suggest they upgrade the bed sheets to match the price of the room. The breakfast was included and was adequate. More variety in the breakfasts would have made the breakfasts more interesting. The coconut water in a coconut was a hit. Dinners at the resort were average, with a stunning view. The little ferry that took us over to the main island from Akitua was always readily available and kind of an unique experience. My husband and I both had massages on the beach, which were excellent. The Aitutaki Lagoon Resort and Spa are recommended for a very special occasion such as a honeymoon. Its spectacular location is one you will never forget.

Room Tip: Beachfront Bungalow. Don`t bother with the overwater ones
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank WpgPrincess
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 July 2014

We spent 2 nights (from 6/05 to 8/05/14) of our honeymoon in this breathtaking spot in Aitutaki.
Our room was a beachfront bungalow: modern and spacious room with fine furniture in polynesian style, outdoor shower at the back where you can enjoy the view of the blue sky and palm leaves while you are having your relaxation time. Stunning room just 8 steps from the water edge of this beautiful lagoon. Just the fridge was really noisy during the night.
A continental breakfast was included in our booking and there was everything you could have asked for: delicious sweets, bread, fresh tropical fruit, hot drinks etc... And of course food presentation was impeccable.
There's really nice and clean swimming pool near the restaurant, but we've never considered the idea of give it a go... With that kind of sea, why should we stay in the swimming pool?
Lots of activities are available in the resort and we enjoyed kayaking, paddling around the motu.
At sunset there's a happy hour at the beach restaurant, with discounted cocktails and if you are hungry you can stay and have dinner in front of the sea and just enjoy the view !
This is certainly a place where we want to return and of course we suggest it to everyone who is thinking about visiting the cook islands.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
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3  Thank UnAustralianno L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 July 2014

My wife and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary on the island and we had the most relaxing and enjoyable holiday. I had arranged a candlelit dinner on the beach on our arrival and the staff kept the secret right up until we went for dinner and we both absolutely enjoyed our meals and the location was picture perfect. We stayed in a deluxe beach bungalow which was a very good size and well maintained. the staff were very pleasant and helpful and able to satisfy any queries or bookings that we made. breakfast was average and found the service on some days was fairly lackadaisical. Overall though we had one of the best holidays in years and would certainly go back again as the location was awesome.

Room Tip: lagoon side was the best location.
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Michael J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 July 2014

My husband and I spent 7 nights here on our honeymoon and we had an amazing time! The location of the Resort is fantastic. The fact that it's on its own island and has easy access to the Lagoon made our trip feel like a true escape. We stayed in a beachfront bungalow which was spacious and clean, and had a picture perfect view of the lagoon. There were also a number of times where we felt like we had the whole beach to ourselves. The equipment available from the activities hut was fantastic.

The staff were generally friendly (some were friendlier than others) although it would have been helpful if the front of house staff had explained about the resort facilities on arrival (like the bikes available to borrow, where the gym was etc). We enjoyed the management cocktails and it was really nice that staff from all of the departments introduced themselves. The daily newsletter was also really cute.

The resort has two restaurants; however the food was fairly average and we had far better meals at Samades and Taumanu.

Overall, we really enjoyed our stay here and would stay here again in a heartbeat.

Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank MandyCford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 June 2014

For a romantic getaway this hotel is THE pick on Aitutaki due to it's location. The island it is built on provides it with the most picuresque location of all the high end hotels in the island.

Having visited the other hotels this is definitely the one I would recommend. Rooms are very comfortable with great views.

The other high end hotels may have better service and food but you won't match the location of this one. This and the beach in front of Samades (opposite this hotel) have the only real swimming beaches on the island. You will see fish if you go swimming off the hotel but it isn't on a reef so better snorkelling is found by taking tour or off the other hotels.

Breakfast is particularly average here. Visit the other hotels for dinners and lunches.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank Becstar_traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 June 2014

The Aitutaki Lagoon Resort & Spa has a great location and beautiful accommodations. The views are beautiful and it is possible to catch a great sunrise out on the side of the island with the overwater bungalows. (I don't believe the view of the sunrise from the overwater bungalows themselves would be as good as if you walked the scenic trail out to the NE point of the island, or if you even get a view of the sunrise from the overwater bungalows as they sweep away from where the sun rises.) The rooms themselves are very nice and the décor has a distinctively island feel - like Hawaii in the 60's. Everything is kept clean and well maintained by a friendly and hard working staff, and they are the main reason this resort is getting a 3-star rating rather than a 2-star rating. The majority of the issues we had seemed like issues that should not have even existed at a resort of the level that this one is trying to be, either due to poor planning or policies. Overall, we wish we had stayed somewhere else. Maybe the Pacific Resort, Samade, or Tamanu.

Pros
- The majority of the staff is friendly and hardworking. The housekeeping and ground maintenance staff in particular were friendly and welcoming.
- The rooms themselves are large and clean. They have upscale décor and lovely views. Each room has a mini refrigerator, which is great for chilling your bottled water or other drinks.
- The resort has snorkel gear, kayaks and paddle boards available for your use. There are some interesting spots to observe fish in the channel between the resort island the main island.

Cons
- The beach bungalows only have an outdoor shower. This is fine if you only want to take a shower when the sun is out and it is not windy. However a nighttime shower is a bit cool and the wind makes for a freezing experience when it blows the stream of water off of you. If there were some way to block the wind out, the experience would be improved. Note that the shower is huge and to reach the little shelf for soap/shampoo/conditioner, you need to leave the water. Again, if at night, this will probably be a bit cold. The option of a fully enclosed indoor shower in the room would be worth its weight in gold. I don't know if any of the other room categories have an indoor shower, but I would hope that the overwater bungalows do since they are on the windy side of the island and that would be an absolutely miserable shower to take.
- The resort seemed to nickel and dime you. They don't tell you up front that local calls that you make or receive from the room phone cost $0.50 NZD each. We found this out when reviewing our bill. Thank goodness we didn't have a need to make or receive many calls. It seemed like there was a price associated with most things - there was a fee for many of the daily activities offered by the Activities Staff. The daily shuttle into town was $12.50 per person and you only got about an hour or so in town. Not enough time to do much if you plan to eat in town as they are definitely on island time.
- Their Wi-Fi data plan policy is poor. You MUST logout of their Wi-Fi service to stop using data. Just turning off your Wi-Fi device or access won't work. Your data will still be used even though there is no way that you are using it. The manager told us that she couldn't issue us a full credit for the large data plan that we had purchased even though we were able to show that we had only used a tiny percent of the data (5 Mb of a 200 Mb plan for $25 NZD). Instead she gave us a replacement plan of 50 Mb that would normally cost $15 NZD after repeatedly telling us that the data had been used. The 50 and 200 Mb plans are the only ones offered. What would have happened if we had only purchased the 50 Mb plan to start with?
- Yes, the rooms have A/C. No, the A/C cannot keep the room cool during the heat of the winter days. The only area of the room that was consistently cool was right under the A/C unit. The rest of the room - bed, bathroom, table, closet - was not cool. How is it possible to be sweating in an air conditioned room? (I'm the type most comfortable in about 78 to 80 deg F, so this was a big surprise for me.)
- The resort still uses old fashioned metal keys. And you only get one per room that has a very large key ring with a large wooden tag/figure that made it unwieldy to carry around. Our key didn't work very well and it took a lot of jiggering each time we wanted to lock or unlock our room. It felt like we were breaking into and out of our room each time we used the key!
- The rooms (at least the beach bungalows) do not have a microwave. So you cannot bring leftovers back to the room unless you don't mind eating them cold. Seems like they were forcing you to buy new food for each meal.
- There were tiny bugs all over the room. They were smaller than ants, but we also had ants in the room...Not sure if there is anything that could be done about them, but it wasn't a great feeling knowing that they were crawling on your bed.
- There are a lot of lights in the room, but none over the table. A minor inconvenience, but I would have liked to be able to see what I was writing.
- They admit that they are still in the process of upgrading their computer system, but why couldn't they have a simple data sheet printed out and in each room with general information. Like how you dial an outside line, what the restaurant hours are, what the ferry hours are - by the way, there is a $100 NZD per person fee if you need the ferry outside of normal operating hours, etc. They also didn't seem to know what was included as a part of their customer's packages. Every time we asked about something that was included they had to go check with someone else. The front desk and management in general didn't seem to be very service oriented or welcoming. It was more like they feared you would ask a question that they didn't have an answer to.
- The restaurant (Bounty) was expensive and inconsistent. Most of the food was good, but the quality and even the same item seemed to vary depending on the day. They have candles that are used to keep the mosquitos at bay, but often they were not lit.

Room Tip: Bungalows 12 and 14 seemed like the best location, but a bit far from the ferry and Bounty (breakfas...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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2  Thank Puds312
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Aitutaki Lagoon Resort & Spa

Address: Akitua Private Island | Motu Akitua, Cook Islands
Phone Number:
Region: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Aitutaki
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Luxury Hotel in Aitutaki
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Aitutaki
Price Range: £274 - £399 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Aitutaki Lagoon Resort & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 36
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The only private island, adults only resort in the Cook Islands. It is the only Cook Islands resort to offer that invention of incurable romantics - the Overwater Bungalow. And it is the only resort on Aitutaki with a truly Polynesian flavour, so you can truly savour what the South Pacific is famous for. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aitutaki Lagoon Hotel Aitutaki
Aitutaki Lagoon Resort And Spa
Aitutaki Lagoon Resort & Spa South Pacific - Cook Islands
Lagoon Resort Aitutaki

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