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“Excellent hotel, very friendly and welcoming staff!”

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Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort
Ranked #12 of 17 Hotels in Bora Bora
Reviewed 30 January 2014

This trip was a birthday present for my 15 year old daughter, and I stayed registered under my full name which is Maria L M Mclean. This hotel is simply beautiful!!!! This is where they filmed the movie "Hurricane"... I feel lucky to have stayed at this hotel and even luckyer to stay in a overwater bungalow. That was a very different and beautiful experience. The bungalow is large, the bathroom is excellent and the room has a part of the floor made out of glass, so you can see the fish swimming under your feet! I´d like to point out the friendliness of the staff. Extremely nice and smiling people, doing everything to see you happy 24 hours a day. The restaurrant is nice, the typical dinner show I truly recommend and the breakfast is delicious. The jewelry store has great pearl offers, better than the local shops, and the ladies who work there are very nice. The only one bad comment that I have about this hotel is in reference of the prices. Everything is Bora Bora is expensive, however, I found the restaurant in the hotel quite expensive! Other than that this is a real paradise!!!!

Room Tip: I recommend a overwater bungalow
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  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
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3  Thank Maria Luiza M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 21 February 2014

Thank you for sharing your experience at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach, your comment are very useful for us and we carefully follow-up on any opportunity to increase our quality which is our comitment for all our guest.
It was great to host you!

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Reviewed 14 January 2014

This is in a beautiful place. Hotel is good, we had a room over the water which was very lovely. The beach is nice, kayaks and snorkels for free to rent. The romantic dinner on the private island was interesting. The biggest drawback for us was the food. Not a great standard and we had human hair in our meals (plural). Plus the service even by island standard was very slow. Breakfast was good, lots of choice, but dinner was disappointing. Could easily be a 5 star but the restaurant lets them down.

Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
4  Thank Kathy L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 14 February 2014

Thank you for your comment which are so important for us. thank you for your great recommendation for our breakfast, our rooms and all our resort facilities, everithing is back to the level of what you must expect fom a brand like Sofitel!

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Reviewed 17 December 2013

I recently visited the Sofitel in Bora Bora and it was my third visit to the hotel in as many years. What strikes me most about this property is the attentive and friendly staff, who always go out of their way to greet you ("Io Orana") with a smile. From the front desk staff to the attendants in the dining room and the activities directors, everyone is warm and welcoming and genuinely seems to enjoy their jobs. On my recent visit a few of the hotel's employees actually remembered me from previous visits and greeted me with hugs and recollections of a previous stay. This personal touch is really unique and not taken for granted.

The breakfast buffet here is a highlight; the fresh-baked croissants and array of local fruits is delicious, and you can have an omelet or pancakes/crepes made to order.

There are garden bungalows as well as the famous 'over the water' bungalows; no matter what your budget neither of the rooms or their locations disappoint.

One particularly nice amenity is the option to shower and change in an unoccupied room if you need to check out of your hotel room in the morning but don't have a flight until that night. The hotel will provide a fresh room to shower and prepare for your journey after a day at the beach (I assume as long as a room is available), allowing you a hassle-free day at the beach knowing you will have a place to rinse off and dress for your flight later. This is a very nice perk and a definite reason to recommend this hotel.

Room Tip: Any room in the #60's will be 'over the water' and removed from the main hotel grounds...
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with friends
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3  Thank akostich_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 9 January 2014

Thank you for your great comment regarding our "Ambassadors" always willing to provide a "cousu main" service to all our guest.
Our Chef Regis Bruillon thank you for ypur comment regarding your culinary experience and i really apreciate your fidelity to our brand and to Sofitel Bora Bora Marara beach in particular
I wih you a happy new year and hope to have the chance to welcome you back soon

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Reviewed 7 December 2013

Bungalows are located in a beautiful garden. Sea is just great and tourists are offered many activities - dance show, pearl presentation, ecotours including swimming in coral garden and with sharks. The hotel has a nice ritual to both welcome you and say good bye - be pleasantly surprised.

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank UGM_BRNO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

thank you for your comment regarding your experience at Sofitel Bora Bora!

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Reviewed 7 December 2013

First, let me start by saying that I am super picky and snobby about hotels, cleanliness and service. Did you notice the rating I gave?!!

We stayed at the Sofitel from Nov. 21 - 24, 2013 in an overwater bungalow at the main hotel, and it was amazing! Our bungalow was probably the least desirable of all the overwaters, staring at the restaurant and pool, rather than having a great ocean view, but oh wow! Everything about the room was awesome, and the view was fine.
(We didn't see anything run down about the place, as mentioned by others on TripAdvisor. The wood could use re-staining, but it looks lovely in its naturally weathered state - not rotted or shabby)
Truly my only disappointment at all about the resort was the sad absence of healthy coral due to the storm that wiped it out in 2009. It meant only a few fish were hanging out under our room, but there were plenty of urchins to keep us entertained! Sofitel is working to recreate what was there before, a coral garden, by providing artificial supports for coral to grow on, and we did see a couple of unique fish in that area.

As for the hotel - the greeting was warm and welcoming. The entire facility is BEAUTIFUL. We arrived 2 hours before check-in, yet our room was ready. Constanze gave us a great orientation and helped us get settled into our room. There were flowers on the bed and a bottle of champagne chilling for us when we walked in (30th anniversary package, I assume!).
At about 5:00 every day we had a knock at the door and a delightful staff member handed us bottles of water and tasty macaroons! All of the staff were friendly and helpful.

We had fun at the manager's cocktail reception on Thurs. PM, that included a pearl fashion show. We ate at the bar that night because we didn't have a big enough appetite for the buffet! Good food, interesting options, decent prices and fun drinks at the bar. On her episode filmed at the hotel, Giada DeLaurentis said we had to try "the Hurricane," a drink which her grandpa had created when he created the resort, so that was my first cocktail; it was rather boring, but fine.

Breakfast buffets were nice every day, with a good selection of breads, eggs, fruit etc., and the staff bent over backward to please.

On Saturday we decided, at the very last minute, that we wanted to book a fancy private dinner for our anniversary. Though it was ridiculously short timing, Katherine (one of the concierge staff) called over to the private island and made it happen for us! Francois (management staff on the private island) arranged the most incredible evening. We were completely pampered in a very private setting, though right there on their main beach! Because it was the Tahitian Oven buffet at the main restaurant of our resort, most of the private island customers were there enjoying the traditional Polynesian dinner and show.
Francois and the chef prepared the best meal, literally, of our lives!
The experience was beyond belief.
This is getting lengthy but I have to share more details so I'll do it at the end of the review if you are interested!

Sunday was our sad day to check out, at 11:00 AM. But our flight didn't leave until 6 PM so we arranged a day on the beach at the private island to do what we heard was the best snorkeling in Bora Bora (so true!). What we were surprised to find out was that the hotel plans for those of us who have nowhere to go! They provided us with a garden bungalow room at the end of the day where we could shower and change, prior to getting on the "shuttle" boat to travel to the airport! Who does that?!! It was awesome to be able to snorkel, lunch and laze on the beach, then shower and change to go to the airport!

The fabulous attitude of customer service at Sofitel was more than I ever expected, and better than I have ever experienced anywhere. I will travel with Sofitel wherever I can, at this point!
If we get the opportunity to return we will definitely try the private island due to it's incredible location in the region. The main resort is awesome and the private island views are breath-taking. It's just a different experience!

More about the private dinner: We were transported to the private island by boat, and greeted with cool, wet towels upon arrival. Francois introduced himself and gave us a brief orientation of the public area as we climbed to the top of the hill for a champagne sunset, complete with canapes, ice cold bubbly and cool towels (needed after the slight hike!). We were left "alone" to enjoy our treats and soak in the evening views, but Francois was ever watchful to keep our glasses filled and to offer to take photos of us.
Once the sun was gone he lit a torch and walked us down the hill to the beach. The set-up was charming and drinks were offered (for a fee). We were brought a special appetizer from the chef for our anniversary (yummy crab-cake balls), then the regular appetizer that comes with the dinner (the best scallops ever!). Next Francois asked if we would like to go over to the daybed that was on the beach to recline and relax a bit - talk about pampered!
What followed was the most delicious use of flowers I have ever experienced...
as a palate cleanser we were given tiare sorbet, made from the incredible smelling flowers used all over the resort. It was DELICIOUS!
Then we were served our very tasty lobster dinner, which was grilled to perfection and fun to dis-assemble (toes in the sand and fingers covered in lobster - what a life!), along with potatoes and veggies.
Though we were filled to the brim after the 4 courses, it was time for dessert, a delicious 3 part marshmallowy, fruity experience in itself. We absolutely devoured it! And when that was gone Francois brought out another dessert, made specially by the chef for our anniversary! We took that one to go, but I have to tell you the the layers of chocolate cake, chocolate mousse and mango custard were to die for in the morning!
The evening ended with us reclining on the daybed again, listening to the water and watching as one couple at a time returned from the main resort by boat. We finally paid the bill and said goodbye to Francois, who was without a doubt the best waiter/butler/pamperer we have ever encountered! We then watched the baby reef sharks swim in the lights of the dock while we waited for our water taxi back to our hotel.
The 4 hour experience is on their specialties list at a standard rate of xpf 500,000 plus drinks and tip, but the meal itself would probably have been 300,000, then add in the champagne sunset (I think you can book that alone for xpf 165,000 through the concierge) and all of the little touches and extras. It was extravagant but really worth it for the VERY fine dining and pampering. Yes, pricey, but not exorbitant for such an "excursion!" Sofitel really knows how to make their guests feel special.

Room Tip: Travel in November was awesome and the prices are excellent. Garden rooms are ripe with mosquitoes!
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank SoCaliNative
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

your WOW is our best compliment. Thank you for sharing!
enjoying and experiencing the two Sofitel properties for what they really provide in Bora Bora is the best way to enjoy your stay at Sofitel.

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Reviewed 4 December 2013

To start on a positive note:
Unlike other reviewers we did enjoy the hotel' s decor. The room was very nice as well.
The water around the hotel may not look always look clean but it pretty much depends on the weather. No big deal, there are many other places to explore. It' s a beautiful island with many hidden gems that you should explore!
What was however absolutely unacceptable and we had zero tolerance for is the fact that we got ripped off by the hotel bar staff. This is already an expensive place to stay, a small bottle of water costs about $7. At one occasion the staff would tipple our consumption of bottled water at another occasion I got overcharged on a piece of a mini-dessert (one bite dessert) from a buffet so I ended up paying the same amount of money I would pay for a regular tiramisu dessert. They probably had been doing this from the beginning of our stay but we did not pay much attention to our check. We did behave like typical tourists!
Front desk staff - Dimitry was an example of a guy who got trapped in a business where you need to serve people. Never saw him in a good mood, he would talk back to me, or would give me an incorrect information so I ended up paying for their wi-fi , which was unstable in order to research for information on my own.
I ended up talking to their PR manager, a Frenchman, who did not seem to care at all. He was sort of mentally somewhere else when I was trying to resolve this issue in a friendly manner. Nevertheless, he promised to look at the billing issue, which he did not honor. We left this resort being ripped off. What' s even more outrageous is that we would pay very decent tips to the restaurant/hotel bar staff. 20+% (you are not really expected to tip in French Polynesia but we internationally tip waiters that way to appreciate their hard work) and that may have been the mistake we made.
Anyway, I filled out and submitted a feedback form for their VP of Marketing and described my difficulties. To this day, nobody has ever contacted me.
Bora Bora is a gorgeous place to visit. We loved it but the service related difficulties made our memories sort of bitter-sweet.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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15  Thank Barbara123445782
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

i read attentively your comment. Just to clarify a bottle of Evian is 7.37 Euros, royal water is 5.02 Euros and local small royal water is 2.59 Euros which are the average price of mineral water (local and international).
I really apologize if our PR manager did not solve your request properly , that is the reason why your comment are really important for us and be ensured that proper action follows up on every single point you mentionned in your comment
Thank you for your stay with us last March.

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Reviewed 30 November 2013

We didn't know what to expect, but this exceeded all of our expectations. This is a relatively small and intimate resort with a very relaxed ambience. The room (semi-overwater) was beautiful. Very clean and spacious, with a large, partially shaded terrace over the water. The bathroom was large with a great shower, the bed was exceptionally comfortable and plenty of wardrobe space. From our terrace, we could swim in the ocean, that was sparkling clean and warm. The food in the restaurant was excellent, the bar very welcoming (we are in our early 50's) and plenty of seating. There was a show of Polynesian dancing one night - we felt so special, dining under the stars with an amazing show in front of us. We did a day trip with snorkelling and swimming, which was great also. Anita at the Activities Desk was very helpful. On our last day, we had a late flight, so checked out of our room at 11. However they offered us full use of all the resort facilities and then a room to shower and change before we left. My only complaint was the lack of complementary wifi - with the prices that we are paying, wifi and the shuttles from the airport and into town should be complementary.

Room Tip: Semi-overwater bungalows are very private and just as good as fully overwater
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank MB_MM_1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Didier L, Directeur général at Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

Thank you for your sharing your great experience at Sofitel Bora Bora. your comment are important for us and it was great to host you in our property at Bora Bora.

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Additional Information about Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort

Address: BP 6, Nunue, 98730, French Polynesia
Phone Number:
Region: French Polynesia > Society Islands > Bora Bora
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites
Hotel Style:
#7 Spa Hotel in Bora Bora
#9 Luxury Hotel in Bora Bora
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Bora Bora
Price Range: £227 - £368 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 55
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach Resort is located on the island of Bora Bora in the heart of the exceptional Matira Bay. The island of Bora Bora is encircled by a protective necklace of coral. Breathtaking lush mountains provide a dramatic backdrop for the luminous turquoise, lapis and aquamarine of the sheltered lagoon. There is something truly unique about Bora Bora, with its sugary sands, rugged mountains, vivid blues, lush greens and soothing lagoon waters that make it the most romantic destination in the world. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sofitel Bora Bora Marara Beach And Private Island Hotel Bora Bora
Sofitel Bora Motu Private Island
Accor Bora Motu Private Island
Bora Bora Sofitel
Sofitel Motu Bora Bora

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