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“Third time back and this time was OUTSTANDING”

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Vacations Beach Fales
Ranked #13 of 15 Hotels in Savai'i
Auckland
Level Contributor
13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Third time back and this time was OUTSTANDING”
Reviewed 1 September 2010

This is our 3rd two week stay at Vacations, the first was in 2006 and was just so fantastic that we decided to travel back in 2008 with our family and get married. Our wedding put on by Vacations was amazing. However the overall standard had dropped a bit in 08. This visit in Aug 2010 we knew we wanted to stay at Manase but didn't book anything as we'd read mixed reviews about the various fale spots. First stop at Manase was Racis Beach Club to check out the current feedback on fales with Rene & Zita - the local bar tender is the best man for info - turned out Janes Fales had been getting complaints about their food, Tailua had no one staying and no cook either! Tanu wasn't for us as it's big, communal eating and more a party central for younger travellers and it's a long walk to the toilets from most fales - not good if you're unwell or it's raining torrentially... Also Tanu is very sheltered from the prevailing wind which makes it VERY hot with no breeze (had learned this from quite a few people during our previous 2 visits). We walked along to Vacations and WOW immediately realised it was back on form. We got a fantastic walk in rate of $65 tala each a night inclusive of breakfast and dinner (Sunday buffet umu cooked lunch is still complimentary for guests or $45 Tala for non guests). The food was outstanding, their new cooks Vailua and Joe are both fantastic, they have dropped the heavy Taro completely (we had struggled with this during the past 2 visits). The breakfasts were great, fresh paw paw with lime, local bananas accompanied each breakfast, we got pancakes, omlettes, perfectly poached eggs, scrambled eggs, bacon... was all delicious and all served with as much fresh baked bread/toast as you can eat plus tea/coffee. Dinners were homely but extremely tasty and more than substantial. The lunch menu had broadend since our last visit and the tuna sashimi was super fresh and delicious, although if you want to walk (20 mins) or taxi ($5 tala) then Le Legoto Resort at Fagamalo is better food and same prices - beautiful location too. The bathrooms were beautifully clean, our bedding and towels were changed every 2nd day, we had a coffee table in our fale, we were given an extension cord to use so the iPod was in a good location (The lack of a power outlet in most fale spots swung us towards Vacations again). The staff are amazing, friendly, efficient and a lot of fun. The bar prices are great, although we suggest taking your own spirits duty free and buying the mixers and cups of ice (big bottles of coke $5 tala & $1 tala for a tall glass of ice) as their spirits stock was rather slim, cheapest beer around Big bottles of Valima $7 tala. After travelling and looking around fales on Upolo and Savaii it made us realise that it's all the little special extras that you can't easily list but that make all the difference when they're missing - this is what makes Vacations so special. We thought it basic but neat on our first visit, now we realise what a special almost boutique spot this is. We especially liked the locked gate at night, with security on site all night, unimaginable in this day and age feeling safe leaving all your possessions in an open fale on the beach and knowing they were safe. We wouldn't stay anywhere else in Samoa.

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank NZKB2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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68 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
418 reviews
204 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 378 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 2010

This property has pleasant and accommodating staff. And the best deck on the beach for a drink. The receptionist will tell you the price is 90 talas per person for a fale, but in the next breath they offer a special for 70 per. The fales are fair, not that good, and they are very close to one another. Thus, if you have the misfortune of being next to talkers, drinkers, snorers or crying babies you will lament the night, regardless of the price. Breakfast and dinner are included. The breakfast was good, but the dinner left a lot to be desired. I stayed one night and then headed down the road for better and found Stevenson’s @ Manase, which was more expensive by 50 talas but definitely worth it. See the latest reviews on Stevenson's.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank fdoamerica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Willerzell
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 10 May 2010

In April 10 did we stay in Vacations for about 3 Weeks. It was the end of a 4 month travel. We traveled in New Zealand and wanted some weeks of relaxing in Samoa. We hadn't a idea where we want to stay, we just jumped into the first Hotel after the bus kicked us out in Manase. It was the Vacations. We booked for 2 nights only, but after 2 nights we extended our stay for the rest of our time in Samoa.
We have only good review for this Hotel. They spoiled us with great food, made us every favor we asked for and the staff was very friendly. We felt really welcome. The Fale right on the beach is beautiful and its a great feeling if you wake up and fall asleep with the sound of the sea.
We can't say anything bad about vacations. There are bad reviews about them. But let's be honest, it is a personal thing. Best way to find it out is to see it by yourself and make a own review.
We were very happy there and they made our last stay as perfect as possible.
Thank to all the staff for that:-)
Andrea and Ron

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank andi_kaelin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Auckland, New Zealand
1 review
Reviewed 19 April 2010

We stayed at Vacations for 10 or so days, intending on longer but with other guests coming and going staying only a few days, decided to spend last few days in Savaii at a better more relaxing resort, and it was worth it. We had the only self contained unit there - took about 5 days to get a can opener amongst other things, so self contained description bit of a long shot. That said, Vacations was a great place - great beach, good food, nice smiles from most of staff - from what we could see, probably the better one in Manase, so on a budget, best place - just a bit of advise in that Vacations is a weekend and Christmas retreat for Apia residents with a bit of spending money, so they come for a few days, drink a bit, then go, so keep in mind it gets a bit rowdy. Also, at Christmas time, you might just bump into the big Samoan with the agro look that might drink at the local Otahuhu bar that you would avoid, or the big Samoan mama that stood next to you at the Avondale KFC - we bumped into both sterotypes a number of times - entertaining - to a point. The other places in Manase appear to attract the Lonely Planet backpacker types, or the dumb Australians on a package car included 3 days in Savaii type person. And the bar at Vacations - dont bank on it being open past 8 - (spend your money at Racis bar 100m dwn beach, or buy your beer at the petrol station across road). You want a cheapish place to stay, good food included, balconey right on the beach - Vacations. The one big advise - pay cash ONLY, and pay as you go. We paid for the accom by credit card, and when we got back to NZ, checked the statement and they had tried to book us twice, and no, wasnt a mistake! Bank in NZ put a credit through, but could have done without that - And Lou (owner), get rid of Pili (manager) - couldnt manage his way out of a box - Chow

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank hoppyz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canberra
Level Contributor
36 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 December 2009

Beachfront fales are beachfront fales - no frills, pretty uncomfortable, but a great cultural insight and what you stay in if you want to step off your mattress and onto the beach. Fales along the Manase stretch are crowded - these ones are around 3m apart - luckily both our neighbouring ones were unoccupied. After a couple of nights we generally feel like moving on and finding a warm shower somewhere. And Samoan service is Samoan service - a bit hit and miss and can be infuriating if you come here with unrealistic expectations, but if you're lucky or if you are friendly towards your hosts, you'll be warmly welcomed and looked after. We were.

We hadn't read the awful reviews from some guests who stayed at Vacations 6 months ago because we just turned up and asked about a vacancy, so I'm pleased to say we received attentive service from local staff who chatted with us, served reasonable food and kept the place fairly clean (although the bathroom block was pretty nasty). The restaurant and bar area seemed much bigger and better than what's available at the other (cheaper) fale-style resorts in Manase. The beach is gorgeous with trees overhanging the sand for the kids to play in the shade (an unexpected bonus), although the water tended to have a fair bit of floaty leaves and natural debris on it.

  • Stayed October 2009, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Travelwith2kidsnow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NZ
1 review
Reviewed 24 July 2009

My husband and I stayed in a beachfront fale and couldn't have asked for a more perfect location in Samoa. We travelled around both Upolu and Savaii and feel that Manase is definitely the best spot in Samoa. The meals exceeded my expectations, and the Samoan feast put on for everyone at lunchtime on Sunday was a nice touch. The big difference between Vacations and alot of other fale type properties is that there are only 14/15 fales altogether, and therefore was quieter than some others. Leota the owner was always on hand to check that we were enjoying our stay. The thing we loved the most was the location amongst the palm trees and there you can wander along the beach for a drink at Raci's Beach Club bar, Janes Bar or even Stevensons. Would highly recommend for couples & singles of all ages looking for a more authentic Samoan experience.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank kandmNz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New Zealand
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 April 2009

This resort was welcoming had a great family feel and the most fantastic spot. The fales were clean and tidy and we stayed right on the beach. There was an outdoor shower outside our fale and the facitlities and food were great.
I would definately recommend a stay here and commend the hosts on a fantastic resort and a great holiday.

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank acbNZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Vacations Beach Fales

Property: Vacations Beach Fales
Address: Manase Street | Manase, Savai'i, Samoa
Region: Samoa > Savai'i
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Savai'i
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Talofa Lava and Welcome to Vacations Beach Fales in Manase Savaii. We're more than happy to greet you, assist you with kindness if need assistance and definitely make your stay feel at home. About Ratings it is ST90pp thus includes Breakfast and Dinner. For Self contain at ST400 per day per unit thus includes Breakfast and Dinner, Beach Front Cottage with En-suite Bathroom at ST250 per day per unit with an extra at ST50 includes Breakfast and Dinner. We make sure that you enjoy staying with us and all your needs are accomplished. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Vacations Beach Fales Hotel Savai`i
Vacations Beach Fales Savai i
Vacations Beach Fales Samoa

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