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“Heaven on a stick !”
Review of Aore Island Resort

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Aore Island Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Aore Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 7 August 2013

I have been to Aore Island Resort twice before for a day but this last time in July, I was thrilled to be able to stay for 12 days. It is private and secluded and is a wonderful, happy, relaxing, calm, gentle and rejuvenating place.

I had a bungalow right on the edge of the water and the view, set perfectly between palm trees and huge shady Napangora trees, took you over the Segong Channel towards the main island of Santo. The bungalows, set amidst beautiful tropical gardens, are very comfortable and have everything you need. Sitting on the balcony gazing at a perfect tropical scene is complemented by the gentle lap of the water creating an instant and dreamy calm.

Delicious meals, simple or serious, are available all day from the Nakamal Restaurant and the ‘all you can eat’ complimentary buffet breakfast I looked forward to everyday.

There is a wonderful coral reef just out from the water’s edge and I had the most wonderful time snorkelling and taking photos of my beloved ‘Nemo” and other brilliantly coloured tropical fish...all this and you are only waist deep in water.

Once collected from the airport, it is onto the little ferry that the Resort provides to bring you over the 10 minutes from Luganville (the capital of Santo) to Aore Island. As you get off the ferry, you look down and there is a mass of coral and straight away, it is such a thrill to see masses of brilliantly coloured tropical fish and this, just from the landing.

When you can pull yourself away from looking at the fish, there is Anne, the owner of the Resort, waiting to greet you and show you to your bungalow. Anne is simply amazing! Anything you want or ask for, seems to appear as if by magic and her staff are very friendly and so helpful. Somehow you all become family and the gentle fun and camaraderie that you experience at the resort, is really enjoyable and makes your stay very special indeed.

Aore Island Resort is the perfect place to just chill out and do as little as you wish (but it's easy to walk down and have a great massage at the Day Spa) but if you begin to feel an urge to explore this beautiful island, there is so much you can do either at the Resort itself or on Santo. Organised or bespoke tours, in the expert hands of Tim from Santo Heritage Tours, include visiting the astonishingly beautiful blue holes, which really must be seen to be believed, and the equally as beautiful tropical beaches and bays where you can snorkel to your heart’s delight or else get really serious and dive one of the best dives in the world, the ‘USS President Coolidge”.

Staying at Aore Island Resort under the dedicated and considerate care of Anne and her staff, is an experience you will never regret and once discovered, will always return. I know I will.

To Anne, Annie and all the wonderful staff at Aore Resort, thank you so much for making my holiday so marvellous in every way.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank thingsarabic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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254 - 260 of 347 reviews

Reviewed 3 June 2013

We only stayed 2 days as part of our 8 day trip, Overall it was a lovel place with a lovely welcome by lovely people. This was one of three resorts we stayed in.

What we loved.

The hospitality, the food, very flexible place, the bed was comfortable (thats top of the list for us in travel pretty much), the staff, the owner, the sunday bush tucker walk and our guide. We just crashed here and relaxed.

Things to assit you.

Remember to have a working phone that will work in Vanuatu. We didnt, needed the country code and there are no coin operated phones at the airport. We arrived a bit early on our flight to Longaville and could not find our pick up, unfortunately some other people who had no booking saw our driver and joined him. He thought they were us. Unfortunately if I had the working mobile I could have fixed the problem ASAP, but had to catch a taxi to a phone. Our taxi driver was the only person on the island who tried to rip us off, be firm but pleaseant with your request and all will be good. The manager when i contacted her fixed everything ASAP (which shows a good manager) and all went well. Just another learning experience. This isnt a complaint.


Bush tucker walk, this is through open country to thicker secondary jungle.The guide was good fun and try everything he gives you. Few WW11 bunkers and you pass by an old runway.

Snorkeling. We snorkled out front of the place and there is very little coral, but when you look and take your time there are interesting fish life around and it was pleasent to swim in.

PS the 5 dot rating system used for excelent, average etc, dosnt really apply here in vanuatu.

Room Tip: I think they are all pretty much the same, I dont think you need to be on the beach front if money i...
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  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Dirttdog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 April 2013

We (couple) stayed over a long weekend and had a lovely time. Ann and the staff at Aore Island Resort are fabulous and very friendly. The service was really good and the food was excellent.
The rooms are good quality, although fairly basic they do have everything that you would need including a small fridge. The front deck overlooking the harbour is a great place to watch the world slowly go by. We were the only ones on our side of the resort, the Manager putting those with children on the other side of the resort – we thought we were the only ones there for a while. There are only ceiling fans in the room, but we found that was enough to keep cool.
The breakfast is basic, but it is sufficient, with cereal, fresh local fruit and home-made pastries which my husband loved! There is an all day menu and kids menu, as well as a choice of 3 meals from the specials board at lunch and dinner. This changes at every meal and makes uses of the fantastic local produce in season. The Santo beef filet is usually available each meal and is absolutely fantastic. The local NiVanuatu chef did a fabulous job with his menu, cooking and presentation.
One thing to note is that the restaurant can get very warm as there are no fans, and on the weekends (usually Sunday) many residents come from the mainland (Santo) for lunch and a swim in the pool. However there are many other activities to keep you occupied and out of other peoples way. We went bike riding, kayaking and the snorkelling off our room was amazing! The coral – not so flash; The tropical fish – pretty cool!

  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank 66Travel-to-Learn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 April 2013

The owner Ann could not be more helpful and her manager Annie too. In fact all the staff smile and make you feel welcome. The rooms are pretty basic but then this is not a place you go to dress up. Just fans in the room no air conditioning. Sadly there are no fans in the dining area so when it is hot you feel seriously hot. The food is cooked to order and we had some delicious fresh lobster. There is an excellent swimming but there is a lack of loungers around. This is a place to go to snorkel and my husband who has dived all around the world said that it was awesome...the Americans left in the sea a submarine and all their trucks etc. 60 years ago. the dive company could not have been more helpful. There is no cover on some of the boats so you do need to take a hat. there is a great feeling of "Island Time" so a place to slow down. I am not sure what it would be like if the hotel was full it just might not be so relaxing. No sandy beaches it is all coral.

Room Tip: They are all the same
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  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank judy011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 February 2013

Aore is a true island paradise. We have had many visits to Santo and always choose to stay at Aore. Anne and the staff are exceptional. Friendly, happy, ploite and very well trained. The meals are fantastic and the chef is excellent. The Santo Beef is by far the best beef I have ever had. It melts in your mouth. I love wking up to the gentle lap of the waves on the shore , just a few meters for our bed. Super relaxing. We will certainly be back Jenny and John

Room Tip: Contact Aore Island direct for a great deal
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  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Jenny W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 January 2013

I spent 6 fantastic nights at Aore island Resort near the end of last year...November...

Firstly,I have a fond connection with the tropical islands, having grown up in PNG and spending time in Vanuatu,at the Aore Island Resort particulaly, brought back so many great memories of those times.

Secondly, from the moment I arrived at the wharf, I was made to feel welcome by all the staff. I was rapped with the setting and accommodation. There were so many nice little touches. Anne the manager greets all the visitors which I reckon is a lovely and she allows a great connection between you and the rest of the staff/locals.

Nothing is too much trouble and the local knowledge really helps in organising the best and safest tours of Santo,which could be pretty tricky on your own.

The grounds are immaculate,the island friendly and interesting and the location is heaven. I had a great bure close to the restaurant. The front yard of the bure is a ..perfect beach...!!, with great swimming and snorkelling,not to mention the soothing lapping of the waves throughout the night.

The food was great...check out the Lobster curry,and the atmosphere in the lounge room and eating area, instantly relaxing and always friendly.

One of the highlights of the stay was being included in a staff birthday party. The party was put on by the staff for the manager Anne ,which can only be taken as a testimony to the cohesiveness of the whole resort and the morale of the staff.

You can really feel part of this place if you're willing to and there is so much to do. They have all the activities available including a great pool but I'm not really one for hanging around pools when in paradise.

I'm staying in touch with the staff and have made connections/friendships I will keep up for sure in the future. Overall it was very affordable, I managed to get a good special at that time of the year.

I hope to get back to see the gang this year some time...

All the best to all my friends at Aore.

Regards

Terry Clarke

Room Tip: If you can get a room close to the restaurant...it's easy to stay part of the place that way. I...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled solo
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Thank Terry C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 January 2013

Aore Island is a short, free ferry ride, across from Santo Island. The photos on the resort's website certainly tell it like it is - the place is gorgeous! The rooms are all bungalows with great balconies overlooking the water. We stayed in a deluxe beach front bungalow and enjoyed the extra space and larger balcony. The beach at the resort is nice - great for people with kids. There is a small area of coral out front with an interesting mix of colourful fish that can be easily snorkelled from the shore.

The rooms are clean and well laid out with everything you could want including mini bar, ceiling fans, hair dryer and iron. There is no aircon but that doesn't matter because the rooms catch the breeze thanks to plenty of slat windows.

The resort also offers the opportunity to use their free kayaks and their bikes to tour the island. The free ferry runs 4 times a day so you are not isolated from any local tours or buying drinks and snacks from the local stores.

The resort has a nice open air restaurant and the service is always friendly. The food was okay. Resort management tried very hard to cater for special dietary needs (One in the party was a vegetation) however, the local chef had difficulty at times interpreting requirements. Due to the ferry schedule guests have to eat at the restaurant every night (except Fridays) or pay a surplus for an extra ferry if you want to go to the main island for dinner. Having said that, resort management did arrange a special transfer for us to the mainland at no extra charge, on our day of departure so we didn't have to spend too long in the rudimentary Santo airport. A nice touch!

We also stayed a few nights at Village de Santo on the main island (see our separate report on that hotel)

Room Tip: Pick the beach fron rooms
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank PJ-Scuba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Aore Island Resort

Address: Aore Road | Espiritu Santo, Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu
Region: Vanuatu > Espiritu Santo > Aore Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Aore Island
Price Range: £109 - £172 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Aore Island Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Aore Island Resort is a stunning Pacific Island retreat with an authentic and welcoming culture nestled in a unique natural paradise. Experience the raw luxury of our private boutique bungalows and indulge in an impeccably fresh beachfront dining experience overlooking the crystal clear waters of Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aore Island Hotel Espiritu Santo
Aore Resort Santo
Aore Hotel Santo

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