This Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort review is about to take away any hesitation you may have about visiting Moorea. I really hope you don’t just go to Bora Bora, and include some time here too. There’s no comparison when it comes to snorkeling. Bora Bora, while beautiful, glamorous, gorgeous, insert any term of amazingness you’d like here, simply does not have the snorkeling that Moorea does.
I’m going to do a separate post on just the snorkeling, because it’s THAT GOOD (here). In fact, while in Bora Bora, we heard multiple people voice how unhappy they were that they saw no fish or coral under their overwater bungalow. They obviously didn’t do their research, because if they did, they’d know Bora Bora doesn’t have the reefs and coral that Moorea does, and oh my goodness does Moorea have them!
I loved Moorea. Like, I totally fell head over heels in love with this tiny island.
Moorea, home to the smallest, half outside, not air-conditioned, no security, just walk on the plane airport. Moorea, where the Polynesian culture is amazing, and the weather is unpredictable. Seriously, I cannot get over the weather here. It can change LIKE THAT. One minute, it’s gorgeous and sunny, and the next it’s cloudy and rainy. Then, two seconds later the sun’s back out, and it’s beautiful once again. We joked about it being where the author of the Hunger Games (Catching Fire) got her clock idea from. Because seriously, one part of the island is one way, and the other can be totally different. Then, it all of a sudden changes again. I’ve never seen so many different shades of blue, all depending on where the sun and/or clouds are. My pictures were taken over the course of three days, and you can see such a drastic difference in the color of the water, because it all depended on the sun/clouds. Also, a note for the ladies, don’t even attempt to do anything to your hair, because it will flatten out within five seconds.
The Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa isn’t your typical Hilton resort hotel. It’s tiny, and I mean it’s like crazy small.
It’s so open and airy. But the lobby, while beautiful, can become a bit cramped if more than three people are checking in at the same time. And this happens often, as there aren’t many ways to get here, so everyone kind of all comes at once.
But, you see this (below) right off the lobby, and you’re sort of like, whatever, it’s all good! I’ll get to my room eventually.
Luckily, we didn’t have to wait with the crowd to check in, thanks to our Hhonors status. A lady from the concierge greeted us, and took us right to her desk.
All hotels have standard check-in/out times, and this one is no different. Obviously we were very early. However, because of the limited transportation to/from the island, they really could help guests out by having rooms ready to coincide with flight/ferry times, or at least stick to the check out times. That way, those who are exhausted from traveling can get into a room.
I’d say our biggest issue was that we had requested a view of the beach, but the hotel had no record of this. It was kind of silly of them to say that, considering I had the proof right there in my email. It was just a request, which is never guaranteed, however, they should have at least made note of it, which they never did.
So after a rather long “short while,” we got to our desired room, but it was two hours after the designated check in time. They did give us an interim room meanwhile, and two free cocktails for the inconvenience. However, after a 6 hour flight, a layover, another 8 hour flight, yet another layover, and a ferry ride, all we wanted to do was to settle into our own room.
We ended up showering in our interim room, changing into our bathing suits, and relaxing by the beach/pool, which are literally right next to each other. And really, the staff on a whole is absolutely wonderful. We met so many great people here!
The pool is one of the nicest hotel pools I’ve ever been in. It’s SO clean and well kept! At one point, we heard another couple say, “even the water smells good!” I don’t disagree.
The beach here is SO PERFECT. The sand is so soft, and the water is STUNNING.
When it came time to head to our actual room, oh my gosh was it worth the wait! I mean, this was our view. From our bungalow’s patio.
Watching the sunset wasn’t too shabby either.
Our bungalow was actually much more private than you would think based on the pictures, and for being right on the beach.
Here’s a view of our bungalow from the beach.
The best part, aside from our fantastic beach view, was that we could also see the amazing mountains Moorea is famous for. Seriously, best. bungalow. ever.
Inside is large and so well appointed. I really couldn’t believe it cost less than an overwater bungalow, because I thought it was so much better. I mean, we even had our own pool! So my advice: save the overwater bungalow for Bora Bora, and stay beachfront here. It’s a hop to the ocean, a quick walk to the pool, and when we didn’t want to go to either, we had our very own pool right outside our bedroom.
I’ve heard people complain about the food, but I have to say, we loved it. Especially our peppercorn steak at Arii Vahine. It was fantastic, and the highlight meal for us at the Hilton Moorea! The best part about all the restaurants here is that they have such fabulous views. Or, you know, if you don’t want to actually go anywhere, you can always order pool or beachside.
Internet runs 1,000 xpf per day (about $10). But check your Hhonors status, because if you’re a certain level, it’s free (along with breakfast). One evening, the Internet wasn’t working. I wanted to call home and check in on the dogs, so I ended up calling from the room. From French Polynesia. With no idea how much it was going to cost.
It was a quick call (less than a minute), and I was pleasantly surprised by the hotel’s 400 xpf rate (about $4). Not too shabby! Of course, that doesn’t compare to the “free” Wifi calling via the Talkatone app that we’ve been using. Even when I ran out of the free minutes, it only cost .99 for 60 minutes (total!).
Next up, snorkeling in Moorea!