Hilton Bora Bora Nui Resort & Spa

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  1. MyTravels
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    MyTravels Silver Member

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    As we have a Hilton Moorea tread, we might as well start a Hilton Bora Bora Nui tread off with a review (& attached resort map)

    Transit
    * The Hilton has a direct water shuttle from the airport to the resort for 7,500 XPF/CFP per person.
    or
    * You can take the Air Tahiti water ferry to the main city (Vaitape) - this is shuttle is included in your airfare - you're dropped off at the main harbor. From there you walk around to the Robert Wan Pearls and behind the store is a long dock where you can go and then you can catch the Hilton water shuttle - which is included in your room rate - to the Hilton. The Hilton shuttle between the hotel and airport is a different boat than the shuttle between hotel and Vaitape.

    Checkin
    Bora Bora Nui also provides a necklace of palm and flowers and juice upon arrival. Staff is verypolite and courteous and offer a golf-cart transit for you and your bags to your bungalow

    (over the water) Bungalows
    *Size - Bungalows are excessively large for one couple. There are pocket doors that to split the bungalow in two and we hardly were ever on the other side of the bungalow. If you have the proper bedding the villa can easily accommodate 4+
    *Glass floor - There are two smaller glass areas by each end of the couch/second bed. As these are higher up and not in your normal line of sight we looked through them less and never saw any fish below when we did.
    *Bathroom - The bathroom is like the letter "t" when you enter through the pocket doors a sink is on each side, wood counter with sunken sink bowls and two drawers on each counter (and a hot water pot). Straight ahead is a bathtub for two (it takes a while to fill), to the right is a spacious shower and to the left is a commode & bidet.
    *Sliding Glass Door - The 3-pane sliding glass door out to the outside deck allows two of the panes to retract to create a look and feel that the deck is just part of your living area. The large bungalows have two sets of sliding glass doors.
    *Windows/curtains - Wood-slat "windows" which were nice for letting light and a breeze in and had screens to keep bugs out, although we saw few insects. The curtains on the double-sliding glass doors didn't conceal light near the handles and lets light pour into the room in the mornings.
    *Bedroom partition - The earlier mentioned packet doors partition the bedroom from the rest of the villa (and there were two pocket bathroom doors, one for the bedroom, one for the main room).
    *Bed - A regular four post king bed with the see-through curtains.
    Bungalow categories (see attached map)
    16 Lagoon View Suites
    9 Garden Villas
    11 Hillside Villas
    38 Overwater villas
    44 Deluxe Overwater Villas
    2 Royal Overwater Villas
    2 Presidential Overwater Villas​

    (over the water) Deck
    High deck/porch with two two glass floors (slippery when wet) and then stairs down to a lower deck area with a ladder. The latter into the ocean ladder looks more like a typical swimming-pool ladder, although has swivels so you can swivel the ladder out of the water and on to the deck (which might help with keeping the ladder clean of moss, etc, but it seems this function is never used).

    Internet
    Wired only, slow and intermittent and sometimes non-existence internet connections. (you are out in the pacific after all)

    Resort Grounds
    The resort is quite larger and spread out resort, with 122 bungalows. This leads to some long walks or calls for golf-cart transit. When it rains there are some serious flooding issues on the paths as it's not uncommon that over an inch of standing water following a rainfall.

    Resort Pools
    Two infinity-type pools, however it BOB's pools always seemed to have had debris sunk in the pool. Pools are kept at natural temperatures (none are heated, or really need to be, outside of the hot-tub)

    Resort Water & activities
    Kayaks and snorkeling equipment that's included in your room rate and both have some good coral to swim around and see fish. The coral and fish are nothing like St John or Bonaire, but nice to have right off your deck. As Nui is a large resort you if you like covering a lot of ground then there's lost of ground to cover, although the water can be rough at times.

    Staff
    Staff says iorana ("hello" in Tahitian) any time they see any guest - kind of nice, but kind of get the feeling it's forced. I can't say I've called for many golf-cart taxi's at hotels, but Nui typically delivered. At the Westin St John it usually takes two phone calls to have a golf-cart show up 50% of the time. In Nui, 100% of the time they showed up at our villa, and when requesting one from the front desk it was around 80% of the time you didn't need to follow up. Some of the BOB staff were good at stopping and offering a ride, although others, with empty carts, whizzed by.

    Breakfast
    The breakfast area is a restaurant with a sand floor (not a concrete floor with sand on it, but an actual sand floor). Both "hot" and "cold" buffets are available, the cold is included for Gold & Diamond (and people who have breakfast included in their package). The staff here seemed to be winging it every day. No hostess, you had to hunt someone down for the bill each day, the bill never showed a free breakfast, you had to inform them it was free then they'd ask you to scratch it out yourself. As for the buffet itself, we only had the "cold" buffet which had a good assortment - espeically of fresh fruit along with a juicer so you could make your own juice.
    If you're paying cold breakfast is around ~3,550/person

    Dinner Show
    Held in the same area as where breakfast is, although the performance is actually out in the sand in front of the restaurant. Dinner starts about an hour before the show and has no entertainment or music the hour you eat before the show starts (Moorea does). The show is only about a 1/2 hour of the professionals dancing and 20 minutes of getting patrons to come dance - which was kind of like Americas funniest home videos, but I don't pay over $100/head to see Americas funniest home videos (actually 9,500/person)
     

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  2. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Stayed here long before it was a Hilton in OWB #105 with a direct view out to Mt Otemanu. Really a spectacular place, at least it was in 2005 :D

    Food at the time at their main restaurant Iritai was mediocre. Service was very French Polynesia, which is to say lackluster, but not any worse than you'd get elsewhere. But the bungalows were magnificent and views amazing. Every picture looked fake, like a postcard.

    Fortunately breakfast and airport transfers were included in award stays back at the time.

    Thanks for the trip down memory lane!
     
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  3. Pete
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    Pete Silver Member

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    Thanks for the detailed report. Overall, would you recommend this resort?

    What category or room were you in?

    Do you have HH status, and is so what did you receive as an upgrade or elite benefit?
     
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  4. JohnDeere19
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    JohnDeere19 Gold Member

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    Great write up. I can only hope that I'll get a chance to stay here (at a Presidential Overwater Villa perhaps :)).
     
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  5. MyTravels
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    MyTravels Silver Member

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    It's a great resort, we stayed at both the Hilton Moorea & Hilton Bora Bora Nui. We like them both for different reasons and are glad that we split time between them, but if we go back we may only stay at Moorea (convenience, cost, calmer water, although less impressive staff)

    We pre-paid for an overwater villa and received a pretty good discount for our existing status (HHonors award stay). The water is choppy from 301-326 but calmer on the other side (328+) of the sandbar & in the 100 & 200 sections.

    We worked with Amélie Albertin <amelie.albertin@hilton-borabora.pf> or <gs.mgr@hilton-borabora.pf> & the upgrade rates are negotiable.

    Status moves you up one category (from King Lagoon View Suite to a Garden Villa), and they apply that category upgrade toward a paid upgrade rate. Other status benefits are free breakfast & free wired internet.
     
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  6. SST
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    SST Silver Member

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    We loved this property. It is amazing. Didn't hurt that it was only 25% full, either, and they moved us to the over water bungalow on the second night.

    A couple of comments:

    1) The direct airport boat at a cost of about $75 a person rt is actually pretty nice, and essential for getting to your plane home without any uncertainty. I'm a little shocked by the cost, but it was a nice introduction to the lay of the land and had great views, and of course we'd already been Royally Ripped Off by Air Tahiti for the inter-island flight so $150 didn't seem like much of a push since we were already going to be significantly lighter thanks to one air carrier. I can't wait for Air Tahiti to join an airline alliance, so we can afford to go back again one day.

    2) Getting a breakfast included rate is, in my mind, essential. The staff are NOT used to going thru the whole charge business at breakfast--- but in our case we just got up and left since there was nothing more once we finished eating. Breakfast was good and the selection excellent. The poisson cru was to die for.

    3) Overwater bungalows are not all the living end. Yes, the OWB experience is unique. But the hotel's landside bungalows are absolutely superb. BIG and beautifully appointed, we found them quiet and pleasant. We experienced both, and the OWB was a neat thing, but really--- both are amazing. It's a matter of cost--- we were on points so "beggars can't be choosers", except that then we were promoted.

    4) When we visited, the fish we met snorkeling were varied, plentiful and amazing. I haven't been to St John, but this was the best snorkeling I've ever experienced.

    5) We disliked the hotel dinner options, and left every single night for great food on the main island, after the first night. It was night and day. French Polynesia has great food, and it's only the lack of imagination that seems to keep the Hilton noncompetitive. Found several alternatives via internet, all turned out to be wonderful dining experiences. EVERYWHERE is expensive, so might as well eat well. And the adventure of getting somewhere was part of the dining ritual.

    6) Staff at the hotel were very nice. We didn't experience debris in the pools. We snorkeled about 4x a day and kept our fins and masks at the bungalow. Better fish viewing off of the beach in front of the restuarant than in the proximity of our OWB, meaning more varied varieties. We found hanging out at the pool or on the little "island" to be best for sun, returning to the OWB deck later in the day.

    7) The happy hour was 2:1 drinks, and really helped cut down on the expenses. Met nice folks to chat with, too.

    8) Explored the island on parts of a couple days, and went to the turtle preserve at LeMeridien on one: an amazing experience, snorkeling with sea tortoises. I have to say it's one of the most profound things I've ever done, so much so that the next trip might see me sadly stay at LM rather than Hilton.... but we'll see. I liked the Hilton a LOT.

    This is an amazing part of the world. We didn't do Moorea, and skipping the $900 for two flights to Bora Bora would go a long way toward the next trip since you can take the ferry over to Moorea from Papeete for a relative pittance. Unlike everyone else, it seems, we LIKED Tahiti itself, and really really ate well from the roulants at the port each evening. It would be a pity to stay simply on Tahiti, but then we haven't explored the far reaches of that island, either. Looks like I've just convinced myself to start watching and opportunistically collecting points for a return visit to FP. It excites me.
     
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  7. kirkpd
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    kirkpd Silver Member

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    All set for Moorea/Bora Bora next April/May 2012 for 35th anniversary on points. Hilton Bora Bora was easier to work with and actually upgrades were less $$ than Moorea - go figure. Dont be afraid to ask if the first offer will not work for you. They will try to accomodate if they can.
    Worked with Amelie Albertin to secure OWB paid upgrade/non refundable. While Horizon OWB upgrades were approx 185 US - Regular OWB were 7500XPF ( under $100US nightly) amelie.albertin@hilton-borabora.pf She did take our Diamond status and 35 Wedding Anniversary into account. Airport to Island shuttle is now 9240xpf per person.
    Similar upgrade opportunities at Moorea for regular OWB - Horizon upgrades approx $ 285 US and Regular OWB 7500xpf plus tax.
    Hope this helps someone with planning their next dream trip on a budget.
     
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  8. Pete
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    Pete Silver Member

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    Ouch. That is significantly more than other reports that I have seen.
     
  9. kirkpd
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    kirkpd Silver Member

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    I agree steep for a Horizon OWB at $285. But for the regular OWB $ 90 night is very reasonable in my opinon.
     
  10. Pete
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    Pete Silver Member

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    True - - depending perhaps on location of OWB.
     
  11. Max M

    Max M Gold Member

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    Has anyone had a paid upgrade offer either for a stay in 2012 or for an upcoming stay in 2013?

    I plan on staying here for my honeymoon in 2013; I'm HHonors Diamond.

    Please feel free to PM if you like. :)
     
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  12. deant
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    deant Milepoint Guide

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    We have reservations at both Moorea and Bora Bora for May 2013. Have already upgraded to an OWB in Moorea wand will do so in Bora Bora. Was able to do a minor negotiation on the upgrade rate in Moorea but not in Bora Bora.

    Does anyone have a suggestion as to which OWB is "best"?
     

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