The Four Seasons luxury hotel recently opened in Bora Bora and it is the ideal place for a family holiday. You will find everything that you need here, from accommodation to the various activities organised to cater for, and entertain, young and old alike. The hotel is located on a very large estate meaning that guests can enjoy their holiday here without having to leave the property, which also has land-based sports facilities, water sports equipment and a spa. That is, of course, if you have the means.
This hotel review is a translation from the French published on our French site Easyvoyage.com.
The Four Seasons Hotel is on the seafront of Motu Tehotu, facing the east coast of Bora Bora, level with Fitiu point. The airport is around 3 mi away, on Motu Mute, but a boat transfer service is provided by the hotel and takes around 15 minutes. The hotel can also take you by boat to Vaitape (just over 6 mi from the hotel) on request, though such journeys incur an additional charge (rates unavailable).
The Four Seasons is Bora Bora's latest hotel (opened in September 2008). It is set amid 141 acres of land on Motu Tehotu, between the lagoon and the ocean, making it Bora Bora's largest resort. Indeed, given the scale of the estate, you may find it useful to use the club-car to get around, as the hotel does not yet offer cycling facilities (to borrow or hire).
This hotel is best suited to holidaying families thanks to the facilities and entertainment specifically aimed at children and teenagers. There is also a Kid's Club for younger guests (from 5 years of age) offering games and a relaxation area in an enclosed building, as well as an outdoor relaxation area complete with toy water jets. For adolescents, Teen Island offers various activities in a dedicated area close to a beach overlooking the part of the lagoon where the water cuts into the land. It also has a trampoline. Use of the Kid's Club and Teen Island is included in the price of your stay.
Both accommodation categories (bungalows on stilts and villas) are suitable for families, but whereas the bungalows can only accommodate 2 adults and 2 children, the villas are even more spacious and have 2 or 3 bedrooms, making them perfect for large families and groups of friends.
Rates and reservations at www.fourseasons.com.
The Four Seasons Bora Bora is massive, which is a bonus for those who like to stay in vast surroundings, but not such good news for those who don't like to walk much. The latter would be well-advised to book one of the 2 or 3 villas closest to the reception, or even one of the bungalows located at the beginning of the two access pontoons. This way, you will only have between 656 and 984 ft to walk between your room and the main communal areas (pool, bars and restaurants). Those who would prefer a room at the far end of the pontoon (perhaps for the superb views across the lagoon and of Bora Bora's Mount Otemanu) will have to walk over half a mile to reach the hotel's facilities. As far as facilities are concerned, the Four Seasons has two exceptional communal areas, the first being its 98 ft by 20 ft swimming pool, located alongside the lagoon (which is in itself extraordinary). The hotel has also provided covered cabanas around the pool, which are the size of a double bed, like mini-fares with pandanus roofs, as well as deckchairs laid out along the water's edge and on the coconut tree-planted lawn. The hotel's second exceptional area is the spa, which is located to the rear of the estate, on the same level as the ocean. As the terrain is broken up by several coral reef lagoons connected to the main lagoon, the spa overlooks a stretch of salt water. In order to take full advantage of this location, a cabin has been built on stilts, providing the perfect setting to relax and watch the fish (through the glass floor) whilst you enjoy your treatment. The spa has a 98 ft-high roof, giving the place an extraordinary, almost mythical feel, and also houses the hotel's very attractive gym, which offers panoramic views across the deep blue ocean thanks to its position on the reef-side edge of Motu Tehotu, which explains the ultramarine colour of the water. Treatments are given using Espa-branded products, though some are also available using local ingredients, such as crushed black pearl and kagaya flower. Be aware though, that an hour-long massage will set you back around ?140.
The 107 accommodation facilities at the Four Seasons consist of 100 bungalows on stilts and 7 villas on terra firma. The villas offer the most spacious accommodation (with 2 or 3 bedrooms, as well as a lounge area and a terrace) and each has its own private pool of up to 108 sq ft, not to mention a private jacuzzi. Those who like to have a nice view to wake up to will be pleased to know that the villas overlook the lagoon and the island of Bora Bora, as well as other bungalows on stilts in the distance. If you are staying in one of the bungalows, you may find that you are in one of the 12 which has a private pool (as well as direct access to the lagoon via steps leading down from the deck), which is perfect for a family holiday or a romantic break. The bungalows have a floor area of 1076 sq ft, making them extraordinarily spacious for two and perfectly suitable for four. They include a lounge area, separated from the bedroom by the bathroom, with a sofa bed which can accommodate 2 children. Bungalows to the side of the motu have a view across the estate (the traditional buildings of the hotel, surrounded by coconut tree-shaded gardens and lawns), whereas the others enjoy a more select position and panoramic views of the island of Bora Bora with its crowning glory, the sharp summit of Mount Otemanu (2385 ft). The decor in the rooms is subdued (light wood-covered walls and boarded floors) but the amenities leave nothing to be desired. Highlights include the L'Occitane hospitality products presented in 200ml earthenware pots, the plastic flip-flops provided in the bathrooms and the diving equipment that you will find in the dressing room. Other amenities include a bathtub, a hair-dryer and bathrobes in the bathroom and a flat-screen television (in the lounge and also in the bedrooms in the villas), air-conditioning and a ceiling fan, a minibar, a safe, an espresso machine and a kettle (complimentary coffee capsules and sachets of tea provided) in the main room of the accommodation.
The hotel boasts 2 restaurants, a bar-restaurant (between the pool and the beach) and a lounge-bar. The Tere Nui ('the great journey' in Polynesian) is located at the far end of the pool, overlooking the beach and the lagoon, and is open for all three meals of the day. The setting is idyllic, provided that you get a table on the terrace, as the tables are rather close together inside. Breakfast consists of a copious buffet of warm and cold dishes, from omelettes, cheeses and cold meats to fresh fruit and pastries - there really is something for everyone. Enjoy! Dinner is also served as a buffet, sometimes with a theme. Lunch at the Tere Nui can prove costly, so it's a good idea to choose from the simpler menu at the Fare Hoa bar-restaurant, where you can also eat at the water's edge (whether that be pool-side or lagoon-side). If you prefer the more sophisticated surroundings of the Tere Nui, be prepared to spend as much for an international dish (such as a burger with roasted tomatoes) as for a local dish (such as Polynesian coconut ceviche), each of which will set you back ?23. Fortunately, there's nothing lacking in the taste department! Dinner is also served in the hotel's pandanus-roofed gourmet restaurant, Arii Moana ('the prince of the lagoon'). Much of the restaurant is open to the outside, but as it gets dark around 7:00pm you won't be able to enjoy the panoramic views, which is just as well, because this restaurant overlooks one of the pontoons providing access to the bungalows on stilts. Last but not least, the Sunset lounge-bar protrudes out over the lagoon and is positioned so that it does not closely overlook any of the water-based buildings, making this the ideal place for enjoying a cocktail at sunset (around 6:30pm).
Given that the hotel is surrounded by several lagoons, it also has several beaches, one of which, covering an area of 656 ft by 230 ft, has been equipped for lazing around and can be found alongside the swimming pool and the lawn surrounding it. Fine sand has been laid on top of the coarser sand naturally found on the motu, and in the shallow water there is primarily sand. Guests here also have the option of donning flippers and a snorkel (provided in the accommodation) and exploring the lagoon via the channel which runs along the reception. A little further away, you will find young coral in baskets, which is worth having a look at to have an insight into what the coral beds of Bora Bora have to offer. If you want to go further out into the lagoon you'd best take a kayak, which will enable you to sail right out to the far end of the motu. Those who wish to cross the little pass leading out to the ocean should beware, though - this is not recommended, due to the currents and reefs which can be dangerous for inexperienced rowers.
Hotel reviews based on comfort, location and price ratings of its categories
Hotel reviews based on its services and facilities.
Mark out of 10 for geographical location