This is not a sponsored post. But if you’d like me to write one for your resort, I’m TOTALLY open to BEING SPONSORED!!!!
I’m one of those people who looks at a resort web page and tries to see beyond the lighting, the beautiful weather and the smiling faces for the ‘real’ version. I read the reviews and try to glean who’s whingeing for whingeing’s sake (“only 3 power sockets in the hotel room” for example) and who’s making valid points about the resort (“it was pretty windy the whole time- very typical weather apparently”). I look at other resorts in the area for comparison. I can spend hours researching (*cough time wasting cough*) which accommodation is the one for my little family.
So when I booked a week at the Outrigger Resort on Fiji’s main island through Luxury Escapes for the first week of September, 2015, needless to say there was a lot of hand-ringing and looking up of the cancellation policy in case I found something better. It’s also needless to say that for our purposes, a family of four with two kids under 5, it was awesome.
The staff at The Outrigger Viti Levu were pretty fantastic: always super friendly and in regards to the ones we came into contact with most, (wait staff and those at the Kids’ Club) always very accommodating. The staff working the pool deckchairs seemed a little less than ‘happy’ at times, but you know what? I’d probably be well crapped off if I had to walk around in the sun bringing beer towers, cocktails and deep fried food to fat tourists all day too.
We stayed in a Deluxe Ocean View Room in the wing to the right of reception. Everything was clean, they had a cot set up for our 3 year old and a sofa bed for the 5 year old. Our bed was a bit uncomfortable (had a mattress mountain range going through the middle of it) being one of those ones which can be pulled apart to make two singles. This would have to be our only complaint of the entire Outrigger experience and really, I dealt with it by telling my husband to take a cement pill and find another part of the bed that was to his liking: God knows the thing was so huge it felt like we were sleeping on a fluffy tennis court. Anyway, the room was lovely, fitted us all comfortably and looked over the resort and out to sea.
Housekeeping kept on top of our filthy non-bed-making ways and our personal butler Leisa did an awesome job of keeping our cocktail buzz from the pool going with drinks delivered to our door every afternoon.
The food at all of the restaurants was pretty awesome. We dined everywhere and it was always good (except the Kalokalo bar whose tapas menu was almost uniformly deep fried). Special mention must go to that damned Breakfast Buffet which, despite every good intention on the way each morning, ended in an inordinate amount of food. And the papaya cut to order was amazeballs (luckily as we would’ve been as backed up as a school driveway at 3pm). The alcohol is eye-wateringly expensive so be prepared for that. We only experienced the night life once, which was pretty dead until the wedding du jour turned up and then it got really rowdy and daggy as wedding parties do (there was a wedding on every day).
We went up to the Kalokalo bar for sundowners one afternoon and truly, the views are amazing. This is also where the spa is located- it’s quite the relaxing experience to have your feet massaged as you look up the Coral Coastline. Magical! Included in our Luxury Escapes package was a three course dinner at Ivi Restaurant. The meal was everything you’d expect from an upmarket restaurant anywhere in the world- absolutely delicious fine dining!
The facilities are all well maintained (yes, even the gym which I managed to get to four times!! Ok the fourth time I just mucked around on the treadmill for a bit. I probably used more calories walking up the stairs back to the room) and the pool is awesome if you’ve got kids. It’s not awesome if you don’t have kids because there are lots and lots and lots of kids. But there is an adult’s only pool which is pretty swanky so they’ve got you covered there too. Anyway, the pool is great because there are lots of different shallow areas for them to play in as well as a huge deeper area. And there are tonnes of deck chairs and umbrellas.
There is a daily program of events for people staying at the resort which is exhaustive. Honestly, you’d have to be a complete idiot to be bored here. We did the Cava ceremony and a fire dancing thing which were both cool but there is literally an activity, cultural, sporting, arts and craft etc every half hour, most of which are free.
And lastly, the Kid’s Club was great. Our daughter (5) loved it but our son, at three years of age and probably a little young still, hated it. This is because we are such awesome parents he just can’t stand to be apart from us. Not sure what happened with the daughter there… Anyway, the group Kid’s Club runs 3 times a day and they have lots of activities for the kids to do (inside and outdoors). The Nanny’s will take your kids for 8 hours a day (for four consecutive days) and you can choose whether it’s over the middle of the day or late into the night. The personal nannies were also lovely and do care for your children beautifully. They write a report of what they did with the kids (ours loved going down the beach so there was a lot of hermit crab hunting), what they ate and whether the slept etc for you each day.
The beach out front is a ‘coral’ beach in that it’s not soft and squeaky sand but it’s still fine to walk on. You can’t swim in the lagoon unless it’s a few hours either side of high tide but there are lots of kayaks (some with glass bottoms so you can take the kids out to look at the coral) and stand up paddle boards. They also have lots of reef shoes so you can walk out or swim or paddle. And there is some coral and lots of little fish to look at. It was beautiful down at the beach when the winds were light.
So that’s it. For a more candid synopsis and photos of our stay read here: A Week At The Outrigger, Fiji. Truly, it was a wonderful stay! If you want to ask about anything else just comment at the bottom of this post or email at firstname.lastname@example.org
I managed to book a deal through the Luxury Escapes website. We had return airport transfers, daily buffet breakfasts, massages, a 3 course dinner for Mum and Dad, four days nanny service and every meal for the kids free plus a few extras for around $2200 for all four of us. We had to pay a supplement on top of the initial cost for the time of year.