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Reviewed 7 January 2012

I must preface this review by saying that I know the resort was only acquired by its current owners about 1.5 years ago, so they understand there is still some work to do in terms of brining this resort back to its former glory. That said, this is a lovely little island that would be well suited to families, with great amenities including water sport activities, nice beach to relax on, day spa, and a restaurant/bar. The breakfast service could be improved with more variety, and we felt the rooms were in need of some renovations, but again we know that the current owners are working on this. A better option for those wanting a bit of luxury could be to stay at lagoon beach apartments in port villa (this resort is owned by the same family) and you can take day trips to erakor and use their facilities as if you were a guest.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank rfead1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 January 2012

Stayed for one of the 7 day packages over new year. Don't get me wrong, I have been coming to Vanautu for 30 years and really love the place. However this resort is in desperate need of either a qualilty downgrade or a major refurbishment.

The rooms are located on the foreshores and have a beautiful vista, with the aid of reef shoes one can swim and snorkel from your room. However, the rooms are just very tired, and nothing works. The shower screen in our room opened inwards, hello, how are you supposed to get in the shower? Water supply and pressure is intermittant so pick your shower times. It also leaks out, and leaves rather large puddles in the area next to the shower. Ipod docking station broken, ceiling fans noisy, kettle cord doesn't reach the plug.
Rooms need a safe. They recommend that you dont leave any valuables in the room, but it is a fair walk to the reception. Hence we locked up the French opening doors onto the balcony every time we left the room. This is not so easy as you have to move all the furniture including the day bed and the dining table to get the doors by.

The restaurant is overpriced and the food quality is sub standard, the waits are long. We ended up going to other resorts for our meals. On the last night, we ordered pizza which took 1.5 hours. My partner then became violently ill at around midnight. I then had to make my way to town for medication for her in the morning as we were flying out on that day. She is still not 100 %

The day spa is hilarious, I don't think the staff take it too seriously, as I saw them sleeping on the massage benches as I walked past. The benches smell mouldy. We had 2 complimentary massages is our package, but didn't bother going for the second one after experiencing the first one.

The internet and wireless arrangement, when they work, are mind numbingly slow.

Breakfast is basic and one would think that having access to Tanna Coffee which is world famous would be a bonus. No sign of it here, coffee was a disgrace. They really need to train somebody to serve decent coffee in this place.

Management told us that they are in the process of updgrading the facility, but at this stage there doesnt appear to be much going on other than some new sunbeds on the beach.

There are many other resorts on the mainland which are superior in quality and will give you a better experience for the price.

If they ever get their act together and fully refurb this place, it will be great. I will wait till then before returning.

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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10  Thank ArnoldSydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 January 2012

We too spent Christmas and New Year on beautiful Erakor Island travelling with our two teenage daughters, one of whom is disabled . We could not have wished for a more welcoming, warm staff - they were like old friends by the end - this in contrast to some of the service we received elsewhere in Vila. The staff accepted Lucy for who she was and we were able to totally relax - something we rarely get to do.
Not sure what a previous reviewer means by not having the opportunity to speak to the manager - both she and the owner were often around and made themselves very available to chat on more than one occasion with us. The staff could not do enough for us - from breakfast service to saying hello as they raked the paths to organising a driver for us. We even had a surprise cake left for us in our room as some of them knew we went down to the chapel to renew our vows in private ( thanks Lita!!) I guess sometimes in life you reap what you sow when dealing with people is all I can say.

I agree about "Island time" but this was so refreshing for us as our lives are so dominated by the clock, business apointments and technology that we were able to totally unwind without turning our phones on and a glorious week of no emails, twitter or facebook ( although 14yo did manage to use the free wi-fi in the restaurant area to gloat to her friends on FB about the wonderful time she was having)

Our bungalow ( no. 19) was a family loft which would have slept 3 more kids than we had. The beds were all comfortable ( my husband notoriously complains about beds when we travel but he slept like a rock), we had no problem with the heat and humidity - it was no worse than home ( QLD) and the louvres on all windows allowed beautiful cross breezes.
It was cleaned and fresh linen and towels daily. I am a clean freak so promised my family I would not be Monica Geller ( you need to watch Friends) whilst there so hey if there was sand on the floor - so what, but the girls did clean and sweep every day.
The water pressure is dreadful so it is dribbly cold showers but talking to the owner this is a source of frustration to them too and was being addressed after xmas. Just go jump in the lagoon instead !

In all fairness the new owners have only recently saved the island from receivorship so have done an amazing job in a short time with much more to come.

The island itself is beyond beautiful , the water crystal clear and even better than the Whitsundays and reef here in QLD. The sunrises and sunsets were gorgeous, the lagoon is full of huge starfish and there are patches of good snorkelling although snorkelling was much better at Turtle Bay ( recommended by Darrin and family - thanks !)
The see-through kayaks were fun . There were lots of activities if you wanted or you could just veg on the beach and drink cocktails ( they do an interesting version of a mojito!)

Whilst on the whole I agree with previous reviewers on the cost and standard of food - this applied wherever we went in Vanuatu ...very disappointing and very expensive especially when feeding a family of four. Out of every meal I'd say one of four dishes was OK ...and I seemed to always fall into the not good every meal. The best meal we had was the cheapest and was on a round island tour , in a small hut at a beach ( can't remember name ) it was like a home cooked meal and beyond tasty .

We actually enjoyed the breakfasts on Erakor - it was described as continental when we booked so we were happy with what was offered - fresh local fruit , homemade banana bread , cereal, toast, and we loved the banana and pineapple pancakes .
The coffee was great - as long as you didn't try to get your boring old latte or flat white. The coffee is locally produced on Tanna Island - is bitter , strong and wonderful - just how coffee should be. They don't have fresh milk - it is all longlife so you can't complain about the lack of skim milk.

Totally agree with Darrin about organising your own driver - heaps cheaper and more personal. You either get to know a driver ( Sam Lui bus 12803 was great ) or the staff on Erakor were great at helping you out.
But be warned - most of the vehicles are not roadworthy by our standards, the roads in Vila are more pothole than road ( although the main road round the island road is recently upgraded and good) so you are in for some scarey rides. So make sue you use someone like Sam for your round island tours!
Must do's :

Swim with the turtles at Turtle Bay
Cultural village visit - not sure of the name of the one Sam took us to but it was so interesting , not commercial in any way
Blue Lagoon
Mele Cascades
Happy Hour cocktails at sunset at Grand Chancellor - half price cocktails, free nibbles and awesome views.
Relax on the beach...and relax and relax again - get on Island time and enjoy Vanuatu for what it is , you can't travel and expect the luxuries of home - you travel to experience new cultures.
Erakor does not pretend to be a 5 star resort , the new owners are working hard at improving it but I hope it isn't at the expense of the charm of what it is today. If you want the Hyatt type experience - go to Le Lagon , but you will miss out on the real magic of Vanuatu.

Room Tip: bungalow 19 has two bedrooms and a loft.One bedroom is queen, one is single plus bunks and the loft has 2 singles. very spacious, lovely cross breezes from all the louvres and is screened . it is a pleasant stroll from the main beach and restaurant , giving privacy and tranquility
  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with family
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4  Thank sunshinecoast112
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 January 2012

Highly recommend this place for families. Great welcome, the staff are so friendly and play a lot with the kids. Faciliites are great and the resort is kept very clean and tidy.
Lovely rooms, and we had a lagoon view from our bed, the kids had a loft with 3 beds.
Loved the outside day bed, great place to sit and read a book. Day spa was also good, went a couple of times, reasonable prices.
The kids were kept amused everyday with organised activities or just snorkelling and jumping on the trampoline etc. Had a great night out at the Melanisian feast night, with some great music and dancing.
Particular staff at the resort who were very friendly were Blanco, Kevin and Brian who were all excellent and made our stay very memorable. Our only thought for the resort really, is the food. For a longer stay the breakfast was a bit boring and would be good to have some more variety and more reasonable prices for families. Pizzas at the beach cafe were yummy but a bit pricey. Perhaps a solution would be to have a barbeque area was some prepackaged meals would be a good alternative.
Was great to have the ferry to the mainland, this was always regular and was nice to check out other parts of Vila. Taxi's and buses were always available at the other end and we thought we reasonably priced compared to Australia.
Overall, had a fantastic stay and would certainly love to return.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with family
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2  Thank Looey72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 January 2012

Just returned having spent Christmas and New Year at Erakor. Very hot and humid and lack of air conditioning noticeable. However fan provided willingly and, together with ceiling fan, a relaxing holiday was enjoyed. Staff excellent and nothing is too much trouble. Problems were sorted out with pleasant willingness by manager Abi, as well as Lita and Nathalie with expert speediness and good humour. Fantastic location, children well catered for by Nick and concierge Brian. All staff were excellent! Thanks for a great holiday everyone!

  • Stayed: December 2011
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1  Thank 255100PaulaI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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