After flying from LAX to Papeete, waiting three hours in the airport, we flew Air Tahiti to Raiatea where we were greeted by a representative of Taha'a Private Island & Spa.
Our luggage was loaded onto the boat and we were taken directly to the resort.
When we arrived at their dock, we were greeted you with a Lei and a friendly Tahitian playing music. The water is stunningly turquoise and the view of the island is superb.
We were led to the open air lobby and were given a small delicious cold drink as they took their time with check-in. We booked our trip with Chris B. at Tahiti Legends and were fortunate to be upgraded to a Bora Bora Overwater Bungalow, Room 6.
The suite is large and quite comfortable, The bed is in the center of the large room with a view facing the mini motu and the coral garden. The side view is mostly glass. A large sliding door opens to a roomy partially covered deck whereby you can lounge on a sun bed or sit near a table where you can have lunch or relax on a sofa in the shade and enjoy the breathtaking scenery.
The water is clear like a swimming pool and you can walk/wade over to the nearby motu.
Although built in 2002, the whole place is constructed like one would imagine a Tahitian Island of 50 years ago. Very authentic with wood and thatched roofs. There are only 54 rooms so you really never feel crowded, you mostly see people at meal time.
We opted for half- board which covered a lovely breakfast and dinner. This is definitely the way to go; price-wise and for convenience. They also replenish your mini-bar on a daily basis free of charge which was an excellent perk. So you get all the free bottled water that you would need, twix bars, potato chips and some other goodies.
The staff are all native Tahitian and were very friendly and congenial. Some of them surprised us with their talents as they descended straight from the dining area to partake in the the Polynesian show!
This is the type of place you go to escape the maddening crowd. There are many beautiful areas for swimming, snorkeling, jet-skiing, stand up paddle-boarding and spa treatments.
The only minus was our Check Out.
We were notified on the evening prior to departure that they needed our room vacated by 1pm and would move us to another room. It seemed a bit odd, but we didn't make a fuss. The following day, at exactly 1pm there was a knock on our door and a request to take our luggage. Behind that person was a cleaning crew ready to enter our room. We were unceremoniously led to another end of the property that looked like it housed maintenance equipment or employee housing.
We unlocked the door that open to a closet-sized room, our luggage was waiting for us on a long wooden bench. It was so tiny that there was only seating of one chair The result being, one of us had to share the hard bench with our luggage to sit at all. The closet of a room also had a small bathroom and sink.
They made us feel like second class citizens that had committed a crime and were sent to a detention center. I was really shocked by their treatment.
In comparison, on a former trip to French Polynesia, we stayed at the Le Moana Bora Bora and had our room until 5pm to correlate with our flight that departed later. On another occasion at the Four Seasons, Bora Bora, they also graciously offered us the room until our late afternoon departure.
Otherwise, Taha'a Private Island Resort & Spa is a great place to unwind.
If you're looking for a romantic, private, totally relaxing place to stay, this is it. The resort looks just like it does in the pictures online - you won't be disappointed. You fly into the Raiatea airport (tiny, one gate!) and the hotel staff will be waiting for you with flower leis to personally take you by small boat to the resort on Taha'a. There you'll be welcomed with a delicious vanilla punch at check-in, which went quickly and smoothly for us. My husband I stayed for 4 nights as part of a 10th anniversary trip. Not very many kids when we stayed, so perfect for couples and especially honeymooners.
We had a Taha'a overwater bungalow. Very spacious, both inside and outside where your private deck features a covered cabana area, two large lounge chairs and direct access to the lagoon. We requested hypoallergenic bed linens when we booked and they were in the room as promised when we arrived. Room service was great. Mini-bar included two local beers, bottled waters, juices and a few snacks every day. Views were lovely and sleeping was easy because the bungalows are spaced a decent ways apart from one another - expect quiet nights and peaceful days. The resort is doing some coral preservation near the bungalows and each side has its own small but wonderful reef. There is also a coral garden at one end of the resort. Be sure to bring or purchase reef-friendly sunblock so you don't inadvertently damage the reefs while swimming and snorkeling. There was an excellent dance and fire dancing show one night. Service at La Vanille restaurant was on the slow side by American standards, but all staff was very nice and helpful, and all spoke English fluently. Benjamin at the front desk was especially nice. Poor bar service was good (hi to Big Love!) and the infinity pool was lovely but we spent no time there because the ocean was clear, calm, and enjoying it was one of the main reasons we went to Tahiti.
We also spent a few nights at the Sofitel Moorea and the coral reefs are totally amazing there but the bungalows aren't as spacious and the property in general isn't as luxurious or private. I would recommend both for different reasons. This resort is basically the only thing on Taha'a, so it's super private. We could see staff cleaning and generally remaining vigilant against COVID. This is the perfect place to stay if you are anxious about COVID, as you can check in, opt for room service for your meals and almost never even see anyone else. It's a total delight.
We booked our entire trip through Costco Travel and it was an easy and completely seamless experience. We priced the trip out through three different agencies and Costco beat all their quotes. We plan to return and use Costco again.
My wife and I just finished up our stay at Le Taha’a and we thoroughly enjoyed it though there were a couple things which we did not enjoy so much. On our first day, we at the pool restaurant (only restaurant open during the afternoon for lunch) and everything seemed to be going well until the food came out. The second the food came out, we were swarmed with flies and gnats, the staff came over and brought “coffee smoke” which is a local method but honestly, it just was not enough. We must have received 10 bug bites each and then they started landing on our food. Everyone else looked fine at their tables so we attributed it to the fact that we were sitting in the indoors portion of the restaurant. The same night we ate at their fancy restaurant, Ohiri, which was absolutely delicious, I have to say. The biggest frustration was the amount of bugs at the lunch spot and they don’t really warn you. We ordered lunch to the room and it was perfect. The other fix was the dinner service, it just was a bit slow, the first night we ate at Le Vanille, it took 21 minutes just to get menus, we just felt very invisible the whole time and other tables received more attention, the staff they have running dinner just did not seem to be “true waitstaff”. We stayed in room #3 which was beautiful and provided a beautiful view of Bora Bora. The room was nice and clean and the deck was large and for the most part felt pretty private. The lagoon to swim in right there is a beautiful and at times is waist deep which was so nice to swim in. Overall, our stay was great and the resort and location are absolutely beautiful.
Traveling to French Polynesia was on our bucket list for many, many years. Finally, we bit the bullet and decided to make it happen. Traveled to the Caribbean most of our lives and always did the reservations myself. Not for this trip - this was beyond my expertise and I didn't know where to begin. Luckily, a coworker went to FP years ago and used Lisa Corso of Tahiti Legends. I had a scrap of paper with her name on it for so many years and dug it up when we decided to do this trip. Thank goodness I didn't throw away that note. Lisa was wonderful to deal with. We knew we wanted to go to Tahiti and to Bora Bora, but I had never heard of Tahaa -- and I had never heard of Le Taha'a Island Resort. Lisa highly recommended that we include that as part of our vacation - and she wasn't wrong.
We spent 5 nights at Le Taha'a -- and was said to see check-out day come. Could have stayed here much longer. Due to Covid, the resort was not booked to capacity - perfect time to go!
Everyone that we met was so very friendly. The food was very good. Loved the breakfast buffet (hand sanitizer station at the entrance to the restaurant) - the French Toast was "to die for".....delicious hash browns....good amount of fresh fruit. And the pastries -- think every morning I had at least 5 on my plate! French are known for their wonderful pastries -- and this was the case at Le Taha'a. With the exception of one night where we had dinner, we usually just ate at the breakfast buffet and then did a late lunch at La Plage. This might sound silly to rave about this, but they serve the best chicken club sandwich I have EVER had!!!! Also had some other wonderful lunches there - tuna curry dish, chicken teriyaki lunch special. And I feel guilty (almost) at how often I finished up my lunch with the creme brulee! After all - it IS vacation. ;)
Tried paddle-boarding (free) and it was a great experience. Never got into the pool because the water was so wonderful. They also have jet skis. I always wondered what it would be like to go on a jet ski, but was hesitant to sign up for a tour.....fearful I would find out 5 minutes into it that it wasn't for me. My husband talked to the operator of the jet ski.....he was waiting on someone who signed up for the tour, but they hadn't shown up yet. Wish I could remember the person's name, but he was kind enough to take me out on the back of his jet ski.....we zipped around the lagoon area for about 10 minutes -- enough for me to have the thrill...and enough for me to realize I didn't want to sign up for a tour. He was so kind to do that for me.
Our room (#15) had a great view of Tahaa. We enjoyed the spacious room and the deck area was also very spacious. It included 2 loungers in the sun....and a large shaded area with a table. So serene to spend the evening laying on the loungers staring up at the star-lit sky. We did have internet access in our room - but tried not to use it - instead just experienced the beauty of the island.....the peace and quiet. Loved snorkeling around the Bio-Rock spheres. Also loved that the Coral Gardens was so close. And lack of many people at the Coral Gardens due to no cruise ships -- again, the perfect time to go! One of our delights every evening was opening up the "coffee-table"-type lid to the water under our bungalow and watching the variety of fish. Was hard to tear myself away from that - I would just plop a pillow on the floor and stare there for a couple hours.
If I had tried to book this trip myself, I highly doubt I would have known about traveling to Tahaa.....let alone to Le Taha'a Island Resort. That is why I am so very thankful for talking with Lisa Corso of Tahiti Legends. It was a stressful many months worrying about Covid -- our trip had to be postponed from May until October. But made so much better because all I had to do was make a quick phone call to Lisa when FP closed its borders....and asked that she schedule us for later in the year. She made it happen! And, most important to me, she is a down-to-earth person who "held my hand" throughout my stressing out....and it was so, so worth it. Le Taha'a Island Resort is one of the best places we have visited - we were sad when it was time to check out.
Hubby and I told each other that this was a once-in-a-lifetime trip.....but after returning home, all I can think about is planning another trip there!
We arrived before check in time was supposed to start and they were able to get us into our room as soon as we arrived! We had the Overwater Bungalow #10 and it was magical. Our stay was for 3 nights and it was just about right. Great service, staff was cheerful and helpful. We booked our stay through Costcotravel.com and everything went as planned. We had the breakfast and dinner plan included in our rate, totally worth it for us! Our favorite dish was the tuna sashimi, and our fave drink the Pineapple drink. We would definitely stay again!