BORA BORA, French Polynesia -- Starwood Hotels & Resorts is
dubbing it "the most luxurious hotel to open in Tahiti in the last
The Bora Bora Nui Resort & Spa made its official debut at
the close of 2002 and features 120 bungalows -- all of them
Each is 1,000 to 1,500 square feet, featuring an ocean view.
Some are hillside, others sit on the beach, and 84 are over the
water on the resort's private islet.
"It really is the first of its kind," said Keith Vieira,
Starwood's senior vice president for Hawaii and French Polynesia.
"I really think it will shape future developments in French
Polynesia; otherwise, you can't compete."
Two years in the making, this $60 million resort allows the
details to set it apart. Indonesian mahogany canopy beds, Italian
marble bathrooms, satellite television, direct-dial telephones, CD
players and computer data ports dress up the interiors.
Overwater bungalows have three glass viewing panels in the floor
to observe the abundant sea life below.
"People used to say that guests just sleep in the room," said
Vieira. "Well, it's not true. And it's not true [in Bora
Here, Vieira said, it's also about the room.
The hotel has noted increasing room-service orders, he said, and
guests tend to use a kayak or outrigger canoe to paddle back and
forth between the lobby and their rooms.
Thatched roofs were created from dried leaves of the pandanus
plant, and printed tapa cloth from the breadfruit tree forms the
border trim in each bungalow.
Hand-carved, curly kohia wood decorates public places. For
families with young children, there's a two-story, beachfront Hotel
Outside, a white-sand beach nearly a half-mile long stretches
along a blue lagoon surrounded by coconut palms.
When guests are ready to leave the sun for a little indoor
pampering, the 30,000-square-foot Mandara Spa and fitness center
await at the top of the hill. It features a 360-degree view of Bora
Bora's famous Otemanu peak as well as the islands of Tahaa and
Therapists administer treatments in one of four private spa
bungalows, each with a Jacuzzi and full bathroom.
The signature Bora Bora Indulgence pampers guests for two hours
with a saltwater footbath, vanilla body wash and coconut body
scrub, topped off with a full-body massage and mini-facial.
Many guests also choose to get in-room treatments on their
lanais, said Vieira.
Other activities include shark feeding, scuba diving and
kayaking as well as specialty items like Polynesian picnics and
dinner under the stars.
The property, Starwood Luxury Collection's newest addition, is
located southwest of the main volcanic peak that forms the center
of the 18-mile ring of coral reef and small islands that constitute
From the West Coast, travel time is approximately seven hours to
Papeete in Tahiti. Guests to Bora Bora then fly 45 minutes aboard a
smaller plane to Motu Mute before riding a water limousine to the
thatched-roof, overwater "floating" lobby.
"The setting is unsurpassed anywhere," Vieira said. "It's a good
thing for French Polynesia and a good thing for Starwood."
The Bora Bora Nui Resort is the third Starwood resort in French
Polynesia, joining the 106-bungalow Sheraton Moorea Resort &
Spa and the 200-room Sheraton Tahiti Hotel & Spa.
Rack rates for the bungalows range from $500 to $1,885.
Commission is 10%.
For additional information, call (800) 782-9488 or visit www.sheratonsintahiti.com or www.starwood.com.