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- A Bad Start & a Few Hours in Los Angeles
- Air France Lounge – Los Angeles
- Air France Business Class – Los Angeles to Papeete
- Getting to Moorea
- Hilton Moorea
- Hilton Moorea, Panoramic Overwater Bungalow #87
- An ATV Tour in Moorea
- Whale & Dolphin Watching in Moorea
- Eating in Moorea
- Moorea to Bora Bora
- Bora Bora Airport To InterContinental Thalasso
- Emerald Overwater Bungalow #204 at the InterContinental Thalasso Bora Bora
- Jet-Skiing in Bora Bora
- A 9 Hour Bike Ride Around Bora Bora
- Eating in the InterContinental Thalasso
- InterContinental Thalasso Coral Garden Suite
- Around the InterContinental Thalasso
- Hilton Bora Bora Nui Resort
- Royal Overwater Villa, Hilton Bora Bora Nui
- Dinner at Villa Mahana
- Eating in the Hilton Bora Bora
- Is Food Expensive in Bora Bora?
- A Day in Papeete
- Air Tahiti Nui and Southwest Flights Home
- Conclusion & Blog Giveaway!
Daraius: The InterContinental Thallaso was the nicest, most modern, and well kept of all the hotels we stayed in French Polynesia. This was a hotel which even a hotel snob would like – the staff greeted you by name, the grounds were well kept, and the little details were taken care of.
See Bart Lapers’ great trip report of the InterContinental in Bora Bora here for more great pictures!
The landscaping was very pretty and well maintained.
And the hotel was new and very modern.
The main lounging area had no walls so there was often a nice breeze inside. There was a pool table, chess and other board games available.
However, the furniture by the bar looked nice, but was a bit uncomfortable to sit in.
On the flip side, food at the hotel is expensive and there’s no easy way to get free breakfast or internet (like you can at the Hilton hotels with gold elite status).
There also aren’t many fish in the water, unless you snorkel in the artificial pond where the hotel has placed fish for guests. You can see quite a few fish with different colors!
There is also a spa where the treatment room overlooks the artificial pond with fishes.
Emily: We went for a walk around the hotel and saw the regular rooms and then found a deserted beach on the other side of the resort. The currents were pretty strong and it seemed like a great place for surfing because the waves got pretty big.
There were some great views to be had!
We then walked past the tennis courts and helipad.
And finally we went to see the stingray feeding, which happens every day, at 2:00 pm.
The stingrays come right up to you and let you pet them! They are slimy, but soft.
With all of the walking around, I was in the mood for a relaxing time at the pool.
Before we left, Daraius bought me an inflatable lounge and inner tube (in my favorite colors!) and we had one blown up at the hotel because our battery operated motor was taking too long.
It seemed like they got that request a lot because they knew exactly what I was talking about and brought me the inner tube ready to use in about 10 minutes (which was less than the 20 minutes they estimated at first).
I tubed it back to our room!
Here’s a map of the InterContinental Bora Bora. If you are paying for an upgrade, it doesn’t hurt to specify a room preference. The hotel will do their best to get you the room, but there are no guarantees.
Daraius: I booked 1 night at the InterContinental Thalasso in Bora Bora for 30,000 Priority Club points (currently 50,000 points) and the other 2 nights using our free nights from the Priority Club credit cards.
I then emailed the hotel to ask about an upgrade from the standard garden room to an overwater bungalow and to combine our reservations so that we did not have to change rooms. I emailed gmoffice.boraboraspa “at” interconti.pf
The hotel reminded me that my InterContinental Platinum Ambassador status was not applicable on stays using points and that September was peak season and asked if I wanted to guarantee a room upgrade.
“May I take the opportunity to remind you that following Priority Club Rewards terms & conditions: “When staying on Reward Nights, all Ambassador and Royal Ambassador privileges apply with the exception of upgrades, free Pay TV film per stay, 24 hour guaranteed room availability, 8:00 am early check-in and complimentary mini bar beverages.
However as we value our loyal members, we always do our outmost (sic) to upgrade but it will be only upon availability at check in time and no guaranty at any stage. May we remind you that September is still our peak season and the resort will be pretty booked at this time.”
They offered the following upgrades, per night:
- Emerald overwater villa – 15,000 XPF (~$154) + 14% taxes
- Sapphire overwater villa – 25,000 XPF (~$256) + 14% taxes
- Diamond overwater villa – 35,000 XPF (~$308) + 14% taxes
- Diamond Otemanu overwater villa – 45,000 XPF (~$461) + 14% taxes
- Diamond End of Pontoon overwater villa – 55,000 XPF (~$564)+ 14% taxes
I wrote more about the garden villas in this post, but you could end up in these rooms if the hotel is oversold.
Emerald Overwater Villa
I paid the $175 per night upgrade to the Emerald overwater villa. Here’s the video and picture review of our bungalow.
The advantage of paying the upgrade was that we were able to specify a room. I specified room #205 and we got #204 in the wing which doesn’t face other bungalows (see left side in the map above).
I wouldn’t choose the Emerald villas which overlook the hotel’s beach (#237 to #237 & #101 to #106) because it may not be as private. And rooms #137 to #139 face the boat landing dock which can be busy with hotel guests arriving and leaving.
Sapphire overwater villa
I didn’t stay in a Sapphire overwater villa, but Bart did, so read his review of Sapphire overwater bungalow #118 here.
Diamond overwater villa
These overwater bungalows tend to be further down, but cost more to upgrade to. We again preferred the two Diamond villas which were off to the left side of the map – #209 & #210.
Diamond Otemanu overwater villa
These villas don’t extend as far out as the other villas, but have a direct view of Mt. Otemanu. I don’t think the view of the mountain is worth $460+ a night. You can see it for free from other parts of the hotel!
Diamond End of Pontoon overwater villa
These are the most expensive overwater villas and face the horizon directly.
The views were nice, but I’m not sure they were worth a $564 up charge per night! We thought #211 was the best of the end-of-pontoon villas because it was off to the side by itself.