Our 2nd Honeymoon in Paradise – InterContinental Thalasso Bora Bora Review

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Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
At the InterContinental Thalasso Resort in Bora Bora
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!

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Emily by the Reception

The landscaping was very pretty and well maintained.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort

And the hotel was new and very modern.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Chairs to Lounge In

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.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Pool Table

However, the furniture by the bar looked nice, but was a bit uncomfortable to sit in.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Furniture in the Bar

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).

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Bathroom in the Main Complex

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!

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Wedding Chapel Overlooking Artificial Pool

There is also a spa where the treatment room overlooks the artificial pond with fishes.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Spa Bungalows Overlooking the Artificial Pond
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.
Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Beach on the Other Side of the Resort

There were some great views to be had!

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
All Alone on the Beach

We then walked past the tennis courts and helipad.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Tennis Courts

And finally we went to see the stingray feeding, which happens every day, at 2:00 pm.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Stingray Feeding

The stingrays come right up to you and let you pet them!  They are slimy, but soft.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Petting the Stingrays

With all of the walking around, I was in the mood for a relaxing time at the pool.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Intercontinental Thalasso 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!

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Tubing it Back to the 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.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Intercontinental Thalasso Resort Map.  (Original Image From Bart Lapers)
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

Garden Villa

I wrote more about the garden villas in this post, but you could end up in these rooms if the hotel is oversold.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Garden Villas

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).

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Room #204 Lower Deck

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.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Hotel Beach View From Room #241

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. 

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Sapphire Overwater Villa #118 (Picture Courtesy Bart Lapers)
Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Sapphire Overwater Villa #118 (Picture Courtesy Bart Lapers)

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.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Emily by the End-of-Pontoon Villas

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.

Intercontinental Thalasso Resort
Emily on the Pontoon

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