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“A bit far from town if working.”

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The Melanesian Port Vila
Ranked #25 of 47 Hotels in Port Vila
Wherever
Level Contributor
223 reviews
88 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
“A bit far from town if working.”
Reviewed 22 October 2010

Introduction
These comments are the result of an extended – eight week – stay in the hotel in an Orchid Room facing the pool.

Room
The room was large and well equipped – TV (fair selection of channels); ‘fridge; kettle; iron and ironing board. The satellite TV freezes and vanishes from time to time.

Laundry service is good and cheap – VT800 for 8 items special deal being especially good value.

As the hotel brochure honestly admits – the internet in the rooms is a bit hit and miss. Mostly miss, it was never possible to handle large files and the quality of the Skype calls was poor – but ordinary e-mails usually worked OK – although patience is required. It was off altogether for the last full weekend I was there.

Food
The buffet breakfast is not very good and never changes. If it is included in your room rate fair enough - but paying extra for it is not good value-for-money.

All food, whether in the Melanesian or not, is expensive in Vanuatu – expect to pay what you do at home. However, for breakfast you would be better of using the nearby supermarket.

Also, when the hotel has large groups it is impossible to get anywhere near the food at times – mostly when I needed to eat before going to work – so, even though I had paid for it, I used my room instead.

Unless you eat in the Thai/Pizza restaurant, you will be eating outside. Not so good when it rains as you still get wet walking to the limited sheltered spots. Also, you sometimes share your breakfast with the local fly population.


Location
The hotel is a 20 minute walk away from the town centre – downhill on the way there! There is a very good supermarket five minutes walk away and several restaurants very close – including the Le Rendez Vous with excellent harbour views.

Noise
The rooms themselves are well built and, apart from in the bathroom, you do not hear you neighbours. However, if you have one of the rooms around the pool you will hear the thrice weekly cultural performances and the weekly singers. These usually finish around 8pm and are not that intrusive and worth watching/listening to anyway.
The problem is at the weekends if there are groups of young people staying in the hotel or coming for a birthday party - for example. They generate considerable noise around the pool area making it difficult to concentrate on work or reading or anything else in the rooms.

My room was on the South side of the complex – with other hotels behind it. The facing rooms back onto a side road – however, I would not think would cause a problem.
However, the ones on the East side back onto a fairly busy road.

Staff and Management
The staff are very friendly if not very efficient. Complaints about anything rarely resulting in any change. Management could be improved.

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank GOM99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (79)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Hobart, Australia
Level Contributor
18 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 October 2010

Staying at the Melanesian was a pleasure, the room were very clean and serviced every day with fresh sheets and towels. The staff were great even confirming our tours which was not expected of them. Meals were fabulous and very well priced. Breakfast is included in the room price and is all you can eat from eggs to french pastry's and cereals. Nothing was a problem for the loacsl at the Melanesian. we will be staying there again when we return next year.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank lynnecure
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 July 2010

Recently booked and stayed one night only at the Melanesian - a Pool View Room - on arrival, found the room to be very damp smelling, generally run down and definitely not 4 star!. The whole hotel is generally run down and outdated. The shower head feel to pieces on use and the bedside light bulb blew as soon as it was turned on. The bed was very low to the floor, was frayed and wearing on one side, as well as being very uncomfortable. It's only saving grace was the friendly and helpful staff at the hotel, who could not have been more helpful. Was very thankful that we only booked for one night - I would have complained ++ if I had. Will not return to this one - there is better out there.

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank VolcanoMelbourne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Moreton Island, Australia
Level Contributor
67 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 234 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 June 2010

My friend and I visited in late 2009, and I had been to Port Vila 5 years previously and had a wonderful stay, but not at the Melanesian.

Sadly the resort was run down, but I must add it was clean. The included breakfast was not too bad, included fresh eggs and pancakes cooked on the spot, the staff were very friendly. The dance troupe were exceptional , much better than Fiji and so happy and were glad to have pics taken with travellers.

The hotel is a short walk to town and shops etc. and going in the other direction is the biggest supermarket in Port Vila, which is well stocked and cheap.

The first time in my worldwide travels since I went to Bali in 1972, the very careful me, got sick, and I mean very sick from food poisoning. And I have stayed at some dodgy places in Indonesia, China and Thailand, I didn't drink local water or even clean my teeth with local water. , nor did I think it was the hotel/resort.
I am always so careful. My tip, just don't eat any food down on the harbour near the outdoor markets. Nor eat pizzas there.( and I mean most restaurnats) And don't trust the ice in drinks no matter what they tell you. That's my experience in staying in Port Vila, but 5 years ago I stayed at the now demolised resort closure of the lovely White Sands Resort and Country Club north of the Port which is now a bulldozed wreck unfortunately. It was so lovely and such fantastic staff and food.

Luckily we went home 2 days after and missed our trip to the outer islands. I was still sick, couldn't eat anything for 5 days after. Be careful

  • Stayed September 2009, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank lifetravellerbrissy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
30 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 April 2010

Have just returned home from Port Vila - stayed 5 nights in Melanesian Resort and found it to be clean and comfortable. The position of the Melanesian is great - only a 5 - 10 minute walk into town, few minutes to the supermarket or the Cultural Centre. The breakfast included, stated continental but you received more than a continental as it included fried eggs or fresh pancakes - ample for anyone (fruit, cereal,croissants etc also avail)
The rooms were serviced each day with fresh towels, soap, shampoo etc.
We had airconditioning in our room (though we spoke to someone who didn't)
Lots staff - all friendly and helpful!
Buffet dinner & entertainment 3 times / week at a reasonable rate.
Thai / Pizza Restaurant attached to the Melanesian - we ate here twice and food was great! (Service was also good - say hi to Tony!)
We found the accom. fine - it wasn't 5 star - but we weren't in our rooms during the day - each evening we used the pool (though I hear they are doing renovations over the next month, so perhaps the pool may be out of bounds - not too sure but would pay to check on this!!)
For those looking for 5 star accom, maybe look a lil further - but be prepared to pay a lot more!

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank LeapinLiz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
128 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 126 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 April 2010

My husband and I stayed here recently in a 1 bedroom apartment for 11 nights. We were in Port Vila to visit our son, who's working there for a year, so this did dictate our choice of accommodation. We were not expecting a 5* Asian type of resort, which we usually have in Phuket, as I'd researched extensively. We got what we expected, and were happy with our experience. It is NOT a resort, and if that's what you want, you won't be particularly happy here, but it met our needs admirably.
Location: a 10 - 15 minute walk into Port Vila (downhill) - beware of the footpaths at night. If you don't want to walk, buses are everywhere. The walk back up the hill wasn't too bad, and I'm not fit and no spring chicken. There was a supermarket one block away, and also some restaurants and takeaways not too far.
Apartment: quite spacious, with a separate bedroom, plenty of storage, kitchenette (fridge, stove and microwave), dining table and lounges (not particularly comfortable), TV with Australian channels and fox sports, big bathroom/laundry with shower, toilet, basin, washing machine and sink and a big balcony with a washing line. It certainly needs some TLC (stuck drawers, new screens needed, loose taps, etc) but it was clean and big. There was also an additional bed in the lounge area, but only suitable for a child. There were plenty of toiletries, replenished daily, and cutlery, crockery and cooking utensils.
Breakfast: it was described as "light" but there was plenty to choose from including pancakes and fried eggs made to order.
Pool: it was large and available every day we were there - I had been worried about this from a previous review. I was sometimes the only one there so had enough loungers to choose from. There is also a children's pool adjoining it. However, there is little or no shade available, especially in the morning. They need some umbrellas. Also note you have to have your own towel. There are lots of tables and chairs here and they've just built a new long cabana.
Staff: always friendly.
Price: reasonable, especially considering costs in Vanuatu.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank dragonlady2411
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton, New Zealand
Level Contributor
109 reviews
89 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 155 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 January 2010

This was my 6th visit to Port Vila in five years. After three weeks in Santo I was filling in a little time( 5nights) here. I had stayed here five years ago and was not impressed. As I was travelling alone this time not feeling the need for the frills of a resort like Lagon or Le Meridian with their free hobby cats, tennis, golf....previously enjoyed with my family.This establishment is just on the edge of town and Expedia made me an offer I just could not say no to. Easy walk down to market, shops, restuarants and bar. Just a few blocks up behind is Vilas largest supermarket, wide range of wines and fresh produce. Bread and local meat at very good prices.
In this area also Italian rest, french rest ( flying fox on the menu if you dare) and two japanese rest.
So position of Melanesian is good. On the other hand it is run down. Like five years ago no money being put back into the place. Flyscreens in bad repair. It took TWO full days for management to put a flyer under the door to say a failure with the pool filter had caused the pool to be very cloudy.Technicians are now working on it. Felt sorry for families as the pool was out of action for my whole stay. Funny that five years ago the pool water also looked like long life milk as it did at this time. If you are on holiday and wish to enjoy a swim in the heat of the day in clear clean water I would suggest either another establishment or in the beaut blue sea.
My room had two hot plates and a microwave allowing for cooking. Big plus. The place was over populated with uniformed staff. They were full of smiles. Lots of smiles. Restaurant not used by me and was quiet every time I past. One comment form a pair of guests to me was for two days they had no fish availible. Many slot machines on two levels in club 21 part of the hotel if you feel the need or perhaps down to the Grand ( previous Sebel) with casino tables. Across the road from the Grand the new revamped bar The Port offers draught beer from the new boutque brewery in Vila. The Anchore bar other end of town has happy hour, 5:30-700 thursday and friday. Any drink gets another free. Good one. Well past here is the Harbour View Chinese restuarant. Been about for years and worth dinner but book.
On previous visit was told of small resort out of town called Paradise Cove. Went for a looksee. If you want peace a quiet but still able to go to town this is a great place. Think 4 couple and 6 family bungalows. They looked very confortable. Snorkling just out from it also.

Stayed January 2010, travelled solo
Helpful?
2 Thank Waikatosflyingkiwi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Melanesian Port Vila

Property: The Melanesian Port Vila
Address: P.O. Box 810, Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
Phone Number:
Region: Vanuatu > Efate > Port Vila
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Casino and Gambling Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#10 Spa Hotel in Port Vila
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — The Melanesian Port Vila 3*
Number of rooms: 77
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Only 10min walk from the heart of Port Vila town. Reasonable rates with quiet and comfortable atmosphere. A welcoming smile, friendly hospitality and good service are part of the culture at The Melanesian. Offering a number of guest room styles which satisfies everyone's needs. Our culture entertainment night with "All You Can Eat BBQ" at our Oasis Pool side is must see! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Melanesian Port Vila Hotel Port Vila
Melanesian Port Vila
Melanesian Hotel Port Vila
The Melanesian Port Vila Vanuatu

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