A SECLUDED PARADISE AT THE INTERCONTINENTAL FIJI
A SECLUDED PARADISE AT THE INTERCONTINENTAL FIJI
Bula! Fiji was the third South Pacific island I had travelled to. It was never a destination high on my bucket list, however two weddings in two years (December 2010 and November 2011) bought me to this tropical country of beautiful islands and friendly smiles. And with a four hour flight from Sydney to Nadi, why wouldn’t you come?
The first wedding was held at the secluded InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa located on the very natural setting of Natadola Beach (Coral Coast, Viti Levu). The InterCon Fiji opened in May 2009, so the resort grounds and Bure’s were still immaculate. After the second wedding on Denarau, we decided to come back to the InterCon as it was such a memorable stay.
ROOM | InterCon Fiji is made up of blocks of Bure’s which are a modern version of the traditional thatched bungalows you see in French Polynesia. Each block contains about 12 rooms, half on the first and half on the ground floor. After our Welcome drink of Pineapple juice and cold towels, we were taken by golf buggy from the Reception to our room as the resort was so expansive. We were allocated a first floor Lagoon View room (Room 2424) on our first stay. Upon arrival there was a Welcome card from the manager and a fruit bowl – a nice personal touch. The room was spacious, with a king bed, flat screen TV, Bose entertainment system and a view directly towards the sparkling Navo Lagoon. The bathroom had a very modern design with a rain shower, double vanity and Pure Fiji amenities. Love that lush smell of coconut. The standout feature of the rooms was the Cleopatra bath located on your private terrace.
On our second stay, the room prices were more expensive for some reason, so we opted for just the Garden View room. On the day we arrived more than 200 guests were checking out (after a wedding), but we were happy when the staff told us the resort would be very quiet for the next week during our stay. Even though the resort was quieter, we weren’t lucky enough this time to be upgraded, however we didn’t have to reserve tables at the restaurants either!
The location of ground floor Room 1313 (unlucky?), was definitely more convenient as it was closer to most of the resort facilities. It was just a short walk to breakfast at Sanasana or the Adult Infinity pool. The room style was the same as the Lagoon View.
We also asked if we could have a look at the InterContinental Club Suites. A staff member drove us in a golf buggy to the top of the resort. The club rooms have a great view over the main section of the resort and Natadola Bay. Room 2911 was a Two Bedroom Club Suite – it was extremely spacious! The suites had a long living room, a master bed and ensuite and a second bedroom with twin beds and separate bathroom. Out the front of the living room and master bed, was the suite’s private plunge pool!
RESORT | The first time at the resort it was still very new and the plants and flowers were still young. Coming back the second time there was a noticeable difference in the gardens! Another good view point of the resort and Natadola Bay is from the InterCon’s very long and open aired Reception. The expansive resort has a 105 metre Activity pool, which would be unlimited fun for kids and an Adults Infinity pool for some tranquility that overlooks Natadola Bay. The white sand beach also stretches right along the bay to Navo Lagoon.
EAT | Buffet brekky at Sanasana was included both times we stayed at the InterCon. Sanasana has a beautiful view across Meke lawn and the front tables are located next to an infinity pond, a very relaxing atmosphere for the start of the day. At breakfast there was an extremely friendly and bubbly waiter, who loved talking about the rugby league to the guests and knew all the Aussie teams! He was very proud of Noa Nadruku coming from his country.
Toba Bar & Grill is relaxed open air dining located in between the kids and adults pools. It has a great selection of options for breakfast, lunch and dinner, which include daily specials and a cocktail of the day! The ribs were delicious!
Kama Lounge was also good for cocktails and Happy Hour! You could also order a selection of tapas. The afternoon of our first stay we relaxed on the outdoor lounges enjoying a spectacular sunset with some cocktails and Olives ‘Three ways’ and Salmon, mussels & scallops tapas plates.
Navo – This fine dining restaurant was the venue for the wedding reception. Located at the end of the restaurant was an open air dining area, with a waterfall backdrop and a view of Navo Lagoon. It was serene, intimate and a perfect location for a reception dinner. We loved the wedding menu and the presentation of the food was exceptional.
The second stay at the resort, we dined at Navo twice. We had lovely and friendly service from our host of the night Freddy. The complimentary canapés and palette cleansers, a signature of any fine dining restaurant were tasty. The first dinner, the dish of the night was the Pork Belly and on the second night it was my partner’s Lobster of the day special. The presentation was impressive.
TO DO | The resort has a list of daily activities that are either complimentary or can be charged back to your room. In one afternoon we went on a small boat ride to snorkel in the deeper waters of Natadola Bay. Afterwards my partner and I decided on a joint Tube ride – an inflatable donut attached by a long rope to a speed boat. This is highly recommended if you lean towards water sports and adrenalin activities, but if you don’t have strong arms you may not think it’s as fun as the snorkelling when you fly off like a frisbee.
The Romantic Dining Under the Stars (Private Cabana Dinner) is a perfect night out. You have your own private waiter serving you a set menu from Navo restaurant in your own open air cabana next to the beach as you take in another beautiful sunset. This is highly recommended.
If you do wish to leave the resort, there are limited activities in the Coral Coast region without having to travel back to Port Denarau. Most of the tours are available but you have to factor in a 45 minute trip each way (to the Port). We chose the Seaspray Day Sailing Adventure where you travel by catamaran past South Sea, Bounty, Treasure, Beachcomber and Mana Islands, before transferring to the sailing ship. Seaspray then takes you out to the Mamanuca Islands where you get to snorkel off the soft white sand beach of Modriki where the movie Cast Away with Tom Hanks was filmed. This uninhabited island was Fiji bliss. Not too far away, James Packer’s Arctic P yacht was moored between Modriki and Yanuya Islands. This South Pacific location must be good if a billionaire was also enjoying these islands.
As always, a spa treatment is a must. We indulged both times with a massage and the Spa facilities like the Hydro-therapy pool and Relaxation room are flawless. You can also purchase different scents of the Pure Fiji amenities from Spa InterContinental’s boutique.
IN SUMMARY | What you need to know….
– VIEW – A view directly towards the sparkling Navo Lagoon
– ROOM – Garden View room 63 sqm – Ground floor
– NUMBER – 1313
– VIEW – Tropical garden view towards the main resort walkway
– ROOM – Two Bedroom Club Suite 156 sqm – Ground floor
– NUMBER – 2911
– VIEW – The suite’s private plunge pool
– BED – King size
– BATHROOM – Double vanity and rain shower
– BATH AMENITIES – Pure Fiji Coconut infusion
– MINI BAR – Simple Mini Bar with Tea and coffee making facilities
– BREAKFAST – Sanasana for Buffet Breakfast overlooking the infinity pond
– RESTAURANTS – Toba Bar & Grill for relaxed open air dining near the pools and the fine dining restaurant Navo by the lagoon
– ROOM SERVICE – Includes breakfast, all day dining, dessert and a children’s menu as well as Gluten free options (24 hour service – Delivery charge applies)
– RESORT – Expansive resort with an Activity pool for kids and Adults Infinity pool for some tranquility that overlooks Natadola Bay
– SPA – Loved the Hydro-therapy pool and Relaxation room
– WI FI – Surcharge
– LOCATION – The beautiful white sand beach of Natadola Bay, Coral Coast
– OPENED – May 2009
– PRICE TAG – Luxe
– LOVED – The Pure Fiji amenities, the Cleopatra bath located on the private terrace, the Navo restaurant and the Romantic Dining Under the Stars (Private Cabana Dinner)
Even though the wedding led us to stay at the InterCon on our first trip to Fiji, we weren’t disappointed. It would have definitely been a resort I would have chosen because of Priority Club and the InterCon brand, that’s why we came back….
BOOK | InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa – Advance purchase rate with breakfast
– Escape Travel
– Travel Online – 5 nights: Garden View King Room – FJD$600 Resort Credit package
Maro Road, Natadola Bay, Viti Levu Fiji
FLY | Virgin Australia – Flights to Nadi, Fiji
All photos by Mel McLeod ©