Likuliku Lagoon Resort, Fiji

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Attaching “five star” to a Pacific region resort may cause some travel cynics to raise an eyebrow, and while it’s true that many top end establishments ultimately fall short, Likuliku Lagoon Resort continues to set a new precedent for luxury and service. Here’s why.

  • Location: On Malolo Island in the Mamanuca Islands. 
  • Accommodations: There are 45 bures, with 35 enjoying direct beach access, and 18 of these coming with a private plunge pool. The remaining 10 are spacious overwater bures sitting above the reef. All accommodations are traditionally styled and designed, with features including natural materials, hardwood floors, hand-woven coconut husk art, and internal thatching. 
  • Dining options: The onsite restaurant, Fijiana, is headed up by Executive Chef Shane Watson, and the place to enjoy all meals, with a focus on local and international produce including local seafood. For a more intimate and romantic dining experience there are two outdoor, beachside decks below the restaurant terrace, and for parties there’s a private dining room for up to 20 people. You can also take a picnic lunch out to a local beach if desired.
  • What else is there: There is a gym, a Tadadra Spa, and two bars, Masima Bar on the central lagoon, and Dua Tale Bar in the central complex. Daily activities include snorkelling, fishing, diving, sunset cruises, and walking trails. 
  • What’s nearby:Guests can go on a Village Trip to meet the indigenous land owners, or go island hopping by boat past Castaway, Mana and Matamonoa Islands, stopping at MonuRiki Island for a swim, snorkel and a walk on the beach. Guests can also spend time (by invitation) on Mociu Private Island, aka Honeymoon Island, which is a 15 minute boat ride from the resort.
  • Why go: This idyllic, unspoiled adults-only retreat is blessed with natural beauty and a tranquil location, and to top off the Fijian cliché, it’s the perfect spot to catch a classic and oh-so romantic South Pacific sunset.

The Space

Likuliku Lagoon Resort straddles an idyllic bay on a quiet slice of Malolo Island in the Mamanucas, and since throwing its doors open in 2007 it has won numerous awards and accolades. One of the latest is being accepted as a National Geographic Unique Lodge of the World (NGULW) - the first and only one in Fiji and one of only two in the Pacific. What sets Likuliku apart includes its overwater and beachfront bures, along with bans on day-trippers, kids, and mobile phones (except in the privacy of your bure). All you find at this resort are adults seeking temporary respite from the real world. But the resort’s creators have also successfully fused understated elegance with a sense of remote tranquility. From the moment you set foot on the “arrival island” in the middle of the lagoon, you sense that this is a place where you can feel the sand beneath your feet without having to sacrifice the creature comforts that put the “stars” into a five-star resort.

Where We Stayed

If you can afford it, the best place to lay your head at Likuliku is undeniably an overwater bure, as we did for two nights, and while this is not unique accommodation in the South Pacific, the ones here lay fair claim to being the best in the region. Stretching out like a necklace of pearls above the pristine coral, the overwater bures enjoy a blend of European styling with Fijian accents, including traditional architecture, and use of materials unique to the region. Elegant and stylish pieces surround you in the woodwork, the “magi magi” designs, and the richness of the fabrics. The bures have a private deck where you can access the reef by ladder, and a separate bathing pavilion with mesmerising lagoon views from a large, freestanding bathtub. Among the perks of staying in a bure are a daily canapé plate from Chef with a glass of Champagne to enjoy while gazing down at the glass floor and exotic marine life ebbing and flowing below. Loves 

  • The privacy and spaciousness of the overwater bures.
  • The views of the lagoon from everywhere.
  • The cuisine - it’s varied, plentiful and as good as fine dining gets. 

Insider Tips  

  • The bures are always in high demand so if you’re planning a visit for a special occasion such as a big birthday or an anniversary, book well in advance.
  • There are no televisions or room service.
  • The resort is located 25 kilometres from Nadi International Airport, and can be reached by fast catamaran, private speedboat, seaplane or helicopter.

The Details 

Likuliku Lagoon Resort is located on Malolo Island, Mamanucas, Fiji,


Ben Hall