Budget-friendly beachfront hotel with an authentic Polynesian feel
Multiple room types, some with kitchenettes
Casual beachfront restaurant for breakfast and lunch
Dinner restaurant with French and Italian specialties
Free Wi-Fi, breakfast, kayaks, and bike rentals
Rooms do not have air-conditioning
Wi-Fi can be spotty
Hotel Les Tipaniers is a fantastic option for budget travelers in Moorea. The two-pearl property is well-kept, and has an authentic Polynesian feel, with thatched-roof bungalows and a gorgeous beachfront. There aren’t many on-site amenities, like a pool, spa, or fitness center, but there are two restaurants and free Wi-Fi. One major drawback is rooms’ lack of air-conditioning. Those who can’t live without AC might prefer Hotel Hibiscus, a slightly more expensive property with a few more amenities, but a subpar beach.
Mostly budget travelers at one of Moorea's oldest hotels
Hotel Les Tipaniers is one of the oldest properties on Moorea. So while it’s not the most modern place to stay on the island, it has an authentic feel that’s hard to find at newer hotels. A carved wooden sign directs travelers off the main road, down a gravel driveway to the hotel’s entrance — a one story, thatched-roof building in front of a sandy parking lot. The lobby has a no-nonsense feel, with plain tile floors and a wood-paneled front desk. Souvenir T-shirts and racks of post cards serve as the room’s decor. The lobby is typically bustling with new arrivals, but check-in is usually hassle free — a reflection on the hotel’s age and staff experience.
Hotel Les Tipaniers sees a wide range of guests, from couples and solo travelers to families with children. Most are European, but there tends to be a smattering of Americans at any given time as well.
On Moorea's northwest coast, not within walking distance of anything
Hotel Les Tipaniers is located on Moorea’s northwest coast, on the tip of Opunohu Bay. It’s a bit of a drive (30 to 35 minutes) from both the ferry terminal and the airport, but sits directly on one of Moorea’s most beautiful beaches. The hotel is located near the village of Papetoai, which has a few shops and restaurants, and is within a 15-minute walk of a few shops, restaurants, and a small grocery store in Le Petit Village. Most travelers will want to rent a car in order to easily get around the island, and a number of guests choose to explore by bike.
Moorea is a mountainous island located 10 nautical miles off the coast of Tahiti. The beautiful, quiet island is popular with honeymooners and families, and has a relaxed, laid-back feel. Travelers headed to Moorea will first need to fly to Papeete, Tahiti, where they can then take a quick 10-minute local flight or a 45-minute ferry to Moorea.
Family-friendly layouts, bland decor, and no air-conditioning
Rooms at Les Tipaniers are simple and clean — otherwise they don’t have much else going for them. Rooms are housed in small thatched-roof bungalows scattered across the property. Interior decor features tapa cloth bedding and Tahitian wood carvings, but otherwise seems a bit plain (not unexpected for this category). White tile floors, white walls, and white curtains are offset by dark wood furniture and woven ceilings. Though decor is a bit bland, we have to give points to Les Tipaniers for practicality. Many rooms are equipped with family-friendly features, like multiple beds, kitchenettes, and mini-fridges. Unfortunately all rooms lack TVs and air conditioners, but they do have ceiling fans.
Bathrooms are small and pretty unmemorable. They consist of large shower stalls and vanities with single sinks, but there are no tubs and water from the taps is not safe to drink. All rooms have an outdoor patio with a simple wood table and chair set. Some have ocean views, but most overlook the other bungalows. Overall, most will find the rooms adequate for this category and price point, if the lack of AC isn't a deal-breaker.
There aren’t many features at Hotel Les Tipaniers -- there is no pool, spa, or fitness center, for example. But it’s the hotel’s rock bottom prices, not its amenities, that attract most guests. However, the hotel’s two on-site restaurants are better than most in the area, and freebies like Wi-Fi, kayaks, and bicycles are nice perks.
Guests can head to the Beach Restaurant each morning for the free breakfast, which typically consists of pastries, fruit, bread, and cereal, along with coffee and tea. The Beach Restaurant’s awesome views and decent food also attract large lunchtime crowds. Dinner is served nightly at The Garden Restaurant, a slightly more upscale establishment serving primarily Italian cuisine, but the menu also has plenty of Tahitian and French offerings, including local seafood dishes. On Fridays, there's live music at the Beach Restaurant in the evenings (typically guitar and ukelele performances), and there is live music at the Garden Restaurant on Saturdays (country and blues).
The beach in front of Les Tipaniers is one of Moorea’s most beautiful. Situated at the tip of Opunohu Bay, the beach here has calm clear waters that are perfect for swimming and snorkeling. On the sand, there are a few plastic lounge chairs and free kayaks for guests to use. The hotel also has snorkel equipment available for rent.
As far a freebies are concerned, Les Tipaniers offers quite a few. There is free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel, though it can be spotty from time to time. Free breakfast is served daily at the Beach Restaurant, and the hotel also has kayaks and bicycles available for guests to use.
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