The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort
What We Love
- On-call butlers who cater to your every whim, including free pressing of two garments upon check-in
- Snorkeling in the Lagoonarium, the resort’s own saltwater lagoon that is teeming with native fish
- An adults-only pool with secluded private cabanas
What To Know
- WiFi access costs $32 per day
- The hotel welcomes families and offers crafts, movie nights and other activities to keep little ones happy
- Don’t dismiss beach villas as they are not only bigger but also offer private gardens and access to a private stretch of sand
- Free WiFi
- Handicap Accessible
- Kids Club
- Room Service
Located on a private island, The St. Regis Bora Bora’s 100 thatched-roof villas, spa set in its own islet, Jean-Georges Vongerichten restaurant and sushi-and-sake restaurant are spread over 44 acres along the edge of a calm lagoon. The look in guest villas and public spaces is Bali-Thai chic, and rooms feature earth-toned textiles that are traditionally woven as well as exotic wood furniture. Intricately carved Polynesian sculptures and paintings depicting island life add a local design touch throughout.
Bed and Bath
Thatched-roof villas set on the sandy beach feature private gardens or terraces with plunge pools, outdoor showers and dining gazebos while the rest are perched over the lagoon overlooking the jagged peaks of Mount Otemanu, an extinct volcano that rises out of turquoise waters that stretch to the horizon. The décor in all villas fuses native woods, woven textiles, floor-to-ceiling windows and Polynesian art. Huge Italian marble-clad bathrooms offer double sinks, sunken tubs, rain showers and separate dressing areas. There’s plenty of hi-tech gadgetry, including 42-inch TVs, CD/DVD players and Bose surround-sound systems. In overwater villas, wooden doors in the bedrooms slide open for views of the sea. Guests can also peek down into the underwater world via indoor glass viewing panels built into the floors.
Cool off during the day with drinks at Aparima, the swim-up bar. And don’t miss dining at Sushi Take Restaurant, the first sushi joint in Bora Bora. You know a restaurant is good when even non-hotel guests are dining there: Jean-Georges’s Lagoon is one such place, and it’s easy to see why. Suspended above the lagoon and affording awesome views of Mount Otemanu, the restaurant serves delicious Franco-Asian dishes prepared with ingredients indigenous to the islands. The resort offers a free kids club—activities include sand crafts, swimming, tennis and Polynesian arts—for children aged 5 to 12. And Miri Miri Spa, which sits in its own islet within the resort, offers treatments under open-air cabanas or in spectacular indoor treatment rooms that lead to private patios with plunge pools and outdoor showers.
In the Area
Ask the concierge to book a diving or snorkeling excursion with Diveasy Bora Bora. Or experience the underwater world in a submarine and encounter snappers, lemon shark and stingrays, among other marine life. Everyone who goes to Bora Bora eventually makes it to Bloody Mary’s, a laid-back restaurant and bar that specializes in fresh-caught seafood dishes.
How to Get There
The St. Regis puts forth its butler service as one if its differentiating attributes for discerning travelers. However, had the butler service been called "concierge" instead, we wouldn't have felt so disappointed. We did not experience the level of butler service anticipated, experienced at other resorts at which we've stayed, and as experienced by other guests we saw around us during our trip.
This is a really beautiful place - very big with plenty to explore - but the gaps in service had us preferring our time spent at another resort on Bora Bora for the second half of our trip.
Our first taste of disappointment with the St. Regis was at the airport when we arrived after traveling on 3 different airplanes to get to Bora Bora. All other passengers were warmly greeted by representatives at their respective hotels, but my husband and I were left standing alone and confused by the St. Regis welcome desk. Luckily, someone who worked at the Conrad hotel's reception desk noticed us being unattended to and gave us a lei, cool towel and bottle of water. The St. Regis rep arrived moments later and apologized (she was with other guests which is totally understandable) but this was the sign of things to come from the St. Regis service.
Arrival at the resort was calm and welcoming, with a really lovely welcome by the reception staff and hotel manager, followed by introduction and a property tour with our assigned butler. She was lovely but we were disappointed to learn that she had made a 9pm dinner reservation for us and that no other times at any other restaurants would be available for us despite the property and butler team knowing in advance that we were traveling from the east coast of the US and arrived at the property at 8:30 am after 30 hours of travel. We expressed our disappointment with the late reservation but the butler just apologized. Later my husband took matters into his own hands by communicating with the restaurant directly (and having to call multiple times because they wouldn't call back despite telling us to sit tight in our room and they would call right back in 10, 15 minutes). Finally the restaurant agreed to let us have a 6:30 reservation. Of course when we arrived, and throughout our meal, only half of the restuarant tables were occupied! They clearly could have accommodated us from the beginning. And at the very least, our butler should have made an early dinner reservation in recognition of our long travel, with an option for later dinner. We read many other customer reviews before our trip where it was noted that the guest arrived to the St. Regis and their butler had dinner planned for them. We never expected that we would be given the last seating of the night after so much travel to get to the St. Regis.
We didn't see our butler again until the 3rd day. In the meantime we noticed other guests getting checked-in on by their butler at breakfast just checking to make sure they were happy, or doing photo shoots with the guests around the resort. This was not the service we received, and we are platinum elite Bonvoy members... perhaps we needed to give the butlers a big cash bonus upon our arrival to get the St. Regis butler service we expected?
Other slips in service included unclean snorkel equipment that reeked strongly of raw onions, loud and rusty bikes, being given 3 bottles of body wash and zero shampoo in the bathroom, having to ask multiple times for our daily morning beverage delivery, getting undercooked breakfast items that were ordered "well done", but the worst display of lack of attention to detail and customer service was the special beach dinner my husband planned on our last night. They served us the wrong entree! I think this may have been a language barrier situation and we accept some responsibility but after receiving an entree we did not order and did not care for (we had told the resort and butler before we arrived about specific type of food we do not eat but were served it anyway). Mistakes happen and we were quite pleased with how this was fixed. Shaia, our server, was a true professional and a highlight of our trip. I share this only to warn future guests about the importance of being proactive with their butler and asking for written confirmation in case language barriers limit some culinary vocabulary if you're doing a special beach dinner. Again, we were pleased with how this mishap was handled. Just wish it hadn't happened!
We spent so much time on this trip waiting for the butler/concierge people to call us back or simply follow through on a promise. And really, there were 2 things we needed each day: our morning beverage and a dinner reservation. It shouldn't have taken so much work on our part to get them. We were never really made to feel special after our arrival, or welcome for traveling such a great distance. Had the butler service been labeled as a simple standard concierge, we would not have had such high expectations of personalized service. Mistakes happen but the St. Regis Bora Bora needs more attention to guest details and try to extend the same hospitality and qualiy service to all guests, in particular the loyal platinum elite Bonvoy members.
We do recommend this hotel. It is beautiful and the lagoonarium and spa are great! But don't be fooled by the butler service claims. Spend a few nights here and then move on to a property that has a more natural Polynesian feel with more attentive service.
I went there to visit some friends staying there for a week! That place is paradise: all was perfect and also the food which is very hard to find on the island! I love this hotel!! Moreover they made a campaign against abandoning dogs and they are working to improve this horrible and sad situation of the beautiful island! I love it! An international hotel of such a perfection could not put this issue apart.
Good job and keep on like this!
Let me start off by saying I really wanted to like this resort, truly. For a 5 star hotel and one of the “best” on the island I came with very high standards. I flew on 3 planes for a total of 15 hours to get here and I expected nothing less than top notch. I have been traveling heavily for the past few years and stayed at many hotels all over the world so I’ve had my fair share of 5 star hotels. I’m also a Marriott Platinum member and St. Regis Bora Bora is a hotel in their collection. I have several comments so I figured it’d be best to provide them by department. I pay attention to small details so a long review is ahead, you have been warned.
Upon arrival at the main dock Arena greeted us with mango juice and a warm smile. She was great and provided us with a brief tour of the resort, brought us to breakfast and showed us to our room. She informed us if we needed anything to let her know and provided us her card. She also told us the hours she will be working the next few days so if we needed anything outside those hours we could dial 9. We didn’t see much of Arena except at breakfast the first 3 days and around the resort when she was assisting other guests. However, on the last two days of our trip when I was looking for her at breakfast and she was not there to greet us, I discovered that she was off the last two days of our stay. We had to ask for another butler (waited a few hours) to go over our itinerary and discuss the details (pick up, dinner, boat transfer to main island and etc.) It would be nice if St. Regis could assign a butler that would be with you for the entirety of your stay, or have the person that’s covering for the butler at least check up on you without having you waiting around or go looking for them. I had dinner reservations on the main island and I wanted to know all the details beforehand so I could plan my day. Arthur was our second butler and was very helpful however I still wish that we could’ve stuck with one person during our stay whether it was Arena or Arthur. On the last day when I wasn’t feeling well (stomachache, headache, fatigue) I informed Arthur at breakfast and he informed me the resort cannot provide any medication however I could see a doctor or have it delivered. He also asked if I wanted to still go to lunch on the main island and I said I’d decide later. After breakfast we walked to reception to see if we could get a ride to our villa. Hailee who gave us a ride back to our villa noticed I wasn’t feeling well and delivered ginger tea to our room personally. That’s the kind of service I expected from this caliber of a resort. I do understand that being a butler is very stressful and guests make a lot of demands, however every guest should have an equal top notch level of service during their stay. Perhaps St. Regis could work something out (hire more butlers, provide more training, etc. ) so that EVERY guest can feel a more personalized experience. I am sure everyone is doing their best.
I noticed that the housekeeping varied but was overall great. Bed was made perfectly everyday and night. Sometimes we had small towels on the floor by the sink other days they were large towels that had st. Regis imprinted. One of the days of our stay we did not receive new towels for the deck but that’s nothing major, we called for some and they delivered. A bottle of body oil was left on our bed every night which was sweet.
The most horrible front desk experience I’ve EVER had. What a hot mess. When we first arrived I asked if we’ve been upgraded to a better room because of my Platinum status (which they refer to as P6 here) Julie at the front desk informed me that there was nothing available but it looks like there will be mid week and to come back every day to check. I came back Every. Single. Day. Isn’t it annoying when you’re vacationing in paradise and have to check at the front desk daily? This should’ve been arranged prior to our arrival in my opinion. If you know a Platinum, Titanium, Ambassador member is arriving wouldn’t you try to arrange an upgrade ahead of time if available? I even mentioned that I don’t care if I have to switch rooms twice, if it’s available I want it. On the third day I spoke with Hinevera and she told me to wait to speak to a supervisor who was Lola to see if there was anything that could’ve been done. Lola informed me no it looks like only on the last day there’s availability but we’re checking out and condescendingly told me they would call me if there was however I don’t have phone service so I said I will just check again the next day. She said the 6 rooms above my category are booked...ok. Thursday comes and I had to displeasure of speaking with Marguex, she gave me an extremely condescending tone and told me there was nothing available. Everything is completely booked. That night at dinner on the main island, the couple in room 214 informed us they had been upgraded Wednesday at check in from a one bedroom to a two bedroom. They didn’t know what to do with an extra room and we’re so surprised they got upgraded upon check in. Hearing this got me infuriated. Why was I informed no upgrades were available but this couple got upgraded?! Was it because I booked using some points? What was the reason? Completely ruined my mood.
The next day Friday which is the day we had late check out, they switched us for 4 hours to the LOWEST TIER ROOM. Reef side villa. There were bugs and lizards everywhere. We previously had the Mountain View overwater bungalow. Mind you, Arthur the butler had informed us that switching to the upgraded room that was “available” the date of our checkout was not possible but I guess switching to the lowest tier room is possible. So frustrating. At checkout I spoke with Marguex again, she informed me that the couple I was speaking about did not get upgraded they got the villa they booked. The villa they booked is a one bedroom or two bedroom. So wait, you’re telling me the couple was lying? You’re also telling me you can book a villa and it could be a one or two bedroom at random? That makes no sense to me because they’re two different categories. Marguex then proceeded to inform me that there were only 15 rooms above my category so it was hard to upgrade me. Wait so now there is 15 rooms above mine not 6? Being told different things everyday was frustrating. Hearing that another couple was upgraded who checked in later than us was frustrating. I wish I had the time and energy to speak to the director or something. I was sick so I didn’t have the energy.
In room dining:
Great great service. Food came still hot and was delicious. Room service also brought our complimentary champagne and cake to our room which was very nice.
We had complimentary breakfast as part of the platinum perks. Had to wait for eggs particularly long one day but other than that the people were very nice. I saw a couple receive a special dessert on their last day but we did not receive anything on our last day. Again, keeping the service consistent here seems to be an issue. Bamboo was great, not the best sushi I’ve ever had but it was decent. Lagoon was awesome. We had a nice table, staff was very nice and helpful. Although we asked a ride back and it didn’t seem like they arranged it because when we went outside there wasn’t anyone waiting. We just walked to reception. No biggie. Private dinner on the beach was perfect. The lady who was our waitress was very nice. Polynesian night was good. Dinner at the bar was also great.
Probably the best staff, were very helpful. Gave us towels, water, slush.
I saw some cigarette butts in the beach which was gross. Also the new oasis pool was being built and construction was annoying. Passed by it multiple times a day. I didn’t escape nyc construction to hear construction here!!! Ugh. One of the days there was service being done on the water lines too so water was unavailable for a few minutes which is whatever. The trees were beautiful and so was the lagoonarium and the shark park. The water is so blue and clear and the location of the resort is gorgeous. Layout of the place was easy to navigate as well.
Overall there are many ways the st. Regis could improve. I am hesitant to return as I don’t want to be disappointed again. I also am not sure how I got sick and whether it was something I ate or drank.