Nanuku Auberge Resort Fiji is a sophisticated resort located at Pacific Harbour in Fiji. With its own private airstrip you can arrive rock-star style and immerse yourself in a traditional authentic Fijian experience at an intimate resort that exudes understated luxury.
Traveller: Emma Lambert
Room: Beachfront Spa Suite
Address: 11 Nanuku Drive, Pacific Harbour, Fiji
Best for: Travellers looking for an authentic Fijian experience without forgoing luxury.
The Signature factor
This would have to be hiring out Nanuku Private Island for the day. We participated in the ultimate celebrity-style activity: hiring jet skis and riding out to Nanuku Island, set in an absolutely stunning secluded location around 30 minutes from the main resort. At the island, staff laid out paddle boards and beach umbrellas as well as snorkelling equipment. We soaked up the sun while a picnic lunch was spread out for us under a Polynesian bamboo shelter. With bellies full, some of us took to the jet skis again and rode around on the shimmering turquoise waters and others snorkelled in the aquarium-like sea. The colour of the water at Nanuku Private Island was absolutely breathtaking and needs to be seen to be believed.
Nanuku Auberge Resort Fiji was designed as a place where luxury, culture and adventure seamlessly intertwine. A boutique resort consisting of just 18 suites and villas, Nanuku was designed to provide a maximum of 60 guests with an all-inclusive, intimate, Fijian experience.
We arrived by a small private aeroplane and landed at Nanuku Auberge Resort Fiji’s private airstrip just across the road from the resort. We were met by traditionally dressed Fijian warriors and were presented with fresh coconuts to drink from and icy cold towels. The entrance was a covered open-air walkway lined with meticulously maintained tropical gardens and pebbles. Immediately we could tell that the service at Nanuku was absolutely fantastic; the warm Fijian smiles were abundant and gazing around at the beautiful bar and restaurant areas we knew we were somewhere refined.
Our villa was deceptively spacious consisting of two storeys, each with its own bathroom, and a sun-filled beachfront plunge pool. The spa bath overlooked a private courtyard garden filled with lush greenery. The generously proportioned villa easily accommodates four adults. Right out the front was a pristine stretch of beach that felt like it was exclusively ours as we only saw one person strolling along it the whole time we were there. The contemporary bathrooms utilised both the indoors and out with a private outdoor shower cocooned in greenery. The quality Pure Fiji amenities were replenished daily along with plenty of fluffy white towels.
Perched up high, Nanuku’s Vunikau Residence offers guests panoramic ocean views. With four master suites and multiple indoor and outdoor living spaces, there’s no need to leave this villa if that’s the sort of holiday you desire! The villa has its own living and dining areas as well as a bar and kitchen and even a barbecue. You can watch your favourite in-house movie in the private media room (complete with Bose sound system). The ensuite bathrooms are stocked with quality Pure Fiji bath and body amenities and feature granite vanities with dual basins, separate rain shower and a large corner spa. For active guests, the Vunikau Residence comes complete with yoga mats and bicycles.
On my plate
Nanuku Auberge Resort Fiji offers guests all-inclusive dining at the contemporary Kanavata Restaurant and Lounge. Cuisine features locally produced ingredients and freshly caught seafood. Each day at 12pm guests can take part in a complimentary culinary experience such as creating their own ceviche or traditional Fijian prawn delicacy where you place prawns, chilli, onion and herbs along with fresh coconut milk into hollow bamboo and cook underground on hot coals. Guests seeking a more private experience can opt for dinner to be served in their villa or at any number of private dining destinations throughout the resort.
Highlights from the mini-bar
The mini bar is stocked with complimentary soft drinks and a fine selection of beers and wine available to purchase.
I wish I could take home…
The fabulous chef who would create a special menu at each meal titled “Emma’s Dinner” or “Emma’s Lunch”. I am vegetarian and they would go to the trouble of curating a vegetarian menu at each meal and printing out my personalised menu and handing it to me in a leather folder.
We indulged in a couples massage at Lomana Spa and Wellness Centre. The treatment room was a beautifully serene shaded outdoor area surrounded by the soft sounds of nature. The prices were reasonable which meant we could book a number of treatments throughout our stay.
Waters ports are a-plenty with a calm and wonderfully warm beach right on your doorstep. The Lailai Children’s Club is sensational with hair braiding, pottery, crab hunting, beach activities, canoeing, boogie-boarding and dressing up as warriors each night and riding across the pool in a bamboo raft before the torch lighting ceremony. Additionally, each child from infants to five years old is provided with a nanny from 8am until 8pm daily. Wi-Fi was complimentary throughout the resort with a strong signal everywhere. The gym was well equipped, air-conditioned with free weights as well as cardio machines.
Nanuku Auberge Resort Fiji arranged a car and driver to take us to the local waterfall, which ended up being two beautiful waterfalls close by. When the driver had reached the start of the trek, we started the descent down to the waterfalls on foot. Our guide was cheerful and engaging, ensuring he shared interesting facts about his childhood in the jungle and medicinal plants as we passed by them. While we were enjoying the refreshing water of the cascades, he popped up out of nowhere and produced traditional crowns made from local foliage he had just whipped up on the spot!
After an adventurous drive across the beautiful Fijian landscape we arrived at the zipline where four of us enjoyed a thrilling adventure across the jungle canopy. There are 12 ziplines of varying degree of difficulty and thrill to suit your abilities. Other activities on offer include fishing, surfing and whitewater rafting.
We left Nanuku on two jet skis and, after a 30-minute ride gliding across the Pacific Ocean, we knew we had found paradise. As we soaked up the sun on this private island the amazing staff set out lunch, paddle boards, drinks, or indeed anything you could wish for.
- Dining Experience Award at the 2016 ANZ Fiji Excellence In Tourism Awards.
Make sure you head to the main pool and lounge for the daily cocktail hour where the most delicious complimentary canapés are served as the sun sinks down into the ocean filling the sky with the myriad of pinks and blues that Fijian sunsets are renowned for.
Where to find it
Nanuku is situated on the eastern side of Fiji near Suva. It can be accessed via private aeroplane or helicopter or a car transfer from Nadi (two hours) or Suva (one hour). We flew Fiji Airways Business Class into Nadi and then transferred to a private plane for the scenic 30-minute flight. On departure we flew out via helicopter, which was breathtaking and highly recommended.
Frequent Sydney jet-setter Emma Lambert knows a thing or two about luxury travel. Emma enjoys travelling to beautiful places both near and far and her website www.luxefamilytravel.com.au is a beautiful mix of lust-worthy destinations and all things luxury travel and lifestyle. For a daily dose of escapism and wanderlust (even if it’s just to dream) follow Emma’s luxury travel mood board on Instagram @luxefamilytravel.