Octopus Resort provides a taste of luxury on a budget. If you are looking for a simplistic hideaway juxtaposed by the most incredible Coral Reef, this resort is for you.
Waya Island, Yasawa Islands, Fiji
N.B. This review may seem a little negative but I have tried to offer the most useful, honest and objective insight possible.
We were due to stay at Octopus Resort for x3 nights, however, this ended up being extended due to unforeseen and extreme circumstances. More on this later! For reference, Paradise Cove, Blue Lagoon and Octopus are all part of the same resort family.
Octopus has named itself as ‘the best luxury resort in Fiji’. However, they do have backpacker-friendly dorm rooms and budget bungalows. We stayed in a ‘Point Beachfront Suite‘ – one of the top-end room categories but sadly, it didn’t live up to the hype.
The actual room was fine, but that’s it. Structurally, it wasn’t well-built or well-maintained and could do with a refurbishment. The wooden shutters did nothing to prevent the wind from coming through. Which was less than ideal once the weather turned. Generally, the design was dated so although clean, it appeared rather musty. Even the sand-removing foot bath was sad! In the sister resorts, we were treated to miniature stone baths with fresh flowers every day. At Octopus, there are unattractive white plastic buckets. Which seemed totally out of place on one of the Yasawa Islands. See if you can spot in in the photos below ;).
The most disappointing feature was the outdoor bathroom. Which can hardly be classed as such. It’s just an average bathroom with part of the roof missing, similar to the one we had at Nanuya. Overall, the suite was disappointing. Although, there was a functioning safe and the private sun loungers and porch were nice, providing fabulous ocean views.
Meals at Octopus are part of a compulsory meal plan, so ensure you check prices before you book. Out of the four Fijian resorts we stayed at, the food here was by far the worst. The breakfast and lunch offering was fine, unremarkable really. But dinner I struggled with. I won’t go into too much detail, as my visit was a while ago now so hopefully, things have improved. But just in case, beware the special Fijian buffet.
In addition to the poor food quality, the lack of flooring in the restaurant is questionable considering Octopus is supposedly a luxury resort. Personally, I don’t want everyone to be barefoot for an a la carte dining experience. Particularly in the evenings – it makes changing for dinner somewhat counterproductive!
Compared to the other Fiji island resorts we visited, the staff here were the least friendly. Perhaps they found that their Manager, Caesar, lacked charisma and compassion. And perhaps, as a result, they lost their sense of enthusiasm. I can’t say I’d blame them!
When things took a turn for the worse, the Manager did nothing to ease the fear and panic of the guests. When the mobile phone towers were knocked out by a cyclone, he wouldn’t allow anyone to log onto the insanely expensive Wi-Fi for a few complimentary minutes… Not even to let our loved ones know we were ok.
And when we were forced to stay on the island for a few unanticipated days? He charged everyone full price for the extra nights. Despite knowing that we had all missed flights and lost out on other bookings etc. Yep, nice. Considering the high price points and abysmal attitudes, the least the team could have done was fix the TV in our ‘luxury’ room. TV in Fiji is not something you anticipate needing – but you try waiting out a cyclone in a beach-focused resort! We asked multiple times for someone to look into it, but nobody came.
Caesar didn’t want anyone to change rooms once everyone became stranded there. Mike and I were staying in one of the best rooms categories as we were treating ourselves to a Fiji ‘holiday’. However, by the end of a 6-month jaunt, we weren’t exactly in a position to fork out for additional nights in the not-so-great beachfront room. We asked nicely, but Caesar was adamant that we couldn’t downgrade.
When asked not so nicely – a day later and a few hundred pounds lighter – he allowed it. The whole encounter added stress to already unfortunate circumstances. Which was a real shame as it hugely tainted my overall impression of Octopus.
Beach: The soft white sand beaches and crystal clear waters would be one of the only things I’d return to Octopus Resort for. But I won’t beat around the bush… The absolute best thing about this resort is the coral reef. This Fiji island resort is fortunate enough to have incredible reefs literally on their doorstep. You can borrow a snorkel for free and spend hours free diving in the South Pacific. It’s simply stunning, as are the various species that reside there. Describing it doesn’t do it justice, so delve into the following pictures and see for yourself.
Pool: The pool is located next to the restaurant. It’s pretty standard size-wise and otherwise. It’s also family-friendly. Honestly, the reef is so beautiful I’m sure you’ll spend more time at the ocean!
Watersports: This Yasawa island has it’s own PADI scuba diving operation, so you can learn whilst your there. I didn’t test this out as the snorkelling opportunities are so fantastic.
Other: Octopus offers a few local activities such as hosting a Fijian Meke (cultural show) for guests. They also have a kids club.
All things considered, our time at Octopus was pretty awful from start to finish. The resort’s one redeeming quality is the beach and its breathtaking reef… Which also happens to be the only thing they can’t take credit for!
Even before everything went drastically downhill weather-wise, we weren’t happy here. Consequently, we left a terrible guest review in the room the day we were originally due to check out. But, as you know, we ended up staying longer. Unfortunately, they had already turned over the room in anticipation of our departure… and discovered said review. Oops!
Nevertheless, I do think others will have a different opinion and experience. Ensure you read a few more reviews before you decided whether to book a stay here. It was highly recommended to us back home. Plus, a friend that I bumped into on our adventures stated that Octopus was the best island she’d stayed on whilst exploring Fiji. Everything is relative. Not to mention, we had just been spoilt rotten in literal paradise (cove).
That being said, nothing makes up for the food, the General Manager, and obviously the whole cyclone thing… So I stand by my review for now!
I hope that this review hasn’t put you off Fiji entirely, as there are some truly stunning tropical resorts out there. In fact, I’d highly recommend Octopus Resort’s sister properties. You can read full reviews for each of these here: Paradise Cove Resort / Blue Lagoon Beach Resort
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