Style Boho Polynesian beach house
Setting Private island in Rangiroa atoll
Fancy barefoot-luxury on your own private island in French Polynesia? Boutique retreat Motu Teta, an intimate, lagoon-lapped isle in a dramatic coral atoll, sleeps up to eight for the ultimate beach-house party. Snorkel, swim or canoe by day; then catch your own fish for dinner on the deck at sunset. With just two laid-back residences, a personal chef and informal tour guides, this is the anti-resort, ideal for castaway capers with family or friends.
Need to know
- Rooms Two suites in the Main House, one in the Guest House, plus a single bed in each (sleeping up to eight adults).
Double rooms from $3079.24 (€2,300), excluding tax at 14 per cent.
The price shown represents the lowest nightly rate for a double room available at this hotel over the next 21 days. Any price conversions from the hotel's local currency (€2,300) have been conducted using today's exchange rates from xe.com.
- More details Rates include exclusive hire of the island, à la carte breakfast, all meals and drinks, return boat transfers from Rangiroa Airport, private chef and tour guides, excursions and water craft.
- Facilities Private island and beach, iPod dock and flatscreen TV, DVD, Blu-ray and CD player (all in Main House only), free library of books, CDs and over 220 DVDs, concierge, laundry, snorkelling gear and watersports including windsurfing, waterskiing, rod and spearfishing, boating and outrigger canoes. In rooms: Polynesian and Neutrogena toiletries, bottled water. Don't expect internet access in this far-flung getaway, although you may be able to get online with a GSM-based cell phone as there is mobile coverage. There are also chargers and a phone guests can use.
- Poolside There's no swimming pool, but who needs one when you're ringed by the lapping turquoise lagoon and you've got a tropical, palm-lined beach all to yourself?
- Check-out 2pm; check-in, 12pm, both flexible subject to availability and arrival/departure times.
- Children Welcome – Motu Teta works brilliantly for intrepid family holidays, if you want time alone with your brood. Free baby cots are available, and extra beds for older kids up to age 16 cost €75 a child a night. More...
- Also Smoking is allowed and pets permitted (but we're not sure Fido would enjoy the plane/boat transfer).
Food and drink at Motu Teta
At Motu Teta, dining is an informal affair, with personal chef Celine on hand to cook for you, and a small crew of staff (who stay on the other side of the island) on hand to serve you and help out. There's a basic menu in place, stuffed with delicious French-meets-Polynesian treats, including fresh fish, healthy salads and tropical fruit, but you can always request something specific or changes to suit your group or schedule. Breakfast is a gorgeous, Gallic spread, spanning French toast, croissants, crepes, eggs, bread and honey, cold cuts, brie, camembert and vanilla yoghurts (leave room for the mango and papaya). Come evening, tuck into grouper with pepper sauces, cream and basil, or more exotic fare such as sea snails with garlic cheese or sea urchin, depending who's caught what that day.
- Dress code On this exclusive-hire Eden, you set the tone. Casual beach attire, from shorts to sarongs and kaftans, will cover most bases, but you might fancy some sparkle for cocktail o'clock.
- Top table Take to the generous table on the deck of the Main House for beachside breakfasts, lazy lunches or starlit suppers, with benches or sofas for reclining. The candlelit, wooden table indoors in the main living/dining area is also a sociable spot.
- Last orders Generally, breakfast is around 8am, lunch at 1pm and dinner at 8pm, but how long they last is totally up to you. Just chat with chef Celine or the other staff about what you'd like to eat and when.
- Room service This ain't the kind of place where you 'ring down' for impersonal burger deliveries at 2am, but a la carte items can be ordered as you fancy. Just help yourself to snacks or drinks anytime, and the team will keep the canapes and wine coming until late.
There's no bar as such, but the Main House comes fully stocked with bottled water, soft drinks and alcohol (all included in rates), and the Guest House has its own bar on a private deck. You're welcome to snack or sip anywhere, from your bedroom to the shared living areas or outdoors, but the sunloungers or hammocks on the decks of both residences are hard to beat for chill bubbly with sea views. The island's American owner has his own Californian vineyard, so you may get to sample his own-label wine Fasi Crest.
Also worth knowing
- Weddings This property is suitable for weddings. More...
Motu Teta P.O. Box 455, 98776 Rangiroa, Tahiti-Polynésie Française, Tahiti
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Smith extra at Motu Teta
Champagne at sunset; SilverSmiths also get a Rangiroa pearl necklace or keyring; GoldSmiths also get a pareo (sarong)
In the know
Our favourite rooms
If you prefer romantic seclusion, make for the more intimate Guest House, with gorgeous views out from the airy king-size bed or deck to the lagoon. Families or friends may prefer to stay together in the more spacious, breezier Main House, which offers two king-size double bedrooms at either end, each with an ensuite shower, plus a single bedroom for the smalls. The boudoir by the main door and kitchen area is cooler; the one opposite is more private, but both spoil you with ocean views.
Bring reef shoes and a rash shirt for swimming and shore exploring, as the coral can be sharp, and your own mask and snorkel if you're fussy about your kit. Sunscreen, lip protection, mossie repellant, toiletries and straw beach mats are all provided, but pack an iPod loaded with your posse's favourite tunes to pop on the dock. A waterproof camera will get a good workout in these island-hopping parts.
Ask your hosts to break out the ukelele, the national instrument of choice. The balmy sounds are a sultry soundtrack for sunset cocktails. The tiare (Tahitian gardenia) flowers decorating the retreat are another local touch.