More about Aggie Grey's Lagoon, Beach Resort & Spa
Loved this place
Aggie Greys Lagoon Resort and Spa, Upolu, Samoa
Period of stay: 4th June - 11th June
New Member: Sydney, Australia
Aggie's was first rate with lovely sized rooms and ocean views at a reasonable cost, $1600 A$ for 7 days.. Food was included in the 7 day stay and was delicious, good quality food not cafeteria style as you often find in these arrangements.
Service was warm and friendly with all staff going out of their way to assist.
Free shuttle into Apia every 2 days ensured shopping and tours were accessible.
The hotel was clean and pristine. The nightclub was not finished but due to open in July.
Apia is a small township so there is no large city nearby such as you find in Phuket or Bali. So if you are looking for something very quiet and relaxing, Aggie's is simply perfect.
Needs a lot of work
Just Got back from a week at Aggie Greys and to be honest this place has got some real poblems.
Food. This was probably the worst dining experience I have ever had in any restaurant anywhere in the world. It is the same menu for both lunch and dinner the whole week, except for the one theme night and one barbecue night. The food was either over cooked, tasteless or fried. I along with a number of other guests whilst we there was sick from what we deduced was bad fish.
They tried with the service, but they still have a long way to go on that score aswell. One of the biggest problems is there poor command of English (not everyone, but most)
The Beach is constantly silty and muddy and rocky, don't let anyone tell you it is due to the construction, we spoke to some locals who confirmed this is as good as it gets and that the best beaches are on the other side of the Island.
The watersports activities are 500 meters up the beach with not much on offer, plus the motorised activites were pretty expensive.
This place is samoan owned and operated which is great for them but they really need the guidence of some experienced hotel operaters to sort out their problems.
Bottom line is, if your happy to sit by the pool and are not concerned with the beach, plus your go with food is quantity not quality and you not into water activities then this place might do. Oterwise I would suggest trying some of the beautiful beach fales which are all over both Islands
An Amazing Experience- 5 Stars*****
I just returned last night from spenging 10 days at Aggie Grey's Lagoon, Beach Resort and Spa. I went with my boyfriend and we had an absolutely amazing time. We found the entire stay at the resort to be absolutely fantastic.
We were on one of the deals where all meals were included for about $99 and it was an absolute steal!! The staff at the "Apolima Fale' resteraunt were absolutely superb and were keen to help us out with anything. Breakfast was a delicious variety of cereals, pastries, fresh fruits, an egg cooked anyway you liked, fresh breads and many hot dishes to choose from. The lunch menu was A La Carte and we were able to chose an entre, main and a desert. The best entrees were definately the Sushimi and the Caesar Salad and the best main was easily the steak sandwhich. Dinner was once again buffet where there was a different theme every night ranging from BBQ, to international to Asian night. Some great dishes were seafoood and coconut cream in a pumpkin, seafood polenta, curried chicken, pan fried fish in lemon, sweat and sour pork and many many more. The best dessert was easily the fresh moose. One night strawberry, the next night hazelnut, the next night mango and the next night mixed berries.
Aside from eating, the resort had many great activities to undertake. We played tennis, went kayaking in the lagoon, went on a catamaran, had a spa and spent time in the beautiful swimming pools. The resort also offered many activities which we thoroughly enjoyed like resort walks, watching fresh coconut cream being made and watching the local ladies weave handicrafts.
We spent a fair bit of time at the variour bars drinking some beautiful cocktails for fairly reasonably prices. You can't go past a pina colada in a place like this. Like one of the other reviews though, we were sorry there was nothing to do after 10pm.
The rooms were beautifully furnished and brand new which is always lovely. The balconies all had top class views of the lagoon.
We hired a car for 5 days through "Discovery Rentals" at the resort. This was the eastiest way to hire a car and the cost was much the same as doing it from Apia. It was a great way to see the entire of Upola and taking the car across on the ferry and seeing Savii. The best tourist attractions were the sliding rocks, the cave pools, return to paradise beach, the array of waterfalls and the turtle feeding. We were concerned about driving on the right side of the road but it was very easy as there are not many cars around.
The best day of the trip was going to Manono island. We caught a taxi to the Manono- Uta ferry port (further south/west than the main ferry) and got a fisherman to take us over to Manona island. He agreed he would come and pick us up after 4 hours for $40 tala ($20 AUD), we then walked around the entire island which was about a 2 hour walk and we stopped for some snorkelling on the way.
We couldn't believe how beautiful the scenery was, it was miles more beautiful than Vanuatu, Fiji or the Cook Islands. The locals were amazing as well, every single one of them wanted to wave and say hello.
Overall it was an amazing trip and an awesome trip. I would definately go back to Samoa and stay at Aggie Greys if i had the opportunity.
A great resort on a beautiful Island
After having read reviews on here and the thorn tree abut earlier experiences we were very dubious about our trip....but I'm pleased to say things have obviously improved, whilst the charm of the place remains in tact!
The beach was back in as much as it looked nice, you couldn’t swim in the ocean due to sinking mud and sharp stones. I noticed that they don’t call themselves a beach resort any more but they really need to update their website accordingly. There are some lagoon places in Fiji on the coral coast that have a great reputation and noone expects to get a swim in the ocean, so I hope for their sake that Aggies go the same way…
But everything else was superb. I think we were lucky in that the hotel was geared up but not full (we went the week before school holidays) so all facilities were available but no queues or crowds.
The food was delicious and reasonable (we were one of the only guests not on a food package so we had very good service because there were so many waiters but everyone else was helping themselves to a buffet)! The wine list was good, and the local beer cheap. The food hygiene was very good.
Service was a bit rustic but so well meant. Everyone was friendly, attentive, polite… it really made the holiday more enjoyable. We loved spotting our favourite waiters in the floor show on the friday night (which was fantastic by the way!)
The pool was always empty and there was always a seat at the swim up bar! We went out on the free catamarans a few times and really enjoyed that. The kids club was nice, but we didn’t use it much because our son was too young to leave him there. I heard older children begging their parents to be allowed to go back to Kids club when the parents were tryin g to have some 'family time'!!
We hired a car for 3 days and drove right round the island and also caught the ferry over to the other island which was great fun. We went to lots of beaches with the car to make up for not having one at the resort. The snorkelling was as good as any we had done in Fiji. All the locals we saw anywhere were friendly and interested in talking to us. They are a lovely people.
It looks like the golf course will be further delayed, but also it was made clear to us that it will not now belong to the resort and will not be complimentary or even reduced to people staying at the resort.
One really good thing about the resort was it's location. Really only 5 mins drive from the airport and 5 mins drive from the ferry terminal! After a long flight it was lovely to get to the hotel so quickly and be sipping our welcome drinks before we knew it!
I should mention the fight, we went with Virgin's pacific blue which is the only way to fly direct from Sydney. The crew were lovely but everything else about the experience was dreadful! The clocks had changed on our way out and the rosters were wrong so there was noone to check us in for an hour, then a very grumpy girl who told us the flight was full and our son would have to sit on our lap (the flight was a quarter full!)There was no hot food available on either flight, there and back (and you have to pay for everything! So you'd expect they'd make sure they had enough to sell!) and on the way back they had again mixed up the times so we landed 2 hours earlier than they said on the itinerary ... great for us but not for those with people collecting them at the airport. Altogether a shambles, but soon forgotten when at the peaceful resort. (except the whole crew were staying there too!!)
Our only regret was eating at McDonalds in Apia because it was so hot and our son was so hungry and we had no detailed map so we didn’t look around for a better dining experience, I would have like to have seen the other Aggie Greys and eaten there….. maybe next time.
I think we will go back when our son is older and can go to kids club by himself, and participate in some of the great free water sports they have like the water trampoline, kyacks, pedalos and catermerans.
We are looking forward to returning then!
The Fawlty Towers of Samoa
My sons and I just spent a week at this so called 5 star resort. This is my 2nd review as I am not sure what happened to my first review I wrote but it seems to have dissappeared and as I think my opinion is valuable I'm writing this again.
This resort was sold to us as a package deal "not to be missed " for it's great value. We've been to an all inclusive resort in Fiji a few times before and had a marvelous time and were looking forward to being at this one in Samoa but it sure fell short of our expectations.
Maybe because it is new , or maybe because Samoa isn't geared up for tourism yet, but this place has a lot of problems to iron out before it can be called a 5 star resort.
The very first night there we got robbed by a security guard who broke into our room and stole money from my wallet and a valuable item from my handbag. Luckily the money and items were eventually returned and the culprit was apparently caught but it took a fair while for the resort manager to deal with my problem and during that time I got to hate being there and felt very stressed. I spoke to 3 other families who also had suspicions about why their safes had seemed tampered with while they swam in the pool, footprints on their vernadah etc. All very suss!
I was determined not to let this experience spoil a holiday I had saved all year for and my sons and I wanted to relax and have a good time as we previously have in the South Pacific. Yet the food was poor quality, the sevice at times atrocious. We watched many families wait up to 3 hours to get lunches. Most times the meal read beautifully on the menu and then we'd get the meal and wonder if that was what we had ordered! My son called the menu an 'artists ' interpretation of the meal you might receive.
We watched many people ine up in the evenings to complain to some manager of the restaurant about the poor food and service they were receiving. It became a joke especially on the flight home when we as a group who had stayed at the resort joked about the menu and the food.
The nightlife here is non existant! If you want night life then don't come to this resort. You have to go to Apia and pay some $100 Tala return ($50 AUD) to get a taxi there and back if you want any nightlife. The whole resort goes to sleep at 9 pm and the place is dead!
The kids club is a joke. The equipment is all broken and no attempt made to repair anything. The water trampoline lives permanently on land, also broken. The organised volleyball in the pool consisted of one Samoan throwing a ball in the water and clearing off. That was it!
After I complained about the kids activities something seemed to get done about it and we saw a little activity but it only seemed to interest the very young kids .
The staff at reception, including the managment seemed overwhelmed at times with complaints and the mananger was known to hide in this office to get away from complaints! What a joke it was.
It could eventually be a nice place to stay. We won't however be paying all that money to give them another chance. One more thing I forgot. I have this visual staying with me , of the poor reception staff and the blank stares they would give to guests when people would complain with very valid reasons.I started to feel very sorry for the staff there having to deal with matters that the management should have taken more responsibilty for.
Hopefully this place will improve.
Good value package holiday albeit rough around the edges
We went to this resort 1 month after its "soft" (first stage) opening. Still a lot of construction going on so we were glad to have a room on the other side of the resort from that.
After an inauspicious start waiting 20 minutes in the bus before departure (the driver was "waiting for someone" - not tourists), we drove the few minutes it took to reach the resort.
First impressions weren't the best, lots of dirt around in front of the resort where Americans are building a golf course.
We were impressed with our unit, however. Being almost brand new and quite spacious it was hard not to be.
Food was either by buffet (help yourself) or you could order from a set menu when you checked in and gave your room number. Almost everyone went straight to the buffet and lined up. I tried the set menu a few times and once was rewarded by very delicious steaks of mahi mahi (dolphin fish). Food was plentiful (don't go there if you are on a diet); sometimes plain, basic, fatty, and repititious; but pretty good overall especially if you choose the local produce such as fruit and fish.
Restaurant staff couldn't have tried harder, were eager to please, and strived to make us happy. We felt like kings at times. They may have made some etiquette mistakes but who cares (we wouldn't know as we have only stayed at a couple of resorts till now).
Most waiting staff were young men good at sports such as rugby, which they like to talk about as well as about their families. (Samoans are very family and community orientated.) Most of the female staff were in the reception or cleaning the rooms. Some of the older women seemed to boss around the younger men at times.
The large pool was nice and the kids lived in it day (and sometimes night!). Pool chairs were often all taken but apparently they have bought more since. The bottom of the pool feels like sandpaper - it could be smoother. Staff are always asking "do you want a drink?" but they are just under orders (resorts make a lot of their money that way I think). Cocktails are expensive ($15-25), but the local beer was nice and relatively cheap.
Room cleaning maids had the annoying habit of leaving the sliding doors your room unlocked even though you had locked them. Proably an innocent mistake/oversight - locking may be foreign in their culture (most houses in the villages have no walls to aid ventilation). They have to be some of the best dressed cleaners around though! (all female staff wore beautiful lava lavas and a few were gorgeous).
The sea and beach in front of the resort was disappointing (so the pool was very popular); apparently it has bad visibility due to all the construction going on and the nearby airport (so few flights so noise was not a problem). You can see some fish though if you go off some of the rocky breakwaters near the walk to the spa.
Much better to go to Palolo Deep Reserve (near Apia) or go on a daytrip to Savaii Island for snorkelling, walking the 15 minutes from the resort to the ferry and then renting a taxi (drivers meet you off the ferry) to take you to one of the bays on the east or northern part of that island. They will even arrange to pick you up. Ferry ($7) and taxi are both cheap compared to New Zealand.
Use of snorkelling equipment, canoes, catamarans etc is free around the resort and a small fee is charged for taking snorkelling equipment off site. The people (Australians and French) run the watersports separately from the resort and are nice people. Unfortunately for them they were having trouble with their ski boat when were there.
Kids' club facilities were not that inviting but the staff were nice and friendly. My kids weren't there much, they preferred the pool and made some friends there too.
Tour to Manono Island was soon booked out so we couldn't go. It would pay to book as soon you arrive.
Organisation and availability of tours not as good as advertised. They could do with better more consistent information on a large board instead of a few little paper notices tucked away in a corner.
Some tourists seemed confused about what tours were or were not available as well as pick up arrangements when they arrived in Apia from the free shuttle.
On our last shuttle trip (it was a Sunday) we got the bonus of a trip (not advertised) to the sliding rocks which were fun. The driver was jovial and nice.
Overall we got what we paid for and probably more. When all the tropical seedlings are fully grown and the construction is all finished it will be a rather luxurious place, and probably unaffordable for many average tourists like us by then.
Just returned from 10 wonderful days of R & R. After reading with interest other reviews prior to going I can honestly say that we were more than happy with what we found.
The resort itself is immaculately presented; rooms are larger than average and spotlessly maintained on a daily basis. We travelled with two children 11 & 7 and there was plenty of space for us all in one room. One queen bed & one single which is standard in all rooms and they added a rollaway bed for the second child.
As much free bottled water in your fridge as you required (as tap water is not safe to consume) and towels replenished twice daily, which was another lovely luxury seldom found these days.
As with previous posters we were on an all inclusive meal deal which really was terrific value. The breakfast and lunch menus were excellent and the children seemed happy with the kids meals although the portions were a little on the small side for the 11 year old but after we made mention of this one evening to a waiter, we never had a problem again with the size of his meal!
The dinner buffets were great value if a little repetitive after 10 days, however there is always the option of the other "A La Carte" restaurant should you want a change.
My only criticism of the food would be the buffet dinner desserts which I felt lacked imagination, mousses and sponge cakes of various flavours with coloured icings each night could be improved upon.
On the beverage list the local beer Vailima went down a treat, and was very reasonably priced compared to the imported stuff. ST6.50 compared to around ST12 for the likes of Steinlager and Heineken. Cocktails on average ranged from ST15.00 - ST20.00 but very nice! Be warned though bottled water is free to your room but chargeable at the bars and at meal times.
The pool is fantastic and swim up bar well used! And after reading earlier posts about the beach I was pleasantly surprised by it. Each morning staff would rake the sand for stones etc and it really looked quite beautiful.
Everyone’s perception of the water will differ however we found it to be ok. The sand is a little sinky in parts, and the water looks clearer at low tide but we swam quite often as did a lot of the guests. At the water sports end of the beach it’s even better for swimming and of course oh so warm! Non motorised water sports were great fun, and we made use of the pedal cats, kayaks, catamarans and the trampoline in the water.
The resort was only 30% occupied during our stay so it was very peaceful, some days we had the pool to ourselves however, management said this was about to increase with a busy winter season ahead. All the staff was friendly and eager to please, they have obviously come a long way since the resorts opening and we didn’t find any problems with the language barrier.
The Spa is worth a visit if only to check out the beautiful setting. I felt the prices were a little over the top, but hey your on holiday so....you indulge if you want to. I was a little disappointed in the Spa menu, not a lot of choice and no basic things like manicures of pedicures available. Simply massage and body treatments.
Our children went a few times to the kids club which had a good range of activities scheduled but was flexible enough to change things round to suit the children’s needs that were there each session. They enjoyed tennis and soccer and then did some crafty things too and yes they have a play station!
The only thing I feel that was missing from the resort is a guest’s laundry. 10 days in that heat and its inevitable with children you will need to do some washing! The hotel offers a "Valet" laundry service but the pricing is ridiculous. Thankfully I had enquired about this prior to leaving and took liquid wash powder with me and managed to wash out what we required in our room.
We hired a 4 x 4 for a few days at the resort to go exploring the island and this was good value with there being 4 of us compared to doing the tours that are available from the resort. It was a brand new Hyundai and cost ST180 per day. You can probably get cheaper in Apia but I have heard that they are not as new and hence not reliable. A little daunting at first driving on the right but you soon get used to it and apart from the bustle of Apia you'll hardly see another vehicle on the road except a local bus or two packed to the hilt!.
Think that’s just about covered everything! Now off to consult the calendar to see when we can go back!
Peaceful Stay with Wonderful People
We enjoyed 10 wonderful days from 7th of May,2006. I agree with the previous writer & add - what wonderful, gentle & religious people are the Samoans. This is reflected in the manner in which we were treated. The service was excellent in all areas & extremely courteous & helpful. For those who wish to attend, there is an onsite church. On Sunday the service was spectacular in its singing by adults & children. Really lifted the roof off.
My only constructive suggestion was that there be a variety in the menu at lunch. The food was ok & satisfactory but one gets very tired of the same breakfast & lunch menu EVERY day. We are told that a night club and disco for the younger generation is being currently constructed so that will cater for the more exuberant generation.
Can highly recommend this destination.
"some of the best holidays are those unplanned..."
Well, Samoa is not in my list of countries to visit. But this year after returning from Perth I was coerced (just kidding) to go to Samoa. The short flight from Auckland was one good reason and having a chance to enjoy one day twice was a bonus! Yes, I got to enjoy the 1st of May twice this year!
I thought I was going to be bored in the little island but I ended up wishing I could stay longer. The port of entry at Faleolo International, just half an hour by cab from Upolu center, is quaint and reminded me of villages in my island country. We had no bookings as we were not sure if or when we can make it there. In the island they charge you if you cancel your booking anytime within the last 15 - 30 days prior to your arrival. I didn't want to risk losing money.
We got there and the cab driver was quite kind, he literally stopped door to door until we found a place to stay. Not so lucky me...all the places I would have preferred to stay at were all booked out. Luckily there was a place for us at Princess Tui. I am not hard to please and I know how to rough it. But roughing it and unclean are two things world apart! If you haven't backpacked before or stayed in dorms I suggest don't dare do it. I had to ask for another room and luckily one of the cottages was free. It was a little bit better but will not go there again.
The only good thing about having stayed there was meeting our Tour Guide Pete. Spent 2 nights in Upolu. Not much to see here except a bit of native products and their 24/7 fresh produce market which I really enjoyed. Great food at Aggie Greys but we also enjoyed dinner at the Paddles...food was good and prices reasonable although I was shocked at the prices of wine (but it does not worry me as I don't drink:-)) The only other reason I stayed there was to try and find a friend from my church who moved to Upolu from AKL a year ago.
The rest of our stay was spent in Lalomanu...and it was one of the few restful holidays I ever had...
"a bit of German heritage...from our Tour Guide"
It was the first time I found out about German's presence in Samoa. Now I understand why a lot of the Samoans have German surnames. Peter, our guide is one of them. He took my buddy on a historical tour...German history of course...and he managed to find my friend an old book about German history in Samoa. I thought it must have been hard for the Germans to adjust with the culture in Samoa...unstructured...island time. Anyway, it was nice to learn a little bit more about Samoa.
Peter looked after our trip to Lalomanu. We payed WST100 each for him to drop us off and pick us up and stopped at places along the way. I would be more than happy to recommend him. He was a former commercial pilot...
Contact Details: Peter Paul +6857774857
"Lalomanu, Upolu Island, Western Samoa"
Lalomanu Beach is about 2 -3 hours from Apia. We did not take the buses that ply the route between Lalomanu and Apia but I was told it is about WST5.00 and the buses are old but colorful. Riding on them I suppose would be an adventure, they looked rather slow for me. The main bus stand is by the waterfront just across the dry goods market.
They have very late breakfasts ...brunch rather..between 0900 - 1100 This is true at Taufua Fales, although we found Litia Sini's have theirs a bit earlier.
At Taufua the rate was WST80 per pax inclusive of breakfast and dinner.
Again these two are different in the way they serve food. Litia's is served buffet style... Taufua is served more like a potluck...except they cook the food for you of course. To some extroverts...this will suit them well... but those like me who look at holidays as having a break...and I mean break including that from crowd/s which I have to deal with everyday at home/work, will probably prefer Litia Sini's. People tend to mingle together yet you have an option to sit outside in open space on your own.