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Recommendations for semi-private island destination on points? (Bora Bora, Hawaii?)

Recommendations for semi-private island destination on points? (Bora Bora, Hawaii?)

Old Nov 7, 19, 10:22 am
  #1  
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Recommendations for semi-private island destination on points? (Bora Bora, Hawaii?)

Not sure if this is the correct place to post, but I'm in need of help/recommendations. I'm trying to cash-in my 120,000+ chase rewards points for a once-in-a-lifetime getaway for my wife and I. We never get away due to multiple special needs children at home, but I promised we would do something memorable for our 20th, so I've arranged care the third week of February, and can get us to Tahiti / Bora Bora or Hawaii with my United points, but I'm having trouble narrowing down options for a specific location or hotel. Can anyone help?
We're looking for something very quiet, relaxing and private... like a bungalow or tree house type of room (probably can't afford anything over-water though), and we love snorkeling so I'm trying to find a waterfront resort with calm, clear water. Not worried about fancy amenities and we really could care less about night life, restaurants, or nearby touristy stuff; we just want a quiet, but clean place to be alone for a week.
Anyhow, I had assumed I could find something in Bora Bora, but I'm realizing any resort with semi-private room options is going to be $600+ per night. Since my chase points say they're worth $1400, that's sadly only two nights. Are there cheeper islands or locations to consider (i.e. maybe a remote part of Hawaii?) or are there cheeper times to redeem points in Tahiti / Bora Bora in the off-season?
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Old Nov 7, 19, 1:19 pm
  #2  
 
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I can't really comment on other places as I live in Hawaii and have no real interest in other tropical destinations. But $1400 is not really going to go far in Hawaii and there are really no secluded/semi private hotels. Maybe 4 Seasons on Lanai or an Airbnb type of thing but it may be better to look elsewhere because all our beaches are supposed to be public and there aren't really any secret places anymore.
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Old Nov 7, 19, 9:03 pm
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Park Hyatt Maldives is 25,000 chase pts transferred to hyatt per night. Pretty long trip to get there though.
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Old Nov 7, 19, 9:22 pm
  #4  
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Originally Posted by klockw243 View Post
Not sure if this is the correct place to post, but I'm in need of help/recommendations. I'm trying to cash-in my 120,000+ chase rewards points for a once-in-a-lifetime getaway for my wife and I. We never get away due to multiple special needs children at home, but I promised we would do something memorable for our 20th, so I've arranged care the third week of February, and can get us to Tahiti / Bora Bora or Hawaii with my United points, but I'm having trouble narrowing down options for a specific location or hotel. Can anyone help?
We're looking for something very quiet, relaxing and private... like a bungalow or tree house type of room (probably can't afford anything over-water though), and we love snorkeling so I'm trying to find a waterfront resort with calm, clear water. Not worried about fancy amenities and we really could care less about night life, restaurants, or nearby touristy stuff; we just want a quiet, but clean place to be alone for a week.
Anyhow, I had assumed I could find something in Bora Bora, but I'm realizing any resort with semi-private room options is going to be $600+ per night. Since my chase points say they're worth $1400, that's sadly only two nights. Are there cheeper islands or locations to consider (i.e. maybe a remote part of Hawaii?) or are there cheeper times to redeem points in Tahiti / Bora Bora in the off-season?
Not sure which is the right Forum for your post, as you bring up so many issues from Chase Rewards to UA points to Tropical paradise destinations. . Therefore, I am moving your thread to the FT Information Desk
I hope you have a lovely 20th Anniversary celebration.
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Old Nov 8, 19, 2:02 am
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Honestly if you’re looking for a beautiful, inexpensive, remote beach destination, I’d probably ditch the idea of Bora Bora and Hawaii and look harder at SE Asia.
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Old Nov 8, 19, 9:16 am
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Do you have an additional cash budget beyond the UR points or do you want to keep it within what you can do with those points? That's really going to determine your range of possibilities. The UR points alone won't cover both airfare and lodging for what you have in mind, but may take care of one or the other, or at least put a dent in one.

There are a number of airline and hotel transfer partners for UR. You have two main routes for UR points - transfer points to one of those partners or redeem through the Chase UR travel portal for "cash" flights or hotels. Then within those two options you would want to see whether the points will go farther with a hotel or an airline option. You can search on what's available for the relevant transfer partners on their sites or also, for airlines, use Award Nexus for a multiple search (free if you login using your FT username and password): https://awardnexus.com/user/login?url=%2F

I'd agree with javabytes that SE Asia has a lot more affordable options in general. You might also look into some areas in Central America, the Caribbean, and parts of South America. While there are a lot of expensive locales in those regions, particularly the Caribbean, there are more budget friendly options sometimes....Belize, Caribbean coast of Colombia, Dominica, Honduras, off the top of my head might be worth further research.
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Old Nov 8, 19, 1:49 pm
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Thanks for the feedback, everyone... and for the helpful transfer options, 84fiero! Last night I also found this really helpful article by TPG that outlined some of the considerations (and hidden costs) of Bora Bora resorts; it could be helpful if anyone else stumbles on this thread later in time: https://thepointsguy.com/guide/moore...right-for-you/

Ultimately, I will be putting some cash into this, but we live on a very meager budget, so... yeah. I have around 160k points in each United and American, plus the Chase UR points, and 100k Marriott points to play with right now. Upon doing some more research into Bora Bora, I found this little mom-and-pop place which would require out of pocket cash (from what I can tell) but it's only $150 per night and you can cook your own food (instead of paying $50/person for every meal): Home - Chez Nono, pension de famille sur la plage Matira, Bora Bora, Polynésie Française

The reason Bora Bora or Hawaii are my main focus is because I'd be flying out of SFO and trying not to loose a day or two each direction with transfers. That being said, I know St. John would be an equivalent "prime" location for crowd-free pristine beaches and snorkeling, but there isn't much lodging options with points. Otherwise I suppose I could look at other Caribbean destinations if anyone has suggestions. One dream had been to find a place featuring private bungalows with their own splash pools, but I can't remember where I've seen those advertised.
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Old Nov 8, 19, 7:06 pm
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Originally Posted by javabytes View Post
Honestly if you’re looking for a beautiful, inexpensive, remote beach destination, I’d probably ditch the idea of Bora Bora and Hawaii and look harder at SE Asia.
A beach resort in Fiji is another option. But US$1400 equivalent value will not go far with any international chain.

As for "can get us to Tahiti / Bora Bora or Hawaii with my United points" that may be a challenge for Fiji. Or anywhere with UA ff miles with very fixed dates.

Expectations need to reset IMHO
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Old Nov 8, 19, 11:26 pm
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Moorea is worth a look if your heart is set on Tahiti.

But I second the push to SE Asia.

Phuket would fit the bill well and is much cheaper on points and at the resort or at in-town food places (Ren Phuket is great when we stayed a few years back).

Kauai is beautiful -- that's worth a look you could transfer your points to Hyatt for the GH Kauai and fly UA/AS to LIH.

Key West is another thought.
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Last edited by Duke787; Nov 8, 19 at 11:33 pm
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Old Nov 10, 19, 1:23 pm
  #10  
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Originally Posted by klockw243 View Post
Thanks for the feedback, everyone... and for the helpful transfer options, 84fiero! Last night I also found this really helpful article by TPG that outlined some of the considerations (and hidden costs) of Bora Bora resorts; it could be helpful if anyone else stumbles on this thread later in time: https://thepointsguy.com/guide/moore...right-for-you/

Ultimately, I will be putting some cash into this, but we live on a very meager budget, so... yeah. I have around 160k points in each United and American, plus the Chase UR points, and 100k Marriott points to play with right now. Upon doing some more research into Bora Bora, I found this little mom-and-pop place which would require out of pocket cash (from what I can tell) but it's only $150 per night and you can cook your own food (instead of paying $50/person for every meal): Home - Chez Nono, pension de famille sur la plage Matira, Bora Bora, Polynésie Française

The reason Bora Bora or Hawaii are my main focus is because I'd be flying out of SFO and trying not to loose a day or two each direction with transfers. That being said, I know St. John would be an equivalent "prime" location for crowd-free pristine beaches and snorkeling, but there isn't much lodging options with points. Otherwise I suppose I could look at other Caribbean destinations if anyone has suggestions. One dream had been to find a place featuring private bungalows with their own splash pools, but I can't remember where I've seen those advertised.
I think your plan makes a lot of sense. Matira beach is beautiful and next to the shuttered Hotel Bora Bora. It used to be home to the Matira Cottages, which for years was one of the only alternatives to Hotel Bora Bora. It is a wonderful location for snorkeling. Easy bike ride in to Vaitape to do any food shopping. No need for a car.
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Old Nov 11, 19, 10:14 am
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To stretch your budget consider a rental or AirBnB/VBRO. Some might come with a car and/or bikes, etc. A home exchange might also work though Fresno is not likely to be an in-demand location. Also, do some research on google.fr for rentals as this might show other/better options.
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Old Nov 11, 19, 8:15 pm
  #12  
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Originally Posted by obscure2k View Post
I think your plan makes a lot of sense. Matira beach is beautiful and next to the shuttered Hotel Bora Bora. It used to be home to the Matira Cottages, which for years was one of the only alternatives to Hotel Bora Bora. It is a wonderful location for snorkeling. Easy bike ride in to Vaitape to do any food shopping. No need for a car.
Thanks for your post. This is an option I will definitely consider. Have been to Bora Bora several times and this looks like an amazing option.
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Old Nov 12, 19, 11:05 pm
  #13  
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If flying to PPT, the ferry to Moorea is a half hour and at the other end (northwest) of the island is Hotel Les Tipaniers. You’ll have lovely beaches, motus and more genuine culture than Bora Bora (which you’ll have to fly to on Air Tahiti and then pay for the ferry onward).
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Old Nov 14, 19, 10:27 pm
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Thanks so much, everyone! I used all your tips to research more places, and ultimately decided that I'll probably stick with the original plan of Bora Bora. I had seriously considered Moorea instead of Bora Bora after reading the TPG blog I referenced above (and the Hotel Les Tipaniers looks great) but I can't imagine going all that way for a once-in-a-lifetime trip, and wishing we had seen Bora Bora. In the end, it looks like my United points will cover the non-stop from SFO to PTE, and some of my Chase points will cover the local airfare to BOB. I got a night at the Ritz for free with Marriott points, and then we'll just book one of the local options with the rest of the Chase points (Hotel Maitai Polynesia or Hotel Royal Bora Bora look like a great deal... or maybe one of the non-AC bungalow places like Chez Nono or Village Temanuata).
obscure2k: any ideas for local adventures besides Matira Beach?
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