The Aussie at the helm of Samoa’s newest resort
Samoa continues to be a popular destination for Aussie tourists. Here, Travel Talk Magazine talks with former Perth resident NATHAN BUCKNALL, General Manager of the Taumeasina Island Resort, to find out what the attraction is, including where to get the best lobster in town.
Q: What kind of holiday experience can Aussie travellers expect in Samoa?
A: Samoa is a clean, tropical island paradise, a relatively short distance from the mainland of Australia. It has beautiful beaches, amazing natural attractions and friendly and approachable people who are willing and excited to share their customs and culture (faasamoa) with travelling tourists.
Q: What are some of the key features that set your resort apart from the rest?
A: Taumeasina Island Resort is the only island resort in the whole of Samoa and is also one of the newest, only opening in July 2016. The resort is on a semi-reclaimed island attached to the mainland by a causeway, is only a five-minute drive from Apia, the capital, and only 45 minutes from the international airport. We have 80 rooms, including two- and three-bedroom villas, and every room boasts water views. It is also the only property in town with two white sand beaches. Snorkelling, sailing and kayaking are just some of the complimentary water sports activities that you can take part in while stayinghere.
A complimentary buffet breakfast is served daily in Lapita’s restaurant and all guests get 1GB of complimentary Wi-Fi daily.
We are also the only resort in town with a day spa, sauna, tennis court and gym, all complimentary to our in-house guests.
Taumeasina has quickly become one of the most popular venues in the country for both large weddings and conference and incentive groups, catering for groups from 350 to 700 people.
Q: Food is a particular selling point these days. Will guests be well fed at Taumeasina?
A: We have three distinct dining areas: the Sina’s Fine Dining a la carte restaurant, Lapita’s and Cascades poolside dining, with a 24-hour room service menu. Bradley Martin, our Australian chef, likes to fuse locally sourced ingredients using western and Samoan cooking techniques in all of his menus. The menus have just been updated and on average we change them every six months or so.
One of the most popular evenings at Taumeasina is the seafood market, where fresh seafood can be purchased by the kilo from the restaurant and cooked to your liking. The best tasting and most reasonably priced lobster in the whole of the South Pacific can be found here every Tuesday evening.
Other theme nights include the famous Samoan Fia Fia (Celebration and Fire), Sunday To’onai (Sunday Feast Lunch), Asian Flavours Buffet and, of course, our Friday Seafood Extravaganza.
In addition to these restaurants, guests can enjoy one of two bars on site, the Manu Bar and the Sunset Bar, both overlooking the South Pacific.
Q: What memories do you hope guests will take away with them?
A: We hope that our guests will leave feeling rejuvenated, relaxed and recharged with memories of wonderful food, cultural experiences, efficient and friendly service, and with a strong desire to return again.