If your idea of paradise is an idyllic tropical setting, combining enchantment, romance, elegance, and unspoiled beauty, then The Havannah Vanuatu awaits.
You’ll find this intimate, absolute beachfront resort in an unrivaled location at Samoa Point, a mere 30 minute drive from Port Vila, the nation’s capital, and set amidst Flame Trees and tropical gardens.
The Havannah Vanuatu offers a space where relaxation begins and is a welcoming oasis inspired by the nature and culture that surrounds it.
Catering exclusively for adults, couples can immerse themselves in the natural beauty of their surroundings; choose to slow down and enjoy the tranquillity of nature or be active in experiencing the many wonderful, unique, cultural and environmental aspects of the area.
We invite you to experience The Havannah Vanuatu’s genuine warmth of service, attention to detail and truly magical setting. The Havannah Vanuatu is a proud member of National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World.
The resort sits on a stunning white sand peninsula on the sheltered shores of Havannah Harbour, which was named after a visit from a 19th century British naval vessel. This sheltered natural deep-water harbour has fringing areas of reef and mangrove.
Havannah Harbour was also a base for the US fleet during the 1942 Battle of the Coral Sea and visitors are able to view WW 2 memorabilia in the local villages nearby the resort. A short distance across the harbour lie the islands of Moso and Lelepa.
To the south, Lelepa Island acts as the gateway to the UNESCO World Heritage listed Chief Roi Mata domain and includes the significant archaeological sites: Mangasi, Fels Cave and Hat Island. Moso Island, to the north is the home of a Hawksbill turtle marine sanctuary.
In fact, Havannah Harbour hosts a myriad of marine life: dolphins, turtles, migratory whales and manatees can frequently be seen in the waters directly in front of the resort.
The Havannah Vanuatu is a supporter of VESS; a local organisation raising awareness of environmental matters in Vanuatu. A program in which VESS is currently focused is the preservation of Dugongs and the habitat in which they exist.
At The Havannah Vanuatu, guests can often witness Dugongs feeding on the sea grass areas directly off the resort. We are committed to assisting with these efforts and have adopted the VESS best practice guidelines for engaging with these wonderful marine mammals.
We encourage all of our guests to visit the VESS web site and view the Guidelines for Interacting with Dugong.We also encourage our guests to visit the turtle sanctuary at Tranquillity base on Moso Island.
This sanctuary is committed to supporting the breeding of hawksbill sea turtles; a critically endangered turtle that biologists estimate have declined by 80% in the past 120 years.
There is a good chance that an early morning view over the calm waters of Havannah Harbour will provide evidence of the fact that this initiative is proving fruitful and hawksbill numbers are rising locally.
DELUXE WATERFRONT VILLA
The two Deluxe Waterfront Villas are our premium accommodation offerings at The Havannah, Vanuatu. These villas take full advantage of the wide elevated vistas across the sparkling, azure waters to the neighbouring islands.
Divide your time between basking on the sun deck which extends out over the ocean, and cooling off in your private, seven metre, infinity-edge pool. Refresh by showering in the garden or soaking in an outdoor bathtub.
With separate dining and shaded day bed pavilions, you could choose to order room service or have our chef cook a private BBQ for you. You’d never have to leave the privacy of your villa. This is the ultimate in secluded indulgence. Please note that all villas accommodate a maximum of two adults only.
Admire the panoramic view of sparkling azure blue waters to the distant neighboring islands and volcano.
Relax on your private deck with its infinity edge plunge pool and shaded daybed, set off with your mask and snorkel to discover the riches of the nearby reefs, or enjoy easy, direct access to the beach from your villa.
Each of the six Waterfront Villas are of a modern, split level design with a lower living area and raised bedroom tier affording you stunning views from your king-size bed. Please note that all villas accommodate two people only and that the resort only caters for guests of 16 years of age or above.
LAGOON POOL VILLA
The Lagoon Pool Villas afford tropical barefoot sophistication. Each stand alone villa is set atop the magnificent split-level infinity edge lagoon pool and offers the best of both worlds: your own private beach and swimming pool entrance, as well as being in close proximity to the resort’s beach with great snorkeling and water-based activities.
Each Lagoon Pool Villas offers either ocean or pool and garden views, and has a private dining pavilion and day bed so you can enjoy the outlook and stunning sunsets from your choice of location.
For those seeking total seclusion, one of our four Garden Villas will suit your needs. Each Villa is nestled in amongst the tropical foliage, ensuring total privacy, and yet is only metres from the pool, beach and water-based activities.
Laze away sunny afternoons on your private, outdoor day bed and enjoy an evening cocktail and dinner in the privacy of your own dining pavilion.
Indulge and experience sumptuous gourmet cuisine when dining at The Havannah Vanuatu. The Havannah Vanuatu’s food concept is based on daily changing menus offering fresh, clean and creative food choices.
Showcasing the finest local produce with emphasis on local seafood, lush tropical fruits and vegetables, premium locally grown beef and the diversity of cultures that shape Vanuatu, namely French, Vietnamese, English and off course local Ni-Vanuatu.
Our chefs are adept at catering to your dietary requirements, whatever they may be and we can accommodate you without compromising on the flavour or presentation of your meal.
To accompany this gastronomic adventure we offer a selection of fine New Zealand, Australian and French wines. Local, New Zealand and Australian beers, spirits and cocktails are also available.
THE POINT RESTAURANT
The Point Restaurant, with its spectacular 270° views over Havannah Harbour, is the perfect place to relax and experience gourmet cuisine with warm friendly service.
A la Carte breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner are included in our nightly tariff. The Havannah Vanuatu focuses its daily-changing menus around Vanuatu’s many organic products and on the very best seasonal, local produce where ever possible.
Our dining locations are as varied as our mouth-watering cuisine: choose to dine under the thatched dome of the main restaurant, under the flame tree overlooking the beach, in the privacy of your own villa, on the beach or our jetty.
The iconic Havannah Jetty is perfect for a special romantic night; or you may choose to dine in comfort on the beach under the stars beside our bonfire. For a special evening, allow us to create a special, private dining experience for you and your partner in our unique sand sculpture dining setting.
If you are staying in our Deluxe Waterfront Villa, guests can request a private BBQ in their villa.
There is a wide choice of activities at The Havannah Vanuatu ranging from total relaxation to adventure sports. No matter what your ideal Vanuatu holiday entails, you will find something to suit.
Relax and enjoy some beachfront bliss sunbathing on our white sand beach or lounge on one of our daybeds suspended over the lagoon pool. The Havannah Vanuatu provides everything you need for the perfect getaway.
Guests can choose to snorkel off the pristine white sand beach in front of the restaurant to discover friendly clown fish; take a kayak for a leisurely exploration of the coast, or enjoy a sunset cruise with a glass of champagne.
Whilst it’s the perfect place to slow down, immerse yourself and experience the moment, if you are searching for some action, we can even arrange the exhilarating rush of game fishing for marlin, helicopter tours to nearby extinct volcano craters or day and overnight tours to active volcanoes.
You can relax and unwind, or plan for some adventure and action… the choice is yours. Complimentary activities include:
- Sunset cruise
- Stand up paddle boards
- Stand up pedal boards
- Hobie cats
There are 17 dive sites located within fifteen minutes by boat from the Resort. The Havannah Vanuatu is the perfect luxury base for beginner and experienced divers alike. Offering the best diving in Efate, the Havannah Harbour area abounds with colourful hard and soft corals, tropical fish, turtles and dugong.
We work in conjunction with a PADI dive centre that collect our guests each morning from our jetty and return the divers back to the resort in the afternoon. Please see our Dive Packages for further information.
TOURS & ACTIVITIES
Whether you would like to visit our nearby World Heritage listed archaeological sites, or explore a pristine marine environment, perhaps stand on the rim of a live volcano or zip-line through the jungle canopy, The Havannah Vanuatu can arrange it all.
If you choose to go snorkeling, scuba diving, visit a nearby island for a day of relaxation, or visit a turtle sanctuary, it’s all so simple and as easy as walking from your breakfast table to the jetty where our local tour operators can pick you up and drop your off later in the day.
The Havannah Vanuatu gift shop/boutique set in an area adjacent to the front desk reception at the entrance to the main restaurant is where you’ll find our Guest Services staff.
Here you can make reservations for our recommended tours which you can download here.. We’ve hand selected a number of tours and activities that offer our guests authenticity, enrichment, intimate and exceptional guest experiences; inspiring our guests to connect with destination Vanuatu in a meaningful way.
Our boutique sells handicrafts and gifts made by local artisans including wood carvings, Tam Tams, woven baskets and carry bags, shell and paper jewelry, essential oils, moisturizers and lotions, post cards, gift cards and souvenirs.
The resort also has a complimentary shuttle bus which goes into Port Vila twice daily. If that is all too hectic, you can enjoy a relaxing range of treatments at the Resort’s day spa.
We invite you to indulge in signature spa rituals and discover pure skin care at the The Havannah Vanuatu Day Spa.Set in a tropical garden amongst lush foliage and cooling water features, the spa offers a full range of Thalgo body treatments and massages enabling you to unwind and rejuvenate.
During your stay at The Havannah Vanuatu, we’d love to be able to offer you an authentic, enriching and exceptional guest experience. We’ve designed some itineraries to assist you to connect with the destination and each other in meaningful ways.
3-day Romance Celebration
- Day 1 – Enjoy a bottle of chilled French Champagne in your villa on arrival at the resort.
- Day 2 – Indulge in a one hour couples massage at The Havannah Day Spa.This evening, enjoy a sunset cocktail for two followed by our sand-sculpture dinner on beach with a bottle of wine followed by a romantic turn-down in your villa that evening.
- Day 3 – Allow us to whisk you away to a romantic picnic drop off on a secluded beach one day during your stay. Choose from a picnic selection of 3 menu options and a bottle of red, white or sparkling wine.
3-day Nature and Cultural Heritage
- Day 1 – Set off from The Havannah Vanuatu jetty this morning on a wonderful Chief Roi Mata half day tour with morning tea. Come and explore our culture and community; learn about our ways of preserving and protecting our wildlife for the future.
- Day 2 – Morning visit to The National Museum, Haos Blong Handikraft, Fruit & Vegetable Market and coffee at a local coffee shop in Port Vila.
- Day 3 – A visit to Moso Island Turtle Sanctuary followed by drop off to a secluded beach for a picnic and some snorkeling. Our staff will collect your later in the day and bring you back to The Havannah Vanuatu. Includes bottle of red, white or sparkling wine.
A tropical destination like no other, the islands of Vanuatu offer a diverse cultural landscape influencing a melting pot of dining tastes and flavours and a natural variety of amazing elements both above and below the earth.
The archipelago consists of 83 islands and the island of Efate is where you’ll find the nation’s capital, Port Vila. Efate has a rugged coastline and rolling fertile verdant countryside, fast flowing rivers, cascading waterfalls, isolated sandy bays and lagoons.
The interior is verdant rain forest cut only by a few walking tracks to remote weather and radio beacons. The Havannah, Vanuatu is just a 30-minute drive away from Port Vila on the North West coast.
The resort is located in a spectacular natural haven, neatly tucked away under the hills that divide the island, providing a natural rain shadow around resort.
The Havannah enjoys only around 1/3 of the rain of the rest of the island… which means you can often have a wonderful dry stay when the rest of the island is under tropical monsoon.
Havannah Harbour was used during World War II as a naval base by the entire U.S. 7th Fleet. As a result, the harbour is full of interesting dive and snorkel sites. You can readily find WWII Coca Cola bottles lining the sea floor, downed sea planes, old artillery shells and other interesting artefacts.
Further afield, for a truly unique cultural experience, you can fly to the islands of Tanna or Ambrym to stand on the crater rim of a live volcano, and experience traditional ‘kustom’ culture like you never knew still existed.
From April to June you can also visit the island of Pentecost and see the Nagol ceremony: an ancient kustom rite of passage known to westerners as ‘land diving’, from which modern day bungee jumping is derived.
There are a myriad of excursions, many of which can be done as day trips, to experience the diverse culture, people, and natural beauty of Vanuatu.
HISTORY OF VANUATU
The first settlers to arrive in Vanuatu are believed to have arrived by canoe approximately 3,500 years ago from New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. In 1606, the Portuguese explorer, Pedro Fernández de Quirós, discovered the island of Espiritu Santo, which he thought was a great southern continent.
Europeans did not return until 1768, when Louis Antoine de Bougainville rediscovered the islands. In 1774, Captain Cook named the islands the New Hebrides, a name that lasted until independence.
During the 1860s, planters in Australia, Fiji, New Caledonia, and Samoa, in need of labourers, began a slave trade called “blackbirding”. At the height of the blackbirding, more than one-half of the adult male population were kidnapped and sent to work overseas.
During the time of blackbirding, foreign settlers and missionaries started arriving. Initially, most of the settlers were British subjects from Australia, but by the turn of the century, the French outnumbered the British two to one.
Attempts to halt the decimation of the native population met success in 1887 when the islands were placed under an Anglo-French naval commission, governed in the current capital Port Vila, which at the time was known as Franceville.
In 1906, France and the United Kingdom agreed to administer the islands jointly. They replaced the naval commission with the British-French Condominium. It was a unique form of government, with separate governmental systems in the same country that came together only in a joint court.
Many called the condominium the “Pandemonium” because of the duplication of laws, police forces, prisons, currencies, education and health systems.
Overseas visitors could choose between British law, that was considered stricter but with more humane prisons, or French law and French prisons, which were somewhat uncomfortable but with better food!
Diseases brought by missionaries, sandalwood traders, and settlers were one of the main reasons the native population was reduced from approximately 1 million in 1800 to 45,000 in 1935. During World War II the islands served as bases for Allied forces in the Pacific theatre.
Today tourists can still buy original Coca Cola bottles divers have retrieved that were thrown overboard from American battleships and aircraft carriers sheltered in the harbour.
On 30 July 1980, amidst the brief Coconut War, the Republic of Vanuatu was created. Since independence, only kastom owners and the government can own land; foreigners and other islanders who are not kastom owners can lease land only for the productive life of a coconut palm – 75 years.
The two major settlements remain Port Vila on the island of Efate, and Luganville on the island of Espiritu Santo.
THE NI-VANUATU PEOPLE
Vanuatu is the home to a rich Melanesian culture full of tradition, magic and ritual, where more than 115 different dialects are spoken and each tribal group has its own identity, customs and artwork.
Vanuatu’s indigenous population, called Ni-Vanuatu, is comprised of many cultures, not just one. English and French are the official languages as a result of the countries’ colonial past, along with Bislama, a pidgin-English, which is the common language spoken by nearly all Ni-Vanuatu.
Although there are similarities in culture, each cultural grouping has its own features, traditions and artwork. Whilst the majority of the population is Christian, a small percentage (8%) still follow their indigenous beliefs, which are based on animism.
Those of Christian faith are mainly Presbyterian, Protestant, Anglican and Catholic.
The Ni-Vanuatu are a kind happy people, and currently the country been named the happiest country in the Asia Pacific region and fourth happiest in the world. Authors of the index say one of Vanuatu’s strengths is that it prioritises family and community without needing to be consumer-driven.
The Havannah is set on one of the best beaches of Efate, surrounded by the crystal clear waters of Havannah Harbour, and overlooking the islands of Lelepa and Moso.
Located on the North West Coast of Efate Island, and just a 30 minute drive from Port Vila, The Havannah is perfect as a secluded retreat yet close enough to the sights Efate has to offer, including Cascade Waterfalls, bush walks, dive sites and Port Vila.
Your stay at the Havannah includes complimentary transfers to Port Vila twice daily run by our shuttle bus.
Flights operate from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Auckland, Fiji (Nadi), New Caledonia (Noumea) and the Solomon Islands (Honiara).
A little known fact is that Vanuatu is so close to our neighbours, so you can be here within a few short hours… it’s only a little over 2 hours from Brisbane, 3 from Sydney or Auckland, 4.5 hrs direct from Melbourne or a short 1.5 hour hop from Fiji or Noumea. Please see below for information on airlines and airport transfers.