A few of our favourite places in the Pacific to while an afternoon or evening.
Home Cafe, Samoa
Every now and then you come across a place that you just wish you had found earlier. Driving around Apia the Home Café kept coming up on our Google Maps and eventually after three days, we decided to pull in.
From the entrance, this place looks like a dump – an actual dump. In fact, the Samoan Prime Minister even went on TV saying the owner, Horace, had succeeded in building a successful business out of rubbish.
Well the ‘rubbish’ is in fact a prize collection of memorabilia from a bygone era. Cassette tapes and records from the seventies and eighties, furniture from the sixties, an old barber’s chair and mismatched glassware and cutlery.
Horace is as much a character as his Home Café. He almost runs the Café as an honour system.
“Here, have a beer, I’ve got to duck out so grab another one if you want,” he said to us after showing us around a few of his favourite things.
On Wednesday nights, visitors and locals are invited to ‘bring your own steak’ and the Home Café guys will cook it for you. Your contribution is five tala for the pasta salad.
Other nights Horace has great burgers and a good story. The clientele is locals and expats, volunteers and the production crew from the Survivor series.
Speaking of Survivor, it and other popular shows are played on the big screen, so if you’re in Samoa and don’t want to miss Game of Thrones or the like, you don’t have to. Head down to the Home Café, where you’ll be treated like you’re, well, at home.
The Home Café is on the Cross Island Road at Tanugamanono, Apia. But trust me, Google Maps will get you there. Just get there on the first day.
Rhum Ba, Fiji
The Yacht Club at Port Denarau went through a major upgrade in 2015 culminating in the opening of the Rhum Ba.
Quality finishings, unmatched views from the top floor function room and the best part of all – over 150 rums on offer set a new standard for sophisticated eating and drinking at the Port.
Even if you’re not a rum drinker (and what would-be sailor can claim not to be?) the cocktail list is sophisticated and interesting.
It’s not all about rum at the Rhum Ba, with late breakfast, lunch and dinner on offer too, there’s plenty to enjoy.
Choices include local and imported seafood (oysters are the house specialty), tender beef cuts, spiced chicken, lamb, pasta and salads.
The menu is all about what is fresh and what is best and the function room upstairs caters for more than 200 people.
We spent a couple of afternoons at the Rhum Ba (which led to a couple of evenings too) – the marina is full of activity, the people and boat watching, plus the relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff at the Rhum Ba made it near impossible to leave.
Beachfront Resort, Vanuatu
The Beachfont Resort on the island of Espiritu Santo is a home away from home for visiting divers, business travellers, expats and adventure tourists.
The casual poolside restaurant offers pizzas, hamburgers, steak sandwiches and other typical pub-style fare.
Reasonably priced and with a home cooked feel, you’ll be welcomed at the Beachfront seven days a week.
Enjoy sunset cocktails and while you’re there, ask about tours around Vanuatu’s big island. Manager Dave Cross has a wealth of knowledge about Espiritu Santo and is more than happy to suggest a day trip or share stories of Santo’s amazing history.