Etu Moana Boutique Beach Villas | Aitutaki | Cook Islands

we make your stay sustainable

Latest Newsletter

Kia Orana

Dear Guests, Friends, and Members of the Etu Moana Family

As the year 2023 comes to an end, it is with pleasure we take this opportunity to reconnect with all of you. Thank you for being our guests, and often our returning guests. It was our great joy to share the beauty and magic of Etu Moana.

Etu Moana has remained an exceptional destination for being, not just for doing. Where no detail is too small.

Where you sleep under natural palm-thatched roof, and glide away on an e-scooters or e-buggy to explore lush Aitutaki. All the while knowing your time spent here directly contributes to our ongoing mission of a sustainable, eco-friendly destination.

Where Terangi from breakfast has celebrated her 10 years anniversary, and Cathy from housekeeping will follow soon. Our dedicated team will continue to host you with a smile and a warm Kia Orana.

We are delighted to announce that Etu Moana has been chosen as the Cook Islands' Leading Resort in the World Travel Awards 2023, and re-chosen as the 2023 Best of the Best for Small Hotels in the South Pacific by Trip Advisor.

And we will continue to keep this promise.

We hope, one of our Exclusive Offers may inspire you to reserve your next stay

- Enjoy being a returning guest (15% off)

- One more night (Stay 6 Pay 5)

- More Amour February Romance (Save $400 while enjoying our Romantic Treat)

- Last minute (20% off to support spontaneous travel decisions)

Exclusive Offers

We wish you a Happy Holiday Season, Merry Christmas, and a healthy New Year!

See you soon at Etu Moana

Jeff & Tiffany Gush and the Etu Moana Team

Kia Orana

Dear Guests and Friends of Etu Moana

The year 2022 is going to end soon, and we wish to take this moment to reconnect with all of you.
We want to thank you for being our guests, and often our returning guests. The pleasure was all ours – Meitaki Atupaka!

And we would like to share with you, what has happened at Etu Moana in 2022, and what our ambitions are for 2023.

May 2022 was a month to remember, as all travel restrictions were lifted! Flight options from Auckland have been restored as well as the weekly flight between Rarotonga and Tahiti. Commencement dates for direct flights from Sydney and Los Angeles are promised to be announced in 2023.  

Jane and Steve, originally from the UK, have made the impossible possible and arrived at Etu Moana during the heaviest Covid restrictions in May 2021. They even took the burden to stay in a hotel room without a window for 14 days during their quarantine in Australia, followed by a subsequent (less strict) quarantine time in New Zealand.

Since both have been leading the Etu Moana Team, the “no detail is too small” philosophy is literally flourishing in every aspect. They are never getting tired of enhancing your guest experience and working on a sustainable tomorrow.

Due to limited dining options on Aitutaki, many of you have already expressed the wish to dine at Etu Moana. This year your wish came true!

Enjoy our INTIMATE POOLSIDE DINING where everything is homemade using local produce, when possible, seasonal, sustainable and with providence at the core.

To experience the intimate and traceable connection between you and the Cook Islands, we offer you a PRIVATE DINING ON THE BEACH. This is a memory that will stay forever.

The Philosophy remains the same throughout our Dining options, and we like to call it “Etu Moana home Cooking”. Feel personally invited to our home called Etu Moana, and not to a restaurant.

Due to bad weather, low quality of the Nikau leaves, and little interest of the locals to do the roofing with passion during Covid, unfortunately all our roofs required re-roofing after just one year. Despite those difficulties, we decided to keep Etu Moana one of the last remaining resorts on Aitutaki that still uses natural Nikau thatch and not Palmex.

To transport the plastic to Etu Moana and finally leaving tons of plastic on Aitutaki is not in agreement with our Philosophy of Sustainable Tourism. We know that you will agree that the finished product looks lovely and is far more sympathetic with our surroundings. We managed to find two young men from Bali who are skilled in Nikau roofing as is the tradition of their hometown. By using more layers of Nikau than before we estimate those roofs to be lasting three to five years.

Since August 2022, transport at Etu Moana is emission-free! We sold our car and our old truck. Solar powered E-Scooters and a people carrier, perfect for airport transfers, these fulfil Etu Moana’s needs and wants, and are a great asset for a sustainable tomorrow. Right now, the vehicles are charged with 20% solar power.

Come and see and e-mbrace Aitutaki on our e-scooters. Or take the cart for more comfort. We are happy to share those with you!

Having a Wedding at Etu Moana is a moment of deep emotions and happiness and we love to make this possible.

Covid has caused big personal changes for many Aitutakians, and thus on our team. We are proud to have a small, but very strong, and enthusiastic team, carrying on the Etu Moana spirit.

Most likely, all of you will remember TERANGI from serving breakfast. She has increased her never ending ambition towards food. Besides breakfast, she takes care of our Magical Dining on the Beach, Villa Veranda Breakfast, and assists Jane in the cooking during Dining at the Pool.

And, also most likely, you will remember CATHY from housekeeping, who continues to ensure our high standard of cleanness.

New in the team is SANDY. She comes from a small village on Aitutaki and supports Ternagi and Cathy whenever needed.

New is GUSTI from Bali, who supports Steve in all aspects of maintaining the resort. Without him, we would have been lost after Covid. His gentle character makes him the darling of everyone. He is supported by his friend and roofing specialist PUTU for the time being of the Nikau roofing.

2000 LOCAL WORKERS have left the Cook Islands for New Zealand and Australia at the beginning of Covid. Therefore, Rarotonga and Aitutaki are becoming more global and have opened their doors to Fijians, Philippinos and Indonesians.

Aitutaki has won the Oceania’s Leading Island Destination in 2022 from the the World Travel association, beating Bora Bora who has held the title for the last three years.

The travel experts of the LONELY PLANET crowned the Cook Islands the Number 1 place to visit in 2022.

The MANA TIKI ECO CERTIFICATION for Sustainable and Biodiversity considered Practices has been given to Etu Moana for the 3rd Time in a row.

Etu Moana is back to the NUMBER 1 HOTEL on Aitutaki since June 2021. Thank you all for taking the time to write such wonderful reviews, so much appreciated Etu Moana won Travelers’ Choice BESDT OF THE BEST AWARD for SMALL HOTELS and WATERS. This is the highest Award TripAdvisor gives to honor hotels among the top 1% of the Trip Advisor listings.

This is our next sustainable project which will start in January 2023. We have built additional roof space aside the work shed on the other side of the road, that will allow us to generate sufficient energy for the resort. On your next visit, Etu Moana will be fossil free!
And your CO2-footprint will be further lowered!


Honolulu-Rarotonga Direct
Weekly direct flights Honolulu-Rarotonga provided by Hawaiian Airlines will start on May 20th, 2023.

Sydney-Rarotonga Direct
Twice weekly flights Sydney-Rarotonga provided by Jetstar will start on June 29th, 2023.


Escape to our little paradise and enjoy some indulgence you deserve: Our Out of Season Ultimate Indulgence Package starts for stays from 1st January 2023 and ends on 30 April 2023, and includes:
Enjoy 5 nights in a Villa of your choice, cost and availability
Our gift to you: FREE
Start each day with a Mimosa whilst enjoying our signature Villa Veranda Breakfast
Experience a ‘Couples massage ritual’
Indulge in a magical barefoot dining experience on the beach just for the two of you! This includes an Etu Moana Mojito at Sunset, a three-course dinner, a bottle of Bubbles, local creativity and tradition, under a blanket of a million sparkling stars.

Who can resist One more night in Paradise?
Our Stay 6 Pay 5 Exclusive offer starts for stays from 1st January 2023 and ends on 31st May 2023 and applies for Bookings in our Lagoon View and Garden View Villas.
Contact us for details and get inspired

We offer free cancellation up to 24 hours prior to arrival

And receive 15% off


All of us here at Etu Moana wish you all the very best for the festive season ahead.
May the New Year bless you with health and happiness!
See you soon at Etu Moana

Jane & Steve Coles, the Etu Moana Staff, and the Etu Moana Directors



The team at Etu Moana wish to take this moment by thanking all guests who visited
our little paradise during the 3 months ‘Travel Bubble’

We are now regrouping and readying our Paradise Island Resort for the next wave of guests to welcome home,
once our travel bubble reopens.

Thank you all for taking the time to write such wonderful reviews, very much appreciated
Etu Moana is now rated #1 of 10 Hotels on Aitutaki 2021 on TripAdvisor.

Solar powered E-Scooters, plus a people carrier, perfect for airport transfers and Island touring will arrive on Resort by the end of 2021 adding to our contributions for a sustainable tomorrow. Newly introduced and happily received, intimate poolside dining, local, seasonal, sustainable and with providence at the core, now available for all to enjoy.

As your traveling plans will have changed, we recommend to hold your deposit for an amended reservation, please keep us informed when you have decided on a new travel date. Alternatively, we will refund the deposit to you. In this case, we have to charge you the banking fees (6% of the deposit).

Please CONTACT us

Until it’s booking time again, ‘Stay safe’

Kia Manuia from all of us at Etu Moana!
Etu Moana - Aitutaki Cook Islands

“Life is what you celebrate”

Kia Orana from Etu Moana

Etu Moana team are so excited!
Our travel borders between New Zealand and Aitutaki are to be
opened for two-way Covid-free travel on the 17th May

It’s time to ‘Welcome you Home’

Cook Islands borders have been closed to the rest of the World, since March 2020.
The past 13 months has seen our local communities face and endure difficult times.
Now with thanks to the many sacrifices made by everyone,
the Cook Islands are still Covid-19 FREE!

The Health and Safety of the Islands, communities and returning family and friends has been uncompromised and prioritised making the Travel Bubble possible.

Our welcome home gift for you

1-year free cancellation up to 24hrs before arrival
The offer starts on April, 3, 2021, and applies for all new bookings
made until April, 2, 2022.

If your traveling plans might change, we recommend to hold your deposit for an amended reservation, and keep us informed when you have decided on a new travel date. Alternatively, we will refund the deposit to you. In this case, we have to charge you the banking fees (6% of the deposit).
Please CONTACT us.

It’s booking time.
Kia Manula from all of us at Etu Moana!

“Go where you feel most alive”

Kia Orana from Etu Moana
Etu Moana is ready and waiting to welcome you home!

The team are happy, and the resort is primed, all we need is for the Borders to open. When the time is right, and for our New Zealand Guests this may be in May, we will be looking forward to you returning to our Covid-19-free and safe Paradise.
Your assurance and reassurance
Your health, safety and security here is of utmost importance for reopening. We continue to follow best practices and take all precautions at our Resort, to maintain the highest standards of cleanliness and hygiene, without exception. You can trust us and feel totally secure in all matters Covid-19 compliance. Leaving you to relax, enjoy, feel safe and free, simply focus on this amazing experience Aitutaki and Etu Moana offer naturally.
Life on Aitutaki
Here on Aitutaki, most people are still on minimal wage subsidy. Nevertheless, they manage, life goes on with a smile. But for those who had taken a loan from the bank, repayment becomes more and more difficult, as the other family members do not have any financial reserves either.
However, right now, everyone is preparing for Easter, and the joy of life is overpowering any burden. Many of the staff are getting involved in making this year’s Easter Service in the church a very special one. Everyone is getting more and more excited to finally greet the first guest, and to see friends and family coming home.
Your travel plans
We can’t change the worldwide restrictions on travel the Covid-19 pandemic has prompted, nor the changing travel landscape. But we can help you to make confident decisions about your current and upcoming travel plans.

This is our re-opening gift for you:
1 year free cancellation up to 24hrs before arrival
The offer starts on April, 3, 2021, and applies for all new bookings made until April, 2, 2022.

How does it work:
If your traveling plans might change, we recommend to hold your deposit for an amended reservation, and keep us informed when you have decided on a new travel date. Alternatively, we will refund the deposit to you. In this case, we have to charge you the banking fees (6% of the deposit).

After a year of restrictions, “go where you feel most alive”.
Our white sandy beaches and the most beautiful lagoon in the world awaits you.

And we all can’t wait to meet you!

Kia manuia, Happy Easter, and all the very best from all of us here at Etu Moana!


“Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass. It's about learning how to dance in the rain.”
(written by Vivian Greene *1904, selected by Hanne, Director of Etu Moana for the year 2020)

Kia Orana from Aitutaki
2020 is certainly a year to remember. In many ways the year has been very challenging but also filled with very warm moments, mutual understanding and the vision that we will welcome you in the future!

For the coming days, the Team at Etu Moana are sending you all a very Meri Kiritimiti.

As with any festivities, you need a few ingredients, so we are sharing some with a tropical twist to brighten up your celebration this merry-season.

45ml Bacardi Rum
20ml Blue Curaçao Liqueur
60ml ​Pineapple Juice
20ml ​cream of coconut

Pour all into your shaker filled with ice cubes. Shake well and strain into a tumbler glass filled with fresh ice cubes – and garnish with fresh pineapple. Take a sip, sit back and dream of our blue lagoon in paradise.

We are in the midst of mango season here and this ham recipe is a real treat for Christmas dinner.

1 Half Leg Ham (about 4.5kg)
2 cinnamon sticks or quills
4 whole cloves
2 very ripe yellow mangoes,
pitted, peeled, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups (375ml) rice wine vinegar
3/4 cup (165g) caster sugar (or more)
Pinch of ground allspice
15g thyme, tied with kitchen string

Step 1: Turn on your BBQ or Oven
Step 2: Line a large baking tray with foil. Run knife over fat to lightly score it all over.
Step 3: Place ham on tray and cover with foil. Cook for around 2 hours at 190°C
Step 4: In a saucepan add cinnamon and cloves and stir for about 3 mins or until toasted.
Step 5: Add mangoes, vinegar, sugar and allspice and bring to a simmer for 10min. Remove whole spices. Blend mango mixture with 1/2 cup water and 2 tsp salt until smooth.
Step 6: When ham is ready, remove foil, increase temperature to 200°C. Using thyme as a brush, glaze the ham, cook for a further 45 minutes, basting every 10 mins with glaze until ham is evenly caramelised
Step 7: Rest ham for 10 mins and carve, serve with reserved mango glaze.

And for the finale’ – some Aitutaki Stringband music in the background to really bring back the memories of our paradise.

Looking ahead towards the New Year, we thank you sincerely for being part of Etu Moana!

Wishing you wonderful Holidays, Good Health for 2021, and all the very best!


Kia Orana 
As our borders remain closed, we remain expectant and positive that in time, you will be back at Etu Moana Villas soaking up this heavenly little island of Aitutaki. In the meantime, the team at Etu Moana stride on with various projects. Nick’s has completed the new pool deck; 1216 linear meters of kwila decking and 8995 screws - it is looking fantastic and we can’t wait to see you relaxing and swimming in the new and improved ‘pool’ area.

We are not only blessed to work in paradise with the delightful Aitutakians, but we have the fortune of being part of a community of cooperation and collaboration. Time for some new nikau roofing so we reached out to the Christian Youth Group of Tautu Village to share the workload. The Minister himself and his team of committed parishioners completed the first project of the reception building, as pictured. Team Tautu bring music, laughter and camaraderie to Etu Moana and we look forward to working with them in the weeks ahead and help raise funds for their youth. We are proud of our commitment to the use of the plaited natural coconut fronds for roofing – for it’s environmental impact, ability to give back to our people and maintain Polynesian tradition.

Not only are we dedicated to progress here on the island, our Directors in Europe recently completed the project of Etu Moana’s new website. Be sure to check it out, including the new ‘Exclusive Offers” and remember your return guest code remains ‘etumoanastars2014.’

Trip Advisor
We are delighted to have been awarded the 'BEST OF THE BEST' by Trip Advisor;  in the Top 25 Hotels for Best Service - South Pacific & Best Small - South Pacific.
Thank you, guests, for your vote of confidence.

As we say once again, an empty ‘Etu Moana Beach Villas’ is an empty heart and soul for us all and until we can welcome you again, we send you our Aroa (love) from us all at Etu Moana Beach Villas


Pip & Nick Goodhew
General Managers

 ‘Mana Tiaki’
Environmental guardian / caretaker of one’s home country

Kia Orana
We interrupt your computer time to bring you a little warmth from our little paradise, Aitutaki. The team at Etu Moana Boutique Villas knows we may be separated by oceans, but we are all in this together and we hope this email message allows you to take a break and dream about the time when you will return to our shores.

Alongside our ongoing refurbishment, we align our energies with our ‘Kia Orana Values’ current focus on Mana Tiaki – a Cook Islands’ wide programme of greater care for our environment. Now, more than ever, we have a responsibility to our islands that ensures we preserve it for future generations and for you, our guests. Mana Tiaki means keeper or guardian while Mana translates as power and influence (us as keepers have the power & ability to preserve the culture and heritage of our islands). Etu Moana Villas have had a rigorous assessment, receiving praise and certification for our environmental values and operation. We were the first ‘Mana Tiaki Certified Resort’ on Aitutaki in 2019. We are also supportive members of the Te Ipukarea Society (translating to ‘our heritage’) which plays a vital role in the environmental preservation of the islands.

Aitutaki Update
Soon we will be able to celebrate getting through these times and we hope that you are keeping your spirits alive. We have been declared one of the only COVID19 Free islands in the world which is triumphant – all the sacrifices for success. We were also encouraged by the recommencement of flights between Rarotonga and Aitutaki in late April. Limited flights are bringing Rarotongan’s to Aitutaki and it is great to see a few international faces around again (workers or ‘stranded tourists’ from the mainland).

We eagerly await news of border openings and stand by enthusiastically, while working hard on procedures and protocols for re-opening to ensure our staff and our visitors are totally safe in Etu Moana’s surroundings.

Progress and Support
We are again grateful for the Government support and especially the recently announced extension until September 2020. Keeping our happy staff and working as a team around the property is essential and rewarding for us all. Minister Brown said in his statement to the country this week; “Our health and economy must move forward together- we cannot maintain our economy without considering the health and safety of our people,” Brown said. “Likewise, we cannot maintain our health system without a viable economy.”  Recognition must also be given, Brown said, to the diligent work by healthcare workers and a committed public that had allowed Cook Islands to declare itself Covid-19-free.

The island continues to work together in true Polynesian style of community & care, faith and family, music and laughter. The Managers at Etu Moana Villas are members of the local ‘Toa Moana’ Vaka paddling club and will be key players in a community paddling event planned for next month which is hoped will bring the island together for some competitive fun.
Continue to stay positive. We trust you and yours are in the best possible situation with imposed ‘social distancing and self-isolation’ wherever you may be around the world, and know we send very much love from us all at Etu Moana Beach Villas – ‘kia manuia’

Social media
Stay friends with us for updates on Etu Moana Villas, Aitutaki and the Cook Islands.  Feel free to pick up the phone if you need to discuss a booking or plan a future stay. Perhaps you have a credit and are still not in a position to commit to any dates, we understand this is going to be a long and slow recovery. 
As we said in our last email, an empty ‘Etu Moana Beach Villas’ is an empty heart and soul for us all and we have enjoyed spending a few minutes with you, reminding you that paradise will always be here. We patiently wait for the world to heal and for travel to be safe again, Until then, we sending you our Aroa (love) from us all at Etu Moana Beach Villas – ‘kia manuia’


Pip & Nick Goodhew
General Managers

 ‘Be Strong, Be Healthy & Move Forward’

Kia Orana

This is a motivating saying for us all at this time, at Etu Moana, on Aitutaki, in the Cooks Islands and around the globe. Traveling has ceased and life as we knew it put ‘on-hold.’

The island of Aitutaki has been closed to any arrivals (international or local) since the 23rd of March, with the exception of a weekly freight flight where air-crew are not allowed off the aircraft nor in contact with the Aitutakians.

The Government in Rarotonga has been extremely pro-active in keeping the outer-islands well protected from the virus, with pertinent concerns being available medical facilities plus low-immunities within the population.

New Zealand continues to support the Cook Islands with air-freight and some Islanders’ returning home, for which we are extremely grateful.

We realize the impact of all the restrictions here is minimal compared to city life and other parts of the world. But even in an idyllic spot such as Aitutaki, there are still rules and precautions including restaurants closed, no more than 10 persons gathering at one time, no group sports and evening curfews.

We have seized the days. The wonderful morning light. The birds singing. The spectacular sunsets. The wonderful sense of togetherness in the Island Community.

We are pleased to say after this four week isolation period there appears to be no Corona-virus on the island of Aitutaki. 

Support and Progress
Thanks to financial support measures of the Government, Etu Moana will be given a subsidy of minimum wage payments to all employees for the first three months (being April, May and June). This has allowed us to keep our wonderful team employed, not only with income but a continued feeling of self, team and purpose.

Our focus is primarily on Villa maintenance. It has been a great deal of fun for us all learning new skills, and turning our hand to projects outside of our normal lines of work. The Tasmanian oak floors and the wooden furniture are all in line for an overhaul. On the property, we have already made great progress in building the new stairs down to the pool.

As long as there is music and laughter, singing and camaraderie, we will not only survive but have a sense of achievement, pride and family.

We just want Etu Moana to be at its best when you’ll be back! And we can hardly wait to welcoming you again.

Many of you have credits and future bookings – please keep in contact. We know setting new dates is not practicable at this time, but you can reach us under any time.

We thank those of you who shared their love for Etu Moana and Aitutaki with the online world - despite the difficult times. We also want to say how much we appreciate your loyalty.

Stay safe. We’ll be waiting.


Pip & Nick Goodhew
General Managers

Kia Orana from Aitutaki.

We are facing an uncertain world presently and Etu Moana wants you to know that we are committed to the health and safety of our guests, our team on site and our beautiful island paradise.

For those who have visited more than once, we are grateful for your loyalty and for those who have an upcoming reservation, we sincerely hope that you will be able to join us soon.

The coronavirus outbreak gives concerns around travelling and with policies and situations changing globally, we are wanting to assure you we are committed to flexibility, especially around booking terms and conditions, as necessary. This applies to the timing of deposits as well as the opportunity to postpone travel to a later date within two years from the date of booking.

Each guest enquiry will be treated on a case-by-case basis to determine the best way forward, providing as much reassurance as possible at this time of vulnerability for both parties.
If Government Travel restrictions deny your entry into the Cook Islands, we will waive cancellation policies and assist with rebooking an alternative date. If you have booked through another travel site or agent, please contact them directly for assistance.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to us if you have any further questions

We remain ever hopeful that our little island and it’s people are kept safe and healthy, and that you may too, so we have the opportunity to welcome you – now or at a later time.

Kia manuia

Nick & Pip Goodhew
On behalf of Etu Moana Boutique Villas