Tonga Little Italy Hotel

Updated: July 11, 2018

Little Italy Hotel – Cosy and chic splash of Mediterranean in the Pacific.

This delightful slice of Italia is instantly recognisable from the balustrades and balconies. All rooms are much the same, with only the views differing: either facing the ocean, with direct sea views from the private balcony, or to the back overlooking the attractive gardens. The beds are huge, the sofa is arty, and the wall-length photos of Capri would make any Italian homesick. And adding to the Mediterranean ambience is the ground-floor restaurant, with red-and-white chequered tablecloths and wallpaper scenes from Rome and Tuscany. It is a little isolated, however: about 1.5km from downtown, but public transport does pass by regularly.

Little Italy Hotel – The Basics

  • Location: Along Vuna Road, the western end of the esplanade, in the capital Nuku’alofa on the main island. About 1.5km from downtown and about 40 minutes from the airport.
  • Guests: All welcome, including families, with many Europeans returning year after year.
  • Beach: It faces the sea but there is no beach anywhere in or around Nuku’alofa. The closest serviceable beach is at Ha’atafu, on the far western tip, about 20km away.
  • Views: Half the rooms front the ocean and esplanade (which is quiet). The rest overlook the garden to the back.
  • Wi-Fi Internet: Available free throughout the hotel and restaurant.
  • Parking: Some spots onsite for free, otherwise easy and safe to park outside on the street.
  • Phone: (676) 25053
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Website: www.littleitalytonga.com
  • How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates. Use the website specific to your language, currency, and home-country for easiest use: UKUSAFrançaisDeutschNederlands.

Little Italy Hotel – Amenities

  • Pool, Spa & Fitness Center: Not expected or provided in this standard of hotel in Tonga.
  • Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Not expected or provided.

Little Italy Hotel – Food and Drink

  • Restaurant & Bar: The Little Italy restaurant is justifiably popular for all sorts of Italian food, as well as steaks, seafood and, um, shepherds’ pie. The wine list is one of the longest in Tonga, and the desserts are worth the trip alone. Also, open on Sundays for guests only.
  • Breakfast: A buffet continental breakfast is included, including cooked items.
  • Room Service: Available during restaurant hours, from about 7am to 9pm.

Little Italy Hotel – Rooms

  • Room Types: Standard Rooms • Ocean View Rooms
  • Smoking Rooms: No smoking allowed in the rooms, so go out to the beach.
  • Best Room: The Ocean View Rooms offer perfect sea views from the extended balconies and modern facilities.

Little Italy Hotel – What’s Nearby?

Restaurants & Bars

  • Little India (22181) – delightful setting overlooking a pond in Mamta Villa. More than just curries, with an open-air bar and snooker table. About 1.2km further along the esplanade from town. 15-minute walk.
  • Black Pearl Restaurant (28 393) – claims to offer the ‘best steaks in Tonga’. The colonial-style setting is pleasant, the furniture ornate and the balcony breezy. Another 200m past Little India. 2-minute drive.
  • Reload Bar Tonga (862 2383) – virtually the only bar in town, along the main street. Happy hours, locally-brewed beers, DJs and adequate meals. 3-minute drive.
  • Friends Café – very popular, if only for the Wi-Fi. Claims to have the ‘best coffee in town’, but also an impressive range of meals. Easy to find at a corner on the main street, Taufa’ahau Road. 3-minute drive.
  • Marco’s Pizza Pasta (22144) – hard to find in a side-street (Unga Road), 2 blocks back from (southeast of) Friends Café. Relaxed garden seating, with live music on weekends, and fish, grills, salads and tasty desserts. 4-minute drive.
  • Enjoy Café (887 8098) – friendly, with street-side seats. Offers cakes, all-day breakfast and substantial meals. In the backstreets on Railway Road, one block south of the main street, Taufa’ahau Road.
  • Market or Grocery: Nothing nearby. Catch local transport to downtown for supermarkets and the produce and handicraft markets.

Local Transport

    ‘Taxis’ (which are actually shared minibuses) pass along the western esplanade outside the hotel. Wave one down and negotiate a fare.

Little Italy Hotel – The Hotel

The Mediterranean-style design of the hotel is very striking.

The hotel features a classic Mediterranean-style design, with broad balconies and whitewashed walls.

There is no decent beach near the sea-facing hotel.

The hotel faces the sea, but there is no worthwhile beach nearby.

Onsite restaurant and bar are a major local attraction.

One attraction of the hotel is the restaurant and bar on the ground floor.

Authentic Italian restaurant was later augmented into a hotel.

Years before the hotel was built, the Italian owners ran an authentic pasta and pizza restaurant in Tonga.

The back of the restaurant features a small patio and garden.

A small patio at the back of the restaurant offers some limited gardens.

Huge paintings of Italy adorn the restaurant walls.

The walls of the restaurant are lined with huge paintings of Italy.

Colourful Standard Rooms feature Italian wallpapers.

The Standard Rooms are colourful, with more reminders of Italy across the walls.

Standard Rooms feature garden views from smallish windows.

The Standard Rooms don’t have a balcony, and the windows aren’t as large as they could be despite the garden views.

Path along the beach lead to the town.

A path alongside the beach leads into town, about 1.5km away.

Black Pearl is renowned for its colonial-style and its steaks.

Within a longish walk, the Black Pearl is renowned locally for its steaks and ornate colonial-style setting.

Little India restaurant nearby overlooks a pond.

Also not too far from the hotel is the Little India restaurant, which overlooks a pond.

Enjoy Café in downtown is very pleasant.

About 1.5km from the hotel, Enjoy Café is a likeable eatery in downtown.

Friends Café is very popular in the town centre.

Friends Café is popular for its meals and Wi-Fi, and easy to find along the main street in the town centre.

Reload Bar is very popular in Tonga.

Reload is the best bar in town, but probably not in Tonga, despite the claim on its sign.

City centre of Nuku’alofa is 1.5km away.

The centre of the likeably scruffy capital, Nuku’alofa, is about 1.5km away.

Parts of town feature century-old churches and trees.

Some parts of the town are nicer than others, with century-old trees and churches.

Talamahu Market in the town centre is popular for souvenir shopping.

The Talamahu Market between the eastern esplanade and main street in Nuku’alofa has a small collection of souvenir stalls.

Talamahu Market is also popular for fresh produce.

The Talamahu Market is more renowned for the stalls selling fruit, vegetables and meat.

Royal Tombs are a tourist attraction yet tourists are not allowed.

The Royal Tombs are touted as a tourist attraction but are off-limits. It’s easy to find along the main street in the town centre.

Royal Palace in the middle of the esplanade is off-limits for tourists.

Along the middle of the esplanade, separating the western and eastern sections, the Royal Palace is also out of bounds to tourists.

Pigs freely graze along the esplanade.

Don’t be surprised to see pigs grazing on any grass along the esplanade.

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