Taniela Qorowale, or Dan, as he is known by his coworkers, is our Guest Relations Officer at Navutu Stars Fiji Yasawa Islands Resort. It takes a very special individual to fill this role, and Dan is indeed very, very special. We recently sat down with this Yaqeta, Fiji native to discuss flower arrangements, many tearful farewells, and what it is like growing up in the South Pacific.
Fiji Through the Eyes of a Local
Dan is a Fijian through and through. Born and raised on the tiny island that houses Navutu Stars Resort, he is the perfect liaison for visitors to Fiji. With more than 25 years of experience, Dan is the man with the answers. If you any questions about island activities or where to catch the freshest fish, you go to Dan. His insider knowledge gives guests at Navutu Stars a crucial edge over other travelers seeking “the real Fiji.”
What is the Real Fiji?
Dan says you can’t find the real Fiji on the mainland – and Dan would know. He gets the best of both worlds. He facilitates guest experiences at the resort, and at the end of each work day on the island he is already home.
“People don’t know about the cultures of Fiji; how we live together as communities, working together, helping each and so forth. Here, a village is truly a family!”
Can Visitors Experience This Fiji?
Of course! Dan says the best parts of his job are the many special relationships he forms with guests. Not only does he get to show visitors all the things he loves most about his home, but as he says,
“When you’re in Fiji, you’re family. The worst part of my job is always the farewell. Having to say goodbye to newfound friends at the resort – these are very difficult moments, and they are very often a tear factor!”
What Do Typical Days On Yaqeta Look Like?
Officially, Dan is the Guest Relations Officer, but he is also the person responsible for beautifying the resort every morning. He has an avid passion for flowers and gardening – so much so that when we asked him what he likes to do in his free time, he told us he preferred “gardening and landscaping!”
He really has a knack for this! – Colleen, General Manager
Dan’s passion is clearly reflected in his handiwork around the resort. On any given morning, his fresh flower arrangements adorn the check-in lounge area. Dan also works his magic when the resort hosts weddings, never-failing to deliver each bride with the most gorgeous bouquet and headdress!
What is Dan’s Favorite Part of His Job in Fiji?
Attention to detail in all aspects. I love maintaining a high standard.
It is people like Dan, Torika, and Colleen that keep Navutu Stars Resort the number one hotel in Yaqeta, Fiji. Dan’s passion, high standards and real affection for guests stays with visitors long after they’ve returned home from their holiday in Fiji paradise.
We were so blown away by the warmth of the staff. I have been to almost 50 countries in my travels, and this place is definitely special. – Laura from Seattle
The employees, mostly natives of local islands were so pleasant to be with. Their care, love and attention made a big impact on us. – David and Amanda Geller
What Would a Fiji Local Recommend that Visitors Must Do?
It happens from time to time that visitors come to Fiji and end up spending all their time on the Mainland. Don’t get me wrong that is great, but the “real” Fiji you find with the islands. Don’t be misled, and think that you will get the true Fiji experience just on Mainland! You have to get out to the islands!