Nanuku Fiji Resort



Previously operating as Taunovo Bay Resort, Karen Taylor, was recommended to Bixby Capital by the previous owner of Jean Michel Cousteau Resort, to turnaround and re-commission Taunovo as Nanuku Fiji Resort and Spa.


Looking at the perceived negatives of the destination by the wholesale industry, Karen focussed on new niche concepts that would overcome these negatives. A strategy proposal was presented to the ownership for Nanuku defining these concepts.



  • To prove you could deliver an island experience on the mainland
  • Weaving an authentic cultural experience into the western style resort, from arrival to ensure a sense of place
  • Adventure safaris with a local food safari focus capitalising on the strengths of the destination. concepts encapsulated in the movie written and directed by Taylor Dade, called the “Spirit of Nanuku” a new genre of resort movie that has been a vital tool used to “turn around” of this failed property

Karen’s comprehensive award winning management leadership and experience delivers guest centric solutions with cultural sensitivity. Undertaking the complete interior design and fit out of the resort, and landscaping concurrently to pre-opening operations, and the capital investment by the  owners into the Guest Club House a phenomenal turn around has been delivered for Nanuku within 18 months of reopening to guests.


Karen was tasked to deliver a leading destination in Fiji on the global stage. 18 months after opening Nanuku achieved Trip Advisor top 1% in guest reviews globally, and Conde Nast Hot List for 2016, the only property to rate in this list for the South Pacific. Late 2014 the property became Nanuku  Auberge Resort Fiji.


Karen Taylor was responsible for

  • Creating innovative niche design concepts to reposition the property as a leading destination in Fiji.
  • Bespoke interior planning and design concepts focussed on culture, authenticity and innovation
  • Delivered the first island experience on the main land with strategies to
  • Delivered a new safari adventure program around local farm to table concepts
  • Project management on site pre and post opening
  • Landscaping for the villa gardens and much of the Club House
  • Turn key procurement of furniture, fixtures and equipment
  • Conceptualised operational service standards that delivered a unique guest experience with a villa mama and buddy concept and nanny service.
  • Optimised the location as the Adventure Capital of Fiji by delivering unique cultural food safaris and an authentic Fijian cultural journey for the guests from the moment of arrival.
  • Creating a menu focus highlighting local food, prepared by an all local team to a world class standard
  • Remote dining locations and events
  • Established the operating systems and standards to support the unique niche concepts
  • Sales and marketing strategies
  • Budget preparation and monthly financial reporting
  • Pre and post opening operational management for the year ending 2015
  • Staff uniform and name necklaces
  • Handcrafted arrival wallets
  • Staff recruitment systems and training
  • Design and execution of special guest events and celebrations