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Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat
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Reviews (230)
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Reviewed 22 September 2016

My third time and the last. Each time it gets less impressive. Lots of cost cutting. No bath salts, cotton buds or cotton wool in the villas anymore. Food has become mediocre and plated differently for each guest. Some generous portions others barely enough. Cooking class recipes the same as 18 months ago. Fridges in rooms not turned on on arrival. Unhappy moody staff. All this and more for $1,000 per day.

  • Stayed: September 2016, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank Danielle65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gwinganna, Manager at Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded 26 September 2016

Dear Danielle65

Thank you for your review. Naturally we are very disappointed to read about your experience. We remember your stay well and we believe we did everything to respond to your requests. Our villas are premium accommodation as you know, however we have never provided bath salts or cotton balls. This has not changed at all.

We constantly receive exceptional feedback on our meals which are created by our chef and a nutritionist and constantly reviewed, including for guest satisfaction. We also receive very positive comments on the portion sizes and abundance of food on offer so we are sorry to hear you did not agree. We noted your disappointment about the cooking class during your stay and hope you enjoy the additional recipes our head chef personally delivered to you prior to departure, along with the additional recipes sent to you after your stay.

We have never had our staff called moody and no other guests that week gave this feedback. The staff are committed each day to doing their very best for each guest.

Contrary to your comment, the retreat is constantly evolving and updating, investing more each year into improving the guest experience. Just this year we have added five more premium rooms, new bespoke amenities and further refurbishments in the dining room.
Wishing you wellness.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 September 2016

It's a beautiful location, mostly excellent food and good activities. However, I feel Gwinganna falls short on a few hygiene issues which I was aware of. The toilet in the Orchard suite didn't flush properly and smelt, the hot water bottle was dirty and when I looked under the bed before I left it was incredibly dusty - no one had bothered to vacuum under there for quite some time. I also noticed staff putting hands all over our eating utensils and one staff member coughing onto a pillow as she was changing the pillow slip. A lot of the volunteers had coughs, as did a few of the guests. This made me somewhat anxious as I did not want to leave a health retreat with a virus! I actually asked the lovely woman in charge, Kay, to say something to guests about covering their mouths when they cough...I lost 2 nights of sleep because of the awful synthetic blanket and duvet so requested pure cotton blankets. At the end of the day it's a money making machine and I do not agree with a lot of what they preach about health and nutrition. They are quite backward and unscientific in their approach and very happy to load people up on heaps of supplements which of course they sell. Be wary of the fancy $300 treatments and just stick to the more basic treatments. The Goddess is Dancing was a waste of money, and the horses they use in the Equine therapy don't really like human contact!!...The nutritionist there didn't even know what xylitol is which was somewhat disappointing. They use small amounts of honey, however, honey still spikes your blood sugar which is what I thought we were trying to avoid. Don't see Michelle - she upgraded my treatment without my permission and uses ultra sound which is seriously outdated and ineffective. They are very pushy when trying to get you to leave a $500 deposit on your next retreat which entitles you to 15% discount. What they refrain from telling you is that you get 10% when you re book anyway.....It is a lovely place, it's just disappointing that at the end of the day it's all about the mighty $$. A good number of the guests I spoke to found this.

  • Stayed: August 2016, travelled solo
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Adventur_W0man
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gwinganna, Manager at Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded 21 September 2016

Thank you for reviewing your experience with us. We are pleased to hear you loved the location, the activities and our cuisine. We choose to use a small amount of raw honey rather than processed sweeteners such as xylitol. Honey contains helpful enzymes and when used with protein and fats, it does not result in blood sugar spikes.

We understand you may not agree with our approach to wellness, however all our presenters are highly qualified and professionally trained. We use evidenced based advice in all seminars and often receive positive feedback from senior medical professionals regarding our factual approach to preventative health care strategies.

In some areas, we utilise rainwater and we recycle water. This is not usually odorous and though you felt the toilet was faulty, we are disappointed that you did not bring this to our attention during your stay so this could be addressed.

As you found, linen and pillows are all changeable and we are happy to assist guests with their preferences. We will be following up on your other housekeeping issues.

We have a strict policy that staff members are unable to attend work with a cold or virus, however we are unable to control the health of other guests. With so much fresh mountain air, the rooms and facilities are regularly open to the elements which helps ensure a fresh, clean environment.

We are sorry to hear you did not enjoy some of the specialty spa experiences and both these therapists are highly experienced and very popular. You may not know that ultrasound is having a resurgence and being used in studies for Alzheimer's. The horses do love and engage with guests yet they are free to do so. They respond to the emotions of humans and will always move away from pressure, one of the reasons why equine therapy is so powerful.

It is distressing to learn your perception regarding our business focus as it is not the case. We prioritise the guest above all and have done so for our 10 years of operation, winning many awards along the way and seeing many guests return again and again. A special offer to return has several variations and levels and these options are always up to the individual guest.
Wishing you wellness.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 September 2016

Gwinganna is not only a stunning sanctuary but the lessons you will learn will blow you away. I did the 7 day detox and have recently been suffering from very high stress and had recently had 2 very bad burnouts within 6 months of each other. Gwinganna helped me relax, revive, detox and feel ready to take on the world again. The facilites are second to none and the staff are so caring you just feel so loved and taken care of. If you are after a retreat that is about your overall Wellness, mind, body, spirit, then Gwinganna is the place for you!

Room Tip: I was in the Heritage rooms which were the closest to the main buildings. Loved it!
  • Stayed: August 2016, travelled solo
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank salz_forrest
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 August 2016

I did a 7 night stay at Gwinganna in the week between finishing one job and starting another. I was completely burnt out from 20 years of working massive hours and having constant deadlines. It was exactly the stop point i needed to completely turn my lifestyle around and start a new career fresh, focused and ready to go - with a lot more balance. Insanely good. I would do it again tomorrow.

Stayed: September 2015, travelled solo
2  Thank adventuregirl1968
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 August 2016

My husband and I have just retired, and were looking to review our overall health, particularly exercise and diet matters. These were covered and much more in hte 1 week detox program. They catered to my dietary preferences, got me exercising more, provided top class food, fixed the sore spot in my back, helped me sleep better, and gave me nutritional advice specific to me.

  • Stayed: August 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank lyell607
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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