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“Beautiful place, lack of service...”

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at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat
Ranked #9 of 10 Hotels in Airlie Beach
Melbourne, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
44 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Beautiful place, lack of service...”
Reviewed 10 November 2011

My husband and I spent 2 nights in a spa suite. The place was big, bright, and spotless. The view was... loud... lots of buildings work going on...
The bis disappointment was the service and breakfast. Breakfast was an already prepacked pack of cereal, milk, juice and cookies. Good enough for me but not worthy of a so called luxury hotel.
Upon arriving, we crossed path with the guy supposed to check us in. Then a supplier came in and we were ignored for a while, then taken to our room where this guy hanged a round a bit for no reason. When we left, we were not asked a single question about our stay, again not a 5 star service....
Way to expensive for the experience you get!

Room Tip: Take a room upstairs for better view and less noise
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank melb3056
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
WWBB29, Owner at at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat, responded to this review, 19 November 2011
Dear melb3056,

Thank you for your feedback in regards to your recent stay, I am sorry we did not meet your expectations on some aspects of your visit. I would like to clarify a few points

The breakfast pack is a complimentary bonus, we do not advertise continental or hot breakfast however we do provide the breakfast pack complimentary to all guests.

I have spoken to Scott our onsite manager, he does not recall crossing paths with you nor ignoring you, Scott is a gracious and caring host, his commitment to quality service is often documented in other reviews, I am sorry you felt Scott was not attentive, it certainly was not his intention.

In regards to "this guy hanged a round a bit for no reason" it is our policy to inform guests of the numerous entertainment options available at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat. We like to briefly inform arriving guests how to utilise the 50" plasma, how to access the complimentary movie, cable and sports channels, how to operate the iPod docking station, how to operate the Nintendo Wii and complimentary games, how to access the complimentary wireless internet and a quick tour of the suite including the balcony spa.

I am sorry Scott did not ask about your stay on departure, it is customary for our team to enquire about your stay, we also email guests a 60 second survey via our online guest survey portal, I personally review all feedback.

I am pleased you enjoyed the Luxury Spa Suite and also found it to be big, bright, and spotless. I do hope you visit us again in the future, we look forward to welcoming you back.

Sincerely

Jeff Aquilina
Managing Director
at Hotel Group
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146 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (26)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 November 2011

My wife and I stayed in the penthouse for our honeymoon in October 2011, and it was just straight out awesome.

Pros: The location, the room, the service, the price, the amenities... everything, really.
Cons: The view was the only thing even close to a con about this place (read below).

The penthouse room is very well equipped and looks fantastic. The L-shaped couch is really comfortable, and the four poster bed was a dream to sleep on (it was our first four poster experience... so magical!). Coming home to full air conditioning in all the rooms each day after soaking up the sun was very well received as well. We spent most of our time out on the extensive balcony - eating breakfast in the morning on the outdoor table with the bi-fold doors to the lounge room opened out to get a nice morning breeze, or relaxing in the shade on the sun lounges with the kitchen windows opened out to make a little bar area, or having a nap on the day bed in the afternoon after a day of swimming, or enjoying a wine in the Jacuzzi on the deck at night. The double shower in the en suite bathroom is really cool as well - opposite a smaller balcony so that you shower with a view of the tops of the trees in the opposite forest area.

Since it was just the two of us, they locked the doors to the extra two bedrooms and turned it into a one-bedroom penthouse for the week - however we did get a peek-in to see what the other rooms looked like and they also looked great. With the extra two rooms it would make a great place for a group to stay for a few nights; there's certainly room for everyone and the place seems set up to accommodate more than a couple of people! The suites on the lower floors looked pretty cool as well.

We'd been warned that the view wasn't fantastic given the ongoing construction, but it wasn't so bad; the hotel across the road looks great lit up at night and you still had a view of boats on the water. Even given the view the location is unbeatable; we were about a two minute walk (all flat!) to the main street and the lagoon with shops and restaurants and eateries. The whole week we were there we didn't even need to consider a taxi or bus; we were so close to the action it just wasn't necessary (even after a bucket of cocktails!). On tours we got to see where the other apartments and hotels were and couldn't believe the hike people had to take to get home after a night out; they were very jealous when we told them of our location!

We did a deal to get the penthouse for the week which included airport transfers and a few activities. All the activity vendors picked us up from the resort and we had a fantastic time - so make sure to look into what the retreat can offer (the helicopter deserted island picnic is a must do for couples). That said, we found ourselves itching to get back to the penthouse most days just because it was so nice to laze around in. We also took the in-room massage option which was very affordable and was a great way to end the week.

The manager Scott was very helpful and had a clear attention to detail. After taking us through the penthouse and showing us how to use all the amenities (Jacuzzi, sound system, TV/DVD/Austar, etc) he actually stopped to rewash the deck as he didn't think it was up to his standard (we couldn't see anything wrong, but it certainly showed his commitment to quality). That commitment to quality is evidenced again by the pristine pool and barbeque area available to all the guests; we'd look down on it from our balcony every day and it was just so blue and beautiful that we just had to have a dip.

I can't fault this place on anything; the price was good, the amenities superb, and the room itself just freaking brilliant. The only criticism I could offer would be the view (which has been noted in other reviews), but at night it still looks great and realistically you won't care about it given how close you are to Airlie and how cool the room itself is.

If you're heading to Airlie, you HAVE to check this place out.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Stephen E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
WWBB29, Owner at at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat, responded to this review, 8 March 2012
Port of Airlie opened in April 2011, welcome to the latest Airlie Beach Fashion & Dining Precinct. Discover a place where you are just a short walk from shops, restaurants and recreational facilities. Port of Airlie is loctaed 50 meters from at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat.

Port of Airlie Retailers include:
• Billabong
• The Coffee Club
• Aimer Accessorys
• Calypso Resort & Swimwear
• Denman Cellars & Beer Cafe
• Cha mah Moroccan Restaurant
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nebo
1 review
Reviewed 25 October 2011

Beautiful apartment with a real homely feel but with the luxury you would expect from a penthouse, loved the jacuzzi on the balcony with a bottle of wine after a day cruising the islands of the Whitsundays. Very friendly staff ready to do anything for you, Thankyou for a great experience...

Room Tip: Close to town
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank kjbkab
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
84 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 September 2011

My fiance and I stayed here in early Sep 2011. Upon arriving at the hotel I was confused as the name out the front didn't match the full name on any of the websites (I think it was abbreviated to Whitsunday Retreat). Moreover, upon entering the room we booked (which was very nicely equipped), the view of the boats in the harbour had disappeared - in place of it was a view of a large hotel and incomplete construction across the road with minimal water and no boats (we subsequently found out they had run out of money and suspended construction).

We were quite disappointed and spoke to the manager about staying at one of their two 'sister' resorts. After some discussion, he said that we could have the penthouse for an extra $70 as it was only one night (AU$250 total)......

The Penthouse:

Three bedrooms, a full-sized kitchen with granite benchtops, cupboards full of condiments, consumables (glad wrap, foil, etc); all stainless steel appliances incl dishwasher; bay windows opening onto patio; 6 burner stove; 3 ovens; 3-door full sized fridge; large ensuite with HUGE shower and its own balcony; 4-poster bed draped in silk; separate dressing room; huge patio/balcony with 6 person jacuzzi and day bed; separate dining room; large lounge area with LCD, Wii and PS2; surround sound and AV system with iPod input; split system AC in every room; 5 min walk to all the shops on the main street... in a word, AMAZING!!!

There is only one penthouse at the hotel and it is truly amazing... best hotel I've ever stayed at (and I've paid a lot more for less!). I could have lived there.

Anyone who travels to Airlie Beach and is looking for accommodation under $400pn would be doing themselves an injustice not to stay at this amazing place.

The only downside was the lack of view (which was apparent in the lower suites, but slightly better on the 3rd level penthouse).

Would DEFINITELY stay again! In fact, we're hoping to head back there and stay in the Penthouse next July with a few friends.

Room Tip: Book the Penthouse!!
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Monkey1234567
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
WWBB29, Owner at at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat, responded to this review, 8 March 2012
Port of Airlie opened in April 2011, welcome to the latest Airlie Beach Fashion & Dining Precinct. Discover a place where you are just a short walk from shops, restaurants and recreational facilities. Port of Airlie is loctaed 50 meters from at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat.

Port of Airlie Retailers include:
• Billabong
• The Coffee Club
• Aimer Accessorys
• Calypso Resort & Swimwear
• Denman Cellars & Beer Cafe
• Cha mah Moroccan Restaurant
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 5 Contributor
75 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 September 2011

Stayed here for 3 nights while visiting the Whitsundays and The GreatnBarrier Reef.This hotel is perfectly located for a quiet, peaceful and comfortable holiday. The rooms have lovely views, are spacious and well furnished. The kitchen has all you need to cook up a great meal which you can then enjoy on the large balcony overlooking the beautiful infinity pool. Follow it up with a jacuzzi bath on your own balcony( while listening to your own music coming from the huge iPod dock) before you climb into the king sized bed to watch some TV on the large flat screen TV. Really great. If you can drag yourself out of all this luxury Scott, a most genial and helpful young manager, can arrange tours.. A complimentary breakfast is most welcome and a BBQ grill by the pool adds to ones choices for eating. There are many fine restaurants in Airlie Beach, which is a comfortable 10min walk .
All in all the quality and comfort of this hotel made our trip to 'The Reef' a most memorable one and nearly stole the show !!

  • Stayed September 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank cufrank
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat

Property: at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat
Address: 438 Shute Harbour Rd, Airlie Beach, Queensland 4802, Australia
Region: Australia > Queensland > Airlie Beach
Amenities:
Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Airlie Beach
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Airlie Beach
#6 Family Hotel in Airlie Beach
Price range (per night): $227 - $591
Hotel Class:4.5 star — at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat 4.5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat sets new standards of luxury award winning couples only boutique accommodation in the Whitsundays. Adjoining Airlie Beach and nestled on Pioneer bay which features pristine turquoise waters surrounded by breathtaking rainforest, guests can expect a high level of privacy coupled with exceptional unobtrusive personalised service. The luxury retreat comprises an exclusive collection of just five, one bedroom balcony spa suites and an incredible top floor Jacuzzi penthouse, with views over Port of Airlie and the Coral Sea. The luxury spa suites feature contemporary inspired interior furnishings that exude style and tropical ambience, natural timber louvers, spacious balcony with corner spa, Brand new king size beds, gourmet galley kitchen and pebbled ensuite bathrooms. The penthouse features a unique four posted king bed, the master bathroom featuring a double person rain shower, generous powder room complete with private balcony overlooking lush rainforest, a gourmet kitchen, black marble bar complete with wine fridge and stainless steel fixtures. Externally the penthouse enjoys an expansive balcony complete with six person Jacuzzi. Redefining intimate levels of service suites are serviced daily whilst the retreat boasts a private sun deck, deep water horizon pool, guest BBQ, lush tropical gardens, a-la-carte in room massage, facial and beauty treatments, unlimited FREE wireless internet, tour booking desk, great barrier reef touring, concierge and personalised limousine transfers. Exuding luxury, romance and tropical ambiance, at Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat offers the travel connoisseur a perfect blend of relaxation, intimacy and personalised service for an unparalleled couples only retreat experience. PLEASE NOTE : For the enjoyment of all guests, Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat 18+ enforces a strict NO NOISE NO PARTY POLICY. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat Airlie Beach
Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat Hotel
At Waterfront Whitsunday Retreat Airlie Beach/Whitsunday Islands

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