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“good location” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Port Douglas Retreat

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Port Douglas Retreat
3.5 of 5 Condominium   |   31 - 33 Mowbray Street, Port Douglas, Queensland 4877, Australia   |  
Hotel amenities
Sydney
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“good location”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2013

Stayed for 6 nights. The location of PD Retreat is very good, very handy to the shops, restaurants, beach and marina. We had a rental car and tripped away most days and a reef trip, On reflection 6 nights in PD is probably too long, our time would have been more enjoyable breaking our holiday to 2 - 3 different locations. It's amusing reading the TA reviews after staying at PD Retreat. My advise to prospective guests - the location & pool are excellent, I totally concur with other reviewers negative comments regarding management, and experienced samples of each complaint I have read. Fortunately you do not go on holiday to holiday with the management. The pool toilet did stink, showers are small, air conditioner unit is the old window rattler variety and very noisy. Usual basic motel/hotel expectations eg. shamp/cond, tea coffee & change of towels - do not happen, except at a charge. When so many guests mention this as a negative, you would think that by providing fresh towels etc (even if only every 3rd day), it would be a very cheap way to gain positive feedback.
One reviewer mentioned the pool toilet stunk, when we stayed it still stunk- like an animal had died in the drain, so this may be an unresolvable problem. The pool is closed at 10pm, one night we were heading to the pool in togs & towels at 9.40pm for a quick dip after dinner, David passed us and said "I've just locked the gate to the pool" and continued past us seemingly ignoring us pointing out that the sign says "pool closed 10pm", however, he diid turn back before we had reached our room and said he had unlocked the gate. First response was not a friendly unlocking of the gate, the impression was that we had inconvenienced David's evening. David points out in his TA responses "this is a 3.5 star resort", however this doesn't mean the management should lower their standard of customer service. I got the impression David's expectations of customer service are higher than the service he delivers based on his impression of "value" for money.
Our tropical holiday ideal is, snorkelling, relaxing and a break from commericial shopping, crowds etc. Comparing PD other tropical locations such as Samoa, Fiji, Bareboat charters Whitsundays, we enjoy snorkelling & swimming in the ocean, this is only available in PD at the expense of reef trips (highly recommend the silver sonic trip - 3 locations, & good food), ocean swimming out of the question because of stingers & crocodiles. Therefore the accomodation can become quite important regarding facilities such as pool & surrounds - the size of PD Retreat is small and can feel like staying at home by the pool, with strangers calling in and sharing your back deck.
The town is packed when cruise ships are in. If you visit during a busy period at PD - make reservations at restaurants, the popular restaurants were booked 3 days ahead. I would recommend a rental car, tourist destinations such as mossman gorge, daintree discovery centre, Cape Trib can all be covered without the expense of a guided tour. The discovery centre provides handheld commentary units, mossman gorge can be walked on your own or by guided walk.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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186 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (63)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Lytham St Anne's, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2013

A great location for both the beach, centre and marina. Great pool and gardens, but quite shady due to trees. We were made very welcome. David and Joyce assisted us to book trips and gave advice when visiting Daintree rain forest and Kuranda. Apartment was well equipped with comfortable bed and good view over looking pool. Port Douglas is a great location and would recommend as a great place for a holiday.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
australia
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2013

Stayed for a week and enjoyed the pool which had some warm water pumped through. Looked fantastic lit up at night. This is a very clean and well maintained resort and was good value. There were a number of noisy guests at the BBQ area for the first few nights and we were glad we didn't have a poolside room. The bed and the air conditioner were my only complaints. The bed was 2 singles joined as we have had at many hotels but the seams were higher than the mattress so if you moved onto them they were very uncomfortable. I think the beds are almost due for replacement or at least a mattress topper. The aircon also is on its last legs very noisy we couldn't keep it on for more than a few minutes. Fortunately it wasn't too hot and the fan was good enough so it didn't bother us. This was a great place to stay, very well situated, minutes walk to everything so no need for a car. Site Manager was very helpful and pleasant!

Room Tip: BBQ area quite noisy so we preferred a room away from the pool.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 6, 2013

I had a wonderful time at Port Douglas, particularly with my stay at the Retreat. Dave and Joyce were so accomodating, even when I locked myself out of my room after hours (whoops!). The outdoor pool was a particular delight. The location was great, too. It was a couple streets from the main road, but a 5-10 minute walk from 4 Mile Beach and the marina. Tourist noises weren't a problem, but the sounds of birds put you to sleep and wake you up. I would definitely stay here again!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mission Beach, Australia
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2013

Carnivale' in Port Douglas. Sounds like a good idea, but where to stay? You need to be close to the action, far enough away from the noise, comfortable, but have a respect for cost and have a pool that's not an afterthought.
Here it is The Port Douglas Retreat.
Run by Joyce and David, it's as if you are their very first customer! Friendly, happy, eager and informative.
The resort looks like a, well, resort. Thoughtfully blending the pool barbeque area with mature palms, even Lipstick palms.
Cleanliness is a priority. Each morning we saw David cleaning, repositioning washing down and sweeping - but he does this quietly.
Rooms are of an older statement, but very very clean - powerful shower, King bed, good pillows and even a welcome pack of milk etc etc.

We have travelled extensively, and really value for money - The Port Douglas Retreat has no peers in this area.
Well done Joyce and David

Room Tip: All rooms are of the same view, simply there is a 1st floor and with no lift, this may be an issue f...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Napier, New Zealand
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 17, 2013

My wife and I stayed here for our honeymoon. We chose this place because of it close location to town and its recommendation from other people we know that had stayed here. Our shuttles had been pre arranged to take us from cairns to the retreat so no issues at all on getting there. But as we arrived at the retreat we were disappointed.
The first thing we noticed was that we had 2 SINGLE BEDS pushed together with a queen sheet over them, not ideal as we paid more to have a standard double room plus we were on our honeymoon. We were supplied with 2 towels only, if we wanted more we had to go and pay to hire more and 10mls of milk in the fridge. That was it. The room itself was small and we opted to spend as little time here as possible, luckily we had lots of tours planned so we stayed most of the days out and about.
On the last day of our stay my wife and I were out in Cairns, I rang the front desk and asked if they could confirm our airport transfer shuttle for the next morning, I gave them the shuttle company's name, the time and a reference number, we arrived back at our room around 9pm and had a note under our door saying we needed to check out at 10am and they had booked us a shuttle: wrong company, wrong time and a price! Considering we had pre paid the shuttle service and had been given a reference number which I had gave the front desk I couldn't believe it.
The next morning I went down and asked them to cancel the other shuttle as I rang up myself at my own expense and confirmed with the right company, he said NO because we hadn't' given 24 hours notice to cancel, and that we would still need to pay the $80 to the bus company, he didn't say it politely either, considering they had been given all the right information and still used a different bus company I can only assume that he got some kind of commission out of it. I refused to pay and caught the intended shuttle to the airport and that was the end of it.
I am still very disappointed that we chose this place over other options, like I said at the beginning of the review the location is good, but after our stay that is all I can say.

Room Tip: If you are travelling as a couple, make sure you get an actual bed for 2, not 2 single beds pushed t...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PDRetreat, Owner at Port Douglas Retreat, responded to this review, May 18, 2013
We thank our guest for their "review".

Just some facts so the story is correct.
We offer self serviced studio apartments, they are 36sq m as shown on our website, perfect for couples or single travellers.

All our beds are 'king zip' these are two large singles zipped up (concealed zips) and have a mattress pad/topper placed over the top along with all the bedding. I would have thought in the 5 days our guest were with us if there was something wrong they would have told us and we could have put another mattress pad over the top. While we are a 3.5 star property, many properties including many 4,& 4.5 star properties use these beds and find them comfortable.

Our guests booked to stay for their honeymoon in our tree view apartments (our cheaper apartments) but these are perfectly comfortable apartments. They did not pay more for these apartments, they are cheaper than our than our pool view apartments.

Our property is a self-serviced/self-catering apartments and we explained to them about the 'welcome pack' of 200ml milk (not 10ml) and tea/coffee and if they required more they can purchase more but this is a 'welcome pack' . This so they do not need to race off to the supermarket just for a cup of coffee when they first arrive.

We never made any mistakes with their bus transfer.
We received a phone call from our guests asking us to "book a bus to Cairns airport". We asked what time they wanted to be there and booked a bus accordingly and told them over the phone about the cost of the bus. Surely, he would have said why does he need to pay again and why it was a different company to the first if he knew had prearranged bus transfers .

I was surprised to read their 'review' and their comments about booking the wrong bus, payment, pick up time etc, as it was the guest on the departure morning who told us their prearranged bus company called them on their last night and asked if they were returning as they had not reconfirmed their pick-up as written in their itinerary. We do not know about their prearranged itinerary and if they had prearranged bus travel etc, this is between the guest and their booking agent.

We always try to help guests with their transfers and do our very best to make sure guests get to the airport on time but it would help us if these guests had told us about their prearrangements before asking us to book bus transfer.

I guess sometimes it is easier to blame us.

While we are only a 3.5 star property, we offer very affordable and very comfortable accommodation and in a great location as other Reviewers have written. We are happy to see that honeymooners choose to stay with us.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
west yorkshire
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2013

We were pleased with our choice and found the Retreat to be an excellent place to chill out. The Retreat is close to the centre of Port Douglas and the Marina.
Lovely couple who keep the site, and the rooms, very clean.
A very good pool, deep in parts, with BBQ area adjoining.
Ideal site for couples rather than families

Room Tip: We were in a room above the car park and whilst there wasn't any noise we didn't have much o...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Port Douglas Retreat

Address: 31 - 33 Mowbray Street, Port Douglas, Queensland 4877, Australia
Location: Australia > Queensland > Port Douglas
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #21 of 55 Specialty Lodging in Port Douglas
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Port Douglas Retreat 3.5*
Number of rooms: 36
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
IDEAL ACCOMMODATION IN PORT DOUGLAS. Port Douglas Retreat Holiday Accommodation offers self-contained studio apartments in Port Douglas, Far North Queensland, Australia. Perfect holiday accommodation for couples or single travellers. EXCELLENT LOCATION. Port Douglas Retreat Holiday Accommodation is superbly located just a few minutes' walk to Four Mile Beach or Macrossan Street and Marina Mirage. VISITOR INFORMATION. With an in-house tour desk and local knowledge, your hosts can help create your wonderful Port Douglas experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Port Douglas Retreat Hotel Port Douglas

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