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“Magical, mystical and expensive” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Qualia Resort

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Qualia Resort
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   20 Whitsunday Boulevard, 4803, Australia   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 5 hotels in Hamilton Island
Brisbane, Australia
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
“Magical, mystical and expensive”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

When anything is voted "best in the world" then expectations are instantly raised - and often, I think, its hard for anything or anyone to live up to these expectations all of the time. And so it was with Qualia. I did expect to be blown away, but unfortunately I wasn't. Don't get me wrong the place is just out of this world. The physical features of the resort are truly outstanding - from the magical ocean views, to the beautiful tropical gardens (which are extremely well maintained), to the spacious and luxurious Pavillions, to the infinity edge pool overlooking the beach and ocean, to the golf buggies (your transport around the resort) which were loads of fun. Everything was just beautiful and perfect. What disappointed me was the poor customer service we experience over our three day stay. I felt invisible, like no one knew we were there - from the minute we stepped off the plane and were left to wait in a corridor without being given any information as to what was happening; to the lunch waitress that was visibly outraged that we actually wanted to order a drink; to the ridiculous prices - just because you are the best in the world, you don't have to be the most expensive in the world!. For lunch I had a beef burger - just a regular burger that cost $42.00. But I wont go on about the negatives because I feel this place is magical and people should visit it. We just happened to be there on a very busy weekend and the staff, I think, just couldn't cope.

We stayed in a Leeward Pavillion - these are the basic rooms at Qualia. In any other resort you would think yourself lucky to be in this room - its large by any standards - with separate deep bath, shower and toilet and double basin bench, his and hers wardrobes and then an even larger room for the king size bed and lounge room. There is also a large deck with two sunlounges as well as table and chairs. The finish is all polished timber floors with high ceilings - very classy and very nice. However, if you can afford it and even if you can't - do yourself a favour and stay the the other type of rooms the Windward pavillions - these are to die for!! Before leaving we had a look at number 11 and we absolutely regreted not having booked this type of room. They are extremely large with fantastic ocean views and private plunge pool!!! Oh, well we'll just have to come back!

We had Pavillions 59 and 60 which were right on the water's edge and very secluded. No. 60 had better ocean views. When we arrived there was a bottle of Champagne on ice waiting for us and the fridge was full of non-alcoholic drinks which were included in the price. We booked a gourmet package which included breakfast and dinner in the Long Pavillion each day of our stay. The breakfast pancakes were to die for and I highly recommend them. For dinner you can have a la carte or desgustation - we tried both!! Ask for a table on the deck - its much nicer outside with the wonderful view especially for breakfast. We also had a beach drop off - which was part of our package - and well worth doing. We were dropped off on a deserted island beach for a few hours where the staff had pre-setup umbrella's and beach mats for us - it was all very indulgent.

To truly appreciate all that this resort has to offer you need to stay longer than a few days.

Room Tip: Stay in a Windward Pavillion - you wont regret it! Purchase food and drinks outside the resort an...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 2 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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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (207)
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English first
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

My partner and I have just returned from a 3 day stay at qualia over the Easter weekend. Overall, the experience at qualia was great. The service, facilities, surroundings and Windward pavilion were as expected at a resort of this calibre. All the staff were helpful, friendly and always willing to assist when needed. The views from our room were magnificent and we did not want to leave our pavilions as it was the best part of the qualia experience, especially with the full height windows opening out to the ocean, private plunge pool and large bathrooms. However, the room cleaning times were a little strange. For example, we left our pavilion at around 10am to play a round of golf and returned at approximately 2.45pm and our pavilion had not been cleaned. With most other things working like clockwork at qualia, we thought that they would have taken this in to consideration and cleaned our room during our scheduled 4 hour absence. Although we do note that we stayed during the busy Easter weekend so the occupancy rates at the resort would have been very high. Also, the food was sub-par in comparison to both the reviews from the resort with the highly acclaimed Executive Chef, people who have stayed there and eaten the food, and also the meal prices. We ate at the Long Pavilion for dinner on the first night which was average (although serving sizes were a little larger than I expected), and the inclusive breakfasts were also average at best. There were some food items that were obviously mass produced, which is acceptable if the prices reflected this, which they did not. The wait staff should also consider writing down peoples orders rather than trying to memorize them, as all three mornings when we dined at the Long Pavilion for breakfast, our extra mushrooms or whatnot did not arrive with our meals as requested. The airport service and champagne upon arrival is a nice way to get you into a relaxed holiday mode which is definitely achieved when staying at qualia.

Room Tip: Opt for a Windward Pavilion as the private plunge pool + the views makes the experience at qualia wo...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 4 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.
Melbourne, Australia
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013 via mobile

Over rated island, too expensive compared to value, positives- spacious rooms, service was good overall except for very rigid attitude in the hotel restaurant - did not allow a tasting menu for one and a la carte menu for my husband, views are nice, nice breakfast, yoga class, negatives : too pricey for what you are getting, including spa treatments, average facilities, rocky beach, and the island in general is not that interesting and all island restaurants are over priced very hard to find one less than 100 a person, why go to Hamilton island when you can so much more for less in other places?

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this review, April 1, 2013
Dear Etipeti,


I appreciate you taking the time to share your opinion of qualia on Tripadvisor.

We aren’t a cheap destination but I really do believe that qualia represents great value for money and a growing number of guests are telling me just that. In fact, there have been many recent reviews that make a point of mentioning that qualia is well worth the price in their opinion. That being said, we are actively working on ways to provide even better value to our guests. A recent example of this is the development of our well being programme that includes complimentary aquarobics and access to a private trainer, alongside the yoga that you have already mentioned, all non-alcoholic beverages are included throughout your stay and many other touches that make our packages good value. Unlike many other Australian resorts, we also offer secure, high speed Wi-Fi to guests completely free of charge.

I’m sorry that you weren’t as impressed with Hamilton Island and qualia as most of our other guests but I do hope that you will come back again someday and give us another chance to surprise and delight you.


Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2013

My wife and I recently spent 4 nights at qualia living it up in one of their magnificent Windward pavilions. Not only was this one of our best holidays, this was the most luxurious experience we've ever had. From the moment our flight arrived into beautiful Hamilton Island, qualia's impeccable service was on display. We were told not to worry about our luggage and were chauffeured in one of their luxury vehicles into the resort. The check in process over a glass of champagne was smooth and very personalised. We were taken to our room in our own private golf buggy only to find our lugguage already waiting for us in the room. We were lucky enough to stay in windward pavillion 6, probably the best of the rooms in qualia, the same room that is pictured on their website. Pictures do not do justice to the beauty of this room, it was faultless. From our own private infinity pool, or any room in the pavilion, the stunning view of the turquoise waters surrounding the island was mesmerising.

Qualia is world class in all respects. The attentive high quality treatment at spa qualia matches anything we have received in Australia, Fiji and Thailand. The exquisite meals at the Long Pavilion rival any of the reputed hatted restaurants in Sydney. What we will however remember the most about our experience at qualia are the little things - the complimentary ice creams by the main pool near pebble beach, the scented candle in our room on arrival, or just the little possums running around at night when driving our buggy back to our room after dinner.

Thank you qualia staff for a magnificent holiday, we are missing the resort, the gorgeous views and your wonderful friendly courteous staff. Hope to be back soon.

Room Tip: Definitely pay more for the windward pavilion. You won't regret it - ask for pavilion 6 !
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
Sydney, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2013

Highly recommend staying at Qualia.

We stayed in November last year and whilst we picked a busy weekend the staff were fantastic!
Anything we needed they were happy to accommodate. The rooms were stunning as were the views. Qualia defiantly deserves all the awards it has been given!

I hope we can come back and enjoy your beautiful resort soon!

Room Tip: Book a Windward Room. BEAUTIFUL!!
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  • Stayed November 2012, 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.
sydney
Top Contributor
133 reviews 133 reviews
85 hotel reviews
Reviews in 87 cities Reviews in 87 cities
99 helpful votes 99 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2013

From the moment we arrived at Hamilton Island to the end of our trip absolutely everything about Qualia impressed us. We never vacation at home in Australia, but would return to Qualia.

The resort is beautiful, the location amazing, and the staff are suprisingly very good (world class). Just note that the Whitsundays do not have the best beaches in Australia besides Whitehaven, so its really a poolside style resort.

Definitely stay in a winward pavillion, they are larger, and the plunge pool is very nice. By comparison the other pavillions seem quite small. The view is spectacular. The housekeeping excellent.

We had a food inclusive package, and are very glad we did. The food at the Long Pavillion is Michelin star quality and we never tired or had a bad meal during a five night stay. Its difficult to find a restaurant that does every course well, but Qualia succeeds at this! Breakfasts are also amongst the best we have had at any hotel. If your paying for food separately then you will not save, as you will quickly decide there is nothing to compare to Qualia on the island for meals. A larger wine list is my only request for next time.

Hamilton Island has an abundance of activities - the golf is very good (not great...) but the views on Dent Island are amazing, the jet ski tour is not to be missed (even for beginners like us), the Atomic cruise looked great, and if its in the budget a chopper over Whitehaven and to the reef is great.

The best thing about Qualia though is the service. The standard of staff is way beyond anything we have experienced in Australia. If you are an American travelling Australia in particular, this is the only place that comes close to the level of service you get over there.

We were delayed returning home at the end of our trip due to cancelled flights. After spending a frustrating day at the airport, Qualia... not the airline, looked after us with a further night back in our own pavillion gratis without any requests.

I cannot speak highly enough of this resort... other than to say GO!

Room Tip: winward is the only room to get
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
Brisbane, Australia
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2013

The only thing that spoilt our holiday was the rain for a few days as it meant we couldn't get out and relax at the pool and meant the sunset cruise was not suitable for us. Other than that we had a fabulous time. The staff are delightful. They always smile and are very cheery about life. The food was excellent with the daily breakfast being a great start to each day. I enjoyed the Yoga classes and swimming in the pool. If you are energetic enough you too could do the walk/climb to Passsage Peak where there amazing views or even continue to the secluded beaches. Take plenty of water and a small towel to wipe the perspiration away. I recommend Qualia as an excellent break from the hustle and bustle.

Room Tip: We could only access the Leeward rooms as our preferred Windward ones were full. The Leeward room wa...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 5 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 Qualia Resort

Address: 20 Whitsunday Boulevard, 4803, Australia
Phone Number:
Location: Australia > Queensland > Whitsunday Islands > Hamilton Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 hotels in Hamilton Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Qualia Resort 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated in the Whitsundays, qualia puts the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef right on your doorstep. Its sun-drenched northern aspect provides the ideal location to appreciate the passing beauty of each day, surrounding guests with some of the most stunning and spectacular waters to be found anywhere in the world. What’s more, with a direct flight taking only 2-3 hours from international gateway cities on Australia’s east coast, qualia truly is a world-class destination without the journey.qualia offers a choice of 60 individual pavilions, each with breathtaking views. There are spacious one-bedroom freestanding pavilions (Windward and Leeward) that provide an indulgentspace to relax in and unwind, with either a sundeck or private infinity edge plunge pool. Or, there’s the uncompromising luxury and privacy of the Beach House with its own guest pavilion. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Qualia Hamilton Island
Qualia Hotel Hamilton Island

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