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“Great location- lacking the finer details of previous visit” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection

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The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   99 Williams Esplanade, Palm Cove, Queensland 4879, Australia (Formerly Sebel Reef House)   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 13 Hotels in Palm Cove
Grange SA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great location- lacking the finer details of previous visit”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012

We first visited the Reef House five years ago and were blown away. Sadly on this holiday we found the hotel service has lost its attention to detail that we loved on the first visit. The continental breakfast was disappointing and most morning we had to tell the staff when items had run out on the buffett. It was a shame that the full breakfast was no longer avilable buffett style and the range of tropical fruits from our last visit was certianly reduced. In fact we didn't dine in the resturant for lunch or dinner over the holiday due to the service in the mornings. The room was nice but again the simple things like having the tea/ coffee/ toilet paper replaced daily were missing. The spa on the veranda was great but we did have some concerns with privacy from the adjacent motel.
The Reef House is a wonderful, characteristic resort in a truely beautiful location that sadly needs a shake up to get back to its former glory.

  • Stayed September 2012, 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
    • 2 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.
Kellie_Eustace, General Manager at The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection, responded to this review, September 27, 2012
Thank you for returning to the Reef House, I have discussed your feedback with the team as
this is not our normal standard of service. Your comments regarding the team members at breakfast will assist with our ongoing training and development, I am sorry - you certainly should not have to tell the staff when items have run out on the buffet. The inconsistant housekeeping servicing of your room has been addressed.

Thank you for your comments and support, we look forward to welcoming you back to Palm Cove.

Yours sincerely
Kellie
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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579 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 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (104)
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Canberra
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2012

The location of the Reef House is perfect, being located right across from the beach and with a very short walk to shops and other restaurants.

Service was very friendly with all our requests taken care of with a minimum of fuss. I found the care taken of my 20 month old lovely - it's not quite the same travelling with a toddler but it made it easier when he was provided with some attention and special drinks for him. We enjoyed the daily evening drinks and snacks.

The rooms were quite dirty. The floors needed a good scrub and the bathroom had mould in it. The climate probably doesn't help with this (the mould), but I wouldn't have expected this kind of disrepair in a hotel of this standard.

Room service was quite slow, especially at breakfast time where we had to cancel an order one day or we would have been late for a tour pickup.

We had a lovely, relaxed stay overall. It was just the lack of cleanliness and need of sprucing things up a little that made the shine of the time there dull a little. Luckily, the service was very friendly and helpful and it made up for it somewhat.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 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.
Kellie_Eustace, General Manager at The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection, responded to this review, September 27, 2012
Our location is perfect and thank you for acknowleding the teams service particularly with your little one. I am so sorry you had to cancel a room service breakfast and I have taken action with the housekeeping team, thank you for your feedback.

On behalf of the team we look forward to welcoming you back.

Yours sincerely
Kellie
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Sydney, Australia
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2012

We first started staying at Reef House nearly 25 years ago and in that time have probably visited 7 times. It has always been a very sophisticated and well run resort except for this time. The whole resort has a run down feel and is looking very shabby and the restaurant's cuisine and service is very much inferior to what it used to be. The room cleaners need a big shake up as in 9 days we never got our fridge restocked and glassware only washed every few days.
All in all a bit disappointing. Next time we will probably stay somewhere else.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 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.
Kellie_Eustace, General Manager at The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection, responded to this review, September 27, 2012
Thank you for taking the time to write about your recent stay and agree, based on your experience the housekeeping team do need a shake up, this is certainly not our normal standard of service. I have followed this through and I sincerely apologise for the oversights. On behalf of the team we sincerely hope you do choose to stay with us again and please contact myself directly as I would love to co-ordinate your next booking personally.

Yours sincerely
Kellie
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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2012 via mobile

The beach is at your door step, the food is great & the rooms are large. The facility is a little older but value for money and perfect location.
Cairns is a good 30 min drive so you'll need to plan for transport. The location did get a little cool at night during August.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Kellie_Eustace, General Manager at The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection, responded to this review, September 27, 2012
Wonderful to read you enjoyed your stay in our colonial beach house, our location is perfect. Thank you.

Yours sincerely
Kellie
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Melbourne
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2012

Each winter beautiful Tasmania becomes quite brisk, so we seek warmth in the north Queensland sun. Usually we stay for around 12 days. We have had 13 holidays in Palm Cove, the most beautiful and least commercial of all destinations north of Cairns. Ten of those holidays have been at Reef House. We love its charm and individuality, its beachfront position, the large rooms, the great restaurant, the two pools (one heated saltwater, the other freshwater fed by a magnificent artificial waterfall). When we first stayed at Reef House it was owned by Sebel and it was brilliant. Over the years we witnessed the resort slowly ageing and for a few of those stays we thought it would be our last. But under new management, the old lady is having a gentle facelift. The grounds once again are immaculate (thanks to an energetic French Canadian) and the rooms are being refurbished, as indeed they had to be. The restaurant, shaded by magnificent paperbark trees hundreds of years old (Captain Cook must have sighted them on his historic voyage throught these waters), is serving great meals and inhouse guests for the first time in our memory receive a 20% discount on the bill (including wine). Our tariff included continental breakfast, which was substantial. The young staff (mostly from Europe on short-term visas) are great fun. As our recent visit to Palm Cove has been our 13th, we don't travel too much, but we do recommend renting a car for a day and driving to Silky Oaks Lodge in the Daintree, for a fabulous lunch overlooking the Mossman Gorge. The Reef House restaurant and another one 400m to the south, called Far Horizons, are the best value for money in Palm Cove and both look through the palms to the beach. We do not recommend Nunus -- once our favourite restaurant at Palm Cove, now serving mediocre meals at inflated prices.

Room Tip: We like the Verandah rooms, which overlook the freshwater pool and waterfall. The bedrooms are large...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kellie_Eustace, General Manager at The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection, responded to this review, September 7, 2012
Dear Melbourne Halls

On behalf of the entire Resort team thank you for your continued support of the Reef House, your home away from home in the glorious North Queensland sun. Thank you for recommending us to your friends who by all accounts will be returning with their family next year as well. We simply cannot wait to see you again and welcome you back for your 11th stay.

Please stay in touch.

Yours sincerely
Kellie
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BRISBANE
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2012

Returned to Cairns after many years, stayed at Reef House Palm Cove. Palm Cove does not have cocktail bars or night clubs. Is elegant, quiet but has a real magic about it, far better than Port Douglas. Where to stay??? There are many beach front locations, some attract young families and noisy kids. We stayed at Reef House. Has 2 swimming pools, one is heated. Ground are tropical with comfortable sun lounges. We got a great package at $200 a night with b,fast. Not the greatest rooms, however spacious and upstairs have lovely views over the pool. Breakfast is basic but sufficient, cereal, toast ect with plenty of fresh fruit. Do not bother upgrading to a larger breakfast which costs extra $10. Wife ordered tomato on toast. Received half a tomato on each slice of toast, even I can cook better than that .Staff are extremely friendly and polite, actually staff are excellent. .
The 2 swimming pools are tiled, this would of been a 5 star resort 20 years ago, just looking a bit tired now, give it 3 to 4 star rating, prices reflect this. I would 100% recommend the Reef House and we will be back within 6 months. Best time to visit is April to October.

Room Tip: Up stairs overlooking the pool
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2012

We have just returned from a marvellously relaxing 3-day stay at the Reef House. Its location was perfect with the beach right across the road and the shops & other variety of restaurants within easy walking distance.
I loved the warm & welcoming charm of the Reef House. It had a lovely classic Colonial beach house feel, with its crisp white building sheltered by large palm & Melaleuca trees with the cascading branches & leaves, which made the resort, feel very pleasant, & “secluded” though it was in the middle of Palm Cove strip.

We were treated very well from arrival, with chocolates and bubbles in our rooms. We had a room with a spa on the veranda overlooking the sea which was incredible!

The resort had a lovely casual atmosphere. The staff were friendly, courteous, and attentive, greeting us by our first names. The pool area was serene & peaceful and the lounges were very comfortable to lounge the afternoon away.

Dining at the Reef House was a fantastic experience; the meals were all well-prepared & delicious. The location right on the beach was so beautiful, enjoyed every minute sitting outside on the lovely veranda decking of the restaurant and dining with the gentle sea breeze & overlooking to sea….could sit for hours….

A thoroughly enjoyable & memorable few days stay. Loved every moment of it! Very much looking forward to visiting this resort again…hopefully in a not so distant future!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kellie_Eustace, General Manager at The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection, responded to this review, September 7, 2012
On behalf of the team we do hope to see you again in the not too distant future and look forward to welcoming you back to the warmth of Tropical North Queensland. Thank you.

Yours sincerely
Kellie
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection

Address: 99 Williams Esplanade, Palm Cove, Queensland 4879, Australia (Formerly Sebel Reef House)
Phone Number:
Location: Australia > Queensland > Cairns Region > Palm Cove
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Palm Cove
#5 Spa Hotel in Palm Cove
#7 Family Hotel in Palm Cove
#8 Luxury Hotel in Palm Cove
#8 Romantic Hotel in Palm Cove
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection 5*
Number of rooms: 69
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located just 25 minutes north of Cairns in the secluded Palm Cove, an upscale boutique beachfront experience awaits guests at Reef House Palm Cove - MGallery Collection.The resort offers a warm, personalised service for all guests and together with its comprehensive range of resort facilities, The Reef House is the perfect getaway for couples seeking romantic bliss or simply a holiday in sheer relaxation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Reef House Hotel Palm Cove
The Sebel Reef Hotel
Sebel Reef Hotel

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