If you're seeking spectacular panoramic Whitsunday blue sky, blue sea vistas in a peaceful setting, with easy access to restaurants, marina and tourist shopping, with spacious uncluttered accommodation, look no further.
This almost brand new apartment accommodation boasts ample lounge, well appointed kitchen, spacious balcony with large table and 6 well sized chairs and decently sized bedroom.
There is no restaurant on the premises and any provisions supplied for tea/coffee would only be replenished at an additional cost $15. The usual mini-bar was absent, but there was a vending machine in the car park, adjacent to the infinity swimming pool. The TV only has the free to air channels and ABC has fairly ordinary reception. DVD player is provided, but no discs, so bring your own or rent from local stores.
The rooms are only serviced every 3 days if you're staying that long, unless you want to pay an additional $20/day. The cleaning performed is pretty ordinary, which is OK at the moment, but will eventually become an issue when the place starts to age and get more worn out. We noticed our bedroom had a significant amount of clothes threads on the carpet when we arrived, signalling that it had not been hoovered between guests and the waste bin in the kitchen smelled bad, even though it had been emptied.
If we had any criticism it is that the bathroom lacks much functionality. There are no hooks, only one power point, space is only provided for one towel on the rail, the lighting is poor and my wife had some problems with the proximity of the toilet to the toilet roll and its proximity to the shower. We used a large number of towels, because we used the wonderful infinity pool downstairs and then had to use the clothes drying horse provided on the ample balcony.
The owners run the place part-time, with one couple on for 3-4 days and then rotated with the other couple, what else would you do living in the shadows of the beautiful Whitsunday islands, but sail in your spare time!! Consequently they could not provide the advertised wake up call as no one starts that early and honestly why would you if you lived there. “Use your radio alarm” was our instruction.
One owner, Florida born Phil, had booked our reef excursion and assured us that "everything is provided" without adding the proviso "at a price", so we neglected to take our own towels and sun lotion. And found that on the cruise we could purchase sun lotion, but towels were not available for any price. Fortunately the sun came out, having been showers up until that day, and we got dry anyway.
Phil also recommended the Terrace restaurant in Airlie Beach for dinner. When we arrived we found we were the only patrons. Maybe because it is fairly ordinary fare, maybe because the prices were modest, or maybe because the hotel is very tired and in bad need of renovation. It seems like more of a drop in location for an after work drink.
The next night we ate at the Airlie Beach Hotel, Capers. No wonder Phil didn't recommend this place. It has an interesting menu, quite fashionable, located across the road from the beach with uninterrupted views of the sea and atmosphere. Phil would recognise that ABH is his direct competition in town. I don't know what their rooms are like, but the place looks fairly new.
Capers was great, until they forgot us and then we couldn't get any service at all. Despite this the food quality brought us back for breakfast the next morning, only to find that the service had deteriorated even further, we only got one meal and that was wrong. They fixed it up and supplied the other meal, with that typical North Qld style, slow and casual, what's your problem we're all relaxed here in the sun, chill out and enjoy the holiday. Maybe Phil didn’t recommend this place for these reasons.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Grand Mercure Azure Sea is located at Airlie Beach, gateway to the famous Whitsunday Islands. This four star resort features 30 self catering apartments, fully equipped with the latest European appliances, surrounded by landscaped tropical gardens and only 15 minutes walk from the main beach or shopping centre. Guests enjoy stunning 180 degree views over the Coral Sea to Hayman Island and a spectacular infinity edge waterfall swimming pool. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Mercure Azure Sea Hotel Airlie Beach
- Grand Mercure Azure Sea Airlie Beach/Whitsunday Islands