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“Strange Island politics, "adequate" apartments, weather showed all the island flaws.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Pandanus Apartments

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Pandanus Apartments
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Lord Howe Island, Australia   |  
Hotel amenities
Australia
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Strange Island politics, "adequate" apartments, weather showed all the island flaws.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2010

Accommodation
Stayed in a two bedroom apartment, adequate, old building that has been "renovated". No cook top, BBQ outside on verandah. Beds are perfect. Found spiders inside the bedrooms and the beds, don't think this place has been sprayed to avoid bugs coming inside. Bathroom adequate, again it has been "renovated". Big enough, clean enough. There are some dvd's, beach towels, picnic backpack, some cable television. No air conditioning, no ceiling fans, just one portable fan, which can be a problem as it can get quite hot. There is no mobile reception in the island. There is a public phone next to pandanus restaurant. There also is free wireless in the restaurant. There is no pool in the place, so if you need to cool down you have to go to the beach, which at times, due to the hill it seemed like a chore.
The manager picked us up from the airport and offered rides to places if needed, however it felt more like protocol rather than she really wanted to help so we stack to the bikes.
Because of the weather we were in our cabin a lot and other people NOT the manager suggested things to do, I thought this was a shame. We missed carols near church as we didn't know they were on. We only found out about the museum as an option on a rainy day, thanks to the Pandanus restaurant manager; We found out about Santa on Ned's beach from the hair dresser next door to our accommodation. When we got there we realised people from other resorts got a lift in the mini buses, however we didn't, and had to ride our bikes in the rain while pandanus mini bus sat on the driveway.
It was no secret we had small children, it was no secret it rained a LOT of the time we were there, however we felt we were left to our own devices. A little bit of help and friendliness would have been appreciated. The couple of times we got rides it seemed like a favour more than customer service.

Location
The place is at the top of a hill (somehow no one told us this!), everyone told us we should hire bikes but with two small children we ended up walking the bikes up the hill. If you have small kids or are travelling with an elderly person I would hire a car (there are about 5 for hire in the island so get in quickly).
The island is truly a gorgeous place, but be warned if it's raining (which it was for 4 out of 7 days we were there!) there is nothing else to do. No cinemas, no shopping centre. The only place to go to is the Museum which is very interesting but not very amusing for small kids.
The weather in the island can be unpredictable (something no one told us before we got there either!) However it is a beautiful place.
Everyone talks about feeding the fish, and yes it's a fun thing to do and it's pretty cool, the kids loved it. Weather providing, there are plenty of beaches to choose from.

The Island
This is a strange place where only a few people own most of the businesses, one guy owns the bike hire and car hire, another owns the cafe and a "hotel", and so on. Someone must be making a lot of money, however most services seem to be ran down and average, food is extremely expensive, because there is not a lot of competition (only 3 stores, payed 9 dollars for a jar of vegemite!!). Service is awful, people seem to have an attitude and a sense of "you should be thankful we allowed you in here". It seems to me that in the islander's quest to pocket in money they're running the island down to the ground. We were told by several people that there is a drinking problem in the Island, not surprised. We were also told that people who try to open businesses or come up with new ideas are quickly silenced by the "board of islanders" (more like mafia to me), Islanders don't want new people or businesses coming along because then there is more people to share the cake with. To be able to own a property you need to marry an islander and even people that live and work in the island, aren't considered to be islanders and are discriminated upon by the "original" residents. For a heritage listed place all these retrograde politics seem like a lot of rubbish and very BAD press. It's a real shame that this is the way this place is being managed.....if it continues it will eventually die, I would imagine it's already happening, you just need to look at the state of the facilities. The place looks neglected. What a shame.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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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21 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (5)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Sydney, Australia
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 57 cities Reviews in 57 cities
137 helpful votes 137 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2010

Lord Howe Island was unknown to us so we booked Pandanus based on tripadvisor recommendations and we were not disappointed. Liz picked us up from the airport and dropped us back there at the end of the stay. She droved us around the island to get our bearings, took us to the local shop to stock up our groceries, took us to dinner whenever we wanted to go....in other words was endlessly gracious and helpful to not only us, but every other guest staying at Pandanus. The units themselves were large, airy, bright and very well equipped. DVD and CD players were supplied, laundry available (extra cost) but a laundry tub with free detergent was in each unit for hand washing. The kingsize bed was comfy and the bathroom adequate. It was cold at night when we were there so a small heater would have been a nice addition. The lovely large decks on each unit are marvellous for a drink, cuppa or to read a book. Individual barbeques also there. However, no hotplate for cooking inside the unit, just microwave and electric frypan. All told an extremely comfortable place to call home. Took a while to get used to not being able to lock the unit when you go out however. This is an island tradition evidently but for jaded mainlanders, slightly disconcerting! Without a doubt I would choose to stay there again, not only for the accommodation and truly gorgeous setting, but also for Pandanus Restaurant which is classy and elegant in its own right. The one warning I would sound though is that this island is steep and Pandanus is almost at the peak of a hill. Almost all guests are riding bikes or walking as there is no publc transport and only 7 hire cars. Therefore the walk up from the lagoon is quite a journey. If you are elderly or disabled in any way, this might not be the accommodation for you. Yes, it is near Ned's beach but even that is not a flat walk. We adored Lord Howe and loved Pandanus but it is worth bearing in mind.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mexico
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2010

As a family group with four young teenagers between us these units could not have been more perfect. We rented two of the two bedroom units which allowed us to be together but not on top of each other. Everything was clean, well presented and very comfortable. Basic necessities were all included. Each unit had a fantastic back deck with large dining table and new BBQ which allowed us to eat together if we did not want to go out to the excellent island restaurants (try Pandanus and Humpty Micks!). Liz was friendly and helpful and gave us a great introduction to the Island on our first day. To sum it up - this place is highly recommended and we would definitely love to return one day.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with family
    • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2010

Three of us stayed in the two bedroom apartment (cabin, really) which was beautifully furnished, very well equipped with a good kitchen and bathroom and is surrounded by lovely gardens and a forest of palm trees.There is also a very up-to-date TV (and DVD equipment) and reception was excellent when we were there. The apartment has a roomy furnished deck with large BBQ at the back and a smaller furnished deck at the front. We were delighted with the setting and with the excellent service provided by Liz, the manager, who keeps the gardens and apartments spotless as well as driving guests to and from the airport.
There is a very good restaurant on site and plenty of others within walking distance. Nothing is very far away on Lord Howe and most visitors walk or cycle to the staggeringly beautiful beaches.
The Panadanus is highly recommended for anyone who seeks comfort, beauty and serenity.

  • Stayed February 2010, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2009

Pandanus is the perfect place to stay. The staff are super friendly, the apartments are very comfortable, the location is outstanding, and the restaurant's food beats even the best restaurants in Sydney. LHI is an amazing destination and Pandanus is an exceptional place to call home during your stay.

  • Stayed May 2009
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pandanus Apartments

Address: Lord Howe Island, Australia
Location: Australia > Lord Howe Island
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 10 Specialty Lodging in Lord Howe Island
Number of rooms: 4

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