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“Active stays/Fawlty Towers-can't believe we stayed twice!!” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Active Stays Motel

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Active Stays Motel
2481 Gold Coast Highway, Mermaid Beach, Queensland 4218, Australia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #12 of 12 hotels in Mermaid Beach
Brisbane, Australia
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Active stays/Fawlty Towers-can't believe we stayed twice!!”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2012

We originally stayed at Acive Stays earlier in the year, the stay overall wasn't so bad with the exception that while travelling down there, Bruce rang us from the motel to say they were overbooked and wanted to cancel our holiday, my response was "no way" and they had to sort it which they did with a few hiccups along the way!! The room was clean but the bin hadn't been emptied and overall the quality of the hotel was poor. The voucher situation was not explained to us and we tried to use the Curry Muncher voucher but was told it could not be used so we bought a meal anyway and thoroughly enjoyed it. We travelled down there again this weekend, the stay was much worse, the guy who greeted us who also responded to the name 'Bruce' was a totally different person, the first thing our of his mouth was excuses as to how the room wasn't ready and how busy it had been, we were offered no wine or fruit platter, he gave us one voucher for the Curry Muncher restaurant but informed us it wasn't open that night-Sunday, although on the previous stay we had eaten there on a Sunday!! We said we would go out to give them time to get the room ready. When we got back I noticed the bed hadn't been changed and phoned 'Bruce', he got a lady called 'Marlene' to come and sort the situation out, she must have been the resident cleaner who in my opinion did her best to sort things out, she informed us that we shouldn't have been in there and transferred us to another room, the bed in the new room hadn't been made and the bin needed emptying, she promptly sorted this for us but then she infomed us that there wasn't a key as it had been stolen and that we would have to ring and let them know when we got back each time to open the room. The room had been cleaned but the bathroom door wouldn't shut and the shower curtain was disgusting, we asked her about the wine but but none arrived and she laughed when we menitoned the fruit platter!! On the last night we got back, the alleged Bruce was asked to unlock our door, I stated to him that the situation had been ridiculous and that it appeared he wasn't bothered, he promptly responded with no he wasn't as he wasn't the owner, exactly the response I expected.
This is the worst place I have stayed in and because I bought the holiday through Groupon I will be contacting them with a compaint and also the hotel standards authority which accredits them with their star rating, I suggest that everyone does this who has had the sme type of experience that we have had.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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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43 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    3 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2 of 5 stars
  • Service
    2 of 5 stars
  • Value
    2 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Brisbane, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2012

The photo certainly was not like the room we stayed in!!! After purchasing our three day groupon deal we arrived at the motel to find all the sheets hanging over the balcony drying!!!! What a greeting!! There was no manager but there and a woman who kindly came over and let us into our room. We were then told we would get some keys when the boss arrived!!! A few hours later still no keys so we asked again for a key as we were going out. Eventually we did get one and also our 'bottle of wine' no fruit platter!! None of the vouchers were accepted anywhere so what was supposed to be a $880 package deal turned out to be the laugh of the century!!! As for breakfast, this is the first time we have ever had to go into a reception room and serve ourselves. Breakfast was to be served between 8-10am and at 8.20am the milk still hadn't arrived!!! Second morning when we had booked a whale watching trip, we turned up at 8am for breakfast - surprise surprise - everywhere locked up. We just looked at each other and thought we can't do this anymore. Our keys were posted through the door and the best part of the holiday was when we left. I could go on and on about this place but after reading all of the other reviews realise I am only repeating what everyone else has already said!!! The one thing I have learnt is to make sure that I read the trip adviser BEFORE I do any more deals.

Room Tip: Make sure you go to trip advisor before you book any room!!!
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2012

To begin with, there were NO working staff at this hotel available at any time including check-in and check-out times. The hotel was of disgusting quality and the 'smoke-free' venue as promised did not exist as all other occupants smoked in their rooms and in walkways causing many smoke alarms to continually go off. The added bonuses that came with this paid for coupon were not supplied. I only received a complimentary bottle of wine and return accommodation vouchers, which will not be used. I also received "bonus" massage vouchers instead of the welcome fruit platter, even though I was supposed to receive both of these anyway. The daily continental breakfast consisted of a loaf of bread and fruit on chairs in the office that you chose amongst other guests to eat in your room and was of very poor quality and hygiene. The Pilates vouchers had no code or signature so could not be used, with no yoga or gym use available either. I never received the putt-putt mini golf vouchers, or the tickets for a sunset or evening speedboat charter cruises, which was supposed to be the highlight of the stay. One of the only coupons I did receive, to the local Indian restaurant, was deemed invalid as Active Stays no longer pays their bills to this place and they do not accept these. The whole trip which was a 21st birthday gift turned into a total disaster. We were left with no options or assistance at all, and feel completely ripped off. The beds were not comfy as suggested, there was no Wi-Fi and the pool was filled with outdoor furniture and cigarette butts - quite the opposite to the advertised 'inviting' pool. I have never been more disappointed with something like this, or anything really, before and cannot believe how deceiving this deal really was. I was mortified to present this to someone as a gift and feel as though action should definitely be taken.
This deal should definitely not be available for purchase, you receive nothing remotely close to what you are paying for.
Just as a rating of the accommodation, without the package details still remains the most disappointing experience I have ever had. This hotel is beyond a joke.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Surfers Paradise, Australia
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2012

A copy of my complaint to Groupon pretty much sums it up:

This is our first Groupon purchased deal. With so many recommendations, I
thought this was going to be such good value for money.
On arriving last night, at what we expected to be an exciting 3 night stay at
"Active stays", with included activities, we were disappointed with what we
really got-and mainly what we didn't.

As backpackers from England, we thought saving money by booking a range of
trips/activities and free meals with a bonus stay here, would be
ideal-considering everything was included.
We are staying with family friends in The Gold Coast, but thought a 3 day break
in a different area would be good for us.

However upon arrival, we were handed our bottle of cheap wine and met with a
number of excuses.
The manager explained briefly that we wouldn't get our fruit platter (his excuse

"apples and oranges are the only fruit available at this time of year.." was
hard to understand as the fruit shop-just seconds down the street-seemed to have

everything else..) we wouldn't get our game of "putt putt" mini golf, and we
wouldn't get our boat trip (due to some kind of insurance problem).

With the boat trip being one of the main things we were actually looking forward

to, and one of the main reasons for booking the deal to begin with-other than
all the other bonuses, we were already concerned.

He handed us an envelope with the vouchers we would be getting and explained the

voucher for our "thai massage" inside, could be extended for an extra half hour,

and that this deal would be worth more than what we had lost out on.
However, I still fail to see, after checking out the basic motel room, how on
earth the deals we actually got, were originally valued at $884.

The "motel" wasn't actually that bad, but if we had wanted budget accommodation, I've stayed in similar hostels rooms for much less, and wouldn't pay more than $30 a night for somewhere like the basic room we got-so without the groupon activities, $179 for a basic bed and none of these included was a bit of a waste to us.
The bed was comfortable enough, we sat in the room watching tv from the bed as there wasn't much else to do. I'd suggest bring your own pillow if you're anything like me and like them fluffed.
Tv was the only thing we really used after looking around, yet there were free tea and coffee making facilities and though the shower/toilet was tiny, it wasn't too bad-free shampoo/shower gel was actually a nice touch.
It did feel like people walking past the room might be able to see in through the window with the light on in there though, which is a bit uncomfortable when you're using the toilet.
Though we couldn't help feel like the traditional brick wall building felt a bit like a "prison cell"-I've stayed in worse so this wasn't too bad, just not at all like the pictures on the website.

On getting to our "double" room, (which had a double bed plus a bunkbed, as this
was "the only room which had been available for the cleaner to attend to") we
opened the envelope which held the vouchers.
They were hand-cut pieces of paper which had been printed off a regular printer,
with the company logo attached.
The deals we had got, were the free meal at the curry muncher, some vouchers
which seemed like they could be redeemed for yoga classes-although not explained

very well at all, massage pricelist and a return stay voucher for $80.

Reviewing my original "deal" on the Groupon website, I realised we didn't
receive:
Two tickets on a Sunset or Evening Speedboat Charters cruise
Two $30 vouchers for Nourish Me beauty salon
Two games of putt-putt mini golf
Three-Day gym pass
Welcome fruit platter
-and we were unable to find the inviting outdoor pool.

Trying to overcome our disappointment, we decided to go out for dinner with our
meal vouchers and headed to The Curry Muncher.

On arrival here, we were told they were no longer accepting vouchers from Active

stays due to management problems with the property.
We were told to speak to the manager at Active stays for more explanations.
Even the vouchers we had received were UN-usable.

This seemed like the biggest scam we had ever encountered, after only 3 hours or

so of arrival, and all we had got for our $179 was a free bottle of cheap wine
so far.

We were very unsatisfied by this and
went back to the motel-even more disappointed to find there was nobody at the
reception desk to enquire about our useless vouchers.

We decided to leave, and handed the keys through the reception letterbox in an
envelope, without staying for even one of the three nights intended.
We were better off staying with our family friends, back on the other side of
The Gold Coast, where we'd originally left.
Expecting the free meal included, we hadn't originally planned the need to spend

more of our money, and with no activities scheduled, didn't see the point in
staying in the basic motel room.
It had only seemed to make us feel more and more dissatisfied.

I feel that reviewing the deal again, has confirmed that we have been highly
mislead. This is a concern to trading standards and The ACCC.
As a backpacker on a working holiday (working and saving all of my money to see
the sites of Australia) I feel I have wasted good money, which could have been
spent on tours and excursions elsewhere.

I have since looked up Active stays on Tripadvisor and have noticed a trend in
other people not getting what they originally expected also, through similar
deals.

I am completely and utterly shocked and disgusted at the fact we have been the
subject of fraud and wish to have a refund as soon as possible.

This motel should not be used or represented on your website as anything but
disgusting and a waste of the money and disappointment it has cost us.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2012

21/07/12 We purchased our Group On Voucher for Active Stays for two nights accommodation. I was a little apprehensive about staying here, as like you I read the reviews below which weren't that great. My husband, my dog and I were pleasantly surprised when we arrived, Bruce handed over our keys and our bottle of wine. We opened our room door (number 7) and found a clean tidy room. I had actually packed our own sheets and towel for a 'just in case' moment but we didn't need them. Although we weren't able to redeem our Indian Meal voucher or get our fruit platter, for us it didn't matter too much as this was one of the rare hotels that our dog was allowed to stay. Bruce and his team were helpful when we went out for lunch, our dog was a little anxious as it was a new surrounding for him, they asked if he could play in the dog area which was great as he made a new little friend. I understand with the below reviews that people feel duped about the rating that the hotel and deals the voucher initially had, and I too thought before arriving this is going to be the hotel hell, but it really wasn't. It was clean, the doors locked and the people were friendly. I feel if you don't expect 5 star you are fine, it is a motel, it is clean and has a lockable door. Buy the way you only sleep here, get out and enjoy the Gold Coast

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2012

My husband and I had a few days spare on our honeymoon and we decided to use the voucher I bought. We were only there an hour and a half before we left and stayed at the Crowne Plaza. The room smelled like urine as the bathroom was a disgrace and I definitely wouldn't shower without a pair of thongs on. The place looked old, run down and unclean.

Room Tip: To be honest I don't think any room would be better than the next.
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 27, 2012

I was pretty worried about the reviews Active Stays had been receiving on this site. However, we agreed to check it out nonetheless. Expecting something absolutely shocking, it seriously wasn't that bad. For an average rated place, that's what it was.

We were greeted politely, given a fruit "platter" (which was some fruit wrapped in glad wrap on a tray", and provided the keys to room 12. For two nights and $70 for me and my partner, we were quite content. I personally was pleased with the location because across the road was SO many shops; particularly food, which was super handy. And Pacific Fair was probably a kilometer away, so we jut walked there and back when it wasn't raining.

The bathroom looked fine (it's small though, and I brought cleaning products to be safe), there was a double and single bed in the room, a small wardrobe to hang clothes next to the window where the single bed was.

In front of the double bed was a bar-like bench with a high stool, where the tv sat in the corner and a medium sized mirror was on the wall (only thing I was sad about this was that 7mate & one or something other channel didn't work). Next to the tv was a divider, and a bench top with coffee, tea and sugar sachets. Below this was a mini fridge with a cupboard which contained a kettle, toaster and hairdryer; which were all normal and clean. Although the bar fridge wasn't very cool, it still did the job. There was a bin lined on the floor near this.

The sink was clean, with shampoo, shaving cream and body wash containers on the wall that you pump out (also some in the shower next to the sink). The aircon was old and not reverse cycle, but still did the job; although the vent could have been cleaned.

Wifi was available although we never heard back from Bruce about the password; though this didn't bother us greatly. We were informed they were having difficulties with vouchers for the activities, so we were provided with three blank ones to fill out for some offered (though we didn't bother, mainly because it was raining), two free meals with drinks at The Curry Muncher across the road (which was good!), and the remedial massage (which did hurt a bit, but hey, it's free and had it's good moments).

Room Tip: Don't always judge a place by bitter reviews, and fight for your rights if the place falsely adv...
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  • Stayed June 2012, 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
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 Active Stays Motel

Address: 2481 Gold Coast Highway, Mermaid Beach, Queensland 4218, Australia
Location: Australia > Queensland > Gold Coast > Mermaid Beach
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 12 hotels in Mermaid Beach
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Active Stays provides budget accommodation for runners, cyclists, surfers, life savers or anyone else looking to participate or spectate in the wide range of sports and activities available on the Gold Coast. Offering exceptional value, our rooms are priced on the basis of the earlier you book, the less you pay and periods of high demand such as school holidays cost more than less popular periods. We have 19 clean, comfortable, air-conditioned rooms only 300 metres from Mermaid Beach and are close to major shopping, sporting and entertainment venues. Active Stays is fully non-smoking and we have a limited number of pet-friendly and family rooms. Guest parking, continental breakfast & WiFi internet are all available. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Active Stays Motel Gold Coast/Mermaid Beach, Australia

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