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“No other choice so not fantastic”

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O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed October 24, 2012

We have had quite a few stays at the villas on multiple occassions. Each time very similar experience. Very isolated at the villas and you feel like you are the ostracised distant cousins of the retreat guests. Nothing is included. No food or activities so be prepared to pay through the nose.
The restaurant is poor when you have to pay top dollar. Okay if half the price. All food was cold and when asked to heat it up still cold. Wine isn't great either and not much choice.
The layout of the furntire isn't great so we rearranged the furniture. We doa lot of relaxing up there and the sofas are not ideal for relaxing. Also there is no free to air TV channels (ABC only) only AUSTAR which isn't great. Would prefer a cable or wireless to the guesthouse so we can get free to air.
But considering there is very little choice in accomodation options for the bushwalking in the Lamington National Park you have to put up with things less than ideal. Bushwalking is in the National Park so nothing to do with O'Reillys.
The treetop walk is controlled by O'Reillys and is packed out on weekends so try and avoid those times if you want to see wildlife. No wildlife around when lots of people around.

Room Tip: If you don't want to climb lots of stairs after a long walk then ask for a villa with no stairs...
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  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank mannysnumber1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OReillys_Retreat, Marketing Manager at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 13, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience. Naturally, your feedback causes us concern. True, the villas are located 500m away from the main hub of O’Reilly’s; they are designed for the independent traveler – one who prefers the modern conveniences like WIFI, televisions and a kitchen to self-cater. We can offer tailored packages to include meals and activities for guests staying at the Villas and the Retreat. I apologise that you felt ‘ostracised’ – we treat all our guests of equal value.

It is disappointing to read we fell below your expectations during your dining experiences – we generally receive consistently great feedback on our food and our wine (the wine list has over 45 selections from all around the world in addition to O’Reilly’s wine).

While O’Reilly’s doesn’t ‘own’ the Treetop Walk, Peter O’Reilly had the vision and implemented the construction of the first Treetop Walk in the world - a world class experience and free for all guests to enjoy. Good tip - many day visitors enjoy this walk too, so if you want to see wildlife, I suggest a guided tour or an early morning walk. The bush trails are maintained by National Parks – however should you need any directions or advice the O’Reilly’s teams are most happy to assist.

Thanks again for your feedback – perhaps you might enjoy a stay at the Retreat next time.

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973 - 979 of 1,236 reviews

Reviewed October 23, 2012

@THE SHORT
Great area and well worth the visit. Magnificent location, clean tidy rooms, wonderful staff and quite nice food. However the resort is overpriced for what you get. Don’t expect a world class property. The rooms are great – but – of the type you would expect in any clean motel at the side of the highway in Australia. Note that the “Villa” accommodation at $380 and up – may be much better.

@THE LONG
As I have stated, this area is a great place to visit with wonderful walks and amazing rain forest vegetation populated by a vast variety of birds. The hotel is also fine and I would definitely visit again, however the rooms on their web page are not the room you are likely to get – unless you specifically request them. So for us it was a matter of expectations more than anything else.

The hotel needs a complete overhaul. Compared to hotels I have stayed in recently, and that includes properties in Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Myanmar, Italy, India, Morocco Japan, Mexico, Guatemala, - O'Reilly's is at the bottom of the list for the price. The rooms are old clean 1980's suburbia with a doors that allow all noise to be heard from either side. Definitely not a room for honeymooners !

Small issues - frayed carpet in the lobby, large cobwebs in the cafeteria, a big glass window in the dining room that reveals a water tank. Actually the dining room is mysterious. The resort has a wonderful view to the north west – but in the dining room the architect decided not to put any windows on that side. Their small lounge is the same – on one side big windows that reveal the lobby and rear of another building – while on the view side a wooden wall. There was so much potential for this lounge room.

When we arrived we were told that the restaurant was closed but we could eat in the cafeteria. Fine with me - burgers, pizza, fries in a cardboard box - also no issue – although surprising. There were some sandwiches but the bread was not that fresh and to tell the staff what you wanted they had to leave the cash register and go over to see you point at the sandwich you wanted. To keep it short, the restaurant needed a good F and B manager who knows how to quickly and efficiently serve people good healthy food. If you are on a non-fat, low carb diet, don't bother going to the cafeteria. The coffee was fine.

Check in was not smooth, mix up regarding the location of our rooms and where we could park the car. Also not told that we had to book a time for dinner. When we arrived in our room there was an attractive leather folder with information about the hotel – with lots of missing pages and others stained and falling out. For heavens sake use plastic sleeves and check the books now and again.

My 90 year old mother was with us. There are quite long distances - for a 90 year old - to walk and there are steps and ramps. I had intended to take mum to the bar but alas she could not manage the steps so we sat in the lounge room while while my iPad took for ever to connect to the Internet. Don't bother to use their Internet as you are wasting your time and money. They charge $7 for one hour, which I thought was steep for what we paid for the room - and – although it worked you could have done a nice bushwalk while waiting for a page to download. I gave up and read a book and so did other customers ! If the internet is slow or poor then don't provide it to customers or if so then don't charge for a bad connection.

Later we retired to our rooms. I went to check on mum prior to going to sleep to find that she was locked in her bathroom ! I immediately assumed that it was just another 90 year old mobility issue only to find that I too could not open the door. She had not locked it - it was just a really sticky sliding door that was almost impossible to open once closed. Thank God I had checked on her. The amazing thing is that this was a special room for a person with disabilities.

If you are coming from overseas and want to stay in the rainforest then this is the place. But bring your own wine from the pub in Canungra and some of your own snacks to eat in the room and while walking. There are no TV’s in the room – which I think is a good thing – so bring a good book or iPad with some movies on it. If you plan on doing a bushwalk you can get sandwiches in the cafeteria – but – it wont be open early enough – so bring some bread and make your own the night before.

But don’t get me wrong – it is a fine place to stay, just expensive. Not quite but almost the Fawlty Towers of the Plateau.

Room Tip: ring them and ask what your room actually has
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank chris l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OReillys_Retreat, Marketing Manager at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 13, 2012

Thank you for your detailed review, we value the feedback we receive from our guests, it ensures we continue to meet our guest’s expectations and also helps us identify areas that may require improvement – so truly, thanks for your comments.

We agree, we are lucky to be surrounded in World Heritage rainforest and while we are only 3 star at the Retreat (Villas are 4 star), we do believe our location and experiences are of world class.

In our opinion, O’Reilly’s is in a class of its own - we pride ourselves on being 100% Australian family owned and operated for over 100 years. We are not state of the art architecturally designed, nor do we pretend to be. We are a large guesthouse style of accommodation, surrounded by natural beauty and unique wildlife. We treat our guests as friends, our friends as family and our family as gold. We hope our guests experience this during their stay.

I am pleased to advise your comments have been reviewed by management and we have implemented improvements which I hope you will see should we have the opportunity to welcome you back. We truly appreciate the time you have taken to share your feedback – thanks again!

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Reviewed October 23, 2012

We booked a weekend retreat for 2 nights with 2 breakfasts, 1 nights meals, chocolates and champagne on arrival and a picnic basket. We were not sure what all of this meant and were delighted. We stopped into O'Rielly's Vineyard on the was up the mountain and were given a most delicious picnic hamper to enjoy anywere on the property, everything was included and we chose a beautiful spot by the river, We went to the resort and our room has chocolate dipped strawberries and champagne waiting for us, all of our meals were fantastic and we could choose what ever we wanted from the menu, the views and scenery were spectacular and we were blessed with perfect weather, I would not like to go there in bad weather as nothing to do.
We had the most superb relaxing romantic weekend, and the sunset from the pub verandah is awesome.

Room Tip: Ask for the front cabin rooms overlooking the valley, the beds are not the most comfortable but the...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Stewart H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OReillys_Retreat, Marketing Manager at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 13, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to share your O’Reilly’s experience! It is pleasing to read your romantic getaway, was exactly that! I am glad the weather was in your favour, rest assured we have activities running in all weather conditions – we wouldn't be a rain forest without the rain after all!

We very much look forward to seeing you back at O’Reilly’s again soon!

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Reviewed October 22, 2012

We stayed in a 2 bed villa for 5 nights with our 8 year old daughter in early Oct.
O'Reilly's is a 100 year old guest house perched on top of a rainforest clad mountain about 2 hours drive south of Brisbane. It's a wonderful old log place with quite a bit of charm and character. The accommodation is split in to cabins and rooms in the traditional part of the building and modern villas set on their own "estate" a few minutes down the road.
There is a restaurant, cafe, gift shop, library, bar, and education room. Throughout the day they run educational tours - ranging from 4WD bus excursions to short walks of about 2 hours. There is also a bird of prey show and a wildlife show.
We attended most of the activities during our stay and they were definitely worth it. They ranged from a very interesting and intimate wildlife show which introduced the wildlife of the area and told you about the dangers they face, to guided walks through the rainforest . The guides were all well educated in their fields and showed tremendous enthusiasm for their subject. We saw many many more things than we ever would have seen walking independently - so despite the fact that we are experienced walkers used to doing our own thing, we actually signed up for three of their walks.
Each evening there is a short film screened in the snug, with information about the birds and animals of the area, and the history of the O'Reilly family.
The food in the restaurant is of good quality. It is a little more expensive than you would find elsewhere - but then you are probably more than an hour's drive from the nearest supermarket! There is a kid's menu - which although formularic (spag bog, fish and chips etc) was well made and tasty. The puddings are very yummy. The bar food was a bit more bland - but we did try it on a night when there was a big group in so it may have just been that night. The bar had a great veranda for supping a sundowner and watching the sunset from.
We stayed in a 2 bed villa. The villas are well equipped and comfortable with lovely views over the rainforest to the horizon. They were peaceful and relaxing, with gas fires to snuggle up in front of and modern facilities. For us, it was probably a bit too modern - the villas have been laid out on a sort of suburban street theme, which felt a bit incongruous in the middle of the rainforest, and in some instances it looked like you may be peering over the rooftops of other villas to see the forest. However having said this the accommodation was very pleasant - we enjoyed sitting in the widow seat reading books and on the deck for a glass of wine.
There is a spa with a lovely infinity pool to dip in, but really it is the wildlife, the birds and the beauty of the rainforest you go to O'Reilly's for.
The staff are all very friendly and welcoming.
We travelled with our 8 year old who I had worried might get bored. But despite it being out of school holidays, she loved all the activities and adventures and didn't want to go home.
All in all it was a very relaxing and rewarding stay - and made a lovely change from the traditional beach holiday.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
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Thank ginnyb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OReillys_Retreat, Marketing Manager at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 13, 2012

Another five star review! Thank you for taking the time to share your O’Reilly’s experience on TripAdvisor. It is pleasing to read you enjoyed your stay, in particular the activities and dining experience. If televisions and cooking facilities are not a priority during your stay, I suggest staying in a Canopy Suite on your next visit. Located at the Retreat close to the Dining Room and Activities, the Canopy Suites have log fires, four balconies and a spa bath in the bathroom with great views of the westerly ranges. There is not much time to get bored at O’Reilly’s with our daily activities program – fun for all ages!

Thanks again for your feedback - we look forward to the opportunity of welcoming you back again soon.

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Reviewed October 21, 2012

I recently stayed at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat for two nights with four children aged 5, 8 and two 10 year olds. I had stayed previously in a Villa without children and loved it and it inspired me to share the experience with my children. I gave my eldest who is prone to car sickness a ginger tablet before we left Brisbane and he was fine, the kids loved the drive because of the beautiful views especially when we drove through thick rainforest. We shared one room and it was spacious with a balcony overlooking the mountains. The meals in the restaurant were amazing, I chose a deal that included most meals and it was great value and very high quality. The restaurant is also a great place to meet other people and get advice on walks to do. The younger children attended 'Eco Rangers' and loved it. It enabled me to do a longer walk with the older children which was fantastic. We were able to do about 6 smaller walks altogether over the few days. With no TV in the room we read and played board games/cards which was also great fun. All the children enjoyed swimming in the pool and the spa, they did the flying fox activity and we all did the night 'Glow Worm Tour' which was an amazing experience that we are still talking about, I would urge everyone to do it, it is simply breathtaking. The staff at O'Reillys were very friendly and also very knowledgable on the walks and activities and were able to advise me on the best walks for the various children's ages of my group. We would love to return for a longer stay, it was extremely relaxing and all the children learnt so much about the rainforest and really loved seeing many animals and birds they hadn't seen before. I found it extremely relaxing especially not cooking any meals! Watching the children discover the rainforest for the first time was fantastic.

Room Tip: Rooms with mountain views are very relaxing, the view when the sun sets is magical
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Thank BrsibaneAlison
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OReillys_Retreat, Marketing Manager at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa, responded to this reviewResponded November 13, 2012

Thank you for your five star review! It is always pleasing to read when our guests return with the family and friends to share an O’Reilly’s experience. Eco Rangers is a great program available in QLD school holidays – kids can learn, discover and engage in the outdoors and wildlife. Thanks for the great feedback on all the activities – the Glow Worms is one of my personal favourites too!

We look forward to seeing you and the family next school holidays for some more fun! Thanks again for taking the time to share your experience!

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Reviewed October 18, 2012

We did a day trip to O'Reilly's from Binnna Burra, to see what the competition was like. At the mountain cafe for lunch, we ate one plate of soup of the day, described as potato and leek, but definitely containing some curry. It was gelatinous glop, so we abandoned that. Next was a caesar salad with chicken. It was so salty it was almost unpalatable. The accompanying poached egg was so overlooked it would have bounced. One soup, two salads, and two drinks cost $63. Ouch!!

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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3  Thank JenniePS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OReillys_Retreat, Marketing Manager at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa, responded to this reviewResponded October 21, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback, we value your comments. Naturally we are disappointed to read your review as we generally receive good feedback on our dining experiences at O’Reilly’s. Your comments have been forwarded to the General Manager for action. Thanks once again – I hope we have the opportunity to welcome you back to experience an improvement on your recent visit.

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Reviewed October 18, 2012

The Mountainview rooms are very comfortable to sleep in but need lots of work done as they are very run down. The rooms have no cooking facilities so you have to eat in the restaurant every night & this could be expensive if you stayed more than a couple of days. We've always wanted to go so now we've done it, we wouldn't bother going back. On the upside we did quite a few walks by ourselves & thoroughly enjoyed it. It was really relaxing to be away from suburbia and back in nature especially being around the birds & seeing all the animals you wouldn't normally see.
Thankfully we didn't pay full price for the rooms otherwise I would have been really annoyed.

Room Tip: I believe the spa rooms are really quite impressive so if you could afford it maybe choose one of th...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank ktpie300
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OReillys_Retreat, Marketing Manager at O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa, responded to this reviewResponded October 21, 2012

Thanks for taking the time to share your comments on TripAdvisor. The Mountain View Rooms are designed to be a comfortable room to sleep in, just as you described. A three star motel/retreat style room, with no televisions or in room WIFI – but spectacular views of mountains and sunsets and wildlife at the doorstep. True, the rooms could do with a minor face lift - something we are working on. We invite guests to our Retreat to experience the natural surrounds - the unique wildlife, the ancient rainforest and the warm traditional hospitality. We offer a number of packages and will also design one to suit your taste. I am glad you enjoyed the bushwalking and relaxed during your time on the mountain.

It is disappointing to read you won’t be back – should you change you mind, I would suggest the newer, self-contained villas. Thanks again for your feedback.

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Additional Information about O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa

Address: Lamington National Park Road, Canungra, Queensland 4275, Australia
Location: Australia > Queensland > Brisbane Region > Scenic Rim > Canungra
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 Specialty Lodging in Canungra
Price Range: $107 - $305 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 114
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Explore World Heritage-listed Lamington National Park from the best and only vantage point on Green Mountain - at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat - operated by passionate by third generation O’Reilly family members whose ancestors pioneered eco tourism in Australia in 1926. Choose to stay in a cosy Rainforest Retreat guest room with expansive views overlooking the western McPherson Range or one of 48 self-contained and architecturally designed modern Villas perched unobtrusively onto the sloping hillside. Get amongst the daily activities of guided bird walks, animal shows and the famed Tree Top Walk and treehouse climb to viewing platforms above. Plus, test your skills on an off road two-wheeled Segway tour through creek crossings to Morans Falls, or bliss out in the Lost World Day Spa. Dine in the casual treehouse bar on homemade pizzas or opt for the rustic dining room with a gourmet a la carte menu including matching wines from the Canungra Valley Vineyards down the road. Order a packed lunch or picnic hamper and set off to one of 500 waterfalls via 160 kilometres of nature trails. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
o`Reilly`s Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas And Lost World Hotel Canungra
O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas And Lost World Spa Australia/Canungra, Queensland

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