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“Comfortable Old Fashioned Lodging”
Review of University House

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University House
Ranked #32 of 59 Hotels in Canberra
Reviewed August 27, 2011

This place is hard to get a booking as it has become so popular. Older style, but clean with updated bathrooms, the spacious rooms enter off stairways from a Quadrangle.
Underfloor heating in the bathrooms make it comfortable in the Winter.
If you are lucky enough to be there on the right night, the "House Dinners" are great. Simple food with wines included they have a Guest Lecturer as an after-dinner speaker.
Good wi-fi and library facilities.
There is a Restaurant, Boffins which is ordinary, but the Cafe where breaky is served is good for lunch and dinner too.

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled on business
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Thank JCTraveller2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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303 - 309 of 345 reviews

Reviewed August 16, 2011

I really don't want to tell you about University House!! If I do, then you will all go and stay there!!.
At the moment, its beautifully quiet, with friendly service and a unique atmosphere. Secure parking right outside, lovely grounds , HUGE cooked breakfast with wide selection of food to chose from and the most convenient location in the middle of the University (almost in the centre of Canberra). There is a library, a bar and an excellent restaurant on site, with tasteful modern decor which compliments the Heritage feel of the place. University House is cheaper than hotels, better located than most of them, much more interesting and certainly more beautiful. The rooms are wonderful heritage retreats, with heavy 1950's wooden furniture. Spotlessly clean. Not flash, but everything is clean and works. A minor maintenance problem was fixed for us within 3 hours.
If you want glitzy, or if you need very child friendly, go somewhere else. If you want quiet, comfortable and old fashioned accomodation for adults and older children, this is the place for you.
Just don't tell your friends - lets keep this treausre to ourselves!!!

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank sessymac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 28, 2011

This is a classic old boarding house. Rooms are dowdy & very old fashioned, but you can't help but love just how old-fashioned & dowdy they are. It's almost fashionable retro. Almost, but not quite.

The rooms have huge wooden desks that I'm sure were dragged straight out of one of ANU's libraries. There's a little balcony, & plenty of heating. The bathrooms have under floor heating - awesome! There are lovely view across the pleasant courtyard from the upper floors, & the location is good.

  • Stayed: July 2011
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Thank Adam R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 2, 2011

Nice old, basic study bedrooms at this hotel which were used by resident professors until very recently. The building and much of the furniture and fittings inside date from the 1950s, but they are quite charming really.

The accommodation is obviously ideal if you are visiting the University, but a car is really needed if you want to see around Canberra. No bars or restaurants are within walking distance, other than those found on the campus itself (and the ones in Uni House close very early).

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled on business
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1  Thank barryjohnsmith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2011

I stayed for 6 nights in a superior twin suite with my teenage son.
Apart from a musty smell when first opening the room, which disappeared after a day of us going in and out, we were pleasantly surprised by our suite.
There was a lounge room with settee and armchairs, coffee table, large desk and a buffet which doubled as a storage cupboard and mini bar. There was quite a large flat screen TV and air conditioning, but we didn't need the air con as it was mild for January. I think the TV may have had some Foxtel channels,but we didn't spend much time in the room to watch TV, too busy out and about having a look at the Campus activities.
The bathroom was large & brand new with deep bath and shower over bath, vanity , toilet and plenty of towels and racks to hang them on. A small balcony off the lounge as great for airing clothes or getting some fresh air.
Bedroom was a reasonable size with 2 twin beds, dressing table, bedside table and wardrobe, as well as a reading lamp and clock. Great to see crisp, white linen and real woollen blankets, with big fluffy pillows and spares in the wardrobe.
We were on the third floor, no lift, so my only warning would be to request a ground floor room if you don't like 6 flights of steps to get up and down with your luggage. However it was very quiet, up in the trees, with great views over the beautiful gardens; bar and restaurant courtyard below. Patrons very civilised, so no noise from the revellers heard.
The decor is '70s style, which suits the era of the buildings, which are all built around a central grassed courtyard with a massive pond with koi carp, sculptures, mood lighting at night, magnificent trees and gardens.
There is a communal coin laundry for you to do your washing.There were only tea/coffee faciities in the room we stayed in, but the restaurants on site are very reasonable, so no need to cook. Plenty of parking available, free, on site. The reception staff were very helpful when I dealt with them, extended my booking another day with no drama.

A very quiet and serene spot, great value for the money, but not your usual hotel. If you are looking for pools, gyms, saunas, night clubs etc this is not for you.
I wouldn't recommend it for anyone with young children as there is nothing for them to do except run around the gardens, and I think that may be frowned upon somehow!

I enjoyed my stay very much; my 16 year old son less so because there was nothing much there for him to do and he isn't into gardens or peace & quiet.

If you are looking for somewhere quiet, comfortable without being luxurious, and good value for money whilst not on the beaten track, then University House could be for you.

Probably "quirky" would be a good description or fiiling a "niche" in the market. I can almost imagine those Professors (or The Boffins that the restaurant is named after) sitting in our suite, sipping a scotch and reading a good book!

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled on business
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5  Thank pookleman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 10, 2011

I knew what to expect from previous reviews - big but old rooms, lovely grounds and a generally hassle free stay. Exactly right. The rooms are sparse, no decoration, just utilitarian furniture but it's comfy and very large with a well equipped kitchen. TV's should be of a watchable size, if I had to criticize. Great location for business or the Federal Court, and not too far from some terrific restaurants. There is a solid bar with reasonable trivia on Tuesday nights, and a very good, if not cheap, breakfast. All in all a pretty good option in canberra, with the above caveats.

  • Stayed: May 2011
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2  Thank John F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 7, 2011

I have stayed here before on a trip with my choir - the prices seem to have increased quite a bit. We had a good sized twin bedded room with ensuite - overall it was very clean but basic - but the mattress on my bed was awful, like a hammock, although other people said theirs were fine. I think they need to check each mattress regularly to see if a 24 stone person has been sleeping in it and wrecked it. The furnishings are very 1960's, although the TV was modern. The kettle has a very short cord and had to be balanced behind the TV to reach a power point, not an ideal situation. The heating was on, so we were warm, but other people said they were too hot, and could not turn down the radiator. The breakfast, though, was great - full hot and cold buffet in a pleasant room. Also the staff allowed free use of meeting rooms for choir practice and for early morning yoga. The location was great for us, make sure to visit the National Film and Sound Archive, just a short stroll away. We used the restaurant one night but I thought it was a bit pricey and the staff were efficient but rather cool towards us - maybe we didn't spend enough.

  • Stayed: April 2011
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2  Thank PollyAustralia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about University House

Address: Cnr Balmain Cr & Liversidge St | Australian National University, Acton, Canberra 2601, Australia
Location: Australia > Australian Capital Territory > Canberra
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
#16 Business Hotel in Canberra
Price Range: $85 - $143 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — University House 3.5*
Number of rooms: 105
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Also Known As:
University House Hotel Canberra
University Hotel Canberra
University House Canberra

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