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“Serenity at it’s best….”
Review of Gilgara Retreat

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Gilgara Retreat
Ranked #10 of 20 Margaret River B&B and Inns
Reviewed January 18, 2013

First visit was a romantic trip....which was so perfect in November, that we just had to stay again with our friends from overseas before Christmas.

Elaine & Steve never disappoint - being the most gracious and friendliest of hosts. It truly is a peaceful retreat (when the other guests abide by the conditions of booking in the main house!),

If only passing through or stopping for a couple of days when visiting Margaret River - this is the place you want to stay, for that slice of quiet heaven in a beautiful setting, surrounded by gorgeous country. You can't go wrong.

Room Tip: B&B in the main house (with no children) is ideal for those seeking a 'retreat' from the...
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Jay_SEPC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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90 - 96 of 134 reviews

Reviewed January 18, 2013

When I first drove up the drive, this being my first trip to Australia and wanting to experience it all, there was a kangaroo drinking at the bird bath and when I opened the car door I was greeted by the sound of kookaburra's laughing in the trees - it was a dream come true before I even stepped out of the car! The welcoming, friendly and homely feel of this stunning retreat coupled with it's excellent owners only made our stay more enjoyable - nothing was too much for us and we were truly made to feel like the place was our home for the duration of our stay. Having finally escaped the irritations and trials of life in the UK it was just delightful to find a place so perfect, well focussed and utterly peaceful to enjoy a relaxed and child free weekend! I cannot recommend Gilgara Retreat highly enough as the most peaceful, authentic Australian hide away you'll ever want to visit!

Room Tip: They are all totally gorgeous room - you won't be uncomfortable in any of them!
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Hellymens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 8, 2013

We stayed at Gilgara Retreat on 22nd and 23rd December with friends whilst visiting Australia for Christmas!! It was absolutely amazing!! Steve and Elaine are the perfect hosts.

The rooms were clean and tidy and a good nights sleep was had by us for sure. Breakfast was really wonderful, freshly grown fruit and freshly made yoghurt and as much toast and tea, coffee and juice as you wanted, we were definately set up for a day of adventure to the Wine Region.

A bonus was that we were greeted by a Kangaroo, fondly know as Warren, drinking from the Bird Bath on the Front Lawn. The grounds are super amazing and very well kept. There was also seating outside for us to sit and chat over a glass of wine in the evening after a day packed full of fun stuff.

Needless to say if I find myself visiting Margaret River again soon, I will definately be looking up Gilgard Retreat to stay.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Claire1977_-07_17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 6, 2012 via mobile

We had such a peaceful time at this beautiful property. We only met the guy who manages the place but he was lovely. The suites are really modern with heaps of windows to have nature come inside. Could use more modern tv and digital channels but suppose that's not why you go. Good location close to Margaret River. Nice for quiet getaway.

  • Stayed: December 2012
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Thank Vicki S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 2, 2012

It's in a pretty location and the rooms are spacious. But it's not cheap - and for that we'd like proper house keeping please.

They don't empty the rubbish bins every day. That's pretty annoying when, like us, you are travelling with children in diapers so the used diapers stay in your room for three days.

Annoying too that if you leave a coffee cup by your bed, it's still there when you get back that evening. Staying at a friends's place I'd pick up my own used cups- staying at an expensive hotel I expect the house keeping to take care of it.

Beware too that the Margaret River is cold in September (not the hotel's fault!). But the one small reverse cycle air con unit couldn't keep the room warm at night. Actually the room is big and the ac unit small, so I don't fancy its chances of keeping the place cold in summer.

So overall it's an ok choice- have stayed in worse- but they should I improve if they want to justify those prices.

Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
2  Thank mgh444
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gilgara, Manager at Gilgara Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded December 15, 2012

Hi mgh44. Thank you for taking the time to write the review.
We would like to apologies on behalf of Gilgara Management and Housekeepers for our poor performance. General housekeeping including removal of rubbish (from bins provided) is carried out daily. If however, the rubbish bags are taken out of the bins, tied up by the guest and placed elsewhere, then it is possibile that the housekeeper was not aware of them, as it is standard practice for housekeepers not to throw anything out if it is not placed in a rubish bin. If we were aware of the situation at the time of your stay, we could have rectified the matter. However, no excuse!
Once again, thank you for your valuable criticisms, as they serve to remind management and houskeepers to be diligent and vigilent!

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Reviewed November 25, 2012

My family and I (two adults and three young kids, age 11, 8 and 6) stayed at this retreat, Garden Suite, for two nights. Of all the resorts available at Margaret River, i mistrusted the good reviews posted on tripadvisor and chose this for my stay, I am deeply regret and felt that Elaine and Steve, the managers ' attitude have ruined my holiday mood.

This is going to be a long review, if you dont have time, please just take note of my points of reviews:
First, this retreat is not child friendly,secondly location is bad( you can hear the noise of fast moving car and truck form the main road, which is about 100meters away from the garden suites units), lastly service is ignorant and pretentious and rude. In conclusion, we will never ever go back to this retreat and will definitely not recommend this to my friends, as i said, deep regret and big mistake.

Ok, here we go.
The things i liked:
1. Ktichen: able to cook some simple meals for my family.
2. shower: hot shower

The things I dislike are too many:
1. Not transparent hotel policy: in their hotel policy, they mention 2 adults and two children. but in reality, the owners do not welcome children. I think they hate children. The woman manager, Elain, called me at 7am to ask me to keep my children's voice down. My children are very well behaved, all their grade teachers always give comment to say that my children are well mannered, polite and well behaved. Of course they do run around, playing hide and seek, as they are just kids !! you cannot possibly tie the children on a chair and ask them to sit quietly! THrough out the whole stay, i have a strong feeling that my family is being discrimated by the managers of this hotel. Anyway, we are the ONLY ONE family staying there, ALL other garden suite units are not occupied. Hence, I know we wont disturb any other guests, but what i would like to say is that , before i come to this retreat, i have checked with many other hotels/ resorts at Margaret river, many have stated very clearly that they have "no child" policy, that is very fair and transparent!! Elaline and Steve, if you believe that children can just sit down quietly on a chair, no noise , and no laughing. Please video tape it and show me ! Otherwise, dont confuse us and himiliate us eventually.

2. Location: not quiet, as my garden suite is located about 100 meters from the high/ free way, i was awaken by the fast moving car or truck at 3am in the morning. (actually ALL the garden suite units are at a very near distance from the main road, you can clearly see the cars, trucks passing by, 24 hours a day) Dont be fooled by the small bush in between the main road and our units, the bush neither block the voice nor provide any nature feeling to your stay, these are just some trees and plants, that's all)

3. Location again: quite a distance from the Margaret River city centre, I was blaming myself for not doing a better research, hence wasted our time of travelling and our petrol gas.

4. Value: very pricey, not worth it. . In addition, they charged me AUD 120 extra for two nights for bringing kid. Although I feel like a day time robbery, I paid immediately with cash as I didnt clearly tell them i have young children with me and my husband at the time of booking. Ok, so i paid the penalty.

5. Attitude: Absolutely not friendly and hostile to my young kids : I have apologized to the woman manager , Elaine, about my fault of not informing them of bringing kids with me on the very first day i arrived. I sincerely said sorry and admitted my fault. But she keeps harping about my bringing along of chilren, told me this retreat is very quiet, so we have to be quiet at all times and through out our whole stay, she keeps harping about keeping the voice down and tell my how to teach children to behave. Tell me to bring my kids out for activities as soon as they wake up so that they wont make noise in the retreat ( Ha i paid so much money and yet we cant stay in the retreat!!) I told her, we all woke up at 5.30 am , and there are no farms , vineyard or any activities open that early!, She replied we can go to beach ( this is ridiculous and nonsense , it is so freezingly cold in the morning, and she wanted to kick us out of the resort)

6. Facility: Elaine never told me we can use their lounge area in the main building. Every day we passed by the main building, we saw they have some nice giant sofa in the lounge. But we dont feel welcomed.


I told Elaine, i read from the reviews from tripadvisor about bringing young children, so i thought this retreat welcomes children, she shoot me back away, they the managers made the rule, not the guests!

Lastly, i better stop here before i bore the readers here but i hope my review can help other family with young kids to be aware, so that the money spend is all worth it. Finally , I have to add that after this Margaret River, we proceed to Fremantle, and stayed at Pier21 Apartment, and i must praise the management and the hotel of Pier21 Apartment, we all feel like an honoured guests there. A review will be up later.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
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7  Thank ShanTy W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gilgara, Manager at Gilgara Retreat, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2012

I would like to firstly thank our past guests who had taken the time to write about their stay @ Gilgara; for their kind words of encouragement, & for their criticisms which help to remind us why we are here.
Hi Travelaholic.Thank you for taking the time to write about 'the big mistake to stay in the retreat".
1.You booked thro' an agent for a GardenSuite for 2adults and arrived with husband& 3children
Our Children Policy clearly states: max. 2 adults & 2 children under 12 in the GS. You talked of TRANSPARENT & neglected to inform us of this minor detail even after I sent you information & direction to our Retreat. We then tried hard to accommodate your needs upon your arrival.
2. You complained about being charged extra for 2 nights for your children's stay. That was the charge for 2 (not 3) children as per our rate policy.
3. Please be accurate with your facts - you and your family weren't the only guests at the time of your stay! We diligently safeguard the privacy and well being of our guests. It was unfortunate that you felt discriminated.
4. Guests from the Garden Suites usually ask if it would be alright to use the Lounge Area in the Main House and are mindful that this area is generally for Main House guests. I don't recall you asking.
5. Caves Road is not a Freeway/Highway, & is a minimum of 175m from your Garden Suite. Again, it is unfortunate that the passing traffic upsets you; as guests staying in the Garden Suites in the past found the Retreat 'a place of peace and quiet'!
Finally, I am sorry that your stay at the Retreat was a 'mistake' and wish you the very best with all your stays in your travels in the future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2012

I stayed at Gilgara earlier this year with a large family group for a wedding. We had primary school age children up to Nana. We took up the entire place for 3 days, spread from the homestead to the garden suites.

Elain was a great host, at nothing was trouble. It was very kid friendly environment, but it's definitely a place for people to chill out and relax in. Breakfast was delicious and Elaine accomodated my dietary needs with aplomb.

The fly spray is in the cupboards under the sink, I suggest you don't leave any doors open and check for spiders before you go to bed :D - but that's part of life living in the bush. I'll definitely go back again when I want to have a time out for a few days.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Lori N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Gilgara Retreat

Address: 3 Old Ellen Brook Road, Margaret River, Western Australia 6285, Australia
Location: Australia > Western Australia > Margaret River Region > Margaret River
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 20 B&Bs / Inns in Margaret River
Price Range: $124 - $225 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Gilgara Retreat 3.5*
Number of rooms: 12
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Also Known As:
Gilgara Retreat Hotel Margaret River

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