My gut feeling was to give this resort 4* but I couldn't think of a fault. The reason that I have hesitated to give it 5* is that we didn't make good use of the facilities but that was for personal reasons so I don't think I can mark it down based on our lack of experience. There is plenty for children to see and do for 7 nights though I think most children would tire of all day swimming and bouncing after 7-10 days.
There is a lovely family pool 'sun lagoon' with two spas and a slide and it is quite shallow over-all and shaded. Definitely a family area rather than for serious swimming. Surrounding are pergolas with BBQs, toilets and a shower - a nice place to spend the evening cooking dinner with friends. The garden pool I would give the flick. My husband took our girls there and didn't think anything of it until he saw the 'sun lagoon' and realised what the children had missed. Our four year old loved the bouncing pillows (the biggest in the world they claim) but the sand flies were horrific come dusk. The same can be said for much of Cairns which would be my biggest warning. The play area is fantastic, but we never used the mini golf or the entertainment building where movies are shown etc, nor the other sporting facilities.
There are several BBQs around the site in adequate numbers, and a couple of laundries. Avoid the laundries in the evening and on Sunday afternoon. I would've commented that three washing machines and three driers isn't enough but it was ample when I first used the laundry, but not nearly enough when I used it again one evening. Thankfully we have friends who are locals so we used their laundry too.
We spent seven nights in a deluxe villa. It was good to have a carport - at this time of year you experience quite a lot of rain. The patio was a reasonable size and mostly covered (with a hanging rail behind the handrail which was a good way to dry towels without losing them over the side). The lounge/dining was a bit pokey with our two young children and several toys (one had a birthday while we were there) but the kitchen was very decent for holiday accommodation. Unfortunately we didn't make good use of it like we expected, so we'd have been better off saving the $20 difference per night and taking a standard villa. We didn't use the spa as anything other than a bath and we laughed when we realised the advertised 'mood lighting' was simply a dimmer switch on a single recessed spot light in the bathroom! So really we didn't get any use out of the extra facilities of a deluxe villa.
I found the queen bed quite hard and the pillows rock solid - I borrowed pillows from my friend on the third day! This may be the norm though now as we experienced the same thing in Townsville the night before arriving in Cairns.
We joined the Big4 club while we were there ([--]big4[-] I think...). The discount is low at 10% and maximum $30 per stay but it is better than nothing. It costs just $40 for two years and we saved $30 on this stay so we'll definitely recover our money as there are around 165 member holiday parks around Australia to stay at.
The staff were very good, booking a number of tours for us. They were always friendly and helpful. The mini mart on site isn't as well-equipped as the brochures had me believe. I was also surprised there is no ATM on site, and not particularly near either. The mini mart staff said the main reception will let you withdraw cash with EFTPOS but they said they wouldn't do it until after midday as they need lots of cash in the morning to return key deposits. This was bad timing for me, and annoying. They will give change for the laundry etc however.
We didn't use the bus to the city option as we had our own car. I did try to book four night at this resort and three at a city hotel so that we could eat out and walk back but this resort wouldn't book less than seven nights at this peak period. It wasn't really any loss to us in the end, but the 6km to the city centre could be annoying for people who want to get out and about every day.
All up the facilities are very good, the accommodation is adequate and clean, the resort is quiet, the staff are very nice and Cairns is the gateway to many wonderful things.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Family-friendly self-contained accommodation with the most amazing range of free activities including heated SPLASH water park, under sixes indoor playground, adults only therapeutic hot spa, mini golf, the NEOS interactive playground, two heated (and cooled) resort pools, monster Jumping Pillows, tennis court and much, much more. Accommodation choices range from luxury three bedroom Condos, fully self contained Villas with two bathrooms to Tropical Cabins and sites for caravans, motorhomes & tents. Multi award winning including 7 times winner of the Australian Tourism Award for Best Tourist & Holiday Park. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Cairns Coconut Holiday Hotel Cairns
- Cairns Caravan Coconut Resort