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“Don't get what the big deal is about this place....”

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Kingfisher Bay Resort
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Fraser Island
Certificate of Excellence
Wilmington, North Carolina
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Don't get what the big deal is about this place....”
Reviewed 15 December 2008

Honestly, people, this is not worth the hype. We read so many articles in magazines and books about how great this place was. Yeah, it is really cool architecture and it is nice staying some place that is eco-certified. And the island is cool if you can afford the incredible price tags to get out and see it. But that's about it.

Here's the deal: VERY few options for food, nowhere to walk to, no room service, lukewarm "hot tub," very expensive.
They do plan some activities, but they gouge you for them. And, on top of that, they are only outdoor activities. So just pray that it doesn't rain or even threaten rain-- it rained or looked overcast our entire stay and while we are generally happy people who can entertain ourselves, we were miserable. There was nothing to do (2 channels on the television, no books, no stores to buy books or games, no games available incl. cards, no bars, limited restaurant hours, one store that is woefully understocked in food and drinks) and they don't even TRY to provide entertainment or activities for guests during the rain. A few times activities were scheduled, but it was looking like rain so they just cancelled them "just in case."

Also, this place is SO HARD to get to. We had done a lot of research, but still weren't prepared for exactly how hard it was. Once you get to Hervey Bay, the ferry schedule is intermittent, hard to figure out, and runs every couple of hours. To get off the island and the resort- same thing. You either leave super early in the morning or super late at night.

Honestly, it's not worth the money. Consider staying at the bay & going for a long day trip to Fraser Island and getting a 4WD vehicle (taking the earliest ferry there and the latest ferry back).

  • Stayed May 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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3 Thank NCTakesOnTheWorld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Frankfurt a.M.
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 3 December 2008

hmmmm... well, what can I say... it's eco certified, so don't expect a classic 4* resort. nope, they don't have a nice beach. nope, they don't have very nicely furnished rooms nope, staff is not very friendly

yes, food is okay yes, the nature is fantastic, so that's the only reason, why you should keep Fraser Island as a stop in your australia trip. When you book yourself a guided tour across the island, you'll really have advantages to the groups coming from the mainland just for a daytrip. what we can advise is booking the spa upgrade to the room, not because of the spa (pretty old, filthy, jak...) but you'll have a room on the first floor, which means LESS insects.

HAving been in Brsibane and Noosa, Kingfisher Resort has been a big disappointment on the first look. On the website and all those touristic catalogs, you'll expect somethin nice, splendid, fascinating but not this. The resort is preety much dated by now. Having had a quite rude checkin staff didn't really help lighting up our mood (and in your honeymoon, it's actually kinda hard becoming depressed). Also the wheather, was windy, cloudy, little rainy...anyway. The restaurant (not the buffet one) was pretty good, and after a bottle of red wine, you'll enjoy your room as well. We just hang in there, because everybody told us, that the nature beauties of Fraser Island simply blow you away. And they did indeed. 75 mile beach, the wandering dunes, elie creek and most of all the big lake in the middle of the island just blew our minds. Especially the last stop was fantastic. So keep overlooking the negative sides of the resort. the island is well worth a visit. still we were glad leaving the island and the resort. without the beauties around it, it won't be worth the money. BUT all the other "resorts" on the island are worse!!!! and I mean WORSE!!! the Eurong Resort was just pittyful... we stopped there for our daytrip for lunch. HAving seen this, Kingfisher seemed a splendid hotel :-)

  • Liked — the island's nature wonders
  • Disliked — staff, room, annoying flies at the pool (but this is Australia)
  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank bingo303
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 December 2008

In October we had a 3-night stay at the Kingfisher resort. Fraser Island is just amazing; however, the 'eco resort' is a different story. Overall, it's lovely, well set out and has some great communal amenities with fabulous pools and lots of space to sit and read or just take in the surrounding rainforest and beaches.

Getting down to the nitty gritty is quite a different matter. The room was basic but clean, which is more than could be said for the bathroom - that was, simply, GROSS! I've stayed in backpackers with shared bathrooms that were cleaner and nicer than this. There was mould and dirt around the bottom of the shower, which looked like it had been kitted out from a 1950s hospital ward! Yuk! And the floor hadn't had more than a cursory wipe for years. The toilet seat did not fit on the toilet so was uncomfortable to sit on and even the soap holder in the shower, which was cracked, hadn't been installed properly.

If that were the sum of the problems, I might forgive them, but it's not... While the staff are lovely, they are more suited to working on an 18-35 ClubMed resort than Kingfisher. The concept of 'customer service' seemed rather foreign to some of them, and there was a definite lack of professionalism and slickness about the whole place.

When we went fishing one day and caught a nice little bream that we didn't fancy eating that night, the manager of one of the restaurants kindly put it on ice in their fridge. But alas, despite asking for it back on two separate occasions the next day, poor fishy was never seen again...

Finally, when we got back home we found that, although we'd settled up in full on checking out, they had also charged us again for the full amount on my credit card! I understand that problems sometimes happen, but this took days to sort out. Tim the duty manager said he would refund the rather substantial sum "that afternoon", but after chasing him 5 days later, he still hadn't refunded it (and I had explained to him that I was leaving the country and needed it refunded ASAP)!

It's a beautiful island - just a shame that the resort is so unprofessional and inadequately managed.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Dirty bathroom!!
  • Stayed October 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank RoyAM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bournemouth, UK
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 December 2008

My husband and I were so disapointed with this resort. WE were staying on a 2 night break in the Kingfisher Bay resort and couldn't have been happier to leave.
We arrived in the dark - it's a spooky place at night as everywhere is so deathly quiet. Even in recptions areas- you feel bad to talk.
After a full day of travelling - there was no where open at 8.30pm to have something to eat. Well, there's the Maheno restaurant where you can have a manky 3 course buffet for $39 each.
We just said we wanted something light in the event of no room service but we were offered a dry old buffet which was not very appealing.
The level of service was really bad - not one member of staff we encountered throughout our whole stay smiled at us. Smiles cost nothing!!!! It actually seemed as if the staff were scared of us!!!
We had our drinks threwn at us and our pizza we ordered on the second night was practically frisbeed across to us.
The rooms are very basic and offer no sound insulation at all - we heard next door on the toilet!!!!
We also had a problem with no hot water -and the bath water was brown.

It sounds like we are real whingers but we genuinelly wouldn't recommend this place to anyone - it's probably one notch up from camping.
I would strongly suggest saving your money by not staying here - we wished we'd stayed longer in Noosa and done a long day trip to see all the scenic spots.

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — The miserable staff
  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank lottielock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bath, North East Somerset
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 November 2008

I knew the Kingfisher Bay hotel might be dated as I had read the reviews on trip advisor before I went but very much wanted to stay on Fraser island so booked anyway It was dated! Decor slightly depressing, bathroom small and pokey. Room configurations very confusing when booking on line and we ended up with a room with one bed less than we expected - all sorted very quickly and without charge. Although neighbours upstairs and next door were not noisy we could hear every word spoken - insulation very poor this resulted in a very early awakening for us. The public spaces are attractive but the private accomodation is poor and unattractive unfortunately there is not much choice on the island. We went on the whale watching trip which was absoloutely fantastic and made up for other defects but it is definitely not good value for money.

  • Liked — The whale watching trip.
  • Disliked — The poor quality of accomodation.
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank westcountrymum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bath UK
Level 6 Contributor
54 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 November 2008

We spent two nights at Kingfisher with our toddler daughter, buying the island tour package.

We arrived on the evening cat and found it a bit bizarre to be stranded at reception with all our luggage to be told to walk a good few minutes to our rooms. Our pre-ordered cot was not there and it took a lot of phone calls and buck-passing by staff before one eventually arrived a couple of hours later.

Our room was fine ( a bit late 70's) though it is best not to have the fly screen fall off it's runners with a young child! The pool was clean and warm (in September). I struggle to understand how the place is an Eco-resort, I read the rationale and thought "so what?".

We ate at the Maheno restaurant for breakfast. The food was fine, staff were helpful and attentive, but the small birds diving for your plate were annoying. We tried to eat at the Seabelle but arrived on time to find that they couldn't seat us (seemingly there are only 2 highchairs in the entire resort). Eventually we negotiated take-out (which we'd been told was possible, then impossible, earlier that afternoon). The waitress told us to leave and it would be delivered but then we received an angry phone call asking us to come to collect it. We were astounded to be told "the waitress who told you we'd deliver is stupid"! Suffice it to say the bartender who helped my husband carry our 3-course meal over was furious (but the food was yummy!).

The island tour was enjoyable and the ranger was knowledgeable but we did set off a good 30 minutes later than the rest of the day tours who boarded identical buses and did the same route.

We couldn't help but feel short-changed at Kingfisher because of its lousy service. Fraser Island is lovely, but I think we'll be giving Kingfisher a miss in future.

  • Liked — Nice location
  • Disliked — Staff all seem to hate each other
  • Stayed September 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
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    • Cleanliness
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank sueduncBATH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Uk
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 November 2008

We were able to check-in in Hervey Bay and our luggage was taken across to the island for us. The food and drinks are not over priced as we expected them to be, as you can't really travel outside the resort after dark. We didn't use the 2 more expensive restaurants within the main building, but we ate both nights at the pizza/bistro (which ran out of pizzas) but the food was reasonable. Although we didn't have any bad experiences, a lot of people seemed to be complaining about their rooms and asking to be moved. Our room was fine. The water in the bathroom ran brown for 5 minutes, but then cleared. For the 3 days we were there we hired a 4WD which is a MUST, it was great fun, although a little scarey at first when you come out of the hotel grounds....it's a bit bumpy! Driving down the beach was great. We would recommend staying at this hotel.

  • Stayed October 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank UkJetlag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Kingfisher Bay Resort

Property: Kingfisher Bay Resort
Address: Kingfisher Bay, Fraser Island, Queensland 4655, Australia (Formerly Mercure Kingfisher Bay)
Region: Australia > Queensland > Fraser Coast > Fraser Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Fraser Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Kingfisher Bay Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 152
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled in the bush overlooking the calm waters of the Great Sandy Strait, this award-winning ecotourism resort on World Heritage-listed Fraser Island is the perfect base to explore the world's largest sand island. The resort incorporates the 152-room Mercure Kingfisher Bay Hotel, self-contained two and three bedroom villas and houses, and a 174-bed Wilderness Lodge for groups. Resort Rangers also guide a variety of four-wheel-drive coach tours or personalised tours of the island. Access to Fraser Island is by ferry only. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mercure Kingfisher Bay Resort Fraser Island
Kingfisher Bay Hotel Fraser Island
Kingfisher Bay Fraser Island

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