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“Relaxed and rejuvenated”

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Lizard Island Resort
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Lizard Island
Certificate of Excellence
Bowral, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Relaxed and rejuvenated”
Reviewed 16 November 2013 via mobile

We stayed for 5 nights in October
The weather was perfect and the water warm and clear.
We had intended to snorkel rather than scuba dive, but after watching the video of the divers at the Cod Hole, we booked a dive lesson.
We had a dive off the beach at the end of the lesson and then did the reef tour the next day . The scuba instructor was very patient with his terrified middle aged client and finally coaxed me under .The next day on the reef we had the same instructor looking after just 2 of us.
I truly thought I would never have this experience and am so grateful to have seen this beautiful part of the reef .
The snorkelling off the resort beaches is great and we borrowed a body suit to prevent sunburn.
We left Sydney at 9 am and were snorkelling by the end of the day.
The service was relaxed and professional .We enjoyed the meals and found that the chef was accommodating to requests for variations in the menu. We enjoyed the wine and the staff's recommendations .
There were yoga lessons for October , another first and we made use of the spa therapies.
It was great to leave the outside world behind and tell work they would be unable to contact us by mobile phone .
After our 6 days we were completely refreshed and relaxed and felt so lucky to have visited such a special place .
It is wise to book diving ahead .If you book an afternoon flight home you can still dive the full day reef tour the day before.

Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Jennifer L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (161)
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English first
Seattle, Washington
Level 6 Contributor
351 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 104 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 November 2013

While tempted to tell people to stay away for selfish reasons, the truth is that this is a great place. This was our third visit to Lizard (aka "the Rock") and it was every bit as good as our other visits. As expected, the accommodations, the food and the staff were fine. The location is perfect.

Room Tip: The Sunset Point Villas offer privacy and spectacular views.
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank The2TravelingFools
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
West Palm Beach, Florida
Level 4 Contributor
43 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 November 2013

We actually changed our hotel reservations to stay here--because it is actually on The Great Barrier Reef. And that's what we came for--to do exceptional snorkeling, right off the porch of our room the first afternoon. The resort has four beaches around the island, and will drop you off and pick you up as requested. We took a hop to Watson Bay where we were rewarded with incredible snorkeling of The Clam Garden and tons of fish along the Wall--including a Blue Linckia Starfish--which was a first for us. The next day we took a half day boat excursion, pricey, but we were able to get out further, although still within Inner Reef--most incredible snorkeling over coral gardens. The room is large (did have some trouble keeping air from freezing us out, but finally figured out system) great porch where you can recline, take in the scene and pinch yourself that you are actually staying on The Great Barrier Reef. Food in the restaurant is good, service is great--staff are friendly, very helpful in planning activities and just seemed to want to make your isit perfect.

Room Tip: We had Anchor Bay Room 23--at first I thought it was too close to Boat/Dive shop, but quickly learne...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank JoAnn S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 October 2013

This is the most amazing location in the world. To be able to snorkel and swim right within the reef - or be dropped off to a private island with a designated pick up time and a picnic hamper is out of this world.
The food and wine is delicious (although room service would be nice). No wifi in the rooms.

Room Tip: Pay extra to upgrade to the bungalows on sunset beach... that way you have a balcony with a hammock...
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jane A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, England, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 October 2013

As all the reviews have said, this is a truly magical place - a stunning island at the northern tip of the Great Barrier Reef, with exceptional snorkeling, beautiful private beaches and a very special food and wine experience to boot.

I came here with my English partner in June (his first trip to Australia) - we only had a few days so I splurged on a really special spot. It was a VERY expensive few days but in terms of the accommodation, location, food and reef experience it was worth every penny.

Unfortunately, our plane off the island had to be rescheduled due to mechanical problems, which meant we missed our connection to Sydney (and had to book an extra night in Cairns - thus missing our last night in Sydney). When I returned to the UK, I discovered that such internal missed flight connections are not covered by UK travel insurance, so I was left almost $600 out of pocket.

I contacted Lizard Island to try to negotiate some reimbursement of our costs - as I had booked my onward Cairns-Sydney flight in accordance with their online booking policy (they say to allow
2 hours between connecting flights) I think it is reasonable that they should at least share some (if not all) of the financial cost of the missed flights. Also, all our transfer flights had been booked (and paid for) through Lizard Island - not the flight operator.

I emailed THREE times before I got a reply from a member of their reception staff telling me that they could not help me. When I asked to escalate my concern to a manager, I had a single reply from the manager saying that she would look into it.

That was over two months ago now and although I have emailed the manager directly several times since then, I have not received any further correspondence.

I've been putting off writing this review hoping that I would be able to resolve this privately with Lizard Island, but it seems that their management are simply not interested. Perhaps people only ever come once to Lizard Island so they can't see the point of maintaining good relationships with former clients? Perhaps they don't think that $600 is all that much money (it is to me!)?

I must say I have had better customer experiences at Travelodge. I find it hard to believe I have been dealing with a 'luxury' resort.

It is a shame that such poor communication and management has clouded our memories of a beautiful holiday.

My advice would be to allow much more time when booking your connecting flights - ignore what the Lizard Island website says. Perhaps just book that extra night in Cairns and fly out the next morning - it's not a bad town!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank veuve_steph
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
154 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 113 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 October 2013

I have just come back from a week at Lizard Island staying in an Anchor Bay Suite.
Getting there was very efficient. Flying to Cairns there are lots of flight and then taking a Hinterland light plane to the island was handled very well.
I will not repeat comment made by other reviewers but make soem additional comments.

Suites
Our room was very pleasant but lacked some features you would expect at $2,100 per night. No TV or DVD would be a problem if you were here in bad weather. We would not have used a TV but at this price I have the right to decide. We have been to nearly all of Australia’s 5 star resorts and this is not common. The house keeping could only be described as very poor. The cleaning was very superficial. The mini bar had four beers and two half bottles of wine, not what I would call it a mini bar. Water was not replaced and we found it easier to go to the internet lounge and replace our own water. The turn back service comprised of putting the pillows on the bed and lighting a candle. A photo attached shows how our bath robes were thrown onto the bed as part of the turn back service. I remember Taveuni in Fiji and think of the beautiful display of flowers on the bed and the eye for detail.
The views were stunning and walk ways very well designed so that in bad weather you were well above the soggy ground.

The restaurant
This has had varied reviews on service in the past. Our experience was that the staff although mostly iterate workers were lovely to us and partly make the atmosphere in the addition of a richness of cultures. Due to short term employment the service was very varied. This is a management and training problem not the willingness of the staff. It is worth mentioning David was a gem, when he was on duty things ran much better. Many of the more refined features we are used to, like the use of our names and addressing our preferences only came after four days.
The food and wine were excellent. The variety was good and we were not tired of it after a week. There was ample selection for most tastes and the staff were very willing to meet individual needs.

The Resort Facilities
The WiFi was only available in the lounge where there was a TV on which you can watch DVDs. In the 21 st Century, WiFi is part of our world so not being available in your room is a big shortfall. Each day you would see numbers of people huddling in the lounge doing emails, so the need is there. It is a guest right to make the decision whether they make use of it and the facility should be provided.
The CD collection has not been updated for around 10 years and if you like classical bring your own music. We were at Taveuni Palms in January where they had a catalogue of DVD and CDs you just asked for a number and they appeared in your room within minutes. That resort is much more isolated than Lizard but had WiFi, TV (no TV stations) but DVD.
Swimming from the beach was fantastic. In fact, some of the best snorkelling we have done was right off the beach. No expensive boat rides. The fish were bigger out on the reef but the same species of fish were just off the beach. If you swim from the beach on Anchor Bay out for about 100m you hit a reef you can then swim along the reef to the north then to the clam garden. It is nice and safe swimming without strong currents or winds.
Resort equipment was very good and well maintained.

Summary
The resort is on the expensive side and not really offering the facilities you would expect for $2K per night. It is however, a very special place, great views and on the whole well worth a visit if you are not worried about cost. With just few extra facilities and better house keeping it would be really great. You need to upgrade to a villa.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank ddsheywo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 October 2013

To be honest, it's hard to visit to highly rated resort (which does come with a higher end price tag) and not have expectations (unrealistic or not) of what the experience should entail or what you expect for the money its costs. One perhaps then over-analyses or is over critical - I'm not sure.

That said, Lizard must, in so many ways, offer one of the best "reef" experiences and in this respect must be hard to beat. To be able to swim off the beach to numerous reefs including a giant clam garden, swim with Green turtles and view the most amazing sea life was special in so many ways. So much on offer without having to embark on a full day boat trip! (though we are sorry that we never took the opportunity to head out on the full day outer reef trip as the video looked amazing and we hope to one day return and fit this in.)

We stayed 3 nights in a Sunset Point Villa and it was very comfortable, island style laid back luxury. Based on comments on this site, I decided on these rooms as opposed to the garden rooms - I must be honest though, the location of the garden rooms was better than I had thought. Yes they are smaller but for the amount of time spent in the room, my husband felt that they would have been more than adequate. I for one enjoyed the space in the Sunset Point Villa and the amazing views of the sunsets, Could happily have spent a few more days lazing in the hammock gazing over the crystal blue waters below. We did feel that housekeeping could have been better though.

The staff that you come across are however amazing - so friendly, knowledgeable and attentive. Nothing is too much trouble for them.

Based on reviews previously posted, we had high expectations when it came to the food and perhaps we are overly fussy (and yes we do appreciate that huge logistics are concerned in getting supplies to the island) but we felt it to be hit and miss. Certain meals/courses were amazing and others disappointed. In particular we found breakfast to be disappointing - sounded wonderful on the menu but somehow failed to deliver. The food was beautifully presented but wasn't wow. The packed picnic to a beach drop-off was lovely and fresh though. Very cleverly done. Certain wines and drinks are inclusive as part of your accommodation booking - we were disappointed with the quality of the wines on offer considering the price you are paying overall and think that slightly better wines and sparklings could be offered.

At the end of the day, Lizard Island is a beautiful romantic place to visit and I would happily return there one day for another visit. Would I recommend it - yes definitely. Don't go with any expectations - just go and appreciate it for all that it is!

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank BBM2407
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Lizard Island Resort

Property: Lizard Island Resort
Address: Via Cairns, Cook Shire, Lizard Island, Queensland 4871, Australia
Region: Australia > Queensland > Cook Shire > Lizard Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Lizard Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Lizard Island Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lizard Island is truly secluded from the rest of the world. With 24 powdery-white beaches and 40 luxurious suites, it is the most northern resort in tropical Queensland and is located directly on the Great Barrier Reef. A National Park covering 1,013 hectares with 24 sandy beaches and a lagoon, Lizard Island is accessible only by private charter from Cairns Airport in northern Queensland, Australia. Cairns Airport is accessible from all major Australian airports and directly from some cities in Asia. The island is reserved for the fortunate few who will experience an unforgettable holiday like no other. Enjoy secluded picnics and sunset beach degustation on private beaches, five star cuisine in the beautiful Salt Water restaurant and indulgent spa treatments in the Essentia Day Spa. Relax in style in premium accommodation and take in the wonders of Australia's Great Barrier Reef - right on your doorstep. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lizard Island Hotel Lizard Island
Lizard Island Resort All Inclusive

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