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“Quintessentially Australian”
Review of Qualia Resort

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Qualia Resort
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Hamilton Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 2 October 2012

Qualia is one of the best, most exclusive resorts we have had the privilege to enjoy. The pavilion accommodation is superb with every detail thought through and privacy assured. The amenities are tasteful and well appointed with a wide range of first class dining options. Above all, the service is unpretentious and friendly. A truly 'first class oasis'.

Room Tip: Windward pavilions 3, 4, 5 or 6 are private and right on the water.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank rob c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 4 October 2012

Dear Rob c,

I was delighted to see your review on Tripadvisor this morning. Thank you for staying with us and thank you for your positive comments.

Unpretentious and friendly are two common Australian personality traits that we feel set us apart from many similar locations across the world. We pride ourselves on providing world class service with a distinctly Australian personality. We've found that all guests, international and Australian, respond really well to our service personality.

Thank you again and please don't wait too long for your next visit!

Yours Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia

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Reviewed 1 October 2012

One of the best resorts i have stayed in. Service very personalised and the rooms are private and excellent. I would stay again. Its more like a 6 star resort, the food, location and use of buggy are all first class. I can not wait to return!

Room Tip: All rooms are great with nice views.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled solo
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1  Thank Sydneytraveller_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2012

Dear Sydneytraveller_11,

I'm so happy to hear that you have left qualia with fully recharged batteries and some great memories. Thank you for your generous words and for making the effort to review qualia.

I can't wait for you to return either but when you do, please ask your travel agent to contact me direct on mshah@qualia.com.au as we're always pleased to see previous guests again.


Yours Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia

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Reviewed 1 October 2012

Okay, just back from Australia! Qualia is an excellent resort in many ways. Sorry for the crazy title but I’m not accustomed to resorts being able to ban children. How lovely was that!??

We were whisked away at the airport by the greeters and taken directly to the hotel. They bother with baggage claim and bring it, much later, to the room. At check-in we felt like we were genuinely welcomed. The GM came and attempted to make conversation with us while we waited for reception to gather our papers. He was wonderful, I’m not sure we were. After coming off an overnight flight from SFO and transferring through Sydney… you get it. We had a suite, #22. (The suites come with a complementary buggy (golf cart) for use on Hamilton Island.) It felt like a tree house overlooking the Whitsundays. Very private, gorgeous view, quiet, stunning! Modern décor. We should have named our Cockatoo. The private pool and the lounge was heavenly. They’re wonderfully equipped with robes, toiletries, linens, and mini bar. The only thing missing in the rooms is “the book”. There is generally a book telling guests all about the island and the resort. We didn’t know to ask about the Resort Center (not the marina) so we assumed the marina was it. Not so, there is another place with shops, etc. We found it the last night because our dinner happened to be there. Not that we would have found the tee shirt of our dreams, but when killing time on a small island, a little more stimulation is always welcomed.

The restaurants are okay. Pebble Beach has had a menu overhaul as we heard. It’s a lovely menu we enjoyed several salads, sides, and fish. But it’s more extensive than that. Every item was prepared well, delicious, and very current. However, the service is hit and miss. They’re trying very hard and were generally very sweet here, but the food sometimes would take a long time. It was a 5 star beach menu, and setting, but some kinks need to be ironed out. It could be the new menu transition.

The Long Pavilion. When are we going to stop with the “jowl” and “belly” fascination?! Make it stop! This menu was not for us. And the surly waitress was icing on the cake. We cancelled our second reservation and would not consider going back for dinner. Breakfast was delicious with lovely service. The Honeycomb being a standout.

There is not a real beach here, it’s pebbly. But the setting is gorgeous and there is a fantastic solution to this. They can take you to a private beach with a picnic! It was so much fun. Umbrellas, cushions, towels, all ready for us. I highly recommend this treat! The pool was comfortable and highlighted by a lack of children.

The Gym (not near the Spa btw) is beautiful. On the water with a great spot to workout on the deck.

The Spa is great. I can understand why it’s ranked so highly. Christina was a gem. I enjoyed the massage and facial. I’m still remembering how special those few hours were. The only thing I would comment on is the lack of snacks and teas available. Normally, at high end Spas there are dried fruits, nuts, and/or at least a bowl of bananas. Along with some pitchers of flavored waters, juices, teas, etc. Upon check-in there is a fantastic freshly made cold tea. And that’s it unless one asks. I asked and they brought a cup of tea. It’s just usually at a 5 star Spa, we don’t have to ask. It certainly wasn’t Christina’s responsibility. It should just be provided on a buffet. Oh, one treat however is the Spa will let guests use the facility at anytime, no extra charge. This is highly unusual! My husband loved being able to pop over and take a steam. Very nice idea.

Hamilton island is very expensive. We were blown away by how expensive the food is. The food is mediocre for the prices. That’s true for every restaurant from the Yacht Club to the Fish and Chips. The quality of the food is not congruent with the price at all. The closest is Pebble Beach. The Koala zoo is fun. The hiking was amazing! The snorkeling is good, not great (actually we went to Haymen to snorkel) The grocery store in town is sweet. I’ll get to separate reviews for dinners.

Check-out is interesting. They have the same procedure with bags. It freaks me out. We’ve had it pounded in our heads in the States, do not let anyone take your bag… be in control of your bag… but they take your bag here and it’s just how they do it. It’s suppose to be fabulous service, and I’m sure a lot of people think I’m nuts for complaining about it. I was worried until I got back to Sydney. I just don’t like my bag out of my control when it’s going on a plane. I’ve heard too many horror stories. So, when I mentioned this there was no way to deviate from their plan. Nothing offered and we had room in our van. Alas, nothing bad happened and the baggage valet was with our bags the entire time. Just an FYi. And in their defense, Qualia made a special trip for us as our boarding passes wouldn’t print and we needed to be there early. That was very nice.

The service overall is resting on it’s stars. Housekeeping did a wonderful job of keeping our room tidy and fresh. The kids seemed happy to be at work. But, the room service menu is lacking. When my husband asked for something off another menu it was met with confusion. When I called to speak with the food and beverage manager, it all went fine. Why did I have to do that? The other thing missing was face recognition. When a resort is this pricy we’re used to being recognized by sight, especially by management. I would go back to Qualia if I wanted to visit the Whitsundays again.

Room Tip: Bigger suites with pools are worth it!
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank snorkelworkel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2012

Dear snorkelworkel,

Thank you for taking the time to post such a thorough account of your stay at qualia and I hope that you’re not missing Australia too much! We really appreciate guests sharing their experience of qualia on guest review sites like Tripadvisor as we think it generally gives visitors a good idea of whether or not qualia is right for their holiday.

I’m sorry that the usual welcome compendium was not in your room during your stay. It is being reprinted after a lengthy revision but will be in all rooms by the end of the month. Alternatively, guests can download the Hamilton island app through the App store to get information on restaurants and activities on the island.

As you mentioned, drinks are free at Spa qualia. I will have a good think about your feedback regarding the Spa – often the best ideas come from guests.

Just to clarify, qualia staff do transport guest's luggage direct from their pavilions to Hamilton Island Airport, where we have a staff member on duty at the airport who looks after our guest’s luggage at all times to ensure there are no “lost bag” incidents that might ruin a holiday.
When guests arrive at the airport we do assist with luggage but for security reasons the airlines require each guest to check in their own bags, so there is the chance for guests to be assured that their luggage is on board. We believe our procedures ensure the best security and least effort for our guests.

There is a limited menu which reflects our resort style. Guests can ask at anytime to have something special prepared and that is why we have people like our F&B Manager available to discuss guests preferences with them.

Thank you for staying at qualia. I’m really proud as an Australian to be able to showcase this beautiful part of Australia to our international guests. I hope that we see you again soon for another memorable stay.


Yours Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia

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Reviewed 30 September 2012

Imagine a beautiful open plan apartment overlooking sparkling seas, without another human in site... Your own plunge pool, golf cart, endless restaurants, marinas, golf...that's just the start. The service is five star,the weather perfect. Qualm is simply unmatched for luxury and peace.

Room Tip: Northern units have the pools
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  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Toby21Sydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2012

Dear Toby21Sydney,

We really appreciate the review of your stay at qualia. Honestly, it never gets tiring to hear positive feedback from satisfied guests that have had an unforgettable experience. I hope that you are able to come back and visit us soon.


Yours Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia

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Reviewed 28 September 2012

July for 4 days - what an experience!

There simply isn't another place like this - totally private Villas with uninterrupted views of the water from your bed - beyond belief.

If you can, do it as it is just amazing.

The only downside was the restaurant which, I am sad to note, was not up the same level as the rest of the resort. The service was terrific however we found the food underwhelming in the sense that it was just not at the same amazing level as the rest of the resort. We expected something just as mind blowing and it did not reach that standard.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank DPL-OZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2012

Dear DPL-OZ,

Thank you very much for leaving a review of qualia on Tripadvisor. I’m glad to hear that you were blown away by your experience staying with us.

I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy the food as much as the rest of qualia. We understand that taste in food is quite subjective and while our Executive Chef has put together an amazing menu that showcases his individual style, we do understand that we won’t be able to completely satisfy everyone. Please note that qualia guests are able to order tailored dishes if they wish.

One of the great things about Hamilton Island is that there are many other dining options on the island including Italian, seafood, modern Australian and asian fusion. That being said, we are extremely proud of qualia’s culinary offering and feedback from our guests has been overwhelmingly positive. Qualia’s Executive Chef, Alistair Waddell, was also just named "best hotel chef" at the recent 2012 HM awards.

It was our pleasure to have you stay with us and I hope that you will be back in the future.


Yours Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia

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Reviewed 28 September 2012

I have just had a stay at the Beautiful Qualia Resort on Hamilton Island for 5 days , it would have to be one of the best in Australia. I was attending a conference on the island and decided to indulge in the resort away from the island tourist area. From the time i was collected at the airport to the time i was dropped at the airport it was a delight to be at the resort. Whilst i had to attend business meetings for 2 of the days it was so good to escape and get back to the resort during sessions. Being greeted with champange on arrival and then finding a bottle of chamagne on ice in the room was a pleasant surprise. Once checked in i headed to the pool area near the private beach to have lunch, a cocktail or 2 and a swim to start the stay. I mentioned to the staff was it possible to get some chocolate, next thing i am delivered 4 chocolates as i sat by the pool. I must recomend the mussells at the beach restruant, i had 3 times because they were so good. Breakfast was very nicely serviced, moderate variety but i am not into buffet so was more than enough for me. I did request lemon juice in warm water. i am pleasantly surprsied that the lovely "alica' remembered this the following mornings. I requested a banana the first morning and they didnt have, but surprise surprise the following mornings i had my bananas with out asking. The attention to detail was amazing and the staff a credit to Qualia. I met the General Manager on the visit at drinks and he was very warm and welcoming. I was surprised to see him doing breakfast service on the Sunday and then driving one of the vehicles to the airport. A very hands on Manager. On the Saturday I did a beach drop to a deserted beach for the day with a book, me and one lonley sea gull for 5 hours. It was so amazing to do and just chill out and do nothing. The cocktails were amazing, a little pricey but this is an exclusive resort.

This place is hard to find fault with from teh time you arrive to your leave. It has amazing accomadation and so private that you can just loose yourself. I work in a high stress business and will most certainly go back to this place when i am needing a well deserved break.

The use of a buggy is also so handing, i used it everyday to go to my business sessions and had dinners to attend at night and i came back to qaulia quite late but always felt safe doing this on my own. The fairies come in plug your buggy into the charger late at night if you forget to do so you dont run out when in use.

Room Tip: i had a room without a pool as i wanted to use the infinity pool on the beach
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled on business
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1  Thank heatherjbelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 7 October 2012

Dear heatherjbelle,

Thank you for leaving a review of your stay at qualia. I’m so glad that we were able to have you stay with us during your time on Hamilton island.

Alicia is a great example of the calibre of people that I have the pleasure of working with at qualia. I have passed on your thanks (as well as my own) to Alicia for the proactive and personalised service she provided to you.

I believe that it is important to be hands-on so that I can see first-hand what the guests are experiencing. I like to lead by example and It is motivating for staff to know that I am not above helping out.
However, the main reason that I get involved is that I enjoy it. I am in this industry because I like dealing with people. I started my hospitality career as a waiter because I found it exciting and rewarding to be able to make a genuine difference to a guest’s stay. I hope that when Alicia is a general manager she will approach the role with the same attitude.

Please remember us whenever your high stress job becomes too much and you need a break. We’re only a short flight away and now that we’ve partnered with Virgin Australia’s Velocity program and guests can earn points for every dollar they spend on accommodation with us, it’s possible to earn enough points in one visit for a return flight from Sydney. Here is my email address: mshah@qualia.com.au – please contact me directly when you feel the need to escape again and I will oversee your booking personally.


Yours Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia

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Reviewed 25 September 2012

As soon as I arrived at Hamilton Island, I was greeted and welcomed by the friendly and attentive Qualia staff. Could I give a description of my luggage? Eeuuhm...a bit hesitant we started describing what our bags looked like, keeping our fingers crossed they would turn up in our room. We stepped into the air-conditioned (much welcomed) Qualia van and were transferred to the resort.

Hamilton Island is a small, but fun and tourist filled island. Everyone is driving around in golf-buggies, giving the whole island a quirky funny image. As Qualia is situated on a private part of the peninsula, we passed the hustle and the bustle and drove to the gate entering a sanctuary of piece and quietness. No children (Qualia has a no children policy), empty pathways (maybe a wallaby here and there) and - most important - beautiful vistas from everywhere you look.

What it was, I don't know. I suddenly felt a bit dizzy. It must have been the bottle of complimentary Veuve Cliquot or it might have been the dazzling view. I reckon it was a combination of both....luckily the most attentive staff will take care of every need, and sometimes knows what you need even before you do!

Our room at Qualia was a Leeward Pavillion. The heavenly beds was the first thing we noticed when walking in. The Aesop bathroom amenities was the second scream of joy. We noticed our bags were already brought into our room....And then we just sat down and relaxed on our private balcony taking in the view (and that bottle of bubbles) before we headed down to the activities centre and explore the waters from a Stand Up Paddle Board.

As Qualia is situated on Hamilton Island, and you have the possession of your own golfbuggy during your entire stay, you don't have to dine in the resort every day. We stayed one night on a Gourmet Package and one night on a Bed & Breakfast rate. Meaning we headed out on Sunday evening, taking our buggy into town (but there is also a 24-hour chauffeur service at Qualia, of course...) and sat down on the grass listening to the live performance at Marina Sundays. Bommies at the Yachtclub is a great restaurant to explore (one of the best on the island, you should make a reservation) but there are many nice little places you can enjoy a great meal!

The food at Qualia is to die for. The hot seafood platter we had for lunch at the Pebble Beach Restaurant was everything we wished for and more. And the degustation dinner at the Long Pavillion that evening was a parade of surprises, all equally tastefull and the main dish brought to us by the chef himself, which I always find a very nice touch to an evening dining out.

My final thoughts? Although Qualia is not directly on the Great Barrier Reef, you can get there easily. It is one of the most exclusive and private retreats to be found in the Whitsundays, and you literally don't have to think about anything and just let the friendly staff arrange your every wish and cater for every need. Everything at qualia has been meticulously considered to relax the mind yet completely spoil the senses. You can enjoy the lively atmosphere on the island itself, or secede from the rest of the world and just enjoy the piece & quiet at Qualia.

My favorite: Get out of bed way to early on one morning (04:00), ask the driver at Qualia to drop you off behind the Reef View Hotel and start your climb to the top of Passage Peak. A torch, a bottle of water and your camera is all you need. Once at the top, you will enjoy the most magnificent sunrise you have ever experienced in your life!

Room Tip: The Leeward Pavillions are already offering a world of luxury and privacy including a private balcon...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Evie-Amsterdam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton_Island_Aus, General Manager at Qualia Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 7 October 2012

Dear Evie-Amsterdam,

Your review of qualia is one of the best that we've received all year! I'm so glad that you had such an unforgettable experience during your stay at qualia and my staff and I are grateful that you chose to share your thoughts with visitors to Tripadvisor considering staying at qualia.

qualia's Executive Chef will be happy to hear you describe his menu as "to die for". I pass on all of the feedback to him and he genuinely appreciates it when it is good feedback (nearly 100% of the time!) but he also takes any negative feedback on board so that he can improve. This has lead to him being named Best Hotel Chef at the 2012 HM awards recently. The degustation menu that you mentioned changes weekly and vegetarian options are available.

The Windward Pavilions are beautiful but I think your review is clear evidence that the Leeward Pavilions such as the one you stayed in are also really amazing rooms as well.

I thought you might be interested to know that Hamilton Island is not completely full of tourists but is home to over 1,000 permanent residents. We have a school, bank, post office and all other kinds of services that you'd expect in a small community.

My staff and I sincerely appreciate your wonderful review and we’re all delighted to know that you were completely satisfied with your stay at qualia. Please feel free to get in contact with me directly on mshah@qualia.com.au if you or your loved ones are planning to come to qualia and I will attend to the booking personally.

Yours Sincerely,

Michael Shah
General Manager
qualia

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Additional Information about Qualia Resort

Address: 20 Whitsunday Boulevard, 4803, Australia
Phone Number:
Region: Australia > Queensland > Whitsunday Islands > Hamilton Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Hamilton Island
Price Range: £601 - £1,075 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Qualia Resort 5*
Number of rooms: 60
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated in the Whitsundays, qualia puts the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef right on your doorstep. Its sun-drenched northern aspect provides the ideal location to appreciate the passing beauty of each day, surrounding guests with some of the most stunning and spectacular waters to be found anywhere in the world. What’s more, with a direct flight taking only 2-3 hours from international gateway cities on Australia’s east coast, qualia truly is a world-class destination without the journey.qualia offers a choice of 60 individual pavilions, each with breathtaking views. There are spacious one-bedroom freestanding pavilions (Windward and Leeward) that provide an indulgentspace to relax in and unwind, with either a sundeck or private infinity edge plunge pool. Or, there’s the uncompromising luxury and privacy of the Beach House with its own guest pavilion. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Qualia Hamilton Island
Qualia Hotel Hamilton Island

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