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“Reef Retreat is the Best!”

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The Reef Retreat Palm Cove
Ranked #2 of 12 Hotels in Palm Cove
Certificate of Excellence
Bancroft, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
“Reef Retreat is the Best!”
Reviewed 2 May 2014

We were so fortunate to stay at the beautiful Reef Retreat in Palm Cove prior to and during Cyclone Ita. We had not made a prior booking but intrigued by the retreat's ambiance and beauty we just walked in off the street looking for accommodation. We received a warm welcome, and Clive showed us two apartments from which to choose. We were thrilled and excited to see such lovely options. We much appreciated Clive's patience and flexibility especially when we had to prolong our stay day-by-day as the cyclone approached, even though we were double-booked farther north. We felt totally comfortable and safe in our apartment, and secure knowing that Clive was monitoring the weather and taking an interest in our safety. Also Clive and Mary helped us in every possible way - booking excursions, recommending restaurants, answering all our questions politely and respectfully. (And we had many questions...being Canadians we had never before experienced a powerful cyclone.)

The next morning after the cyclone had passed we were pleasantly surprised that the clean up from the extensive tree damage was well underway making it safe for us to venture out.

In addition to excellent service, Reef Retreat is set in absolutely lovely surroundings and the resort has much character. Our one bedroom with a well-equipped kitchenette was perfect: spacious, immaculate, crisp decor, and very private. Our large balcony overlooked the common area and pool which really should be featured in a magazine it is so pretty. Just like living in a village tree-house surrounded by lofty melaleucas, palms, and foliage. As well there is a good collection of DVDs to watch during cyclones!, an excellent selection of wine, a laundry facility, and internet available. The location is very convenient for strolling around the village and beach.

In retrospect, we experienced an exciting and memorable time at Reef Retreat, our favourite accommodation by far during our holiday in Australia. In truth we did not want to leave and hope to return one day. Until then we will highly recommend to our family, friends, and anyone listening that they stay nowhere else. Thank you Clive and Mary for your kindness and professional attitude; our initial three-day-stay extended to a one-week-visit was the highlight of our three month holiday Downunder. With luck we shall return!

Heather and Jim Graham

Room Tip: Try for Apartment 13 or one with a balcony overlooking the pool!
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Heather G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clive and Mary R, Owner/Managers at The Reef Retreat Palm Cove, responded to this review, 6 May 2014
Our sincere thanks Heather & Jim for your kind and very detailed review. It was our pleasure to be able to accommodate you when you wandered in and we are happy that you felt comfortable and secure at Reef Retreat during your stay. We very much hope to welcome you back.

Warm regards

Clive & Mary
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534 reviews from our community

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Warragul
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 May 2014

From the moment we arrived we were made most welcome
Nothing was to much
Clive and Mary are
A wealth of local knowledge right down to great places to eat.
Kind, friendly manner the resort is kept spotlessly clean
they arranged emails and transfers for us as plus a hire car.
that is our second stay
With Clive and Mary at reef
retreat and I know that there will be more thanks do much for a great stay many thanks
Pete and Sue Northover

  • Stayed April 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Petewarragul
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clive and Mary R, Owner /Managers at The Reef Retreat Palm Cove, responded to this review, 5 May 2014
Thank you Pete & Sue for posting your review after your second stay at Reef Retreat. We are so pleased that you enjoyed it just as much as the first time and we look forward to welcoming you back in the future.

Clive & Mary
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Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 April 2014

My husband and I stayed at this self catering resort for a week. We quickly realised it was not going to be the tropical sea sun and sand type of holidays after the 4th day of uninterrupted torrential rain. I suppose at that point we might have felt slightly annoyed and unimpressed with pretty much everything, location, entertainment and options. Which makes our overall great experience stand out even more.
Clive and Mary (the owners) are lovely and attentive hosts, nothing is too much trouble. They are able to advise and book all sorts of excursions and tours for you - even car rental-, with direct pick up from the hotel, which is really convenient. On a particularly bleak day we thought we might go fishing... but how... well, we asked Clive. He disappeared to the back room and came out with his own fishing lines to get us going. Now, I don't know if it just pays to be nice to get them to be nice in return, but I honestly can't understand some of the negative comments about the level of hospitality here. For us it's been first class all the way.
The apartments are spacious, fresh and clean; having your own kitchen is a definite plus given that the dining out choices are a little limited. Coles is a little far to walk to (can take the bus but...) so I placed an order online and got the groceries delivered to the room, very easy. For drinks, there's a pretty good selection at reception, reasonably priced, and a great communal area with a well kitted out BBQ area, which guests use and and enjoy regularly.
I would recommend the Reef Retreat to anyone wanting to find everything in one place, great value, superb hospitality and perfect location.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ECitygirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clive and Mary R, Owener/Managers at The Reef Retreat Palm Cove, responded to this review, 30 April 2014
Thank you ECitygirl for your thoughtful and kind review. We are always sad for our guests when our normally beautiful weather goes missing for a while and we hope that you will return to a warm, not wet tropical experience here one day.

Your tip regarding online shopping & delivery from the local supermarket is a great tip for guests, thank you for sharing.

We appreciate your comments about the hospitality that you encountered, the vast majority of our guests are like minded and delightful so it is easy but sadly do not post reviews, we thank you for taking the time to share your experience.

Clive & Mary
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Cleveland, Ohio
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 April 2014 via mobile

We had a wonderful stay at the Reef Retreat! It was very peaceful and romantic as one of our destinations on our Australian honeymoon. Thank you to Clive and Mary for being so hospitable! We recommend the Reef Retreat to anyone visiting the area that is looking for lovely, clean, quiet, and peaceful accommodations. We will definitely come back when we return to Australia some day!!

Stayed May 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Melissa N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clive and Mary R, Owner/Managers at The Reef Retreat Palm Cove, responded to this review, 30 April 2014
We appreciate you taking the time to review your stay at Reef Retreat while on Honeymoon in Australia. We are very pleased that you enjoyed your stay here and we look forward to welcoming you back maybe for an anniversary.

With thanks and kind regards

Clive & Mary
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Adelaide
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 26 April 2014 via mobile

We have just had the loveliest holiday at the reef retreat....we were welcomed on our arrival by Clive and Mary and looked after beautifully for the 9 nights we stayed there. Clive organised a wonderful fishing trip with the cairns fishing charter the day after we arrived- this provided us with fresh fish over 5 nights which meant we could use the wonderful BBQ facilities at the resort, next to the pool and spa and interact with the other visitors staying at the retreat, instead of having to eat out every night.
As we went to palm cove with our friends, Clive placed us in rooms next to each other- this meant that we could have our breakfasts together and then head off for the day to look around the area. Although the resort was fully booked during our visit, it was always quiet and relaxed, mainly because the rooms are situated In the trees and very private.
This is our second visit to the reef retreat and we will definitely go again- nothing was too much trouble for Clive and Mary- they were always available for advice on fishing charters, car hire, activities available in cairns, port Douglas, the daintree and reef tours.
Thank you for a lovely relaxing visit- we will be back.

Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Trisha B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clive and Mary R, Owner/Managers at The Reef Retreat Palm Cove, responded to this review, 30 April 2014
Many thanks Trisha B for your kind review, we are pleased that you and your friends had an enjoyable stay at The Reef Retreat, it was a pleasure to assist you all during your holiday and we are delighted that you caught such great fish on your fishing trip. The BBQ area is a lovely place to gather and enjoy a chat with our guests who come from all corners of the globe.

We look forward to welcoming you back.

Warm regards
Clive & Mary
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Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
23 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 April 2014 via mobile

What kind of holiday resort would get a Tree removal company to come and start cutting up entire trees from 8.30am???????? Try to imagine how much of a horrible noise it makes to break up trees into mulch!!!!!! Like most Australians the owners/managers must get up very early and have absolutely no respect whatsoever for guests on holiday (and neighbours) who whish to sleep in!! Just unbelievable!!

Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank Jeremymowling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clive and Mary R, Owner/Managers at The Reef Retreat Palm Cove, responded to this review, 17 April 2014
Wow we are nearly speechless, this is just incredible!

To directly answer the review from Jeremymowling Brisbane.

We are the type of Holiday Resort & Managers that take the safety of our guests very seriously which is why once Cyclone Ita had passed we had the tree surgeon inspect our Melaleuca Trees. They deemed that 5 trees needed immediate attention. Fortunately for us, and you, they were able to attend to them immediately to remove any danger of limbs falling and hitting you or your family and our other guests. Had we not done this and someone had been injured then we really would have had something to answer for.

We note that you were checking out at 10am on the day in question and it is unfortunate that your sleep was disturbed on this morning. Frankly there have been chain saws, and blowers constantly going over the last few days trying to clear up after the cyclone and in readiness for Easter and your comments are pretty sad considering you were in house during the cyclone and saw the aftermath that had to be coped with.

As you say just unbelievable!!

Clive & Mary Ratcliffe
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Plymouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 April 2014

Stayed twice in March 14, both times for 2 nights. Receptionist helpful, both rooms good size and both had nice balconies (some of the other rooms looked to be less well positioned but we didn't go in so can't be sure.
Receptionist very helpful
rooms good size and clean
air con and a fan
slightly surprised that there were louvred windows but these were not glass and didn't have fly screens so if you opened the louvres for ventillation, you potentially let the flys in - we did get bitten (mainly ankles) but this may have been walking on the beach or it could have been at the hotel so don't let that put you off.
Very pleasantly suprised at the cost of beer and wine from the reception - it was nice not to feel that there was a large mark up (there wasn't).
Nice pool with that seemingly common Aussie approach of deep bit in the middle.
Pool bar etc not open during our stay as new season not yet started.
Good position 25 yds from sea front rd.
Would we stay again - YES.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
Thank howard_keith2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Clive and Mary R, Owner/Managers at The Reef Retreat Palm Cove, responded to this review, 16 April 2014
Thank you for your feedback, we are pleased to see that you enjoyed both of your recent stays.
As in all tropical destinations it is good practice to keep doors and windows closed dusk and dawn and long clothes are recommended when visiting the beach in the evenings.

Warm regards from Palm Cove
Clive & Mary
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Additional Information about The Reef Retreat Palm Cove

Property: The Reef Retreat Palm Cove
Address: 10 - 14 Harpa St, Palm Cove, Queensland 4879, Australia
Region: Australia > Queensland > Cairns Region > Palm Cove
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Palm Cove
#2 Luxury Hotel in Palm Cove
#2 Romantic Hotel in Palm Cove
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Reef Retreat Palm Cove 4*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled in a peaceful rainforest setting, amongst the majestic paperbark trees you will find THE REEF RETREAT, Palm Cove. Just a 30 second stroll, 50 meters to idyllic Palm Cove beach and restaurants. Palm Cove is the jewel of Cairns Northern Beaches, a unique, quiet and relaxing village by the sea where centuries old "paperbark" Melaleuca trees line the casual Esplanade. Just a 25 minute drive north of the Cairns International Airport. The Reef Retreat in Palm Cove is a low rise four-star boutique suite style resort set amongst a lush rainforest setting of palms and majestic Melaleuca paperbark trees offering a choice of accommodation from studios, spa suites, 1 Bedroom Suites, 2 and 3 bedroom Apartment. Every room is lovingly laid out and designed to give you all the comforts of home complete with bedroom, bathroom, living area TV/DVD Player, Ipod docks, kitchenette with stovetop and micro-wave, FREE Cable TV, FREE WIFI and spacious private balconies, with views of the pool, lush tropical gardens and the lush green mountains. The Apartment is fully self-contained with laundry facilities. The Resort offers complimentary barbeque and entertainment area for guest use and is licensed to sell Beer, Wine & Spirits for consumption on site. There is a heated salt-water pool and Spa Pool presenting an idyllic Billabong scene, FREE undercover car parking, FREE WIFI and on site guest internet station, Guest Laundry and tour desk services all within a secluded, lush rainforest setting. Reef Retreat can offer you all the personalized, home-style service and facilities that you need for a truly memorable Australian holiday. Ideal holiday getaway for couples and families ... more   less 
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