We decided to celebrate my wife's birthday together with the rest of our family at a Christmas in July at the Fairmont Resort.
The birthday was a special one with a zero at the end!
At the last minute, we decided to stay overnight rather than drive back after dinner - this was possibly an error in judgement cos the Fairmont is a bit pricey for accommodation if you dont book in advance
The 3 Explorers had great Tripadvisor reviews so we thought we should give it a try and because of the birthday decided to splurge on the Luxury Spa Suite. Sadly, it wasn't what we expected for the money. At $260 per night, you are getting into a price point comparable with a Sydney CBD 5-star establishment.
My disappointment started at check in - I was in a celebratory space and mentioned we were in the mountains for my wife's birthday - only to be told that they used to give guests champagne in their room for special occasions but discovered that people told lies about this so they no longer do it! I don't drink so I really wasn't interested in champagne but a simple 'hope she has a happy birthday' would have been nice! BTW at the Fairmont, we had Santa sing happy birthday to the birthday girl.
My second reason I was disappointed was the name 'Luxury Spa Suite' - I expected something a little special for this. Yes it did have a spa but the idea of of soaking in the bath was not on the agenda as there is no heating in the bathroom - the only heating in the 'suite' was the standard motel a/c/ in the main room. We weren't going to venture out of the main room in Katoomba in winter! Apart from the necessities of life the bathroom wasnt a good place to be!
The same was true for the second bedroom - two single beds which was handy for storing our suitcases but again - no heating in this room either. The manager was insistent that although it had two single beds - we would have to pay extra for additional guests. Again, there was only myself and my wife but I felt like with the birthday deal, he thought we were trying to put one over on him.
I am not sure if the manager is jaded by being in the industry too long or really doesn't like people. Perhaps he was just having a bad day as other reviewers had a different experience.
The contrast with the service at the Fairmont was marked. If we were to stay in the mountains again, we would definitely book ahead and stay at the Fairmont as it is in a different league.
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- Also Known As:
- 3 Explorers Hotel Katoomba
- 3 Explorers Motel Blue Mountains/Katoomba, Australia