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Lilianfels Resort & Spa - Blue Mountains
Ranked #3 of 15 Hotels in Katoomba
Reviewed 26 October 2010

My wife and I spent two nights at Lilianfels in the Blue Mountains earlier this month and thoroughly enjoyed our stay. We have stayed here a number of times in the past and, whilst we understand that the Hotel is now under new management, we noticed that the standards are still as high as ever. We were fortunate to have a valley view room, which was breath-taking, especially as the view was shrouded in fog when we arrived and was tantalisingly exposed as the fog melted away mid-morning.

Even though it was late October the temperature outside was still pretty cold, so we were thrilled to see two substantial log fires burning away in the lounge area. Everything was generous, from the magnificent breakfast and the number of newspapers and magazines available to guests, to the generous spirit of all staff. From staff at reception and concierge, to housekeeping and waiting staff, all were exceptionally friendly and helpful (especially Judi who looked after us at breakfast!). Obviously morale is very high amongst the staff, and they were all obviously very happy and proud to be working at Lilianfels, which was reflected in how well they treated and responded to the guests. The only possible thing I could improve upon would be providing free internet access/connection to guests - hopefully this may arrive in the near future, however it did deter me from checking work emails.

The indoor pool and the magnificent outdoor pool (in its spectacular setting!), plus the gym area, kept me entertained and were not overcrowded by any means, which helped to maintain the quiet and peaceful ambience of Lilianfels.

My wife and I look forward to our next stay at Lilianfels - whatever the time of year!

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank MichaelPotts2065
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 24 October 2010

W travelled to the other side of the world for our honeymoon mainly because we wanted to go back to Lilianfels, having spent four nights there two years ago. If you can afford it, it is THE place to stay in the Blue Mountains and the experience it quite superb (almost in every way, but not quite).

What makes it stand out? The rooms are delightful – expertly furnished and finished – the comfort of the bed’s alone is to die for and the bathrooms are lovely. Every little detail in the room is perfect, and spotlessly clean. The staff are amazing – very personal, polite and nothing is too much trouble. This goes for the welcome from the front desk, to the porters, restaurant staff and housemaids. If you choose a valley view room then the views are amazing too. It feels like a home away from home, in a good way. If you have ever experienced the Inver Lodge Hotel in Lochinver, Scotland, then I’d say the two are very similar.

However, since we last stayed the hotel has been sold by the Orient Express group and is now owned, I believe, by private businessman who also own the property next door. This didn’t seem to affect our stay, but there have been some changes in the hotel – notably The Grill restaurant immediately off reception has gone. It’s been replaced with The Orangery, but it’s only open Fri – Sun. The flagship restaurant (Darley’s) is not our cup of tea, which means your only option if you want to dine-in midweek is to eat in the lounge area or in your room.

The food served in the lounge (adjacent to the bar or gents toilet!) is fine, but the amazing Wagyu steaks they used to serve in The Grill are long gone – there is still a fair choice, but its EXTORTIONATELY priced. There is no other word for it. Try $30+ AUS for fish and chips – and the cheapest glass of house wine is now $15 AUS. An apple juice in the bar is $7 AUS! It’s really OTT, and risks putting Lilianfels out of reach for people like myself who save up all year to stay in lovely hotels as a hard earned treat, but then the costs on top become ridiculously expensive.

Parking can also be a problem – the car park is tiny, and we never got a space in it at all during our stay. Luckily our rate included Valet parking, but if not – be warned – it’s $60 AUS a day. Quite frankly that is nothing short of daylight robbery!

And if you want a web connection in your room, it’s $8 AUS an hour or $22 AUD a day. The same rates apply if you want to use the hotel’s computer in the lobby area. If motels in the States can offer it for free when you are paying $70 US a night, why can’t a five star hotel charging many more times that amount?

Breakfast was also a slight disappointment after our previous stay in 2008. Every day we were there (Weds – Sat) they put on a buffet – and if you choose a cooked breakfast, the plates provided are stone cold. Hotels, especially five star properties, really need to realise that hot breakfasts on cold plates makes for a dismal guest experience – within 2 mins your food is cold. That’s not five star! On the third day I found out we could order our cooked breakfast from the chef direct, meaning it was served fresh (not from a buffet) and came baking hot and on a hot plate– perfect! BUT, in a hotel of Lilianfels’ quality, that’s how it should be every time. Buffets are more suited to the Novotel or Holiday Inn.

These might sound like minor gripes, but considering the room rate we paid for a Deluxe Valley View room was $466 AUS a night b&b mid-week, and $600+ on the Friday night, you do expect a little better.

And as the management no doubt read tripadvisor – these are the things you could do better (and would make me give you a five star report next time): Don’t rip customers off for wi-fi and lounge meals / drinks. Make parking easier, or at least don’t charge the earth for valet if people have to use that. And improve the breakfast set-up – it can be a little crowded in the breakfast room, and if you are going to have a buffet, then PLEASE provide hot plates. The staff at breakfast are still great, but the whole experience has gone a little downhill since two years ago – when even the staff would come and top up your fruit juice. Now you’re expected to serve everything but the teas and coffee yourself…

And finally – give every member of staff a pat on the back for being first class. They could teach those working in pretty much every top London hotel a thing or two…

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank James K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2010

I stayed here for a conference and thought the rooms and the view spectacular.
Dinner at Darleys was pricey but had interesting food. Cocktails by the open fire in the lounge after dinner were really lovely.
Breakfast was a bit of a bun fight..the room was way too small for the amount of people trying to get around the buffet tables. That was really the only quibble.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled on business
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Thank Anastasia55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 October 2010

Nice place for a getaway from Sydney. Small but comfortable rooms with small windows looking out over the Blue Mountains. Nice grounds and a comfortable central lounge (with fireplace in winter). I understand this area used to be unregulated but now you may need to book in busy times. On weekends there if 'High Tea" where you can pay extra for your tea and coffee if you like that kind of thing, but the waterfall chocolate with fruit and marshmallows is certainly tempting! Darley's restaurant is fantastic and a must whenever you stay here. Leura is just down the road and the Three sisters is a short stroll away.

The main drawback is that parking and internet in your room is extra. Why oh why do hotels try and get away with this?

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled with friends
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Thank Peripotetic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 October 2010

My wife and I were on a three week belated honeymoon to Australia. My wife has a brother/sister-in-law and Aunt/Uncle in the country, so our trip was a mix of going on honeymoon, holiday and the chance to see our family.

Our trip before we had got to the Blue Mountains had seen some of the nicest and sunniest days, but the area of the Blue Mountains brought us the first of rain - which was joyous for us Brits.

We had decided to travel up to the area by train (two hours from Sydney), and had arranged for the hotel to very kindly pick us up. On pick up, we were immediately struck by the politness of the hotel staff on this very rainy day. In the hotel rain does not stop it being enjoyable: the rest of our two day stay was full of polite and charming staff; beautiful breakfasts; billiards in their billiard room; swimming in their glorious pool; and so much more. And, of course, we did venture out to see the absolutely stunning Blue Mountains (mainly for us in clouds!!), and went out for supper in a local restaurant/pub; went on the bus, etc. We were always offered a hotel lift to the town to keep us from the rain.

One last thing, everyone should try out the hotel restaurant if they can - it was a little expensive - but was our one of our honeymoon treats. The food was absolutely amazing. (and we got a lift again!)

The only disappointment I can think was that the view out of our bedroom window wasn't amazing (and not because of the weather).

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank TheMattster1980
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 October 2010

If you want a relaxing ,elegant base to discover the mountains,then this hotel has it all!The breakfasts are delicious,with wonderful,plentiful choices(both hot and cold)-either from the buffet and/or a la carte (the same price includes it all!).The public lounge areas are inviting and newly refurbished,all within sight or surrounding the open fires,in autumn/ winter/spring.Staff are accomodating and bell staff deserve a special mention.The new chef at Darley's has a fairly diverse/interesting menu,trying to showcase Oz food.The concierge has both local knowledge and a worldly profile,which would be useful to ant intending guest-Don't hesitate-just book!

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank PennytSydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 October 2010

We stayed one night at the hotel whilst visiting the Blue Mountains - nice and central for most areas. Hotel nice, food very good, but we eat in the conservatory area and it got a little chilly during the evening (October), I wish they offered us a choice when we booked the meal. But the food was excellent.

Bedroom great and spacious, big bathroom and top notch products.

Only nag was we spent a small fortune on the room and food (eye watering could be a good way of saying it), but forgot we had taken a small bottle of water out of the fridge during the night, about two weeks later we got a letter from them (all the way to the UK) saying they had deducted $4 from our credit card. Given the cost of writing the letter and posting it, and the cost of the water to them, I suspect it would have been cheaper to write it off. Is that penny pinching or just good business. Worth bearing in mind when you go there!

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Martyn K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Lilianfels Resort & Spa - Blue Mountains

Address: 5-19 Lilianfels Ave, Katoomba, New South Wales 2780, Australia
Phone Number:
Region: Australia > New South Wales > Blue Mountains > Katoomba
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Katoomba
#2 Spa Hotel in Katoomba
#3 Family Hotel in Katoomba
#3 Romantic Hotel in Katoomba
Price Range: £156 - £329 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Lilianfels Resort & Spa - Blue Mountains 5*
Number of rooms: 89
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lilianfels Resort and Spa is a renowned haven for relaxation in one of Australia's most beautiful destinations. This multi-award winning hotel & resort is set amidst two acres of manicured gardens, overlooking the most spectacular scenery in the World Heritage Listed Blue Mountains National Park in NSW, Australia.Blue Mountains Accommodation | Blue Mountains HotelLilianfels Resort and Spa is a 5 Star resort with 85 Deluxe rooms and Suites. Onsite recreational facilities include heated indoor and outdoor pool, tennis court, billiard/games room, library and gym. Lilianfels is perfectly located within 5 minutes walk to the iconic 3 sisters rock formation at Echo Point and is close to all major attractions including Scenic World, Leura shopping village and award winning restaurants. Blue Mountains Dining | Blue Mountains RestaurantSituated within the grounds of the historic homestead of Sir Frederick Darley, Lilianfels is home to the multi-award winning Darleys Restaurant which features the best seasonal produce from the region, served in an elegant and romantic setting that is unmistakeably fine dining. Celebrate that special occasion in glamour and experience the revival of Lilianfels 'Old World Charm' as we invite you to peruse and tempt your palette with our new A La Carte Menu.Re-discover why our Multi-Award winning Restaurant excels again in style and service.Blue Mountains Conferences | Blue Mountains MeetingsWith meeting and events space for up to 100 guests complete with state-of-the-art equipment, 85 spacious accommodation rooms to house your delegates, and a fabulous array of fine dining options to choose from, it’s the ideal setting for meetings and conferences which will show your colleagues or clients how much you value them.Blue Mountains WeddingsThis European style country house hotel specialises in smaller weddings and events of up to 100 people. Personalised service, exceptional facilities and thoughtful attention to detail, accompanied by stunning views of the Jamison Valley make the hotel the ideal wedding venue.Blue Mountains Spa | Blue Mountains Beauty TreatmentsLilianfels is also renowned for its Spa. Guests can indulge in an array of soothing spa treatments individually tailored to refresh and rejuvenate. Enliven your senses with our soothing and restorative body and beauty treatments delivered by a team of caring and talented spa professionals.Dining with Spectacular Views at our sister property – Echoes RestaurantDiscover why Echoes Restaurant was awarded best regional restaurant in Australia by AHA in 2012. The combination of fine dining and spectacular views of the Jamison Valley have made Echoes a destination in the Blue Mountains. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lilianfels Blue Mountains Hotel Katoomba
Lilianfels Blue Mountains Resort And Spa
Lilianfels Blue Mountains Katoomba
Lilianfels Resort & Spa - Blue Mountains Katoomba, Australia

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