Heading up to Cairns we needed to find a place to stay, and I have to say I ummed and ahhed about it for weeks if not months before deciding on the Rydges Resort Esplanade which I booked through Wotif dot com dot au.
To find a decent place to stay for a decent price is the trick, and well, I’m not sure I succeeded. We looked at AirBnB and possibly if I had my time over again I might have gone down that path, but Rydges was what I went with in the end after comparing reviews from different sites and prices and it seemed to represent decent value for money as far as Cairns is concerned.
Yes, right off the bat I should warn you that Cairns is not a cheap place for accommodation. I only paid a little more for my room in Sydney last year and it was much nicer and had full buffet breakfast included in the price. And that’s Sydney.
July is, I have been told, peak season in Cairns, so that may have played a role. I paid around $160 a night for a twin with two double beds as the rooms all had double beds as far as I could see and it was no more for one with two. It was pay on arrival which suited fine, but I was a little unimpressed by a 3.5% surcharge for Amex, and a 1.5% surcharge for Visa. So probably would have saved that if I had bought through a different website. Surcharges are something you have to deal with in Australia from time to time with credit cards, but this is the first hotel I have had charge me one. I would have thought big businesses would count that as a business expense and absorbed it because let’s be honest, who pays a big bill with cash these days? Almost every transaction would be via credit card I am guessing.
That aside, the greeting was friendly and we soon had taken the lift to our room. It was very spacious which I liked, probably the best feature of the room along with a balcony which overlooked… well more of the resort really. Not an amazing view but you could see the mountains that circle Cairns and they are quite pretty.
It was cold the first night and the room had the air conditioning on when we walked in which was a curious call, that went off straight away and was never put back on. And still it’s been chilly. Really could have done with a heater but I don’t think it’s something anyone could expect, this sort of weather even in July is very rare for Cairns.
Beds were okay, a little saggy in the middle, the blankets (there were spares in the cupboard) seemed a little dusty and used. I was surprised they didn’t go with doonas/duvets myself, much easier to clean and make look new.
The bathroom is okay. Bath a bit small, but it’s clean if a little worn-looking. The toilet seat wouldn’t sit up which was annoying in a rush, and the shower head was too low, however the pressure and heat from it was awesome. The bathtub was not full size and I didn’t give a bath a go. They supplied shampoo, body lotion and conditioner as well as soap and towels, no face washer or shaving gear which was disappointing.
In the room the table was a fair way from the power point which wasn’t too good for using the computer. Luckily tables can be moved! Noise was a factor, Saturday night there was some music pumping until around midnight from I think a wedding reception and conversations were easily heard in the corridor, not to mention every time our neighbours used the shower or toilet we could hear it. The noises were annoying but not overpowering and not a huge minus.
Small fridge, kettle, iron, board were all good amenities, no minibar but then I never use it anyway. So all in all I would have been happy with the Rydges Resort Esplanade if it had been more reasonably priced.
Value for Money: 2/5
Total: 15/25 (60/100)
Thanks for reading, May the Journey Never End!