Shangri-La Hotel, The Marina, Cairns
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TravelPod Member ReviewsShangri-La Hotel, The Marina, Cairns
Only here for one night however the room I'd a good size, beautiful views across the Marina and bay. Room a bit tired but clean, we are on the 3rd floor and it's a very long walk to the room.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Shangri-La Hotel, The Marina, Cairns
The Shangri-La in Cairns is in a perfect location as a base to explore the Great Barrier Reef, the rainforest and other small towns such as Port Douglas and Palm Cover.
The hotel is recently refurbished and the room we had faced away from the harbour, but was excellent with a balcony. The room was only cleaned once per day, and not turned down in an evening as you would usually expect.
The service within the hotel is not as you would you expect from a 5 star hotel, but saying that the hotel is very clean. The reception staff are catering for the Chinese market and do not all speak good English and there is no concierge. The porter was great and even removed some wildlife from our room! The best member of staff is in the tour guide who can book and recommend lots of trips.
The main criticism is the hotel restaurant at breakfast. There is no supervision of the very young staff and whist the buffet was fresh with fruit, pastries, cereal and cooked including fresh eggs to order the service greatly let it down - tables taking a long time to clear and a lack of tea and coffee without asking. In an evening however, the restaurant was great - it is on the outside on the boardwalk facing the harbour so has great views. Food was well priced, good and well served. You need to book if you want a table near the edge with the best views.
Around the hotel there is a distinct impression they are trying to make it more upmarket - and a good small selection of restaurants next to the hotels restaurant are on the boardwalk - such as Dommini's Pizzeria and 2Fish. The hotel is built around a small mall which also seems to be attracting more new shops with a number being refitted.
If I was to visit Cairns again I would definitely stay here again despite the service as I suspect this is as a result of a small population in Cairns and therefore the struggle to recruit.
Nice, but not great.
I stayed here for 3 nights for a work conference. It is about 3 stories high with a shopping centre underneath, as well as cafes & restaurants.
Location - is very good. Right on the marina and next to the park with the council lagoon. Very close (100m) walk to the streets with the shops, and close to Woolworths if you need some groceries of any kind. A few blocks to the bars, and only one block to the casino. Walking paths right outside hotel, than runs along the foreshore, so nice for walks/jogs. The shopping centre & eateries below means the general vicinity is always bustling with people, with some holidaymakers may or may not like.
Lobby - very cold & ultra modern, with lots of black stone & pebbles. I prefer a cosier more welcoming feel, but just personal.
Rooms - ours was MILES from reception and at least 10 minutes walk with heavy bags. No concierges in sight on day of arrival or departure - this was a pain. They were more comfortable & airy than the lobby, thankfully. Modern furnishings, comforable but not overly opulent or luxurious. Rooms have balconies, and ours overlooked the marina. Nice breezes & lots of coming through the doors. Hard beds.
Food - the meals we had were a mix. Some great, but some very poor and insufficient to fill us up, especially lunch.
Housekeeping - was not up to scratch. Shower was grubby. Our complimentary toiletries weren't restocked daily despite being depleted, as is the standard expectation in Australia (esp 5 star hotels!).
Service - there were some poor service tales being regaled amongst the group. Not everyone was pleased, including myself.
Other facilities - pool was lovely, but freezing. The ping pong table was a pleasant find, and was put to good use!
Overall, this wouldn't be my hotel of choice if staying in Cairns (try the Cairns International Hotel - location almost as good, and a bit more 'down to earth' in atmosphere.
Adequate but does not deserve Five Star rating
My wife and I stayed at this Hotel for five days in early September.
In our experience and view, this Hotel does not deserve a Five Star rating. Its location, right by the Marina, is excellent. Apart from that, there is not much else to recommend it as a Five Star Hotel.
We had dinner in the Hotel Restaurant once; we did not dine there again. We had daily breakfast but only because there was no convenient alternative. The Restaurant did not seem to have any Manager present, to ensure the staff carried out their jobs efficiently and promptly. If there was a Manager, we can only assume he/she was ineffectual. The staff seemed to be in no hurry to serve customers, fill up containers with food etc. There also did not seem to be adequate porter services. The only staff member we found to be efficient and helpful was the lady at the Travel Desk who arranged sightseeing tours for us in Cairns as well as our next stop, at Ayers Rock.
In our view, it would be unfair to other Five Star Hotels (including other Shangri-la Hotels we stayed at in the same tour: in Bangkok, Sydney and Singapore) to classify the Cairns Shangri-la in the same category when its standards and services are clearly of a much lower standard.
Excellent hotel - Shangri la standard
My partner and I have just stayed at this hotel for 2 nights as part of our honeymoon trip. As it is much smaller than other Shangri La hotels we were not sure what to expect but we were very pleased with the hotel.
We were able to check in at 7am with no difficulty or extra charge. The location of the hotel is perfect and within walking distance of everything in Cairns. We chose to stay in a Horizon club room which was ultra modern and spacious.
We did eat once in the restaurant and I can honestly say that my husband had the best lamb cutlets that we have ever been served.
If we were to moan about anything it would probably be the noise from the marina design when rain hits the steel roof. However, this was not a major issue for us and we were more than compensated by the unbelievably comfortable bed.
This is a great stopover to explore Cairns and the reef and you can get some great rates for rooms if you look on the internet.
Just above average
We used this hotel only as a jump off point. We stayed here one night after coming in from Adelaide and then again for two nights after returning from Lizard Island. Yes they have redone the hotel, however nothing special. If your thinking about staying only one night then I would say no problem, however if your thinking about more than that and its because your going to use it as a base to explore the area then that would be a huge mistake. As we live in San Diego going to Hawaii has always been an easy trip to make over the years. I remember a couple of years ago I was in Maui and thinking what ever happened to all those japanese tourist you use to see by the thousands???? Well I found them, there in Cairns. A little humor but this is the place they all stay. If you like being in a hotel with rows of tourist buses pulled up out front and wall to wall groups of Japanese tourist or any other tourist groups that are following the stick with a flag on top then this is the place for you. Try going to breakfast in the morning when out of no where 100 people show up at the same time, assault the buffett line and just as quick as they came in march off to the big boat that will take them and 400 more of their closets friends to the Great Barrier Reef. If nothing else it's pretty fun to watch.
This is not a lets go relax by the pool resort so if that is what your thinking then I hope the above was helpful. If you want see the area in and around Cairns, skip Cairns and go straight to Port Douglas. Night and Day difference. It only takes 30 minutes to get there, and is very central for exploring Karunda, Daintree, Cape Tribulation and so on. Also one other hint if your going to karunda and plan to take the scenic train one way and the sky rail the other don't. The train is only for tourist and to be honest you really don't see much. The sky rail is awesome and you will thank me later for telling you to take it both ways. Also at the end of the sky rail is the Aboriginal center which is fun for a couple of hours.
Shangri-La a Definite must!
Stayed at Shangri-La for a week during our honeymoon, it was fantastic! The hotel was beautiful, the room was class and the area perfect. Would definitely recommend anyone of any age to stay here, especially for the 5-7 happy hour where every drink is free!
Shagri La, a little slice of paridise
This hotel has a great location and the recent ultra modern renovation was terrific as it redesigned a former Raddison into the New Shagri La. The rooms are very comfortable and our ocean view was fantastic. Service was terrific and rooms were tended to quite efficiently. The shower was the best my husband every experienced with an unbelievable massager and our beds were so cozy and comfortable. Shopping at the Pier was also convenient as it is located inside the hotel and the dock to the reef trips is right next door. Breakfast was in a pretty spot but not as good as the Hilton next door.
Nice, but not perfect
the Shangri-la, formerly the Radisson is in a very good location. almost down-town, next to the Marina and very close to shop's etc. Included in our package there was airport-limo tranfer. At arriving in Cairns nobody was there and we too a cab. At check-in at the hotel (the receptionist spoke very bad english) we mentioned it an a manager on duty arrived. He told us that we didn't let them know our arrival/flight details ! that was not true at all ! I have sended the 2 times an e-mail concerning our flight-arrival. They confirmed it 2 times back to us !!!! Anyway, we had a very nice suite at the Horizon-Club floor. Only thing, the airconditioning was not working ! At least they gave another, more nice room. But windows from ceiling to floor. Everybody in the marina could see us in the room. So we had to have our curtains closed all day. Also this was on the sunny-side so we had to close our curtains anyway otherwise the a/c had to much work to do ! this room was also on the other side of the hotel which was a very far walk !
For our problems we received a very nice bottle of champagne ! The staff at the horizon-club is very friendly and very helpfull ! We were wondering that the girl who obviously had evening-shift, she had to carry luggage from arriving guests to their rooms, was waitressing the tables, had to take care of the buffet, did do roomservice and a lot more !
At this moment is was not the Shangri-la style/service that we are used from the Shangri-la at f.e. KL or Singapore. Some work to do !
Hotel style very modern, almost steril. Like yapanese/chinese style.
Shangri-La....Take me away!
Spent March 20th at the Shangri-La Cairns this hotel is THE hotel in Cairns and I will only stay here when I return.
The hotel used to be the Radisson and is in the very final stages of construction. They have modernized the hotel and it has an excellent "zen" feel to it. I heard no construction noise and wouldn't have known it if I had not read about it.
The location cannot be beat, on the harbour, two blocks from the center of downtown with many rooms facing out over water. Across the street is the Reef Casino and most everything in downtown Cairns is in walking distance.
I booked a Horizon Club room and it was straight out of a magazine! beautiful, sleek, huge terrace right on the harbour with two mini sofas and a table. Glass enclosed bathroom also overlooking the room and the water with a great soaking tub. It came with buffet breakfast also overlooking the harbour and free internet access, club lounge with various liquids throughout the day, evening snacks and a great staff. Anything I needed was provided, from great little known restaurants to general tourist information.
Besides this hotel having been beautifully renovated I cannot give the staff higher marks....Everything they promised was delivered and I started to feel very comfortable here after only one night!
Enjoy, Cairns is a great stopping off point for the GB reef.
The Shangri-La is still undergoing renovation from when it was a Radisson. They are adding more stores to the shopping center that is attached to the hotel. Only 2 stories high, so you do not feel that you are in a huge hotel. The rooms are more than adequate. The hotel is well located across from the reef where all the boats leave and only 2 blocks from the Esplande (the main street in Cairns).