4.5
Very Good 972 Reviews
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This Hotel meets our standards
Our editors have been here and it has met our standards

What We Love

  • Balmy evenings dining al fresco while watching the moon rise over the Coral Sea
  • The award-winning Li’Tya spa, which uses techniques based on ancient Aboriginal traditions
  • Mingling with fellow guests over free punch and canapés in the Brigadier’s Bar and Lounge

What To Know

  • The Reef House is just 20 minutes’ drive from Cairns International Airport
  • Tours of the Great Barrier Reef operate from Cairns to the south and Port Douglas (40 minutes to the north)
  • Marine stinger (jellyfish) season occurs in Far North Queensland from November to May/June. Palm Cove Beach has a netted area for safe swimming

Amenities

  •  Bar
  •  Free WiFi
  •  Handicap-accessible
  •  Parking On Site
  •  Pool
  •  Restaurant
  •  Spa
Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.
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Overview

Tropical home away from home with an award-winning spa, pretty pool and topnotch eats a short drive from the Great Barrier Reef

The Look

Across the road from a glorious mile-long strip of sand, amethyst-blue sea and four small islands dotting the horizon, towering centuries-old melaleuca gum trees stand guard at the entrance to this colonial-style hotel. Grand white colonnades frame the long timber deck leading to reception, and central to the resort is a 25-meter freshwater pool (there’s also a 20-meter saltwater pool), set amid lush gardens, swaying palm trees and blazing bougainvilleas. Daily at sunset the corridors are lit with dozens of candles as guests gather to share stories of their day’s adventures.

Bed and Bath

From the cool, terracotta-tiled floors and white plantation shutters to the rattan furniture and mosquito nets over the beds, everything about The Reef House says ‘tropics’. The rooms are large and airy, all feature king-sized beds with crisp white linen and a burst of color via tasteful throws and cushions, air-conditioning, ceiling fans, free WiFi and in-house movies. Superior Balcony Room guests can start the romance bubbling along in a couples’ spa bath on their own private and expansive verandah. For those whose bubbly days are largely behind them, family suites are also available.

Beyond

The Reef House Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and has more than enough variety to sustain a lengthy visit. The evening menu changes according to the season and features a five-course degustation menu with wine pairings. From the à la carte menu, the crispy-skin wild-caught barramundi is worth the trip alone. The Brigadier’s Bar and Lounge operates on an honor system (in the spirit of an army officers’ mess) and offers a library of books, board games and DVDs. There’s also the option of flopping on a comfy deckchair and dining poolside. In Li’Tya Spa, uniquely Australian treatments are carried out in restful yet state-of-the-art rooms. Don’t miss the Mala Mayi (90-minute mud wrap and full-body massage) – when it’s over you’ll feel as though you’re walking on air.

In the Area

With relaxation taken care of at The Reef House, Palm Cove Village and the surrounding area is abuzz with activities. From snorkelling to scuba diving to golf to horse trekking to white-water rafting to the latest water craze, jet-ski flyboarding, you can get as big or small an adrenalin rush as you desire. Once you’ve worn yourself out, the village has a generous serve of bars, cafes and restaurants, plus the typical tourist boutiques and souvenirs shops.

How to Get There

The Reef House Palm Cove MGallery by Sofitel
99 Williams Esplanade
Palm Cove, 4879 Australia

Reviews

4.5 Very Good 972 Reviews
Unhappy stay
Reviewed 2 days ago

I was disappointed with our stay and think maybe as the rooms vary this makes a difference to the the experience you have. It was the rainy season and to make matters worse, there were leaks within the building. Passageways had pools of water, stairs and stair wells had puddles as well as drips in the dining room.
Our first room was dull and the bathroom was just white and second rate.
We changed rooms and our second one was better. But we cut our stay short. We found Manuela (front desk) was helpful) and thank her for that.

Friendly
Reviewed 3 days ago

I stayed here for four nights and to summarize the experience I would say that the restaurant serves great quality food at dinner, the 5:00pm free cocktail social is such a good idea (you can really get to know people), the staff is very helpful and the location is very peaceful. You will get really great pictures at dusk and dawn too. This is a laid back place and I enjoyed my time there.

Loved our stay at The Reef House
Reviewed 4 days ago

We stayed 5 nights in January this year and thoroughly enjoyed our stay. Rooms are very spacious and outdoor balcony adds considerably. Great idea to be able to have that area for boiling the kettle, microwave and a sink, refrigerator etc . Staff throughout hotel were fantastic. Our included breakfast was more than adequate, the Mungalli yoghurt a standout. Some opted to order a cooked breakfast a la carte and that certainly looked to be a high standard. We also ate at lunch and dinner fro some meals and were well satisfied. Our only comment would be that dinner options are limited to gourmet dining when we felt just something lighter and/or more casual was all we wanted. But this seems generally to be true of accor properties across the board. We would certainly stay again. It's a great location right in middle of Palm Cove esplanade. As accor members wifi comes with the booking and was excellent.

A disappointing stay
Reviewed 6 days ago

This was meant to be a much anticipated Barrier Reef holiday. The hotel is not geared to cope with the heavy rain that is natural to Cairns. There were leaks and puddles inside the hotel. After two days, we decided to move elsewhere for the remaining four days of our holiday.

Beautiful getaway with a group of girlfriends
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Went here with a group of girlfriends in late October 2018. The staff made us feel so welcome and spoilt. We did water aerobics with Geraldine who was absolutely fantastic! It was a wonderful holiday and we will be returning in 2019. It was a perfect location and we have never encountered staff as friendly! Thank you for a great week - Jane, H