Tangalooma Wild Dolphin Resort

Moreton Island, 4009, Australia
#1 of 1 hotel in Moreton Island
Pleasant (2.5 out of 5.0) 4 reviews
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Re: Tangalooma Wild Dolphin Resort - Bad Choice

Terrible (1.0 of 5.0 stars)
by written on December 29, 2011

I am a person that has travelled extensively across the world and I have stayed in quality 5 star establishments as well as roughed it in interesting places as a back packer. So when my partner and I saw this resort advertised on a well known holiday destination program we thought what a great place to chill out after a busy and hard working year. WRONG! We have two daughters one of which got sea sick as we crossed in the ferry, which isn't anyones fault but you certainly want to get into your room quickly, we were told when we arrived at 11.45am that we couldn't get into our room until between 2pm and 3pm so explained our situation, this was met with a scowl and a response of we will sms you when its ready. At 3pm no SMS had come at 3.05pm I decided to ask the check in desk if our room was ready, the response of "I should be able to find out for you in just 1 minute" 15 minutes later nothing. So enquired a 3rd time, this time getting a more positive response. As the checkin asisstant was processing me I simply took in the sight of chaos and couldn't believe what I was watching. I immediately asked for a feedback fom to the shock of the assistant. Not a good start. After getting into our room and getting our daughter sorted we decided to venture out for a walk to the shops. My jaw almost broke hitting the floor as i looked at the prices for the most basic of commodities. Tiny steaks at 7 bucks each, I couldn't believe it a pack of crisps 7.50 and to top it off they charge you an extra 15 percent on a bank or public holiday! Luckily we took some food with us. I would advise anyone visiting the resort to do this. I was hoping that day 2 would prove to be better how wrong I was. It started with a breakfast that could only be described as vile. The choices we fruit(pear and peaches) that looked definately out of a tin, manky old watermelon and pineapple. 4 different types of cereal and what was supposed to be a cooked breakfast. My daughter loves bacon but took one bite and her response was that it tasted as good as it looked, terrible. in fact it was so bad that we never ate anything other than toast for breakfast fro the rest of the stay. At night we were sourrounded by people who had nothing but complaints of the food, breakfast and dinner. Overrall this holiday boasts to be extremely family orientated but is probably the most overated place I have ever been to, the location is great and the owers should feel priviledged to have such a great location, however our room was never cleaned by staff, they need a proper chef, they need to overhaul their customer service on the check in desk. they need to lower their prices in the retail shop so people can buy things without leaving behind an arm and a leg. they need to reasess the "40 free" activities as guess what most of them aren't, they need to reasses the fact that people CANNOT bring over ther own alcohol. If the resort is unwilling to do this then people WILL either look elsewhere or Never recommend the resort.

Queenslands Worst Resort

Terrible (1.0 of 5.0 stars)
by written on June 13, 2011

For legal reasons I should also point out this is my own point of view based on our own personal experience, and perception of the resort. (Something that I believe from recent events is of little value to the Management of the resort)
Following a traumatic 3 months of in and out of hospital with our little miracle premature baby (born at 26weeks) I decided to treat my wife to a well-deserved R & R weekend at the Tangalooma Resort for the 20th to the 22nd May. We picked the resort as we didn't want to stray too far from the RBH and having been ex rescue services myself I knew we could get back from the island pretty quickly if required.
And looking on the web the resort sounded fairly exclusive.
I booked on line selecting the Deluxe Room and booking a range of activities for the weekend.
Unfortunately the weather turned bad which couldn't be helped so I decided to pay for the parents to come also (as a baby sitter) and booked the parents into a standard room so we could at least enjoy our first evening meal out together without the kids and possible the entertainment on the evening.
On arrival at the island we were met of the boat and taken for a slow guided tour along the beach front which was a little frustrating as we wanted to get checked in and feed the baby.
After 15 minutes I decided to leave the crowd and go straight to reception, only to find out we couldn't check in for another 2 hours.
I was told it said on the booking form which I suppose is my own fault as I assumed the check-in would be similar to other hotels as we nominated what time we were arriving.
When we eventually received the Key and had a look at our Deluxe Room I wasn't convinced is was actually up to the four star standard advertised and the bed certainly wasn't a queen or king as advertised but two singles pushed together with slightly different height mattresses which weren’t very comfortable at all.
When the parents arrived and checked in I couldn't believe it when I realised the standard room was identical to the deluxe room other than a slightly newer TV, a pair of disposable slippers and a dressing gown.

That first evening it rained heavy so we decided to take room service, our choice was limited to pizza, or spaghetti, we settled on pizza and a bottle of wine.
After 50 minutes the pizza came but no bottle of wine, another 35 minutes later our bottle of wine arrived.
Both my wife and I found the Pizza's to be totally disgusting and were clearly made from the cheapest thrown together products bonded together with cheese.
My daughter on the other hand ate a few slices.
After spending the night in the very uncomfortable pushed together single beds the following morning we awoke with my daughter having a bad stomach, clearly from the Pizza she ate, went to the breakfast buffet at 7:30am and were told to find ourselves a seat.
After walking round the dining area and looking at the numerous empty tables were unable to find one table that had been cleared or cleaned so I ended up taking the liberty of doing this myself with baby wipes while a staff member watched me from the corner of the room.
Having found a table we looked at the choice of breakfast which sadly did not look appealing at all.
In fact I would go as far to see the little hot food truck that parks at the end of our office had a better selection and clearly higher quality food than what out that day.
The fruit was brown, the bacon was a tangle of pig fat with no bacon actually on it, two sausages I selected were actually still a little raw in the centre the scrambled egg was grey and the baked beans represented two lost sailors bobbing in an ocean of tomato juice.
As for the continental selection this was limited to toast a few rubbery pancakes and a bit of brown fruit,
Having decided that it was probably best to skip breakfast and wait for the Cafe to open.
With a morning of pouring rain we decided to relax in the CAFE area, we were very disappointed to find only plastic garden chairs and wooden benches, not exactly the relaxing furniture you expect to find in a luxury resort.
The next challenge came around lunch time with a very limited food choice and equally as poor quality as the breakfast.
My three year old wouldn't even eat her microwaved hot dog which is a surprise as my three year old eats anything.
We spent the day doing a few of the free activities and took and participated in a couple of the organised boat tours, which weren’t too bad but didn’t seem to keep the interest of my little girl and weren't really appropriate for the weather.
Both my wife and I were looking forward to an evening without the kids and decided to eat at the resort beach front restaurant for a relaxing evening meal.
We upgraded to the special menu ordering Angus steak.
The starter soup wasn’t too bad in fact it was the nicest thing we had tasted on the island in over 24 hours. I was quite excited about the steak.
The steak came out, with less presentation than you would receive at sizzlers however I wasn't too concerned as some of the best steaks I have had come out looking like $10 bar meals.

Having taken the first bite of the steak I was horrified by rotten meat taste that filled my mouth and even more horrified when I moved the onion in the centre of the steak that was covering what could only be described as a cist or tumorous lump the size of a small tea cup in the centre of the steak. I immediately showed the waitress who was nearly sick herself at the sight of what was on my plate; she said she would take it back to the chef immediately.
10 minutes later she came back and asked me if I wanted the chef to cook me another one, by this time my wife had almost finished her dinner and I still felt physically sickened by what had been presented on my plate the waitress apologised and I a requested a refund for the meal.
I was rather amused when I was refunded only the additional cost of the steak, and quickly prompted the waitress that I wanted a full refund for my meal not just the steak.
We decided to settle on the bar with a couple of packets of potato chips, by far the best quality food on the resort.
The entertainment was almost hilarious and consisted of an aged DJ trying his best to control the dance floor including public shaming over the PA system of people who stepped on to the dance floor with a glass or bottle in there hand. It was a real nostalgic evening as I felt we had returned to one of my old school discos back in 1982.
After spending another evening in the uncomfortable pushed together single beds the following morning we decided it safer to skip breakfast as I couldn't stomach the poor quality buffet again and decided to grab something of the bar on the boat.

At checkout I was confronted with an additional charge on the bill for $100 for missing beach towels.
I explained to the staff that the cleaners took the towels on the Saturday morning only to receive the following reply "I don’t think so, the cleaners wouldn't take the beach towels" I insisted on my innocence and explained that were weren't that hard done by that we had to steal resort towels and she told me that she would have to speak to maid services. She rang maid services and they confirmed that one of the new team members had actually accidentally taken the beach towels from our room and so the staff member advised that she would indeed deduct the cost from my bill.
Thank you! For a moment there I thought I may be wrong and actually a towel thief because the receptionist said so.
Wow, not even an apology for the embarrassment caused in front of the other guests.
All in all I would have to say that it was by far the most disappointing holiday I have ever been on and I could have spent the $2,230 on somewhere really nice.
I have since raised the issue with management at the resort which resulted in an email war between myself and the manager, who instead of showing a little understanding in our disappointment especially considering the circumstances tried his hardest to further insult me and accuse me of blackmail when I advised them that I intended to publicly share my experience and further attempted to convince me that I was being un reasonable.
Not the kind of customer service I would expect from a resort like this however we can only learn from our experience’s (Sentiment that I don’t believe the Management of the resort share).

Openseas's Profile Photo

Fabulous weekend getaway.

Best (5.0 of 5.0 stars)
by written on September 7, 2007

The resort is located on the waterfront and approx 2 minute walk from the ferry wharf

The resort is divided into various segments and named, there seemed to be a range of different accommodation you could choose from hotel standard rooms to units and family apartments and villas.

Our room D14 was called the driftwood unit located in the Adventure’s lodges section. The unit was a large spacious one-bedroom apartment, which could easily sleep six. Our open planned lounge room consisted of two single beds, and one fold out divan, large TV, coffee table, dining table and chairs. The kitchen consisted of sizeable fridge with no mini contents, tea and coffee facilities, cutlery and crockery. Off the lounge, room was a small veranda with table and two chairs; this area we utilized for taking in the water views and watching the glorious sunsets. (D15 looked directly onto the water)

The resort is not a five star but more like a 3.5 star but it is extremely comfortable offering excellent facilities and tours. There is one main swimming pool with a spa attached, which the children seem to enjoy. Tennis courts, squash courts, snorkelling gear, tinnies, catamarans, fishing rods can be hired at the resort, and the main attraction hand feeding the dolphins.

This has to be pre booked between 1pm-5pm, the feeding starts at 7.00pm. We found this to be rather touristy, as you had to line up with one small fish in hand whilst someone takes your photo. My suggestion is to take a seat on the pier; you do get a better view of the dolphins especially when they come into shore.

Overall, we had a great weekend and enjoyed exploring the island and our unit, although not modern or trendy, it was very comfortable. I have given this resort a 4 star rating not for the rooms or the resort; but for the overall experience of Moreton Island.

Unique Quality: There are ample restaurants to dine at from café’s to restaurant dining, all offering standard reasonable food. The Steak house restaurant is the best if you happen to enjoy a good steak, as they are generously proportioned and frankly enormous.The restaurants need to be seriously updated, as they are still in the 60's time wrap.

Just a few tips : When checking in ask to hire your beach towels, as your unit could be miles away from the reception and you can certainly do your daily exercise walking to and fro from tour desk or reception.

Directions: A transfer shuttle bus operates from the CBD otherwise taxis are available. On the return launch, an announcement is made regarding booking a taxi to take you back to CBD from Holt Wharf. (15 minute taxi ride) or 10 minutes from the airport

sorcieus's Profile Photo

Great View, Teribble Service

Bad (2.0 of 5.0 stars)
by written on December 31, 2005

Tangalooma - which means where the fishes meet/gather - is the only resort hotel on moreton island.
It has a beatiful view, but the service was teribble!
Chamber maid did not come to make the room until late in the afternoon, but on the check out day, they were knocking on my door at the crack of dawn (for it was the busy season, so they need to turn over the room quick).
The staff who took order at the Beach Cafe sneeze & clean his nose and did not clean his hands/cover his mouth.
All tours that I booked did not depart between 10-20 minutes from its scheduled time. All 4 of them.

The only good thing about this resort is the view.

Unique Quality: Great View. Beautiful Island. Wild dolphins feeding experience.

Nearby Tangalooma Wild Dolphin Resort

Tangalooma Wild Dolphin Resort

We've found that other people looking for this hotel also know it by these names:

  • Dolphin Resort Tangalooma Wild
  • Tangalooma Island Hotel
  • Hotel Tangalooma Island
  • Tangalooma Beachcomber / Driftwood Hotel Moreton Island

Address: Moreton Island, 4009, Australia

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Amenities at Tangalooma Wild Dolphin Resort

  • Restaurant
  • Suites
  • Swimming Pool
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Bar / Lounge
  • Kitchenette

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