I visited in October which is at the very end of the tourist season. The hotel was practically deserted on some days then it filled with overnight tour groups on others. The location is quite good – within walking distance of most of the central city and next to the Bank of China which changes travellers cheques at the official rate. The building is low rise and it is set in gardens.
Rooms are fairly basic but are adequate. The bathroom had a bath with shower, toilet and handbasin. All worked most of the time and hot water was available on all but one occasion. The room got very cold at night but there were adequate blankets. The cleaning service was reliable. Hot drinking water for jasmine tea was provided twice a day.
Reception was fairly efficient despite some problems with English. The coffee shop was open all day despite there never being more than three people sitting there. The shopping centre was open during the busy morning and evening periods when tour guests were around. Prices here, despite a 50%off sale, were very high. The hotel advertises it has four restaurants but only one was open most days. I didn’t ever eat there. The laundry service was fine.
The hotel also provides a business centre, beauty salon, massage, fitness centre and meeting rooms, however, I didn’t ever see these being used. In the height of the tourist season it is likely to be different.
Townsville, Queensland, Australia
December 4, 2001
From journal The fascinating unknown