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“Read the 'Fine Print'”
Review of The Berkeley River

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The Berkeley River
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 19 August 2017

I generally don't complain, but I really felt it necessary to say something this time.

We booked this holiday with Luxury Escapes and paid for everything up front. Nearly 10 weeks later we receive an email requesting the 'Peak' surcharge. The surcharge is an extra $400 per night, so an extra $2K for us. Not a pleasant surprise at all. This should have been brought to our attention at the time of booking, or at the very least, when we were settling our bill on site. Not 10 weeks later. Very clandestine.
I will agree with other reports that the catering needs attention. If you have dietaries, go prepared. If you are coeliac beware.
I also agree with the flights being better organised so you manage to enjoy the last day instead of being shuffled onto the flight to Darwin at 8am.
Each Villa is well appointed, although no fridge or mini-bar. And don't expect a hot shower if you go in winter - brisk - and it's outdoors.
Couldn't lie by or swim in the pool as it was too windy and cool.
But surprisingly this is their 'peak' time.
There was no spa or massage facility, which was also a surprise given this was meant to be a 'Luxury' escape.
Unbelievably splendid and remote location, and absolutely has the potential to be a sensational eco-holiday but, I'm sorry to say, fell short.

  • Stayed: June 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank geronimo992017
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (128)
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12 - 16 of 128 reviews

Reviewed 1 August 2017

This is not the place to go if you are after a pristine resort, massages and lazing by the pool but its perfect for the more adventurous that loves fishing, exploring, remoteness and experiences.. it was amazing. We bought a package 4N 3D package on Luxury Escapes which was a good length of time to do a range of excursions. We thought it was excellent value given it included all excursions (except helicopter flights), food, wine and return flights ex Darwin. The flight in is a ~16 seater twin engine with beautiful views of the coastline. The resort is on a peninsula facing the ocean and a river that leads into the gorges. In June the pool was rather cold, but that was not an issue for a pool lover as there were excellent scheduled activities to do every day. After the intro brief, you can put you name down for scheduled activities such as 1/2 day fishing trip (morning and afternoon), full day gorge tour, a half day hiking trip to the aboriginal rock art, afternoon beach tours etc. Every trip we did was perfectly catered for with food, refreshments and excellent service. We went in June and Barrra were hard to come by, but there was plenty of other fish to catch and a very beautiful place to be on the water. The breakfast was of a good standard with a small smorgasbord and also omelettes or bacon egg mushrooms etc made to order, lunches were well catered for whilst on the tours (which we did every day) and dinner was excellent with 5 courses including mains such as eye fillet, rack of lamb, salmon. I am a big eater and never went hungry. Basic mixed drinks (such as gin and tonic, bourbon and coke) were made to order and the inclusive wine selection was lovely with a range from the Margaret River and Victoria region. Nothing was ever too much trouble for the staff, and since my husband wanted even more fishing, they organised a buggy drop off pick up and all the gear so he could fish in the river (he kept a keen lookout for crocs...there are lots).

We loved this place, the location, the inclusions and the staff (thanks everyone!!) were amazing which made for a wonderful holiday. We can't wait to visit again!

  • Stayed: June 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank Tropicstraveller_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2017 via mobile

It is going to be difficult to find a more beautiful, isolated and remote location but.....
We were there on a Luxury Escapes deal and as such it was good value, but far from it if paying the full retail price plus return airfare. I would not classify this resort as 5 star luxury for the following reasons :
1- The meals, as mentioned in a number of reviews were ordinary to average with the main course usually small.
2- There is no concrete or sealed footpath to any of the villas so your shoes/feet would be covered in red dirt, this was a problem for those who got dressed up for dinner
3- lighting to your villa was poor which had me stumbling around in the dark and one night tripping over while one chap walked into a tree. There is a torch but if your partner takes that to bed early then you have a problem.
4- there is no phone or intercom service in your room so to get room service you have to trudge all the way to the bar/ restaurant.
5- some villas are quite a distance from the bar/ restaurant and up a hill which it is quite a hike for the more elderly or unfit especially in the heat of the day....and a problem if seeking room service.
6- the villas, though well appointed, need an awning on the front deck to block out the direct, bright, hot afternoon sun.
7- if you are lucky enough to catch a edible fish it won't get cooked for you, it is given to the staff.
But we really enjoyed our stay as the fishing guides worked hard to put you onto fish, the activities are excellent and well organised and the staff very friendly, cheerful and can be fun.

Stayed: July 2017, travelled as a couple
1  Thank olgazza55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 July 2017

We spent 3 nights & 2 days here in May. Were stunned by the location & remoteness & felt very priveledged to be able to stay in this unique spot.
2 days is certainly not long enough to participate in all the activities on offer, nor to have time to just "be" & appreciate the stillness & beauty that is Berkeley Lodge.
Our only big disappointment was the dinners. The advertisement states "gourmet" meals, but the meals we had very very ordinary & no sign of the fish that we had caught.
The staff were wonderful & always helpful.
The accommodation is superb & the outdoor bathroom a winner.

Room Tip: No 1 villa has views of the ocean & the river mouth, but is a bit noisy- further away from the m...
  • Stayed: May 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Lynn C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 July 2017 via mobile

Hi.. we stayed here for four days in July.
The Accomodation is simple but excellent and well maintained.
The activities were great.. we did them all...of special mention was the Helicopter charter (extra cost) and a half day fishing both of which were superb.
The staff were friendly and Jackie did a great job organising the outdoor experiences.
However... the food was generally poor.. breakfast was haphazard with small dishes of fruit ect which ran out, lunch boxes had tough bread rolls I would think were prepared the night before and the dinners very average ..
The chef was not prepared to cook fish caught that day as suggested by a promotional article on the website.. which would have good rather than frozen Barramundi which was poorly cooked.
To some extent the Dinners were drowned in good quality wine which was let down by the food.
I got the impression that the new owners were moving the resort to a bulk deal tourist venue.. which would be a pity.. it is a better resort than that and would have got a much higher mark but for the food.

Stayed: July 2017, travelled as a couple
4  Thank 993rs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Berkeley River

Address: Berkeley River, Kununurra, Western Australia 6740, Australia
Region: Australia > Western Australia > Kimberley Region > Kununurra
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 17 Speciality Lodging in Kununurra
Price Range: €929 - €1,324 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Berkeley River 4*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In one of the last true wilderness areas on earth, between Timor Sea sunrises and Berkeley River sunsets, the ultimate Kimberley adventure and refined indulgence awaits. Only accessible by air, getting to the Berkeley is half the adventure. Leave modern life far behind and relax into the rhythms of nature in your luxurious villa floating atop the coastal dunes. Be one of the privileged few to set eyes upon breathtaking wilderness landscapes by river cruise or helicopter flight. ... more   less 
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