We enjoyed 5 nights here recently, sharing a Balinese style villa complex with family. The rooms, living area and external areas were all well designed, maintained and comfortable. Because of the ongoing COVID restrictions we were only able to enjoy the communal dining area at breakfast time, but the quality of the food in that regard was good. There were plenty of activity options available, including tennis and a gym. The main pool area was spacious, but with villas having their own mini pool and day bed you are able to while away the day in privacy and in leisure. The one small drawback was probably the villa BBQ - similar to those in public parks. They never get hot enough! Certainly not enough to mean we won’t stay again.
Look. As a couple, this place is most likely out of budget for a lot of people. But since we split this cost 5 ways, it was doable and worth every cent. We stayed in villa 72. We booked a 3 bedroom villa with a private pool. It was absolutely stunning. The kitchen was fully equipped, great living area and each bedroom had its own ensuite. With 5 girls, the more bathrooms the better!! The main bedroom was incredible, and so was the second. The room I stayed in though had two single beds which were more like rocking horses. The mattress almost fell off each night and it was uncomfortable. But I was so tired at the end of each day I didn't bother even mentioning it.
The main pool area was also incredible, and the afternoon spritz cocktail deal was a nice touch. I went to the gym each morning too, it was small but new and fine for when holidaying. The included breakfast was fantastic despite some other reviews - I had the muesli most mornings and was full til lunch.
Love love loved - and will absolutely try to go back!
Stunning detail to the landscape and villas. So zen. Our direction faced the sunset over the mountains. It was just 2 of us, so they just locked off the extra bedrooms but we still had full size everything else and it felt like we had our own paradise ready for move-in forever.
We unfortunately couldn't get enough nights here and moved on to the kids-everywhere Pullman Port Douglas for our remaining nights. Which was fine for families, but wish we could have stayed at Niramaya the whole time. So much classier and more romantic!! (Though Niramaya is also a nice size to accommodate families/groups, just easily adjustable to be romantic too). Loved the private plunge pool - but it is deep! I'm 5 feet tall and could not touch the bottom. I wish the waterfall in the pool would stay on until closer to 10pm, not end by 5pm. The only other recommendation is bath salts for the amazing bath tub. There was nothing.
We did not have a problem with lizards in the villas, just close the doors and turn on the AC, dummy.
The gym was good. Small but with windows to lovely landscaping and just enough equipment options.
Other reviews gave me the impression we we were going to starve here if we didn't plan to cook ourselves. Without a car I was so worried I needed groceries delivered. Not the case! The restaurant was open morning and night (unsure about lunch) and was really lovely atmosphere with delicious options and view of the gorgeous common pool. We had dinner on the "tapas bar" side, which was just less enclosed that the full restaurant and less expensive, yet all is still outside and had plenty to eat and lovely all around. We ate at the restaurant for breakfast and dinner every day, not seeing anything better each time in town, especially since we weren't single trying to mingle. Sure, if you want to shop/grill/cook at your villa, you can do that too! Also there are 2 little casual eat cafes and a liquor store with tiny market a 5 min walk across the road toward the beach access. The little fish and chips place was delicious - super casual order at the counter. And a full grocery and plenty of all other kinds shopping in town, accessible from the shuttle if you don't have a car.
Looking for beach front walkout room in PD? I don't think you'll find it. Too dangerous with occasional crocks on the beaches. Instead, I think all(?) the resorts (like this one) are just a short walk from the beach and at least this one is gated for safety. You walk to the beach in daylight, with attentiveness.
It is next to (walkable) to one of the Wildlife Habitat's, but don't go to that one. It is run down and terribly depressing. They are probably waiting to sell it to a new resort build. Go further to Hartley's.
We were fine without a car. All the excursions offer hotel pickup/drop-off options. And to get to town/harbor (same area 5 min drive away) for reef boats, there are 2 or 3 companies that offer little looping vans for $5 per ride or bulk discount passes. They pick up at your hotel when you call them, drop off/pick up at 2 key spots in the tiny town, and then drop off at each resort as requested on the way back. All the resorts seem to be down the same direction one after the next. Niramaya is at the far end where the newest builds are, but not a problem with the shuttle. It seems very new!
We were in QLD to Scuba, and in exactly the right place. There may be more options for snorkel down the coast, but Port Douglas is the closest to the best GBR diving. We enjoyed having only a short 5-10 min ride to/from the harbour when we were tired after a long day of it, rather than 45-min for those from Palm Cove and over an hour for those coming from Cairns. There are many boat options, and day trips all appeared to host both divers and snorkelers unless you go for a live-aboard from what I was told.
We also loved the Daintree Discovery Tour day. A tour for that is highly recommend- so much information about the you would miss without.
Starting with the positives the villa was huge and really fantastic. We were just 2 people and had 3 bedrooms, kitchen, dining room, laundry, private pool, garage, etc. We weren't familiar with this style of lodging as we usually stay at resorts so the sheer size of the accommodation was spectacular and massive- would be better for a big family or a large group to really take advantage of that. The grounds and pool are pretty.
The downside is that there is hardly anything nearby so our only food option was the restaurant. We were not notified at check in that to eat at the pool we would need money or a credit card. The options for poolside snacks were way too expensive and gourmet. We had a tough experience at breakfast too where we were told that breakfast is included in our rate but actually that only includes a very small section of the menu and anything else you want is additional money (which again, can't be charged to the room because it's independent). We have been to many hotels around the world with restaurants inside them owned by someone else but you could still charge to your room. Having to walk around with cash or credit cards in case you might get hungry seems annoying. This should be discussed upfront at checkin--- "do you want to set up a tab for food?"
It would be nice if there were cheaper more casual dining options. Also the pool was freezing- way too cold to swim which was sad because it was so pretty. The gym was decent though with 2 modern treadmills.
Overall would recommend going to this place if you plan to use the kitchen and bring a bunch of groceries with you so you never have to leave your beautiful villa. Ideal for families or large groups.
I almost feel as though I don't need to write a review as ‘jmcastings’ has said it all for me. However, I think we may have been rather lucky, sorry, as our Villa (#63) was simply breath taking in every possible way and everything was of a quality you would expect from a 5 Star rated villa with minimal amount of wear and tear. (The only things missing were bathrobes (handy for the spa) and one or two sun loungers would have been a nice touch.) As an aside this has to be one of the most frustrating things travelling to Australia that every unit anywhere you go seems to be privately owned and up the owner to maintain/decorate etc so it is always the luck of the draw when you arrive.
I think to be honest from reading past reviews, Niramaya probably suffers from being wrongly selected for their holiday by some clients who either did not research the property enough for their needs or who were given bad advice by their travel agent.
We travelled as a family with 2 teenagers aged 18 and 15. (The villas are not suitable for young children and I am actually surprised they are even allowed.) We were all shattered and wanted somewhere to go on holiday where we could relax in peace and quiet without the distraction of young children all around us being school holidays. Niramaya Villas are intensely private and whilst you can have breakfast in their restaurant and use the main pool, tennis court, gym and spa we treated it more as a private home to base ourselves in for exploring the area.
On that subject I would say having a car is a definite bonus - you even have your own garage with internal entry as part of the villa. You also have a large a heated plunge pool which was immaculately clean with beautiful views out over the gardens and lakes with wonderful birdlife.
My only gripe, and the reason I would rate 4.5 stars is that the beds were not the most comfy we have slept in. They are pretty firm and quite low to the ground so quite hard to get in and out of if, like me, you have a bad back! There is also a lot of bird/geese noise from about 3.00am onwards (ended up using ear plugs) which is somewhat ironic as that is also one of the main pluses of Niramaya as we did a few walks around the gardens spotting the different varieties. We did get used to the noise though just in time to leave!
Just to comment on other points raised by reviewers, our breakfast experience was excellent. Included in the room rate is a juice, tea or coffee of any kind and a selection of breakfast dishes made to order so you do have to wait a little while they are cooked but not too long and the breakfast area is lovely.
Staff and service overall was excellent. Yes, we did have to wait a while at reception to check in for someone to arrive but when the lady did she took us to our villa and spent ample time with us showing us around and answering any questions. They very efficiently arranged a barrier reef trip for us which picked us up promptly from Niramaya the next morning (and returned us) and any requests we had were never a bother. The breakfast staff were all lovely too. (Wi-fi was a bit frustrating to be honest – didn’t bother me but if it’s a major issue for you……well, your call).
Overall we had a most enjoyable stay - the highlight being the standard of the villa itself and the location. If you don’t mind a firm bed and you’re not expecting a full out resort, just book it. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.