Comes really close to Gilligans in terms of its all round goodness! The 10 bed dorm I had over the xmas period was MASSIVE (good room parties), although the 8 bed I had to get after was a lot smaller. It’s clean and tidy throughout, and everything pretty modern.
Security is a high priority here, key cards for all rooms, key card entry to hostel after 11pm, key cards for each floor (only accessible by lift)….which is all well and good but does kill the mingling side of things. Staff are knowlegable and really friendly. Free surfboard storage. Wireless on all floors – you have to pay and its not the best for photo uploading but its there none the less. Offers some good free activities (beach walk, city orientation…) which is great for meeting people and getting to know the area, plus the free beer at the end is always a bonus!
Over the Xmas period there was lots of additional stuff being arranged– harbour cruise, free BBQ, free drinks on xmas eve (well a $3000 bar tab!), free champers and cake on xmas morning, shuttle to sunburnt xmas ect ect ect
Sidebar downstairs is a good shout, lots of drinks offers, competitions and $6 meal of the day/$8 steak and chips meal deals (which are stodgingly good portion sizes!). Beware the security though…they’re a bit anal and pretty stubborn/rude.
The only major downside is the kitchen, of which there is only one, and a small one at that considering it services 500 people! Plus there is a distinct lack of pannage!
You also cant pre book unless its over xmas, which i advise you do asap (like book now for 2010 xmas!) because its always full. Rates are reasonable though.
Cleanliness – 5/5
Atmosphere – 5/5
Facilities – 4/5