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Reviewed 1 July 2018

If you enjoy a hotel stay where you are left feeling undervalued and taken for granted, Hilton Surfers Paradise is ideal.

Our room ($500 per night, thank you very much) reminded me of student lodgings. Absolutely no effort had been made to make it inviting. There were no pictures on the walls and the minibar was empty except for long life milk. Great. Remember to bring your own furniture as all there was in our room (other than the bed) was a desk. Oh, and a yellow vinyl ottoman?? So when our room service arrived (delicious actually) on a tray we could either eat it sitting on the floor or on the bed. Zero thought for the customer. “Let’s save some money/make more money and remove the table and chairs, armchairs etc from our rooms so when our guests order room service we make it as uncomfortable as possible for them to eat it.”

There are no bedside lights. So you have to leave the overhead light on which gives the room the ambience of a multi storey car park. There are several light switches that appear to turn nothing on. The bedside tables are chipped and knackered.

The windows are dirty and there is dust on some surfaces. Walls are marked, carpets stained and the desk is chipped. There have been repairs made to the balcony using cement that is a different colour to the surrounding tiles. Untidy.

Breakfast is of the sweaty bain marie variety. That’s ok but you have to queue up to use the coffee machine and the mugs provided are way too big. It might be better for the customer if coffee orders are taken at table. But hey, who cares? It’s not about the customer. Again all the windows are filthy, including along the hallway to the restaurant.

We had to check out a day early on a planned 2 night stay, not the hotel’s fault, but hardly a disappointment. At check out I was asked if I realised I was checking out early. Yes, I said. Without asking for one, I was told that I wouldn’t be getting a refund. No one bothered to ask WHY I was checking out early, or if I had enjoyed my stay. They were too eager to resell our room to another punter.

Hilton are worldwide renowned for their customer service systems. They have totally broken down at the Hilton Surfers Paradise. If it wasn’t for the fact that staff looked stressed, bored or unhappy (except for the charming restaurant supervisor), I’d say they were running this property for their own pleasure. They certainly aren’t doing it for their guests’.

Please, no automated apologies. Or a chatbot that sends me platitudes after I respond with a 1 out of 10 rating. It means nothing. Instead energise yourselves to improve. On this showing, your opportunities are limitless.

Stayed: June 2018, travelled as a couple
1  Thank blah1025
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hilton S, General Manager at Hilton Surfers Paradise, responded to this reviewResponded 3 July 2018

Dear blah1025,

Thank you very much for sharing the experience of your stay with us at Hilton Surfers Paradise.

I would like to personally apologise that we were not able to provide you with the quality services you deserve. This is uncharacteristic of our hotel and we are always looking for ways to improve our customer experience. Your satisfaction is very important to us and we try hard to make sure all of our guests have a rewarding stay. Please be assured your feedback will certainly be used to make improvements.

Thank you for your feedback once again blah1025 and I hope you will consider staying with us again on your future travels to Surfers Paradise.

Kind Regards,

Fiona Pryde
General manager
Hilton Surfers Paradise

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 June 2018

Beware of misleading room view descriptions, and beware if you make an HHonors Reward Booking they are treated as 'second class' by the management team. Also try discount websites (LuxuryEscapes, SecretEscapes, Groupon, Trivago, etc) as often have cheap deals there.

Standard "guest" rooms are described as having "Stunning views of Surfers Paradise beach or the Gold Coast hinterland". They do NOT - they have views of the "city" with very distant slithers of the hinterland (very minor). Also no mini bar as described. My room had view of the Condom Shop and Aircon Units. It was a "city" view - so why not just call it that?

Booked a standard twin share guest room here on a reward reservation for 1 night. Ended up in room 901 which wasn't one of their usual room layouts with a smaller window which overlooked aircon units and not the best side of Surfers streets.

Obviously not their best room within the standard category. That's fine, only there for 1 night but we had another reward reservation the following week for more nights, and I wanted to make sure I didn't get their worst room again (as I know they have nicer rooms within the same category having stayed many times).

So, called down to ask what I needed to ask for next time for a nicer room allocation (not an upgrade - just a nicer allocation in same category).

What should have been a simple conversation ended up as a ridiculously complex complaint made worst at every stage by the people communicating, trying to tell untruths and worst.

The first lady told me the twin room I was in was actually one of the best they had.

This was simply untrue. When challenged and having informed her I'd stayed many times in the same category she continued to try that line.

Why not just say "Yes, we do have nicer rooms but they weren't available". Instead she tried to insist black was white.

It turned a polite request into a complaint.

I questioned it further as was annoyed she was telling untruths, and then was told "Well, obviously its a free room, if someone has paid we prioritise...". She stopped talking realising what she'd said.

First of all, the room is not FREE - I have paid over $200,000 (or more) in rooms over the years to get the points I have. It is a REWARD booking PAID FOR with POINTS I've EARNED. Yes, EARNED.

To call it "free" shows a total disrespect for Honors members and the value they have to the company. I was a diamond guest for many years with over 1 million points, I've only dropped back to Silver as I've started spending the points!

Secondly, she essentially admitted reward bookings are treated as 'second class' when allocating rooms to 'paid' bookings.

Really? Seriously. Not good business.

This is again disgusting - so someone who has paid $149 on a discount website for 1 night gets a better room than a loyal Honors member who has spend hundreds of thousands over the years.

Again, awful.

What's worse - she actually said it.

They clearly see them as 'free' rooms. They are NOT FREE and should be treated equally (and I would argue prioritised) over regular 'paid' bookings.

She realised what she'd said so I then got passed to a duty manager "Ricardo" who made it worse.

First of all, he again tried to say the room I had was a nice one by saying that different guests have different preferences. I'd be interested in finding the guest who enjoys looking at the Condom shop and the aircon units. But maybe that's someones things.

I own resorts, I get it. There are good and bad rooms in the same category.

Worst thing to do is try and 'spin it'. I'd already said I was happy to stay in the room, but I just wanted to ensure I didn't get it on the next stay.

A simple request - I was even fine to stay in this bad room with the WRONG bed allocation.

I felt I was doing him a favour by not insisting houskeeping change the bed or change the room.

So, he should have said "Yeah fair enough, its not our best room, I'll try and allocate you a nice room next time".

It could have ended there.

Instead he argued it was a good room.

He then told me the room description I read to him (stunning hinterland or ocean...) was for a different room type. I explained I'd screen shotted it.

He continued to disagree - seriously, I have a screen shot. I even offered to email it - he declined.

Seriously, why argue black is white when a client has it in front of them.

Why argue? I was happy in the room - again, just trying to help and avoid the same situation next time.

I think the issue here was that both staff assumed I was trying to get an upgrade and as such were trying the 'You got what you paid for' and "holding the line". They assumed I was after something for nothing - rather than assuming I may have a genuine concern.

I get that, they must get it a lot especially with ocean views - but that wasn't the case here. I even explained I own a beach front property in Broadbeach - I can do without the views for 1 night. I couldn't care about the view.

I was not after an upgrade.

Instead, I was just trying to say they'd allocated their worst room for the 1 night stay and could I ensure a better allocation on my next stay(within the category I'd paid for).

But they handled it so badly.

It was 100% clear (as someone who has stayed in the hotel many times) that:

- I had a bad allocation (it happens, no big deal)
- I just wanted a note added to the next booking to avoid it next time (reasonable, right?)
- They obviously give reward bookings the worst rooms (awful)
- The room descriptions on the App are inaccurate (don't argue when someone is reading it in front of you)

Hilton have suffered badly from such issues in the past with complaint resolution and have a "Make it right" campaign where they try to iron out issues before they get to reviews. It seems this initiative hasn't reached Surfers Paradise yet.

This has never been the best Hilton as they have a different style to a more traditional Hilton but staff have always been fantastic.

Seems things have changed.

A silly minor issue, which started as a bed make up error and one time poor room allocation ended up in a situation where they alienated a loyal honors member who is local to the property and controls significant commerical hotel spend and local event budgets.

How silly.

Let's hope my next stay on 4 July is better.

Room Tip: Beware standard guest room view descriptions as they don't have hinterland or ocean views as described - they are 'city view'
  • Stayed: June 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank David R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 June 2018 via mobile

the most dissapointing hilton branch in the world, no class, very boring place, no bathroom ameneties, need to call them to bring us toothbrush and takes like 30mins to bring to our room. the robes and slippers has no logo of the hilton, just like they bought from a cheap dollar store.

and was also looking forward for a relax spa, but they close for 2 days, so we havr to look for other spa to relax ourselves...

one good thing about this place is the warm greeting of the waitress/hostess catherine during our breakfast, always ask the guest hows their day and always smile, i would defintley come back but not for the so called 5 star hilton hotel. but the staff that tries to uplift the hilton's name.

Stayed: June 2018, travelled with friends
3  Thank Nixon O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hilton S, General Manager at Hilton Surfers Paradise, responded to this reviewResponded 27 June 2018

Dear Nixon O,

Thank you very much for sharing the experience of your recent stay at Hilton Surfers Paradise.
I would like to personally apologise that we were not able to provide you with the quality services you deserve. This is uncharacteristic of our hotel and we are always looking for ways to improve our customer experience. Your satisfaction is very important to us and we try hard to make sure all of our guests have a rewarding stay.
Thank you for your feedback once again Nixon O and I hope you will consider staying with us again on your future travels to Surfers Paradise.

Kind Regards,

Fiona Pryde
General Manager
Hilton Surfers Paradise

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2018

Excellent location and great service. Concierge services, Check-in and Check-out was excellent. Breakfast was good.

The suites are very well appointed and spacious. Great for families on vacation.All amenities are provided in the suites. House keeping was excellent.

Overall fantastic experience.

  • Stayed: June 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Sudip B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hilton S, General Manager at Hilton Surfers Paradise, responded to this reviewResponded 26 June 2018

Dear Sudip B,

Thank you for your time sharing the experience of your recent stay at Hilton Surfers Paradise.

I am thrilled to read that your stay was fantastic all around! Your valuable feedback is what drives us to continuing deliver exceptional services to all guests!

Thank you again for the lovely comment, we look forward to welcome you back again at Hilton Surfers Paradise in the near future!

Kind Regards,

Fiona Pryde
General Manager
Hilton Surfers Paradise

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2018

Booked for 5 nights, only stayed for 3...our 14th floor East facing room had a great view but we heard nightclub and street noise until the very early hours. Double glazing would help! Central Surfers location is convenient, easy walk to beach, restaurants and tram. Free onsite parking. Breakfast buffet provided a good variety, evening meal waited 45 minutes, still no food because they lost our order, with only 13 people in the restaurant. We won't be returning.

Stayed: June 2018, travelled as a couple
1  Thank PeterPed
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hilton S, General Manager at Hilton Surfers Paradise, responded to this reviewResponded 26 June 2018

Dear PeterPed,

Thank you very much for sharing the experience of your stay with us at Hilton Surfers Paradise.
I was disappointed to see from your feedback that we did not meet your expectations in some areas. I would like to personally apologise that there were certain inconsistencies during your recent stay with us. We aim to provide a high level of service at the hotel and so it is disappointing to see when we don't meet the expectations of our most valued guests. Your comments have been shared with our Operations Director for appropriate follow up.
Thank you again PeterPed, I hope that you will consider staying with us again on your future travels.

Kind Regards,

Fiona Pryde
General Manager
Hilton Surfers Paradise

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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