The skyscraper-lined shores of Surfers Paradise is one of Australia’s most iconic destinations. With 3km (1.9mi) of beach, it’s no wonder this Gold Coast destination is a favourite among wave riders and joggers. Party animals are attracted to the multitude of bars and clubs here, including backpackers on the East Coast road trip route. Families will find plenty of kid-friendly activities here at the best places to stay in Surfers Paradise.
The Island Gold Coast is a boutique hotel that’s set just one road back from Surfers Paradise Beach. This modern, recently revamped offering is found in what was once a ‘70s hotel block. Don’t worry though, the interior has a chic design, inspired by traditional Queensland timbers, while the exteriors are alive with greenery. There are 98 rooms to choose from, as well as an outdoor pool and a rooftop bar that looks out over the Pacific Ocean.
Looking for a luxury stay? Then look no further than Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa. This five-star hotel is just steps from the beach. However, you might want to trade a day of surfing for relaxation at the Ruby spa, followed by a sauna session and then dinner at the Japanese steakhouse. Each of the 200-plus rooms feature balconies with mountain or ocean views.
Located on the Esplanade, the real draw to Rhapsody Resort is the panoramic rooftop views out to sea. Watch the surfers from the rustic comfort of the Rhapsody Beachside Cafe or enjoy a special Skypoint Breakfast from the observation deck. Each one- and two-bedroom apartment allows you the convenience of a full kitchen, plus you can order romantic treats to the room, such as a luxury champagne and chocolate hamper.
Set a little further back from the beach, voco Gold Coast offers reasonably priced rooms with a luxury touch. Treat your other half to a decadent afternoon tea, complete with champagne and artful pastries. Alternatively, book a treatment at the L’Aqua Day Spa, such as the Decléor facial. If you’re in the mood to meet people, head to the Social House where you can enjoy a cocktail or two with a side of tapas.
Berkeley on the Beach is the place to book if you want a beachfront location with plenty of privacy. This upscale apartment complex has 17 floors, but each is limited to just two apartments. Check in to your spacious, two-bedroom luxury condo with its own ocean view from two (yes, two) private balconies. Cook your own dinner in the apartment or head down to the pool where you can fire up the barbie and throw on a few shrimp in the sunshine.
“Nostalgic surfer chic meets Miami catwalk cool” at QT Gold Coast, as the hotel rightfully boasts. With dazzling views of the Gold Coast, its 297 rooms embody the glamour expected of Surfers Paradise, the party playground of Australia. Elsewhere, guests can make full use of the hammam, three different restaurants (including the California-cool Stingray Lounge and the marketplace-buffet of Bazaar), alongside the full-service SpaQ, and an outdoor swimming pool.
Five-star hotel Peppers Soul Surfers Paradise proudly proclaims that every one of its 160 stunning apartments and penthouses offer “sublime uninterrupted views of the glistening Pacific Ocean”. But that’s not all, the contemporary upscale one- to four-bedroom apartments include flat-screen TVs, whirlpool baths and full kitchens. Downstairs, you’ll find their oceanfront restaurant, Hyde Paradiso, serving Mediterranean food and refreshing sgroppinos (lemon sorbet, topped with vodka and champagne).
For a more family-affordable yet no less attentive level of service, check in to the Wharf Boutique Apartments, conveniently located midway between Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach. Self-contained 1- and 2-bedroom units overlook a private tropical garden, and the usual amenities are included for a fraction of the price of the five-star hotels further down the esplanade. A private path from the apartments leads directly to the beach, while closer to home you’ll find a heated pool, spa, tennis court and BBQ area.
Want to see more? Discover the top hotels on the Gold Coast, or, if you’d like to save some cash for elsewhere, check out the best cheap hotels in Surfers Paradise, bookable with Culture Trip. For more options, book one of the best hotels in Main Beach.
This is an updated version of an article originally written by Alex MacKay.
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