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Review: Mango Lagoon, Palm Cove

We spent 5 nights at Mango Lagoon in July. The Palm Cove weather was perfect, with sunny days and temperature in the mid-high 20’s.

Mango Lagoon was OK.

We had a good time, but it wasn’t until we moved to the Mantra, Palm Cove for the balance of our holiday that we realised why Mango Lagoon is more of a “value” option. Mango Lagoon felt like it had been built a number of years ago using investments from southerners and was now being run on a shoestring just to make a basic return for the investors*.

A park near Mango Lagoon (we didn't take any pics at Mango Lagoon!)

A park near Mango Lagoon (we didn’t take any pics at Mango Lagoon!)

The things I liked about it were:

– Our room (2 BR, upper floor) was spacious and well-designed. The main bedroom had the main bathroom / laundry off to one side, with that bathroom / laundry also be accessible from the open-plan living area. The kitchen was galley style and pretty basic, but it had a dishwasher so that compensated for the lack of bench-space!

– The 4 different pools offered different “experiences” … we used them all. Water flowed from the top pool down through all the pools. The top and bottom pools were odd-shaped, various depth, basic family fun. The second pool had a sand beach … great in theory, but a pain when you get out and end up with sand on your feet. The third pool was a 50m lap pool … sensational, we used this quite a bit. Yep, we did laps :)

– The whole complex was quiet. People were there, but there was no competition for pool chairs and no noisy parties at night.

The things I didn’t like is a longer list:

– Mango Lagoon is probably 500m from the beach and main Palm Cove Promenade … it’s inland. We knew this before we booked and it’s not fatal, but it means that days need to be planned and popping out for a coffee is not really possible.

– The pools were cold. Not ice-cold, but too cold to spend hours lazing poolside. Our guess is that this is because the pools were mainly in the shade. This is probably wonderful in the hot weather, but no good for this time of year. Since Mango Lagoon is not waterfront, the pool(s) need to be perfect and these weren’t. Whilst the Mango Lagoon location was not fatal, in my opinion “imperfect pools” is fatal.

– Management were slack. Or incompetent. Or both. This impacted us in a few specific ways, but also more generally in that the whole place was a bit dowdy. The specific things were (1) our toilet that wouldn’t stop running. We told them on Day 1. Then again on Day 2. Nothing was ever done; (2) our room had no coat-hangers … we told them but again nothing was ever done; (3) the communal BBQ was rusted out and past-it. It was a cheap portable BBQ that could easily be replaced with another cheap portable BBQ (my guess being that Mango Lagoon would never spent the money to buy a better quality, even permanent BBQ); (4) our dishwasher leaked … I noticed this on day 3 but since our other complaints hadn’t been acted on I didn’t bother reporting it; (5) our kitchen didn’t have a chopping board; (6) the kitchen had 3 appliances needing power … a kettle, a toaster and a microwave … but only 2 power points. Install additional points? Provide a power board? Nope, we had to be constantly swapping the power plugs.

– We had a slight quibble that the 3rd kid’s bed was in open-plan living area (next to the dining table) and not in it’s own bedroom, but this didn’t cramp our style too much.

In conclusion, I don’t think I’d stay there again. The cost of a holiday in this region is high … the incremental cost of staying somewhere better would be money well-spent.


* A brochure in our room claimed that 2BR apartments at Mango Lagoon were available to purchase for $219,000 … “less than half what they originally sold for”. So not a great investment for the first investors and not a great investment now either.

Discussion

3 Responses to “Review: Mango Lagoon, Palm Cove”

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  1. […] view might be tainted by our experience the 5 days previous at Mango Lagoon, but I suspect the accommodation at Mantra is forever going to be the benchmark against which other […]

  2. […] Mango Lagoon was OK. My extended thoughts are here. […]

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