There are family friendly hotels, and then there’s the Paradise Resort Surfers Paradise. Our family has just returned from a 5 night holiday at the Paradise Resort and it’s one of the most family friendly places we’ve ever stayed at…by a long shot. Here is my review of the Paradise Resort, so grab a cuppa and settle in for a long read, because there’s lots to talk about!

Paradise Resort Water Park

Location

The Paradise Resort is about a 10 minute walk from the main mall strip at Surfer’s Paradise on the Gold Coast, and it’s two blocks from the beach. It took us about half an hour to drive from Coolangatta Airport to the resort, and similarly it takes about half an hour to drive from the resort to the theme parks (Dreamworld/Whitewater World, Movie World and Wet’n'Wild). SeaWorld is much closer – about a 10 minute drive. All in all the resort was in a great location for us. The only downfall is that it’s on a major highway, and although we couldn’t hear the traffic from our room, we did have some trouble with the surrounding streets being closed off in preparation for the V8 Supercar race, so you’ll want to keep this in mind if you plan on staying in late October.

Paradise Resort Entrance

Paradise Resort Entrance

Kids Facilities

Above all else, the thing that sets the Paradise Resort apart from other resorts on the Gold Coast is the facilities for kids. You could not leave the resort for your whole holiday and I imagine most kids would be quite content with that! Here’s an overview of the main things our kids took part in during our stay:

  • Kids clubs – in the basement under the main building there are two kids clubs; one for 0-2 year olds and one for 3-12 year olds. “A basement?!” I hear you say, “I’m not putting my child in a basement on our holiday!”, but trust me, this is the best basement you and your kids will ever see. The older kids club has a number of rooms with different themes including an underwater theme, outer space, and Egyptian, as well as an outdoor area with go-carts. The baby and toddler room has a garden theme and has plenty of toys, a quiet room with mats and cushions and a TV, a ball pit, an outdoor area with a sandpit as well as a nap room with cots. With our accommodation package, we had one free four hour kids club session per child per day included. Our girls only went to one kids club for session each, but they both loved it. Our older girl went in the 3-12 room and took part in a treasure hunt, did some arts and craft, and had her face painted. Lunch was provided for an extra cost of $8 (a sandwich and piece of sponge cake. No outside food or drinks can be taken into the kids clubs). Our younger daughter went in the 0-2 room and although she got a bit upset when we left, the carers helped her calm down fairly quickly (we went back and peaked through the door and she was happily sitting at the table with the other toddlers eating her dinner). Meals and snacks are provided for free in the toddler room. When we picked up our little one the carer said she had a great time and she was also sporting pretty face paint which she was very proud of. The kids clubs also have two open age free play sessions per day when parents are allowed to stay in the kids clubs with the kids and play together.
    Paradise resort kids club

    Underwater themed room

  • Planet Chill – Planet Chill is the resort’s onsite ice skating rink…yes I said ice skating rink! Kids 3 and up, as well as adults, can book in for a two hour skating session for a cost of $20 per person. Our elder daughter had an absolute ball during her session. When she was lining up to get her skates we discovered that the smallest size skates they had available were size 12 (and she is a size 10), so she was given a “learner” pair of skates to start with. The learner skates had dual blades on each skate which made is easier to balance and they strapped on over her normal shoes. She did a few laps of the ice rink using the learner skates while balancing on one of the penguins available to help the little skaters get the hang of it. Soon after she upgraded to a “real” pair of skates, all be it they were quite big for her. The ice skating session had a really fun and cool vibe with the kids choosing the music and one of the staff handing out glow bracelets and painting the kids’ faces (with what I think was zinc cream) which glowed under the UV lights. It was totally worth the $20, but just be prepared for the your child wanting to go ice skating again every day like ours did!
  • ice skating paradise resort
  • Water parks, Pool and Spa - In the centre of the resort there are two water parks, a pool and a large spa. One of the water parks is geared towards todders and younger children and has a slopped wading pool. The waterpark at the other end of the outdoor area is much bigger and is geared towards older children. Both our kids were in absolute glee playing in these areas. There is also a pool and spa in the middle of the outdoor area. The pool is deep so you might want to bring floaties for younger kids. There is also an adults only area where there are deck chairs and a private spa. We didn’t get a chance to go in this area, but if you are looking for a bit of quiet spa time without a dozen kids splashing all over the place, definitely head to the adults only spa.Paradise Resort Water Park
  • Playground - We only had time for a couple of quick plays in the play ground, but both girls loved it. It has lots of play areas for toddlers as well as older kids.Paradise Resort Playground
  • Games room - There is a games room in the basement with quite a few machines to keep little (and big!) gamers busy.Paradise Resort Games Room
  • Entertainment - In the outdoor area there is a stage where various acts happen throughout the week. One evening we listened to some great live music by Mick Danby, who played the didgeridoo and guitar and had the kids up singing and dancing. In this same area there was also the opportunity to meet the resort’s mascot characters and there were also outdoor movie nights where family movies were played on the big screen.
  • Organised activities – A range of organised kids activities were on offer throughout the week such as plaster painting, pool treasure hunts, water balloon throwing, sand art and cupcake decorating. Most of the craft activities have a small fee if the kids want to participate in those, but the activities in the pool area were free. When you check in you’ll be given a sheet that overviews all the activities happening over the week.

Rooms

We stayed in a Family Room, which had a queen bed in the main room, plus a second bedroom with a bunk bed and a single bed. Even with a porta cot also in the second bedroom (provided for free by the resort) it was still really spacious. Since we were travelling with a toddler who goes to bed earlier than the rest of the family, it was important for us to have a separate room that we could put her down to sleep in. Off the second room was a balcony which we didn’t make a lot of use of, but it was handy for drying out our swimmers and towels. There was plenty of drawer space for storing your folded clothes, but as is the case with just about every hotel I’ve ever stayed in, there weren’t enough coat hangers to hang all the clothes I wanted to hang up in the wardrobes. I usually pack some extra coat hangers in the suitcase, but this time I forgot.

The room also had a kitchenette which was another important feature for us. Before our trip I ordered food from Coles to be be delivered to the hotel so that we could make some meals in the room. If you are planning on doing the same, a couple of things that we found the kitchenette to be lacking was a sharp knife and microwave proof containers, so you might want to consider bringing these items with you, however we did managed to get a couple of microwave proof bowls from the cafe to heat food up in. There was only one bathroom in our room, but it was fine for us. It had a bath/shower combo which is handy when travelling with kids. If room decor is really important to you, I would suggest upgrading to one of the “Superior” rooms which have recently been renovated. Our room was a bit tired looking, with paint peeling off the walls in a couple of places and cracks in the bathroom bench, but for us that wasn’t a deal breaker because we were at the Paradise Resort to enjoy the facilities, not to spend all day in our room. The room was spotlessly clean which was the most important thing.

Our room was number 1445 on the first floor in the “Astro Alley” wing, which is on the southern side of the resort, and we were a nice distance back from the main road which meant we didn’t hear the traffic noise.

Paradise Resort Rooms

Family Room – Main room with queen bed

Parking

When we checked in we were given the option of paying $10 per night to park in the Paradise Resort’s underground car park, or we could park in the car park on the vacant block next to the resort for free. We choose the free car park and that worked out nicely because our room was on the same side of the resort, and it was only a short walk to the car park.

Food

There are a few options for eating at the Paradise Resort; there’s Bistro Zagames, a Poolside Cafe as well as a mini-mart. As I mentioned, we ordered food from Coles to save on the costs of eating out for every meal, so we only ate the Bistro on one occasion. We went for dinner and there was a mix up with our order which meant we waited about 45 minutes for our meals, but we were given our desserts for free to make up for the mistake which was appreciated. The wait for the meals was worth it because the food was great – I had the marinated vegetable stack with halloumi cheese and sweet potato chips, which was absolutely delicious. All of the kids meals were $8 which was a reasonable price. If you’re planning on enjoying the alcoholic beverages at the resort, be prepared for them to be quite expensive (but no more expensive than you would expect to pay at a resort).

The verdict

The consensus from my family is that our holiday at Paradise Resort was “one of the best holidays ever”. Both kids had an absolute ball, and as parents it was nice to have a few hours to ourselves while the kids enjoyed themselves in the kids clubs. Our room definitely wasn’t the flashiest we’d ever stayed in, but the resort facilities more than made up for that. My tip would be that if you decide to stay at the Paradise Resort, don’t “over book” with other activities outside the resort. We went to Dreamworld on 3 days of our 5 day holiday, and I kind of felt like we missed out on making full use of the resort as a result.

Will we go back to the Paradise Resort and visit again one day? Most definitely!

For more information about the Paradise Resort you can click here to visit their website or Facebook page

Have you ever stayed at this resort? If so, what did you think? If you have any questions about our stay at the Paradise Resort I’d be happy to help answer, so please leave a comment below.

Bekx sig

Rebecca Kersten (34 Posts)

Hi, I'm Rebecca and thanks for visiting Happy Travel with Kids! I'm an Aussie working mum of two, who loves exploring the world with my family in my time off. I hope my tips, reviews and travel tales inspire you to travel with your kids!