Tip: Consider staying in airport hotels if you are arriving late from a flight or have an early flight to catch the next morning as they are usually much cheaper than those in the city. This would also mean that we need not factor too much travel time to get the airport in the morning.
The Mercure Darwin Airport Resort
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I can’t say there’s plenty of airport hotels to choose from at Darwin. In fact, the only decent choices were the Mercure Darwin Airport Resort and the Novotel Darwin Airport. We chose Mercure Darwin Airport Resort primarily based on cost as it was only for a night’s sleep.
Check-in was quite a breeze. As the name suggests, Mercure Darwin Airport Resort was a Resort more than a hotel, and this is apparent once we stepped into the resort. You could almost sense the deliberate effort to exude a rustic and relaxed atmosphere. In fact, this resort immediately reminded us of the Eden Hotel at Kuta, Bali.
While the check-in was fast and efficient, we got pretty lost after that, because the signages in this resort was not apparent, and we had difficulty even getting out of the main lobby to look for our assigned cabin.
We eventually did find our way out of the lobby after some struggle, but not before catching a glimpse of the very-inviting pool and the gym.
This is like swimming in the tropics.
I would love to have a dip in this pool if time had permitted.
Beautiful view of the pool at night.
The gym looked a lot less promising – it was just a very small outfit, but has the basic gum equipment.
The lush greenery that leads to the rooms and bungalows…
The unit that we booked was called as Resort Bungalow at Mercure’s website, but from the outside, it looked more like a dilapidated cabin.
There are of course, other categories of rooms at Mercure Darwin Airport Resort, and I would assume that these are the Resort Superior Rooms, which honestly, looked much better than the Bungalows, at least on the outside. They are also cheaper than the Bungalow that we booked.
The Bungalow that we were allocated had a outdoor balcony deck which I am sure sun-lovers would love.
However, the entire cabin (as I would call it) faced a slightly burnt out forest – something which I consider at first sight to be a risk factor, as the chances of being caught in the middle of a bush fire does not sound all that remote when you consider the intense temperatures in Darwin.
If you enjoy a short walk, then it is a plus point, because the walking trails start literally right from your door step.
We fumbled with the door and locks to the cabin because everything was just so old and flimsy.
Upon entry, the room looked to be quite acceptable at first sight. At least, the attempts to refurbish this room into something liveable was quite apparent. But on closer inspection, you can see that the cabin really needed further extensive works to be done because most things were just so old and used.
The room is largely divided into two sections – the bedroom area which consists of a queen-sized bed, windows, and a run-down toilet; and a living room cum kitchenette area.
The toilet is extremely basic, but at least there are some clean towels and toiletries provided. As with the main door, we struggled with the toilet door and feared that it may drop out.
Although we did not use the kitchenette to cook (not even sure if the microwave and fridge were in working condition), it came in handy as an extra hand-washing point.
Blissfully, the bedroom area can be sectioned off from the living room and kitchenette with a sliding door.
View of the living room from the bedroom. The only entrance to the cabin was covered with the curtains. We were grateful for the strategic placement of the over-hanging television, which could be viewed from the bed.
Being that close to nature means that numerous insects and inhabitants of the forest would attempt to get into our cabin, and we were grateful for these nettings over our windows. However, this measure did not stop insects from creeping into our cabin through other means.
The bedroom with the sliding doors pulled together.
Despite the attempts at privacy, I had a really terrible night at Mercure Darwin Airport Resort. The forest proved to be the main source of discomfort, for throughout the night, other than fearing the risk of a forest fire, I could also hear voices and chanting coming from the direction of the forest. All these could not put my mind at ease, and I barely caught an hour of sleep at night. The bed also did not provide much back support and I had a most uncomfortable time just lying there.
Complimentary Airport Shuttle
Mercure Darwin Airport Resort provides a complimentary airport shuttle to the Darwin Airport, which was less than a 5-min drive away – in fact, you can easily walk to the airport if you want to. In terms of location, Mercure Darwin Airport Resort wins in this aspect.
Mercure Darwin Airport Resort
1 Sir Norman Brearley Dr
Join us next as we enjoy our dinner at Loong Fong Restaurant.