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The Reef House Compendium

Welcome to your Colonial Beach House in beautiful Palm Cove.​​

What sets The Reef House apart is our unique setting, history and traditions which keep our house guests returning again and again.

When it was a humble guest house in the early 1970’s owned by Brigadier Thomson, guests enjoyed the feeling of being in their own beach house in tropical north Queensland.

We hope you will feel the same and experience the casual yet elegant ambience and friendly service of The Reef House.

Whether you take one of our bikes for a ride along the palm fringed esplanade or mix yourself a cocktail favourite at the Brigadier’s honesty bar, we hope to make each day of your stay memorable.

Now relax, explore, indulge and have a wonderful stay!

Mr Wayne Harris – General Manager
The Reef House & Spa

To contact reception – Dial 9

Reef House Compendium

Restaurant / Room Service – Dial 662 
Day Spa – Dial 668
Luxury Concierge – Dial 660 
Housekeeping – Dial 671
Reception – Dial 9 

Stay in and relax in the comfort of your own room with our in-room dining menu available daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Dial 662 to place your order.

  • Breakfast: 6:30am to 10am
  • Lunch: 12pm to 2pm
  • Dinner: 6pm to 8pm

Breakfast Menu  Lunch Menu  Dinner Menu Seafood Platter

ATM / Bank
Most shops offer EFTPOS bank card facilities. ATM machines can be found at:
• Pullman Palm Cove
• Palm Cove Tavern, Veivers Rd (southern end)
• Palm Cove Surf Club
• Commonwealth Bank Branch & ATM, Westpac & ANZ ATM are located at Clifton Village Shopping Centre, 5 min drive south of Palm Cove.

Account Settlement
The preferred method of payment is credit card or cash. Should you have any questions regarding payment of your account or credit card merchant fees, please call reception  Dial 9.

Air Conditioning
All guest rooms offer individual air-conditioning. For Eco Friendly power consumption your temperature has been pre-set at 25°C. Please keep your doors closed for maximum cooling efficiency.

Room temperatures lower than 25°C can cause condensation forming on the inside  of  windows/doors, this is normal especially in summer high humidity months. Should you require any assistance with your room temperature, please contact reception – Dial 9.

Airport Transfers
Transfers to the airport are available. Please visit our friendly reception team or dial 9 to make a booking. Please be aware coach airport transfers operate to meet flight schedules, to avoid any inconvenience, please contact us minimum of 48hrs prior. (Charge applies).

Our recommended babysitting service:
Executive Baby Sitting: 4055 6510 or 0417 612 975 or

Bike Hire
We offer vintage style cruiser bikes available complimentary for guests to use throughout your stay – please hire at reception.
Bike hire is also available from Biked & Beach which is located 200m from The Reef House. They offer ebikes, mountain bikes, kids bikes, scooters and beach accessories – contact them on 07 4059 0513.

Blankets & Pillows
Extra bedding items are located in your wardrobe.  For any additional bedding or pillows, please contact reception – Dial 9.

Car Parking
Limited secure car parking is available to our guests under the hotel. Access is via Amphora Street (off Harpa Street), a gate entry code will be provided by reception – Dial 9. Additional outside parking is available on Williams Esplanade and French Streets.

Car Rental
Our concierge would be happy to recommend and assist you with car rental bookings  Dial 655.

Check out time
The checkout time is 11am.  Should you check out after this time you may incur a day use surcharge. If you require a later check out time, please contact reception, we will try to accommodate your request but it is not guaranteed. If you have an early departure we offer breakfast boxes – Dial 9.

Chemist / Pharmacy
Botanical Chemist Palm Cove
21/111-117 Williams Esplanade (Palm Cove shopping village)  Ph 07) 4059 0077
Monday – Friday 8:30am–5:30pm / Saturday  9am–2:30pm  /  Sunday  9am–1pm
There is also a Chemist / Pharmacy located at Clifton Shopping Centre.

Church Services
For information on the location and times of church services, all denominations, please contact reception – Dial 9.

Event Cinemas Smithfield – Located 15 minutes from the Reef House at Smithfield Shopping Centre, Cnr Capt. Cook & Kennedy Highways Smithfield. The centre includes 6 cinemas including Vmax. Transport: Public bus, Taxi (approx. $30), Uber

Credit Cards
We accept: American Express, Visa, Mastercard, JCB, Union Pay & Pay Wave. Surcharge 1.1% applies for all credit card transactions. 

Do Not Disturb
Please place your ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign outside your room to ensure our privacy is upheld. Please note while this sign is on your door, our Housekeeping team will not service your room. Should you need your room serviced, please contact reception between 9am-3pm – Dial 9.

After Hours: There is Dial a Doctor: 1300 030 030 (6:00pm – 8:00am). Our doctors  are  fully  qualified GP’s who provide a full range of services including prescriptions and sickness certificates. Our doctors will write a letter to your usual GP detailing why we have seen you and what we have done.

Laundry and Pressing

Guest Laundry: Located beside the underground car park our guest laundry offers washing machines, dryers and soap powder dispensers. This service is complimentary for our guests.

Emergency Procedures
In an emergency, or to report a fire speak to the hotel reception or after hour’s number by dialling 9. State your name and room number.

Food & Beverage
• Brigadier Bar: Our bar operates on a unique honesty system for house guests, a legacy from Brigadier Thompson it is similar to an Officer’s Mess in the army. From 1030am feel free to help yourself to your favourite ‘tipple’ from our selection of beer, wine, liquor and mixers.
• Brigadier’s Punch at Twilight: Join us at 5pm at the bar for complimentary tropical punch and canapes served nightly by our General Manager.
• Breakfast: 6.30 – 10.00am: Reef House Restaurant with magnificent views across to the Coral Sea. Enjoy our hot A la carte breakfast and barista coffees. Reservations are essential – Dial 662.
• Lunch: 12 – 3pm: Reef House Restaurant or Poolside a delicious menu of mains, light salads and sandwiches. Snacks are available all day at the Brigadier Bar. Reservations are essential – Dial 662.
• Dinner: 6 – 9pm: Reef House Restaurant a perfect romantic setting under the 300 year old Melaleuca trees and swaying palms. Our menu is a collection of modern and traditional dishes using the best of our tropical North Queensland produce. Reservations essential – Dial 662.
• Private Dining: If you wish to have a private dinner poolside, in room or balcony, contact our concierge to make arrangements.  

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Gift Vouchers
Choose from a blissful day spa treatment, dining experience, romantic 2-night package or dollar value voucher and let your recipient create their own luxury experience. Vouchers are valid for 3 years and can be purchased online instantly – shop now. 

Guest Feedback
We strive to always improve in all areas of the hotel. Your feedback is greatly appreciated and you can tell us through the Guest Impression card located in your room. All comments are directed to our General Manager for personal attention.

Hair Dryers
For your convenience a hair dryer is located in bathroom.

For any special needs or room supplies our Housekeeping staff will be happy to assist you. If you do not wish your room to be serviced, please place the DND sign on your room door. We also provide an option to help save our natural environment, if you wish to use your towels again please place them on the towel rail, if you wish clean  towels please place them in the bathtub.
Contact Housekeeping – Dial 671 or Reception Dial 9.

Please see the Restaurant for Ice Buckets. The Ice Machine is located at the Brigadier Bar under the counter.

Enjoy our complimentary Wi-Fi services throughout the whole resort. Please contact reception for log in details – Dial 9.

Iron & Ironing Board
Ironing facilities are located in all guest room wardrobes.

Local Inhabitants
North Queensland enjoys a tropical climate all year round. We have an abundance of wonderful flora and fauna, included in these are a variety of small insects which are harmless. We take the utmost care when cleaning to ensure they are removed. Included in our tropical locals are small lizards called Geckos and Sugar Ants. Please don’t leave food out that is unwrapped.  If their presence concerns you, please contact Housekeeping   Dial 671 or reception – Dial 9.

Lost and Found
Contact our Housekeeping Department for assistance in tracing lost property  Dial 671.

Should you require maintenance assistance (air conditioning, TV, lights etc.) please contact reception – Dial 9.

There is a Manager on Duty 24/7. Should there be an emergency or urgent request after our reception hours please dial 9 for your call to be forwarded.

An indicator light will flash on your phone prompting you that you have a recorded message. 

A limited supply of chargers are available from reception. A holding deposit will be applied to your room account, this will be refunded upon the return of the charger.

Pool Towels & Sunscreen
Complimentary pool towels & sunscreen are available from The Brigadier’s Bar.

The Reef House has two main pools and 2 spa’s. The Mineral Pool located between the Brigadier Rooms is heated in the winter months, there is a Spa connected to this pool. A hot spa located near the guest lounge is also heated. Apartment #312 has a plunge pool for private use only. 

Children Policy: Children are welcome to use the Mineral Pool under parent supervision. Please be aware we have our Day Spa located by the pool at the rear of the resort and excessive noise or jumping from the side walls is not permitted. 

Post Office
The Australia Post Office is located at the Palm Cove Village Shopping Centre on the ground floor, opposite the Après Beach Bar. Opening hours: Mon – Fri 9:00am – 5:00pm / Saturday 9:00am – 11:00am / Sunday – Closed.

Postal Service
We are happy to assist you if you have mail to send, ask at reception – Dial 9.

Our porter is available to assist with luggage and local knowledge of the area  Dial 660.

Room Keys
Please be aware if your room key is not returned to reception upon checkout (via our reception drop box or handing to a staff member) you will incur a $60.00 lost property fee. If you mistakenly pack your room key, please advise reception staff as soon as possible by contacting 07 4080 2600, so we can assist with delivery instructions to return.

Room Service
View our in-room dining menu here 

Safety Deposit Boxes
A safety deposit box is located in your room with instructions on use. If you need assistance please contact reception – Dial 9.

There is strictly NO Smoking permitted in guest rooms or public areas of The Reef House. There is a smoking area located outside the property just to the left of the Colonnade entrance with an ash tray & bench seat.

Spa Bath
If your room has a spa bath, please ensure you fill the spa to at least 5cm above the jets. For your safety do not submerge your head underwater. Please contact reception if you wish to purchase some relaxing and rejuvenating Spa Salts – Dial 9.

Swimming / Stinger Awareness
The beaches and ocean of tropical North Queensland are home to an amazing variety of marine life. Unfortunately there are two species of Jellyfish that are marine stingers and dangerous. During the tropical summer months Marine Stingers may be present in our waters, but by taking a few precautions you can minimise risks  associated. From October to May each year there is a protective swimming net erected at the life Savers lookout on Palm Cove beach. There are similar set ups along all  of Cairns Northern Beaches. It is recommended that you swim in these nets only. There are also light weight Lycra swim suits that are available through the Reef Tour Operators if you are heading out to the Reef.

Sun Safety
In North Queensland the sun is particularly strong.   We highly recommend that you protect your skin from UV (Ultra Violet) rays by using a 30+ sunscreen when outdoors. If out on the Great Barrier Reef, we recommend wearing a t-shirt while snorkelling as salt water can reduce the effectiveness of sunscreen lotions.

Taxi Service
Taxi’s operate to and from Palm Cove. If you wish to book  a taxi please contact reception – Dial 9. Approx. fare to Cairns City/Airport $65 one way. Alternatively we can arrange a private limousine or airport shuttle service, please call our concierge – Dial 655.

Tea & Coffee Making Facilities
Tea and coffee making facilities are available in your room and are replenished daily. If you require additional supplies please contact reception – Dial 9.

Telephone Numbers
• Reception / Duty Manager / Wake up calls – 9
• Porter – 660
• Restaurant – 662
• Day Spa – 668
• Housekeeping –671
• Room to Room Calls dial the room number. Local Calls dial 0 for an outside line.
• International Calls dial 0 for an outside line, then 0011 followed  by the country code, area code and number.

Television Service
Your television is operated by the remote control next to the set. It has access to the latest digital stations currently available. The TV also has full connectivity to USB, HDMI and RGB ports for your personal devices. Your room also has a DVD player. There is a selection of complimentary DVD’s are available to borrow from the guest lounge.

Tour Desk – See Concierge
Our Concierge (located in the guest lounge) will be able to assist you with all tour and attraction bookings  Dial 655.

There is an umbrella in your wardrobe. A limited number of umbrellas are also available at reception – Dial 9.

Wake Up Calls
To arrange a wake-up call please contact reception prior to 9pm the evening before, with your name, room number and time required – Dial 9.

Enjoy a good night’s rest with your choice of pillow from our luxurious pillow menu.

Posture Support Foam Core Pillow
This pillow is perfect for back & side sleepers. It is perfect for sensitive to asthma & allergy triggering allergens. Filled with polyester with foam core with a sewn off finish

Luxe Premium Firm Pillow
This luxurious firm & high pillow has a down-like feel for those that like the feeling of down but require a polyester fibre pillow. Filled with superior Dacron® Comforel® fibre. This luxurious firm & high pillow has a down-like feel for those that like the feeling of down but require a polyester fibre pillow. Filled with superior Dacron® Comforel® fibre

Memory Foam Classic Pillow
This pillow mould & shapes to your head, neck & shoulders with medium feel, high height. Filled with polyurethane foam. Perfect for sensitive to asthma & allergy triggering allergens

Feather & Down Pillow
The luxury of 50% White duck down, 30% White feather down cradles you in luxurious comfort with a resilient feather inner core for support. Combines the best of all materials to provide unparalleled comfort every night. This pillow is designed for both back and side sleepers.

Naturals  Feather & Down Pillow
This pillow filled with resilient feather for support and an outer pillow of 30% Down and 70% Feather for sinkable softness. Combines the best materials to provide unparalleled comfort every night. Perfect for all sleep positions.

Please contact our housekeeping at extension “671” to request for your preferred pillow before 14:00.

In pursuit of creating unforgettable experiences for our guests we are pleased to offer daily activities during your stay:

• Brigadier Punch & Canapés – Join our General Manager at The Brigadier’s Bar at 5pm for our complimentary tropical punch and canapés, served nightly. A great way to end the day and meet some of your fellow travellers.

• Poolside Sorbet – Local tropical sorbet is served around the pools at 3pm daily. 

• ‘Reef House Mixology’ interactive cocktail classes – Discover the art of mixology and learn how to make the perfect cocktail with this fun and interactive class. Classes are held in the Restaurant.  

• Stretch & Breathe Classes – Enjoy total relaxation of the body and the mind through breath work, gentle stretching and guided meditation. Classes are held in the Melaleuca Room. 

• Aqua Aerobics – A safe and fun way to exercise while burning calories, increasing your cardio-vascular fitness and enjoying some social interaction. Classes are held in our temperature regulated Mineral Pool. 

• Yoga – Start your day the right way with a nourishing beachside yoga class by Hartig Yoga, complimentary to Reef House guests. All levels welcome. Classes are held on the grass in front of Alamanda with spectacular views over the Coral Sea. 

View Activity Timetable

Introducing our Luxury Concierge Cedric Lootvoet who is here to assist with all the special touches and needs to make your stay at Reef House memorable. Tropical North Queensland is fortunate to have two World Heritage listed areas on its doorstep and we offer a diverse selection of wonderful tours & attractions to explore. Please contact Cedric and the team for local insights and touring recommendations. We also have a range of Reef House merchandise perfect for gifts. Discover More

Our beautiful ocean view deck and restaurant aspect is second to none, enjoy sunrise breakfast or candle lit dinner under the ancient Melaleuca trees and swaying palms. We have a delicious menu using our fresh North Queensland produce. Bookings are essential – dial 662 to reserve your table.

Dinner Menu | Degustation Menu | Seafood PlatterVegetarian & Vegan Menu MenuLunch Menu | Pool Bar Menu | Breakfast Menu | Beverage List

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Exclusively for House Guests, let us arrange a gourmet picnic for you and your loved one. Choose from our prepared takeaway picnic basket or have your picnic set up in on the beach in front of the Reef House complete with umbrella, chairs, table & mat.

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Meet our Spa Manager, Isabelle Neil…
Originally from Switzerland, Isabelle was trained in France by the crème de la crème; Clarins, Chanel, Dior & Phytomer, specialising in intensive therapies such as anti-ageing, deep relaxation massage, slimming treatments.

Isabelle Managing Director of the first privately owned Christian Dior Spa on the Caribbean island of Saint Maarten. Isabelle’s extensive experience has taken her all around the world as a pioneer in providing anti-ageing facial treatments.

In a busy, fast paced world, Isabelle has adapted the traditional spa experience to focus on relaxation, harmony, and a beautiful holistic experience.

The Reef House Day Spa Experience
The iconic and award winning Reef House Spa offers a beautifully appointed seaside escape, where each element and experience is an intimate journey offering an enchanting Spa Wellness sojourn.

Stunning rituals for face and body incorporating the latest techniques and meticulously formulated products ensure each spa journey rejuvenates skin targeting results while delivering a slice of relaxation heaven.

Professionally Exclusive Spa Collection
Reef House Spa offers Australian formulated WATERLILY botanical products using the purest Aromaceuticals and Phytonutrients. 

We also exclusively offer PHYTOMER marine products from France.  From the sea to the skin, Phytomer is a true pioneer in marine skin care with over 40 years of experience using bio-technology.

Professional Spa Therapists
Be nurtured by our professionally trained and compassionate Spa Therapists dedicated to tailoring each Spa Wellness visit to your exacting requirements. Treatments include body, facial, hand & foot therapy, nail services, waxing & tinting, make up, bridal & teen packages.

Open 10am – 5pm | Bookings are recommended | Spa – Dial 668

View Treatment Menu

We are delighted to provide you with a wealth of resources to enhance your stay with us. Explore our Sleep Easy Support Guide, which offers valuable tips and information for a restful night’s sleep. Additionally, indulge in our collection of special Reef House recipes, allowing you to bring the flavours of our renowned cuisine into your own kitchen. To complete the experience, we have curated a relaxing Reef House music playlist for you to enjoy. We hope these offerings enrich your time with us and create lasting memories even beyond your stay.

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The original Reef House was built in 1958 by a Cairns bookmaker and used as a family home.

According to an article in a 1972 issue of The Bulletin, a swimming pool proprietor was allegedly heavily indebted to the bookmaker, but managed to repay his debt by offering to build ‘the best swimming pool in North Queensland’.

Circa 1972

In 1970 the Reef House was purchased by a syndicate and opened as a restaurant with limited accommodation of three suites in the garden. In 1972, Brigadier The Hon. David Thomson, MC, RL, (later Federal Minister for Science & Technology), acquired the property and operated ‘Reef House’ as a private residence with visitors treated as personal guests.

Guests helped themselves to drinks from the bar, and in the true tradition of an officer’s mess, signed chits on an honesty system. This system prevails today in The Brigadier’s Bar. Also continuing a  tradition, each evening candles are lit  throughout the  resort denoting Twilight  Hour,  an  opportunity to meet with other world traveler’s over a complimentary glass of Brigadier’s Punch.

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The Traveller Accommodation Providers (Liability) Act 2001 changes the  common law about innkeeper’s liability.

Under the Act, an accommodation provider may be liable to make good any  loss of a guest’s property in certain circumstances even though the loss is not caused by the fault of the accommodation provider, or the provider’s agent.

The strict liability of the accommodation provider under the Act –
• applies only to a guest of the accommodation provider on a day when an accommodation unit is provided for the use of the guest
• is limited to $250 for each accommodation unit provided for the use of the guest on the day, unless the guest’s property was placed in safe custody facilities
• does not cover motor vehicles and things owned by the guest left in or on motor vehicles.

Note: Words appearing in italics and bold have a special meaning under the Traveller Accommodation Providers (Liability) Act 2001.

Please enjoy our House Guest Exclusive 10% Discount on your reservation at one of our boutique properties in Palm Cove or the Adelaide Hills. Our House Guest Exclusive is also available to your family or friends you may choose to recommend us to. 

Browse our 3, 5 and 7 night packages with signature luxury inclusions plus added extras for an unforgettable experience. 

Bring the style and comfort of the Reef House to your home with our range of Homewares, Art or Beds. Treat your loves ones to a Reef House Gift Voucher for a Tropical Escape, indulgent Day Spa treatment or an experience at our highly awarded restaurant.