Located within the Ayers Rock Resort complex at Yulara, the Outback Pioneer Hotel is a practical choice for the budget conscious without compromising on comfort and amenities. Staying anywhere within the Ayers Rock Resort is considerably expensive by Australian standards and for the cost per night of a room the Outback Pioneer Hotel is nothing overly flash, but, and there are a lot of buts, it does maintain the outback charm that one may expect from these parts of Australia. A sense of authenticity that is lost in those fancy places just up the road. And that is where I was won over.
That and the fact that the outback pioneer hotel has the only pub in town within the hotel itself (more on that later).
The complex hosts both hotel accommodation and hostel style rooms with up to 4 beds. I stayed in a hotel room that was roomy, well maintained and had everything I needed for my stay, including much needed air conditioning. The bed was super comfortable especially after being outdoors and hiking for a good part of the day. Bathroom was equip with local hair and body products that were really nice to use.
Check in was simple and the staff very friendly. They correspond with tour operators on your behalf and know well in advance what each guest will be doing. One of my tours was cancelled before I arrived and with the reception staff being pre-warned, they attempted to find be different alternatives without me even having to ask.
There is a restaurant where breakfast is buffet style and trust me there is plenty of food! Normally it’s quite expensive (approx $30) but reception will tell you upon check in to grab a voucher from them for any breakfasts at a cost of $15. Bargain! I did only have one dinner at the restaurant and it was both as pleasant as it was filling. Service was exceptional.
The hotel has a pool, gift shop, games centre and plenty of spaces to relax (including the pub). The free town bus is right out the front and departs every 20 minutes to take you the loop to the supermarket, gift shops, cafes, tourist centre and other hotels. If you’re booked on any tours you’re picked up right out the front. All of this runs without any hiccups it really is all too easy.
Now for the pub. It’s the heart of the Outback Pioneer. Right smack bang in the centre of the complex, this open air pub has plenty of outback character, hosts a café, pool tables and plenty of space to pull up a chair to sit back and relax. Of a night it seems unless you’re on a tour everyone converges on the pub for an unwind, to meet new friends and to listen to whomever is performing on the small stage that night. The only issue with the pub is the cost of drinks! $40 for a 6 pack of beer to takeaway is beyond what this beer loving chick would ever want to pay, but when it’s your only option one has to suck up the expense and just go with it. So for the sake of beer and holidays I did, of course.
For my money I would not have stayed anywhere else. When you break a holiday to Uluru area down, you spend most of your day and often night out exploring. It’s not the kind of banana lounge at the beach kind of holiday (beaches being 1000 kms away) so my advice is to keep it simple in Uluru and stay somewhere that is reasonably priced but is comfortable so that you can spend your hard earned dollars on tours and seeing the landscape. The Outback Pioneer Hotel captured a place in my heart, and will be where I stay the next time I’m there.
To book your stay at the Outback Pioneer Hotel click here.