Upgrade to a Suite??? Oh…. ok…… :)

Woke up early – that’s been happening a lot lately. No idea why. Maybe it’s the different bird song, or just getting used to the sun coming up so early here. It’s light by about 5am and the birds start about an hour before that.
Anyway, we relaxed a bit and then got up and packed and we were away for about 930. Sorry to leave O’Reilly’s. It’s a special place and I can’t quite define why, other than due to the incredible scenery that just envelopes you. You are very much in a bubble up there. If you visit this part of the coast, then I highly recommend a couple of days staying there in Lammington.
The day was very fine. Hardly a cloud, sunny and forecast to be 30C down at sea level. We took it very steadily down the steep hill. Got stopped about twice in the roadworks. They are shoring up parts of the road which are collapsing down the mountain. It’s obviously a complicated piece of work and they have multiple gangs working. By the time we got to the bottom it was about 1030 so we stopped in Canungra at a little café called the Outpost Inn. Bob had a steak and kidney pie (I know….. but it was totally delicious!) and I had eggs on toast. With some more fabulous Australian coffee. It is almost impossible to get a bad cup of coffee here. Much better than British coffee and light years better than American coffee.
We headed on and decided to stop at a Woolworths just before Surfer’s Paradise to pick up another box of Coke Zero for the room. We are staying at the Marriott Resort and Spa in Surfer’s Paradise and soft drinks and the mini bar will be exorbitant. Got the cokes and on the way out I noticed a nail bar that was packed out with about 10 operatives hard at work and some pedi chairs. My poor feet deserved a treat after all that walking and the price was really cheap so Bob went off for a cold one on the terrace and I had a shellac pedicure. It was one of the best I’ve ever had. The young Vietnamese chap who did it gave me a lovely leg and foot massage as well as all the usual skin shaving, exfoliating, moisturising etc etc. Got a lovely red gold sparkle shellac polish on. It was only $45. A real bargain.
Got to the Marriott at about 1pm and what a welcome! Because we own Marriott timeshare, we are automatically in their Gold Elite tier so we got all manner of special treats at checkin, despite the fact we are staying here totally on points, no money to pay. Firstly, we have free valet parking worth about $40 per day. They 20% discount on all purchases in the hotel, food and drink. Free full buffet breakfast every day, oh, and an upgrade to a corner junior suite!!!! Plus a glass of free bubbles and a box of chocolates. The suite is amazing. On the top floor we have incredible views over both the beach and also the pools and the inland waterways and mountains. Wrap around glass. It’s a massive room, with wet bar, sofa, desk, king size bed, flat screen tv. There’s a separate loo, a big walk in wardrobe and then a mega great bathroom also, on a corner. The round spa bath sits in the corner so you have views over the beach whilst you lather!!!! Talk about a bath with a view!
We were just unpacking when there was a knock on the door and it was a very nice lady with some more chocolates! Well…. Never say no!
We spent the afternoon down at the pools. They are a bit special. There is one free form one with beach all around it. It’s salt water and in parts there is artificial coral reef and swimming around in the pool – I’m not kidding – are a load of tropical fish!!!!! The other pool winds around the lagoon and has a current running through it in parts, like a lazy river. There are also 2 water slides that go through caves. Well…. We’re going to have fun down there.
Very peaceful afternoon. Bob is even more delighted than me because the final of Miss Galaxy (Australia) is being held in the hotel today and the next 2 days and there are a host of glamorous ladies wandering about the grounds in evening dress, having their pictures taken and no doubt taking part in activities in the various ballrooms.
Got back to the room about 5 and someone had been up and left us a big bag of cashew nuts and….. another box of chocolates!!!!! Then a bit later there was a knock on the door and it was housekeeping with various supplies, including A HANDFUL OF PILLOW CHOCOLATES!!!! This is sabotage. It’s not enough I have to appear at the pool surrounded by lissom lovelies probably in their swimwear tomorrow, but now the hotel is force feeding me chocolate!!! LOL And I am my father, the accountant’s, daughter: if it’s free, you MUST eat it!
So… I’m sorry….. the blog may be rather tame and smug for the next three days while we’re here. I can’t see us venturing out much (other than dinner with Jane and Lee tomorrow), rather tending to stay in our luxury cocoon and extracting maximum chocolates, I mean, value. It’ll be back to the self catering flats soon enough!
Tonight we ate dinner in Citrique, the buffet restaurant in the hotel. It had a very nice, rather romantic atmosphere. Mainly, it is a seafood buffet, but you can also eat a la carte and there are meat, vegetarian and non seafood offerings. We went for the seafood of course! The fresh oysters were deliciously creamy and not rinsed as they often are in the States which just makes them tasteless. We also had sushi, fresh swimmer crab, king prawns, seafood dumplings, poached white fish, chilli crab, chilli Moreton Bay Bugs…. All very nice. In fact the bugs were the best we’ve had so far, the chilli sauce made them nice and moist. We rounded off with make-it-yourself ice cream sundaes. I had chocolate and salted caramel with choc sauce and chocolate shavings. Bob had the most massive bowl with all sort on his including some sort of little sweets. I had to help him out towards the end (!!!!!) and those sweets were lethal! They’d frozen bullet hard and threatened to break your teeth. A very nice dinner and good value. Saw some more of the beauty queens in the lobby. But not in the buffet!!!!!

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