Aurora Alice Springs – the town’s most centrally located hotel.
It’s situated right in the middle of Todd Mall – the heart of Alice Springs.
This means you’re just steps away from great alfresco cafes, restaurants, Aboriginal art galleries, bookshops and the town’s largest shopping arcades and malls.
If you’re worried that this might be noisy, or there might be a lot of traffic, relax!
Todd Mall is a pedestrian-only mall. You won’t be worrying about traffic noise at night.
This review tells you everything you’ll need to know about the Aurora, and we’ll help you to decide whether it’s the place for you when you visit Alice Springs.
Things to Know Before You Book
There’s a few things we’d like to share with you about the Aurora before you make up you mind about staying here.
One of the things people seem to find a little off-putting about the Aurora is its entrance.
Although the hotel advertises itself as being right on Todd Mall, its main entrance in fact in the street behind Todd Mall, Leichhardt Terrace, which is directly alongside the Todd River.
You can walk through from Todd Mall into the Aurora, but to do so, you have to enter through the hotel’s restaurant, called the Red Ochre Grill. This isn’t a problem, just something that’s a little unusual.
Something else you need to be aware of: there are a lot of stairs in the Aurora. If mobility is an issue for you, you might want to think twice about staying here.
These are relatively minor issues, and the hotel’s excellent location, a few minutes walk to all of the main shops and services in Alice Springs, more than make up for them.
The only other thing we’d advise you about is the 4 Star rating. Remember, this is 4 Stars by outback standards, not by world standards. The Aurora is a 3 1/2 Star hotel by international ratings.
Learn more about accommodation ratings, expectations and experiences in outback Australia. Check out our Outback Accommodation page.
Rooms at the Aurora Alice Springs
The rooms at the Aurora include all the usual amenities such as: air conditioning, complimentary toiletries, a refrigerator, a coffee and tea maker, a desk, a clock radio, cable television, ironing equipment, daily housekeeping, in-room safes, and complimentary newspaper delivery.
The standard rooms are average in size and very basic. Although the rooms are comfortable and clean, they are nothing special as far as hotel rooms go. As we’ve said above, outback accommodation requires some adjustments in expectations!
If you’re looking for upgraded rooms, then you’re in luck, as you’ve got a variety of choices at the Aurora. Of course, the added luxury comes with a price.
Several years ago, we treated ourselves to a standard suite, but the hotel also offers spa suites, executive rooms, deluxe rooms, and deluxe king rooms.
The room was spacious, and the decor quite modern (no pastel apricots or avocado in sight!). The bed was very comfortable.
Best of all, at night the hotel room was dark and quiet. This was great because I’m a fussy sleeper, although I did have to ask for a low pillow as the pillow on the bed was as high as Mt Everest!
Ok. Maybe not quite that high, but you get my point…
If you want to pay a little more for one of the more upmarket rooms in the Aurora Alice Springs, you’ll get additional facilities like bathtubs, DVD players and LCD televisions, larger family areas with separate sleeping rooms, private balconies with views of the Todd River, and free in-house movies.
The hotel also offers family bunk accommodations that include a queen bed and two bunk beds, as well as all of the standard room accommodations.
In all, the Aurora offers more upmarket hotel accommodation than you’ll find elsewhere in Alice Springs, but you will pay a little more than at other places.
Standard room rates for the Aurora begin around $145.
The Aurora is centrally located and, it’s got a great restaurant and outside lounge area which we enjoy visiting on hot summer nights. You’ll find lots of Alice Springs locals in the outside area.
The Aurora features pleasant surroundings, so guests staying onsite for the majority of their visit will still enjoy a pleasant experience.
There’s 24 hour front desk service, air conditioning in the hotel’s public areas, an outdoor pool and spa tub, public barbecue grills, a bar and lounge onsite, a well-kept garden, laundry service, free onsite parking, and wireless Internet access for an additional fee.
The Aurora is one of the few Alice Springs hotels that offers a concierge service to help you plan outings and tours throughout the area.
The hotel’s restaurant, the Red Ochre Grill, is not particularly popular amongst locals -even though we’ll go and sit in the outside lounge area. It’s really viewed as a ‘tourist’ restaurant that offers attention-grabbing, somewhat gimicky Australian food.
Why is this?
Australians actually don’t eat wallaby or emu as part of their normal meals!
However, if you’d like to try camel steaks, kangaroo, or even crocodile, then you won’t be disappointed. The restaurant offers Australian seafood dishes, as well as wild game and bush food.
The menu is a little pricey, however. Main meals start at around $32.
The staff at Aurora Alice Springs are friendly, which is a bonus. When we stayed, we enjoyed nightly turn-down service and our room was cleaned each day. They were also more than happy to help with arrangements for local tours and reservations.
The location of the Aurora is really its best feature and it is why many people might choose it over other Alice Springs hotels.
Most travellers, whether in the area for business or pleasure, want a clean hotel that is close to tourist attractions and basic conveniences.
It is also important to find a place that feels secure and that is located in a safe area. Though basic, Aurora Alice Springs offered us all of these features and made for a comfortable stay during our stay.
Have you stayed at the Aurora Alice Springs?
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