The Desert Rose Inn

The Desert Rose Inn: Budget Choice in the Heart of Alice Springs

If you’re looking for a centrally located, budget-priced motel in Alice Springs, then the Desert Rose Inn might just suit your needs.

On my very first visit to Alice Springs, I stayed here, and wasn’t disappointed with the rooms or the service.

I should say that this hotel doesn’t just have budget-priced rooms, it’s also one of the nicest, quietest backpacker’s in Alice Springs. It’s definitely a place to go if you’ve had enough of drunken backpacker party pads!

In this review, I’m going to tell you all about this tucked away gem, only a few minutes walk from the town’s main centre.

Things to Know Before You Book

Desert Rose Inn from the outside

First up, when I say that the Desert Rose Inn is budget accommodation, I really mean it.

The rooms are clean, the beds are comfortable, but don’t expect anything fancy.

The décor is a bit dated (some might say ‘tired’), but serviceable. You won’t find the latest kitchen appliances or prints on the walls. There’s some very 1980s tiles in the bathrooms.

If these kinds of things bother you, you may want to stay elsewhere.

As I’ve stayed here, I can say that these things DIDN’T bother me. I enjoyed my stay very much – I was flown up from Sydney for a job interview, and it was my very first visit to Alice Springs.

I was far too busy sightseeing to worry about the 1980s pastels in the rooms!

Which brings me to one of the best things about the Desert Rose: its central location.

It’s a very short walk to many of Alice Springs’ best restaurants and cafes, shops, its two largest supermarkets, and attractions such as Anzac Hill, the Todd River, Adelaide House and the historic old gaol.

You’re also not far from Todd Mall, which is home to most of Alice Springs’ Aboriginal art galleries, bookshops and lots of alfresco dining.

A short walk from the hotel is the Ghan Train station and the Greyhound Bus station.

Learn more about accommodation ratings, expectations and experiences in outback Australia. Check out our Outback Accommodation page.


Desert Rose InnThe Desert Rose offers several different room options.

The budget backpacker room are a little more upmarket than what you get in most backpackers. These rooms include a shower, two single beds, free bed linen and towels, a shared toilet in the hallways, a desk, air conditioning and heating.

The rooms are basic and comfortable, providing a pleasant respite from travels.

The next step up are the budget rooms:

  • The Budget Twin with Shower, the Budget Double with Shower, and the Budget Ensuite with shower.

With all rooms except the Budget Ensuite, you’ll need to share the toilet in the hallway.

The Budget Twin features two single beds, a refrigerator, an electric kettle, and all of the amenities of the backpacker rooms.

The Budget Double features all of the amenities of the Twin, but with one double bed. Again, the toilet is shared.

Finally, the Budget Ensuite features all of the amenities of the Twin and Double rooms with a choice of bed sizes, as well as an ensuite shower and toilet.

I stayed in one of these rooms when I first visited Alice Springs. My room had a television and was located on the ground floor near the swimming pool, which is the location for all of the Budget Ensuite rooms.

Single backpacker room rates begin at $45 and traditional room rates begin at $80. There are several rooms available in the mid-range rate between $45 and $80 that offer twin showers.

*These rates are offered on the Desert Rose Inn website, so in-person or telephone rates might be higher.

Get the best rates and read reviews.


Pool area at the Desert Rose Inn, Alice Springs

There’s a salt water swimming pool, a grassy area for relaxing, a guest patio, a 24 hour communal kitchen, free barbecue facilities, a communal lounge and television room, a pool table, a guest laundry, onsite parking and a luggage holding room.

The other great thing is the communal kitchen.

I travel a lot for work, and I really like to be able to cook my own meals rather than eat restaurant food or take away (that’s Australian for ‘take out’) all the time. Using the communal kitchen is also a terrific way to meet other travellers, too.

The hotel is also equipped with wireless Internet access which is free of charge.

There’s also a magazine and book exchange, and there is plenty of information on hand about tours and activities in Central Australia.

The hotel’s Tour and Information Desk provides travellers with information about tours of Kings Canyon, Kata Tjuta (the Olgas), Uluru/Ayers Rock, the East and West MacDonnell Ranges, Palm Valley and of course, Alice Springs.

Check out what others say about the Desert Rose Inn.

Overall Impressions

The Desert Rose Inn is not a luxury hotel.

If you decide to stay here, set your sights on clean, comfortable but basic accommodation and that is exactly what you’ll get.

However, it’s hard to beat the convenient location,with easy access to all of the most popular attractions and restaurants in the area.

This was the place I stayed on my very first visit to Alice Springs, and years later, I have no hesitation in recommending it to budget travellers.

Have you stayed at the Desert Rose Inn?

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