Duncan Esplin - "Dunk from Bunk"
Bunk - Surfers Paradise
With the 1st Birthday of Bunk - Surfers Paradise this weekend we decided to catch up with one of the accommodation's awesome crew to find out what makes this hostel so great!
What is the name of your hostel? Where are you located, and how long have you been open?
We’re Bunk Backpackers, Surfers Paradise located on the beautiful Gold Coast, 150 meters away from the beach. We’ve been open for exactly a year on the 24th September 2017!
What sets you apart from other hostels in the area?
I'd say our location is a huge driving force behind what Bunk is, the way the whole property is designed to cater for international backpackers. The common areas, kitchen, pool, spa, outdoor spaces are huge.
Would you say that you're one of the newest in the area?
Definitely as we’re only at the end of our first year, the way we've designed our rooms as well is a huge standout.
How do you get to and from the bus station or airport?
The bus station is next door, it's our friendly neighbour, literally 10 meters from the door is the Greyhound stop. Connection bus from the airport takes you right to our front door here, as well.
our location is a huge driving force behind what Bunk is..
Is it cheap to get from the airport?
The cheapest way to get to or from the airport is to pick up a $10 Go Card which is available at 7 eleven and at the airport itself and you can get the tram. Otherwise you can get the connection bus for 22 bucks.
What types of rooms are available at Bunk Surfers Paradise and how long do people usually stay?
Our average stay is up to about seven days at the moment. We get a lot of people arriving and getting stuck in Surfers and loving it so much that they can't leave. The rooms vary from four shares with en-suite and balcony, six shares with en-suite and balcony, eight shares with en-suite and balcony.
We also offer private rooms that can be rented out as well. They're on the top floor with ocean views.
Is there a best time to visit? Are there high or low season events that travellers should be aware of?
Summer is the busiest period for us. Everyone comes to the Sunshine State and hits the Gold Coast. We've got the Bleach Festival. That happens in October, the Gold Coast Show that happens in September and then all the festivals that happen around Byron Bay throughout festival season as well. These all bring a lot of people to the Gold Coast. We've got Gold Coast Wildfire festival too.
Do people have to worry about schoolies time when booking Bunk?
Not at the moment. Bunk is exclusive to backpackers.
What facilities do you have on offer at your hostel for guests?
As you come into the hostel we've got our giant reception that's recently been renovated. We’ve got a info desk and upstairs you've got our TV room, games area, outdoor area with barbecue, pool, spa, sundeck and our fully decked out kitchen with all utensils supplied. We also have lockers, fridges and more!
What time is the kitchen open for people wanting to cook their own meals?
Our kitchen is 6am till 10pm every day. It's huge, we've got six hobs, three giant sinks, range hoods, and a huge dining area for everyone that makes food themselves, so it never gets too congested.
Where is the closest supermarket or 24 hour convenience store?
Directly across the road for the closest supermarket underneath the Novotel, it's a Woolworths. On the other side there is a 24 hour IGA which is also next to a pharmacy.
When checking in, what should guests have ready?
Passports and credit cards, and get ready to cop a big smile and a bit of a joke on the way in from an enthusiastic Duncan.
Do you offer free luggage storage?
Free luggage storage is in our reception area. It's a locked room and is located behind the reception desk so we can control who goes through.
Do you offer early check-ins or late check-outs?
We do Early check-ins whenever we can. If housekeeping's smashing through the floors, we can get people in as early as 11 o'clock. It just all depends on how housekeeping moved during that day. Most days, nearly every day we're checking in floor by floor as opposed to a single check-in time.
Do you offer any free stuff?
The minute you check in to Bunk Backpackers you get two gigabytes of free WIFI. Free high-speed internet that's accessible everywhere in the hostel, from the rooms to the kitchen to the hot tub. There's Free breaky every morning from 7"30am - 9:30am which consists of tea, coffee, toast and cereal and we’ve got events on most nights too.
We do pub crawls, Saturday and Wednesday night. We do flip cup Friday, trivia Tuesday, and barbecue Mondays. We've got discounts at all bars that you can go to in Surfers as well
What would you say that guests find most surprising about Bunk Surfers?
The beds. We've got unique pod-style beds that create privacy and give each traveller their own little space. A lot of the feedback we get is from people that walk right up to the room and see the huge bathroom, the air con, the ocean views, the beds, and they just lose it. We've got power points, lights all in the beds. Lockers, safes and there's also USB points in the safes for people to charge belongings, as well.
A lot of the feedback we get is from people that walk right up to the room and see the huge bathroom, the air con, the ocean views, the beds, and they just lose it.
What's the most popular tour or activity that people do at the Gold Coast?
I'd say on a one-day trip to the Gold Coast when people arrive, they head down to Cavill Avenue, do the Surfers Paradise sign, head up to the Q1 building for views looking across the whole Gold Coast and then down to Burleigh Heads for a session on the beach on the Burleigh Hill. You can watch the fire twirling and the bongo drums, get amongst the markets down there as well on a Sunday about three o'clock. You can kick on till about six or seven and then they've got bars all around the place.
Do you offer work for accommodation at your hostel?
We've got a big work for accommodation team in one of the nicest rooms in the hostel. There’s a wide choice of jobs for everyone. From party reps to house keepers.
What's your favourite closest late-night eatery?
Probably the best late-night eatery is Brooklyn Depot, across the road. They've got American-style burgers, shakes, chicken wings, ribs. It's a real winner.
Do you have a funny story about the hostel that you can share with us?
When Cyclone Debbie came through the east coast of Australia, the wind was howling through and the rain was coming down, but it was pub crawl night and the Bunk tribe just steamed full ball ahead and threw on their shirts and went out with the banners and brought about 30 people on the pub crawl. The crawl usually takes about a hundred people combined with all the other hostels.
We went and partied in the rain real hard and everyone came back wet so they had to give out free towels to everyone just to dry themselves off. Cyclone Debbie pub crawl, for sure. Strongest night we've had.