Is the Red Castle Motel the worst hotel in Perth?

Not so long ago I headed down to Perth to catch up with friends and catch a game of cricket between Australia and Sri Lanka.

I arrived late so looked online for a cheap hotel close to the airport to see me through until the morning where I had a meeting in the city before heading off to spend a few nights with some friends out in the suburbs.

Perth has a notorious reputation for overcharging on hotel rooms and giving pretty shoddy service as well so when I found the Red Castle Motel was only $120 (it was on special) I quickly booked a room.

Yes you read that correctly, $120 (3,700 baht) is considered dirt cheap for Perth. For this price I was obviously not expecting anything too flash but what I got even surprised me!

When I arrived there was only one person working. Through her broken English she told me that she had me in room 12 which was not good and not where I was meant to be. I asked her what was wrong with the room. She said nothing was wrong with the room but next door there were six Aboriginal people all sharing a room. (They turned out to be New Zealand Maoris).

Not wanting to be next door to six people no matter what colour or nationality they were I asked what had happened to the room I was supposed to be in. She said it had not been cleaned yet and if I wanted to wait she would clean it for me. No problems I replied and said I would go and find some dinner while she cleaned and would come back later.

When I came back she gave me my key and said everything was done. On first impressions the room looked super old, smelt bad and had shoddy looking furniture but hey, this is Perth and it was only $120 so I was not too fussed.

Here are some photos from when I first walked in. Things looked almost half decent.

This was my view out the front towards reception. No cars in the car park then but plenty at 5am the following morning!

This is the view from my back verandah.

Lucky the view was so bad I did not try and enjoy it on the super airy bench seat they had thoughtfully provided!

Once the reception/cleaner lady had left I started to look at the room a little closer. It was a classic!

The single bed in the room had this wooden thing hanging down where it was stuck tight. Many a sore head or feet would have happened if I had to sleep there.

Thankfully I was by myself so had the double which magically turned from a bed to a boomerang as soon as I lay on it.

Lighting was a bit of a problem when two out of the three lights in the room looked like this!

Not much of a problem when all you were planning on doing was watching a bit of TV before bed. Whoops! Hang on, the TV did not work!

I am sure the microwave would have worked had it been there but alas only the instructions were left behind.

They thoughtfully did provide some glassware. A very nice matching set I must admit.

Another nice touch was the half bottle of ultimate repair and gloss treatment that was on the bench.

The highlight though was the bathroom. The tiling had obviously been done by a one armed Eskimo.

The mirror was, well look for yourself. I don’t even want to think what may have made those stains.

The best bit though was the actual toilet. It didn’t work. Yep that’s correct, no water in the cistern and yes I did check the tap and the valve.

Surprisingly I slept fairly well considering all of the above. Well I did until 5.30 am when the owner of the F150 truck parked outside my door decided it was time to start the day which began with warming up his engine for five minutes. I staggered from my bed with not much on and was halfway to use the toilet that didn’t work when who should burst into my room but the reception/cleaning lady!

Without blinking an eye at my immodesty she yells out loudly “you late! Everyone gone airport. You will miss plane. Hurry must!” I explained that I flew in last night and have no plans to fly out so soon. She apologised and said she thought I was a mine worker starting a new shift up north. I thanked her for her concern and continued on my way to the bathroom wondering all along how I was going to go about completing my morning ablutions.


September 11, 2012 at 1pm and the hotel is on fire. This photo is from 10 news. Reports coming in just now say that it is under control and no one was injured.

29 responses to “Is the Red Castle Motel the worst hotel in Perth?

  1. Pingback: Is the Red Castle Motel the worst hotel in Perth? | Isaan Five O

  2. Some interesting reminiscing and history on the red castle motel can be found here.

  3. Classic.

    Makes you want to go there just to experience the badness.

  4. Think this might beat it by a few fleas

  5. That is a classic! It’s a miners stop before flying out. Your sheets must have been nice 🙂

  6. He he. Almost beat some of the Thai hotels I have had the pleasure to stay at in my 15 years in Thailand!
    I thought Australia was a developed country 😀

    • Let’s just say that the mining boom is not all roses in a place like Perth! $120 is 3,700 baht which according to right now would get me a choice of 7 different 5 star hotels in Bangkok. Two of them being ranked in the top 10 for the city.

  7. The Perth hotel emphasises the great value you can get in Thailand. I don’t think I’ve ever come close to staying in a Thai hotel as bad as that and I’ve stayed in some fairly cheap ones. For 3,700 baht you could book into Udon Thani’s top hotel for two nights or the place I use which is not too bad, for 10 nights. That’s a world of difference in money terms.

  8. Wow, that is REALLY bad. But the lady seems awfully helpful… Also, I loved the pictures of your kids taking the rabbit for a walk!

    • Hi Ariana,
      Thanks for stopping by. I love reading your blog and I hope you can get a little enjoyment from mine. Would you believe that the rabbit walk was actually a run! I never knew they could move so fast!

  9. Heh.
    Cistern. Beautiful.

  10. 120AUD is like half months rental (with utilities electricity, water, internet) for a one bedroom apartment in Ubon. I am not even going to start on the room condition and I am sure they don’t meet fire and health codes. I am glad it was only one night stay.

    • Sure is and I have stayed in those apartments and the standard is way way above the red castle hotel in Perth!

  11. There is another post from better times. The wine list may have deteriorated since then.

  12. Was the price due to the location being close to the cricket game? Still, I have never seen anything look this bad.

    • No not at all! It was abut 4kms away from the game plus it was 4 nights before the game actually took place. Just a run down place facing demolition with the owners taking advantage of the mining boom.

  13. My wife’s jaw dropped significantly after showing this post and then telling her the cost. It was cheap by Perth standards though – in more ways than one. Not going to make the top 130 hotels in Perth on Trip Advisor I reckon.

    • Yes it is cheap by Perth standards which is really saying something! Last month I was in Adelaide where I had a chose of 4 star hotels in the city centre for $99 – $149.
      Speaking of trip advisor, thanks for the reminder – I am off to post my review there!

  14. Let it burn…

  15. nina, pretty ballerina

    i luv the red castle but my sister told me it has burnt down….sure it was divey but for proximity to the dome and casino and a hugggge room it cant be beaten….i would have loved to see somebody reform it to its glory of yestertear…..sad. 🙁

    • It almost burnt down but the fire was contained to the top floor of the tallest block so there is still hope for a full restoration!

  16. Pingback: A flying visit to Darwin with my little girl | Family life in rural Thailand & Australia

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  18. Pingback: The Red Castle « Wyrmlog

  19. I live on the street in Lathlain which has the Red Castle at the end of it. I’d never been inside so found your post very interesting.

    After the fire, the building lay abandoned for almost two years. I think the owners had trouble getting planning permission to redevelop or just didn’t have the money. Squatters and drug addicts moved in and crime in the area went up.

    In the last twelve months they pulled it all down, and started building apartments in its place – they kept the red brick turret for some reason. Apparently they’re mostly sold already which seems a bit weird, as there’s a huge oversupply of apartments in Perth.

    It’s still under construction but you can see what it’s going to be like here

    • Hi Crudminer, thanks for taking the time to say hi. Is your street Midgley? Many years ago – way back in 1993, while I was at Boarding school I used to spend most weekends on the corner of Midgley and Gallipoli staying at a friends house. used to walk past that power station and the red castle overtime we walked to the train station.
      Great location for apartments. Will be interesting to see how it all pans out.

  20. Pingback: red castle – castle of dreams | The Claude Mono Blog

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