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Where to stay in Port Douglas?

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These forums have been an invaluable help as I plan my trip to Australia this coming September. We are flying into Sydney, staying for five nights, then flying up to Cairns. Based on all the research I've done, we've decided to stay in Port Douglas, and we'll be there for 6 nights.

I've narrowed it down to three hotels that sound right for us and would love any advice. We had thought about staying at the Sheraton (we are loyal Starwood members and it's always great to earn points) but from what I've read, it's kind of run down and has mold and mildew odor issues.

We don't want to rent a car, so that's one thing to consider. We'd like to be within walking distance of the beach and the main part of town to go to restaurants. We live in NYC and are used to walking a lot. And it seems like we can sign up for things like dive trips and excursions that will pick us up at most hotels--but please correct me if I've got this wrong!

Here are the three:

Thala Beach Lodge: http://www.thalabeach.com.au/experiences/private-beach/ This one sounds great, and very unique. My one concern is that it is more remote, so we'd likely have to take a taxi to get to restaurants, etc, so I'm leaning towards ruling this one out.

Shantara Resort & Spa: http://www.shantara.com.au/

Meridian: http://www.portdouglasmeridian.com/rates.html

Would love any and all advice if anyone has stayed at these three-or has a different one to suggest!

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