Nothing screams ‘good old fashioned road trip’ like a night away in a retro old-school motel. They’re the perfect place to stay when your wallet’s feeling lighter than you’d like, and don’t come with the hassles of a major hotel chain—you know, like waiting 10 minutes for a lift only for it to be full when it finally arrives.
But the best part of motels has to be that highway heritage we all know and love; the kind you associate with classic Aussie rock songs blasting through your radio as you speed your way down a dusty dirt road.
Of course, if you’re yet to experience the wonders of staying in a motel filled with ‘50s memorabilia, there really is no time like the present. With the weather cooling down, it’s the perfect time to roll down your windows and belt out some Acca Dacca on your way to destinations unknown. Here’s our top picks for the best retro motels on the Gold Coast.
La Costa Motel
Located on the southern end of the Gold Coast, La Costa Motel offers that laid back, beach shack atmosphere, without having to fork out for a beachfront Airbnb. The motel even offers guests the free use of their vintage bicycles, so you can swing by the local surf club in style. Oh, and did we mention the complimentary breakfast basket? Free food is always a win in our book.
For a modern take on that old-school motel style, book yourself a stay at the Mysa Motel. This luxury boutique getaway is ideally located along the Gold Coast Highway, making it the perfect place to spend the night if you’re heading way down south. The motel has been lovingly restored from its former digs using recycled materials, and comes complete with retro neon signs, bright pink pool wares and inspired vintage décor. Park your Cadillac out front and settle in for an afternoon sundowner.
Blue Heron Motel
Set just a few blocks away from the beautiful Gold Coast beachfront, Blue Heron Motel offers a clean and modern coastal getaway. Its spacious rooms are all uniquely designed, and go heavy on the fresh, surf shack vibes. The motel comes complete with beach side picnic hampers and an optional bike hire, so you can soak up that salty sea air with a gentle ride along the shorefront. Sounds to us like a little taste of paradise.
The Pink Hotel
One night at The Pink Hotel and you’ve well and truly earned yourself a spot as an honorary member of the Pink Ladies. The newly renovated 1950s-style boutique hotel is an art-lover’s dream, with every room featuring a unique combination of mid-century and Scandanavian themes. Prepare to snap plenty of pics of their retro neon signage and laid-back rooftop bar—not to mention the oh-so-smooth velvet furniture. We’re big fans.
Looking for more local escapes? Treat yourself to Surfers Paradise's brand-new five-star resort and spa.
Image credit: Mysa Motel, The Pink Hotel, Blue Heron Motel