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“A wandering Brit's opinion”
Review of Blanket Bay

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Blanket Bay
Certificate of Excellence
London
Level Contributor
17 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 137 helpful votes
“A wandering Brit's opinion”
Reviewed 7 April 2006

We stayed 3 nights. It is expensive. But it is fabulous. The accommodation is very high class (even in the standard rooms). The communal rooms are spacious and have great facilities (reading areas, fireplaces, bars, pool table and other bar games; cinema TV and DvDs, wonderful views). The spa and gym are high class and the in-house masseuse is a master of her art. The food is very good. Our experience of the service is that it was consistently superb and the staff are helpful and great fun. We therefore find other reviewers' comments to the contrary difficult to understand.

The lodge is in Glenorchy - the area is remote and stunningly beautiful. A trip up the Dart River is a must. There is good hiking and mountain biking in the area. Sky-diving from Glenorchy (landing on the hotel grounds if you want) is great fun and less busy than in Queenstown. That said, Queenstown is only 45-50 minutes away. As others have said there is also the option of helicopter tours from the property (at considerable expense- we got a heli-tour out of Queenstown airport and saved a fair bit on the Blanket Bay price).

The age range of the guests while we were there was 30-70. There were some Brits and Aussies, and a couple of New Zealanders, but more Americans. There is some socialising over drinks but meals are not communal.

All in all we loved this place, and would happily have stayed longer.

  • Stayed February 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank First_Wandering_Brit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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206 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (55)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
109 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 144 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 October 2005

Blanket Bay is a stunning lodge in every way. The location is breathtaking, our accommodation in a Lodge Suite was magnificent, with plush, comfortable sofas, fireplace, gorgeous bed and huge bathroom. The staff in particular were exceptional, from the welcome and throughout our 2 night stay they were incredibly professional and very relaxed at the same time, making the whole experience casual and easy. It is a place where you can just unwind (like we did) or do numerous adventurous activities (but be prepared to pay big bucks for any of these) The food at dinner was excellent, if a little fussy. We wanted a bit more simplicity at times to let the flavours shine through. The lodge is, however, quite expensive for what is included, and we couldn't help but feel an "all-inclusive" policy would have been the way to go, considering the remote location. Lunch is extra and they really slug you for the wine. Be prepared to pay considerably more than the base rate. It's a shame to be thinking about money during your stay at a lodge as gorgeous as this, but with rates this high, it's hard not to when it is very expensive to begin with. All in all though, Blanket Bay is an excellent choice for those wanting something very special. It was an experience we will always remember.

  • Stayed October 2005
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank bluebotty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 12 June 2005

thought we were going to stay at almost the best hotel in the world from all the great comments I had heard about. It was rainy, windy and worst of all we were the only ones staying by the looks of it. I guess it was off season, but if its so popular why arnt there other guests all year round? Something is funny there and we couldnt quite get it.

  • Stayed April 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 17 March 2005

Blanket Bay is true luxury - easily the most (self?) indulgent hotel/lodge I have ever stayed in and certainly the most expensive.

You DO get what you pay for though. The natural beauty surrounding the resort is stunning. The rooms are incredible - we had a chalet suite with an enormous outdoor deck overlooking the lake, a very large newly finished bathroom with double vanity and bath (and a shower that converts to a steam room), and wonderfully decorated bedding and furniture - it also had a fireplace.

The facilities are excellent. We took their mountain bikes (no charge) and went for a spectacular ride to the nearby town of Glenorchy where the views towards to snow-capped alps are just stunning. There's pool table, large TV with new DVD's to watch, telescopes, books, open bar for beer / soft drink - the real highlight was the health area. The jacuzzi is phenomenal - open the french doors and, while sitting in the jacuzzi, you can watch a water feature trickle down towards the lake with soaring mountains just the other side. There's a men's and women's steam room, great showers with Molton Brown products, excellent gym equipment - I really can't complain. If you want to pay more (and I mean, MORE), you can fly to Milford Sound on a small plane, jet boat up the lake, helicopter to another part of the area - but be prepared to cough up around NZ$400 for the flight, or an astonishing $2000 for a chartered helicopter (from memory).

The food is extremely good. Expect fine modern NZ cuisine presented & served in a manner only the best restaurants would do. The staff are friendly & helpful (although looked a little bored). The wine list is impressive, the food tasty, and service outstanding. (Note: The wine you choose is added to your bill - the meal included in the rate, of course)

So who should go? Expect older, married couples. As a 26 year old unmarried Australian male travelling with a US friend, we did feel a little out of place. During the open bar (any cocktail you want, and as many as you want, part of your price), you'll probably chat with the other guests - most were married 50+ couples while we were there and, while all friendly and interesting, it did feel a tad awkward. We even got a (friendlish) comment "I wouldn't think this is your scene" comment (!)

Is it worth $2000 a room? No. Nothing is, in my opinion. But it comes close, and if have saved a bit of money on airfares or cheap meals during your stay in NZ, it very well could be worth indulging for one night (like we did). Staying in such a beautiful part of the world (once again, the scenery really is incredible) probably makes this worth your while. You will feel relaxed, happy and you may even feel like, for just one night perhaps, you're a celebrity. They treat you great, you'll get an awesome night's sleep on one of the most comfortable beds I've ever been on, and you'll never go hungry or thirsty. So....why not?

  • Stayed March 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
13 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 16 November 2004

I am a twenty year subscriber to Andrew Harper's Hideaway Report, in which I've read about New Zealand's Super Lodges, including Blanket Bay. At $2000/night for our suite, I had high expectations and was looking forward to visiting after enjoying Huka, Paratiho, Wharekauhau. We were very disappointed. The lodge is located 50 minutes outside of Queenstown (too far to enjoy all of Queenstown's beauty) at the end of the lake known for bad and windy weather (Blanket Bay got its name because sheep farmers had to use blankets as a wind break). It was too windy to leave our doors unlocked even when closed, and I nearly was blown off my horse the next morning. We arrived to a dark and cavernous, lifeless, facility (too expensive for anyone other than wealthy Americans) bearing no hint of New Zealand and resembling a nice but sterile home in the American West. I've received warmer greetings at self-serve filling stations. After unpacking (no drapes on the upper windows to keep out the light, so be ready for an early morning!), we ventured downstairs for cocktails with the only other two guests and very rude French bartender. It gets worse, but because they do not refund UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, including early checkout, they really don't have to care about you. I'm sure most of their visitors only come one time. Try Victoria Shaw's Eichhart's hotel in town, or better yet, rent a very nice Queenstown condo for about $150/night. You'll actually meet some locals! One of the World's great rip-offs.

Helpful?
24 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 March 2004

We just spent three days of our honeymoon at Blanket Bay. The place may just be paradise! We can't say enough about our experience -- from soup to nuts, they have it all and have paid attention to every last detail.
The accommodations are top notch -- the most incredible bathroom we have ever seen on vacation! The service is impeccable and the food superb (the resident chef has won multiple culinary awards in NZ). If you can swing it, definitely make the additional splurge for a Lodge Suite or Chalet Suite -- you won't be disappointed! We are already looking forward to our next opportunity to vacation at Blanket Bay....

Helpful?
4 Thank JAH62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Blanket Bay

Property: Blanket Bay
Address: Rapid 4191 Glenorchy Queenstown Road | PO Box 35, Glenorchy 9350, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > South Island > Otago Region > Glenorchy
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Speciality Lodging in Glenorchy
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Blanket Bay 5*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This stunning backcountry retreat sits on the lakeshore 45 minutes outside Queenstown in the Southern Alps New Zealand. Lofty beamed ceilings, rock fireplaces and vast picture windows frame the heroic stone and timber lodge housing the Great Room, Den, Game Room, Gym, spa and several indoor/outdoor dining venues.Thirteen rooms offer every conceivable amenity. Activities include an outdoor lap pool, bush walks, fly-fishing, jet boating, horse riding and scenic heli-flights ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blanket Bay Hotel Queenstown

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