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“A cut above”

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Doolan's Country Retreat
Ranked #3 of 52 Rotorua B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Singapore, Singapore
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A cut above”
Reviewed 2 March 2014

The 4 nights we spent at Doolan's Country Retreat were a highlight of our stay in NZ. Our hostess Christine went above and beyond to make us welcome, comfortable and well fed. Great continental breakfast choices plus a different cooked option (all yummy!) every day was a good start. Christine's advice on things to do/places to visit was excellent, and she did much of the booking for us. Our room was perfectly clean, the décor was lovely, wonderful big shower and the bed most comfortable. Free WiFi was available in all the (at least 4!) beautiful sitting areas of the house. We actually felt like we were friends of the family rather than paying guests, and enjoyed every bit of our stay. If you like comfort, peaceful and beautiful surrounds, and a friendly personal touch, this is the place for you!

Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank jude2909
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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295 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 (56)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Any
English first
Richmond, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 March 2014 via mobile

On our 6week trip to Aus & NZ we booked 2 nights on line from the UK on the strength of TA reports! What a mistake. We checked out after the first night! If this is what the B&B crowd think is good then they need to wake up in 2014
Positives:- the setting of the property on high ground & the friendly welcome.
Negatives:- the above is irrelevant if the business basics are poor! Bedrooms are tiny, the double bed too small, the shower-room minute, no wi-fi reception in the bedroom, the toilet cistern leaked noisily, no room temperature control( except for the window), sound insulation is appalling (the next room emptied their wardrobe at 7-30 & we were all woken up) & decor is a bit "old lady-ish." But the straw that broke the camels back was the awful breakfast (another TA bum-steer)! We joined the other 3 couples at the communal table, which had orange juice, cereal, toast & a little fruit & were asked by the wife of one of the other guests who seemed to be helping out (& what on earth is that all about)..."would we like a mushroom omelette?" We answered "no thanks". And that was it! Nothing else! No bacon, no other egg options, no sausage, no meats, no tomato, no cheese. Nothing else. What a sham! We left after this & old Christine who runs the place had the cheek to keep our $220 for the second night! We checked into Hamurana Lodge 2 miles away & at $300 for B&B it was lovely to re-enter the professional world again! Come on you B&B crowd open your eyes to modern standards and don't write about the donkeys!

Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank TShYorks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
bedfordstreet, Owner at Doolan's Country Retreat, responded to this review, 13 March 2014
Thank you for your review of your stay. I am, however, somewhat surprised at the negative comments made. I always greet my guests with a warm welcome and pride myself on the 146 Excellent and 5 Very Good Reviews I have received to date. I do not take these reviews and accolades for granted, and always strive to offer my clients the very best during their stay.

On arrival you were shown to the White Doves Room and made no comment that you were unhappy with the size of the bed or the room and its décor. Whilst you complain in your review that your bed was too small, it was, as advertised, a standard double bed. Other rooms with larger beds were available at the time that you booked, but you did not choose one of these.

I regret that there was a temporary problem with the toilet cistern, but such things occur from time to time, and as a result of being made aware of this I had the problem rectified within a couple of hours.

B&Bs such as mine are not purpose-built, commercial accommodation establishments. Our key point of difference is that we invite guests to share our home, and to engage with us as hosts as well as with fellow guests. We pride ourselves in offering a high standard of accommodation in beautiful surroundings, and above all in offering a level of service and warmth of hospitality that is second to none. I am saddened that you were immune to all of this, and can only surmise that you have misunderstood the nature of B&Bs.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stillwater, Minnesota
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 February 2014

This is a truly lovely place; a bit north of Rotorua, definitely out of the sulfur odor area. Christine is fabulous, very welcoming and very helpful. (Also, we found that the mention of her name had a magical effect at the Rotorua museum, which is maybe a whole other story.) Breakfast was fabulous. The grounds around the house are fabulous. Christine was so helpful, she knows where everything is, the best things to do, and she made our visit such fun. It was so comfortable there. On top of all that, we had the best view of the night sky, which just about made the trip. Truly cannot say enough good things.

Room Tip: All the rooms are good; the house is up a long drive and away from any noise. It was dark and quie...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank M55082
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kennebunks, Maine
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviewed 22 February 2014

The sign and driveway to Doolan's Country Retreat is very welcoming just like Christine!!
Christine made us feel right at home from the moment we enter her lovely home.Gardens and grounds enjoyed by all...Could have stayed for a week.Room very clean with a superior bathroom.
Christine is very helpful with activity ideas and any questions about the area. We actually had "takeaway" with Christine one night and loved every minute

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank sandyj70
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Surrey, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviewed 14 February 2014

We stayed with Christine for 3 nights and wished we could have stayed longer. We felt very very comfortable in her home. She is a wealth of local knowledge with great information on local sights, things to do, and restaurants to visit. Unlike some places we stayed in there is free wifi here. The garden is beautiful .

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sandy W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver
Level 6 Contributor
233 reviews
77 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 February 2014

My husband and I recently spent three nights in the quail suite at this lovely little B&B. The room is bright and airy and well equipped including a good sized walk-in closet and a delightful little patio right outside the bedroom. The grounds are beautiful with a well tended garden area and great views as well. Although about a 10 minute drive back into Rotorua, the drive is quick and it was nice to be out of town in the quiet of the countryside.

What really makes this inn so good is Christine - the inn keeper. Christine was ever helpful with directions and suggestions of what to do and what not to do while we were there. She had advice about hikes and sites and even where to park while in town. We got the feeling that she just couldn't do enough for us - much appreciated.

Bathroom could stand an update, though we understand that this will be done soon. Also, a chair for the dressing table/desk would have been useful but really these are very small points.

Room Tip: I believe the room we were in, the quail's suite, is the largest and from a peek a boo view we h...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank SpikeVancouver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 February 2014

Our hostess Christine was more than gracious and helpful, she was also very personal. After talking with her, this property becomes even more colorful and special. In her spacious garden, each plant was given care and heart. This would be a place that I would love to get married at. Rabbits running around on the spacious grass ground surrounded by roses, orchids and trees. Each morning I felt like waking up in this dreamlike fairy tale place, it was serenity that I found in this place. Christine was more than happy to recommend any restaurant or attraction, she even helped us on booking as well. It was such a lovely stay and hope more people will get to enjoy this place.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Yushan M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Doolan's Country Retreat

Property: Doolan's Country Retreat
Address: 165 Dalbeth Road, Rotorua 3072, New Zealand
Phone Number:
Region: New Zealand > North Island > Bay of Plenty Region > Rotorua District > Rotorua
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 52 B&Bs / Inns in Rotorua
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 4
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