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“Paradise in Rotorua”

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Doolan's Country Retreat
Ranked #3 of 52 Rotorua B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 26 April 2014

We had An amazing stay at Doolan's and were extremely well looked after by the ever energetic and caring Christine. We were extremely spoilt and thoroughly enjoyed the Breakfast while having a nice chat to Christine, who also sat with is and spoke to is about places to visit. Christine has a lot of knowledge about the places to visit around Rotorua and fun things to do.
The accommodation is beautiful. Well laid out, spacious rooms, beautiful mountain views, amazing nature and some farm animals. Did you ever think you would see Ricky Martin in NZ? Well he is one of the Cheeky Donkey's at the accommodation who is always looking to get a good feed from you.
We were the only couple booked in over the 3 nights, hence got to choose any room we wanted. It was hard to choose as every room is unique with different views.
Tip: if you or your kids would enjoy feeding the donkeys - take a bag of carrots or so e fruit along. If you enjoy feeding the quail family - take a loaf of white bread. ( they quails do not eat brown bread. Lol)

I will definitely visit Doolan's again and stay longer. Hopefully with more family and friends later. Thank you for the best holiday stay ever Christine. You are an inspiration.

Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank Sanjeeva07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 21 April 2014

I must say, I have never ever been to a bed and breakfast and at the time I was looking for accommodation in Rotorua, everything was fully booked and I came across this Bed & Breakfast and it was the only place available that could accommodate us for 3 nights. We have never stayed in a B&B and all I can say is, I dont think I will ever stay in a hotel again, my first impression of the house was "WOW" and "OMG" I have never seen such a beautiful house. Very clean, very big and spacious. Our host, Christine Doolan is an absolute dear, such a welcoming hostess and so down to earth. She is a warm and loving lady and we bonded with her ever so easy. She is a very professional woman but at the same time, made you feel more than welcome in her home, We stayed in the Quail Room and it was a dream room, The furnishing is just stunning, the bed was just so comfortable and the ensuite was beautiful. The section of land was amazing and with stunning panoramic views of green hills, Lake Rotorua, Mt Tarawera and many other things. We also had the opportunity to feed her donkeys (Otis Redding, Shania Twain and Ricky Martin). We were just so at home with Christine and didnt want the weekend to end. Breakfasts were different every day and I could not fault the food, with her selection of cereals, home made jams and a hot main, that filled us up for majority of the day, presentation was beautiful and taste was exquisite. I am really going to miss Doolans Country Retreat B&B, If I ever go back to Rotorua, that will always be my number one choice for accommodation. An enchanting house, enchanting views and an enchanting hostess. Thank you Christine for that amazing experience . xx Darcy and Stuart.

Room Tip: All Rooms are beautiful but my preferred choice is "THE QUAIL ROOM"
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank darcycapps
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 April 2014

From the moment my husband and I drove up the long, narrow driveway to the top of the hill, and Christine welcomed us with cheese and crackers on the terrace overlooking Rotorua, I fell in love with Doolan's Country Retreat. Located on top of a geothermal steam vent hill, Doolan's is surrounded by pastures and hillside gardens. Yes, we stayed in places with bigger rooms, bigger beds, and bigger bathrooms, but none could beat the experience of this lovely home on the hilltop, with its gardens, mules, and fabulous views of the stars at night. (Christine, who was so helpful with tips on where to go in the area, also turned out to be a great guide to the stars in the Southern sky.) The house is so welcoming and beautifully furnished, and we felt at home immediately. The bedrooms, and beds, come in different sizes, so choose carefully. A delicious breakfast is served at a long communal table where you can meet the other guests and feast among continental breakfast items and a hot home-cooked meal. Any time of day, you can relax in any of the several seating areas where there is Wifi available, or outside on the terrace where you can enjoy the view of the town, lake, and surrounding mountains. (We could even see the Te Puia geyser erupting on the other side of Rotoua.) Be sure to pay a visit to hand feed the three resident mules! Doolan's Country Retreat is about a 15 minute drive outside of Rotorua, and well worth it to really experience the beautiful countryside. If you want a beautiful, peaceful place to stay on the North Island, with gorgeous views and a gracious hostess, then we highly recommend Doolan's!

Room Tip: Read the descriptions of the rooms carefully to choose the right one for you. They are all lovely...
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank NLSBoston
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 April 2014

This is definitely the most memorable place we stayed during our 10 day trip in New Zealand. The scenery is just stunning and the rooms are all tastefully decorated. Christine is a wonder host and I cannot thank her more for the hospitality she has shown. My 4 year old son was sick on his way to Doolan's and he was vomiting for 3 days. I stayed behind with him while my family and friends went on with our scheduled activities. I very much enjoyed the tranquility during that 3 days and felt lucky I had chosen such a beautiful place to stay. I never get bored with the scenery (and Christine's offer of a glass of white surely helps!) and there is a lot of space to hang out and walk around. My son kept dirtying the beddings and gave a lot of extra work for her. Yet, she made us feel so much like home.
And star gazing at night was amazing. Christine could give you a guided tour on the galaxy also!
For a B&B, this is definitely the top notch. And it is one of the attraction for me to visit New Zealand again.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Winnie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 April 2014

We don't normally stay at B & Bs but we will be doing more of it now. We just stayed one night but we wished it could have been longer. The room was gorgeous and the whole house is so homely and clean. Christine makes an amazing breakfast and gave us all the info we needed to plan our days excursions. We felt very welcome and relaxed. Waking up to see a rabbit and quails out the window against a beautiful valley view was a picture perfect way to start our day.

Room Tip: All of the rooms were equally nice, we were the only guests this night so we got to choose whatever...
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank AliceQ21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 March 2014

Doolans Country Retreat is a beautiful house with stunning views and a hostess that can't do enough for you. We were there at the time of the visit by the guests that have left a negative comment and I was the guest giving Christine a hand to serve breakfast. You feel so much part of the family that to offer some help is natural! The house is a joy with some wonderful paintings done by Christine and we look back on our visit with immense pleasure and would have no hesitation in recommending Doolans Country Retreat. Christine is able to give excellent advice on where to visit and looked after us excellently.
We feel the negative comments given by those guests that chose to leave after 1 night are totally unjustified and should be removed from Trip Advisor as they do reflect the comments in Christine's guest book or the other comments on this site..

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Norma B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 March 2014

We stayed at Doolan's in September 2013 so this review is late but I really wanted to share our experience. Without a doubt, Christine's beautiful bed and breakfast is one of the nicest places we have stayed at. We arrived late afternoon on a wet and windy day, after a 12 hour flight from Singapore and 3 hour drive from Auckland. Christine was very welcoming (having even just emailed to see if we were ok as we were delayed) and it was such a pleasure to step into her warm and comfortable home. Kids were exhausted and it was already dark at 6pm so we did not go out for dinner - instead Christine suggested some local take aways and allowed us free reign of her kitchen and dining area. We booked two ensuite rooms: both of which were pristine, full of charm and very comfortable. We all slept like logs. Breakfast the next morning was delicious and we really liked the fact that Christine sat down with us and chatted, sharing tips about the local area, what to do, where to go etc. She was just great with our two young ones (2 and 4), allowing them to feed her fish, her donkeys (what a highlight!) and sit on her tractors! It was only when the sun came out that morning that we were able to see how gorgeous Doolans really was - the beautiful flowers, the landscaping and views to die for. We wish we could have stayed longer as one night was simply not enough. Christine sent us off on to our next stop with some lemons from her orchard. The kids are still talking about the donkeys now 6 months on and asking us when we are going back to "Aunty Christine's". Doolans may be a long way away from Singapore but it is certainly worth the trip. If you are planning on visiting Rotorua, don't stay in town, stay at Doolans- it really is a little slice of paradise. We will be back! Thank you so much Chrstine for getting our North Island holiday off to such a wonderful startT (Tim, Tara, Kate, Evangeline and Theodore).

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank c00kiemonsters
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

Address: 165 Dalbeth Road, Rotorua 3072, New Zealand
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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: £113 - £134 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 4
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