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“Don't bother” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Princes Gate Hotel

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Princes Gate Hotel
Ranked #38 of 93 Hotels in Rotorua
Whanganui, New Zealand
Level Contributor
16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Don't bother”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2014

My friend and I stayed one night at the Princes. The room was dated and there was no Air - Con!
The swimming pool was dirty - so much so that someone had written "Clean Me" on the grim on the side.
The hotel itself was also very dirty - Yuck stay
Would never stay again

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Erin C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this review, 2 February 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

My wife and I have been the owners and operators of the Princes Gate Hotel for the past 28 years and have always been passionate about our building, but more importantly, service and standards. And to have a genuine passion that offers the very best possible service at all times. We have always held the philosophy that there is nil tolerance to poor service and the identification of guest needs.

Unfortunately, due to my wife’s ill health, we have had to step away from the daily rigours of 7 x 24 x 365 operation of our beautiful hotel. We were left with a dilemma of what to do. There was no compromise in terms of health decisions but we did not want to sell our hotel and business that we have worked so hard to build over 28 years and one that had become such a big part of our lives.

We decided that we needed to engage someone else to love and continue our philosophy of hospitality and to run our business. We decided on another Hotel Company that being Distinction Hotels. To this day we have been pleased in the process but with all things, we knew there would be a transitional period that would throw up anomalies. At the time of writing this response, we accept your comments as factual but assure you and future travellers that measures have been taken to ensure that our beautiful hotel will continue to offer the very best in service and style.

In terms of our personal journey, we will continue to be involved and in some ways this will allow us more time to look more objectively at design and to continue with our upgrade to this truly magnificent building.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to write a review.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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731 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    212
    135
    62
    51
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119
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (212)
Date | Rating
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English first
Wellington, New Zealand
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2014

I grew up in Rotorua and looked forward to staying at Princes Gate as it is such a Rotorua landmark. Our experience mirrors many of the other comments. Room very closed in and airless (although we did discover a fan in the wardrobe - thanks for that), no sign of the 'garden view' advertised when we booked, decor tired and dated, bathroom completely lacking in ventilation, no assistance offered to take our luggage upstairs (yes, I understand it is an historic building, but surely, for the price the facilities don't need to be quite so historic!) All in all a mixed experience - one to tick off the 'bucket list' but not one worth repeating.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank MPC55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this review, 2 February 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

My wife and I have been the owners and operators of the Princes Gate Hotel for the past 28 years and have always been passionate about our building, but more importantly, service and standards. And to have a genuine passion that offers the very best possible service at all times. We have always held the philosophy that there is nil tolerance to poor service and the identification of guest needs.

Unfortunately, due to my wife’s ill health, we have had to step away from the daily rigours of 7 x 24 x 365 operation of our beautiful hotel. We were left with a dilemma of what to do. There was no compromise in terms of health decisions but we did not want to sell our hotel and business that we have worked so hard to build over 28 years and one that had become such a big part of our lives.

We decided that we needed to engage someone else to love and continue our philosophy of hospitality and to run our business. We decided on another Hotel Company that being Distinction Hotels. To this day we have been pleased in the process but with all things, we knew there would be a transitional period that would throw up anomalies. At the time of writing this response, we accept your comments as factual but assure you and future travellers that measures have been taken to ensure that our beautiful hotel will continue to offer the very best in service and style.

In terms of our personal journey, we will continue to be involved and in some ways this will allow us more time to look more objectively at design and to continue with our upgrade to this truly magnificent building.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to write a review.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wellington, New Zealand
Level Contributor
33 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2014

Stayed at the hotel in December.

The hotel has an excellent location, close to the gardens, museum and town (in particular Eat St which has a number of restaurants and bars).

The room was quite dated and musty smelling (as noted by other reviewers). There was not really any ventilation in the bathroom. The bed only had two pillows to sleep on. I asked for an additional pillow, which took 45 mins to be delivered. The pillow was a decorative embodied cushion, not suitable to sleep on.

The other issue with the room is you could hear everything that the people upstairs were doing. Both days we were woken at around 6am by the guests upstairs 'falling' out of bed.

We ate breakfast one day, the food was very average and the coffee was pretty bad.

The hotel looks lovely but we will not be staying there again.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank nzxnick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this review, 2 February 2014
Yes our location is great. As mentioned before, the best location in Rotorua. I suppose when you have first pick in 1897, you trust you get it right.

It is interesting when the comment is that the rooms were dated. The hotel is dated with a Historical “A” Category which means it has been recognized as a gem of the Country and has to be preserved. It is also worth noting that there is only one other building in Rotorua with the same category that is the Bath House which houses the museum and art gallery which is opposite the hotel in the Government Gardens.

In regard to décor, we are very aware that we have to offer a hotel that is relevant to its years. All the rooms over the past 24 months have been totally re-vamped. This includes wall paper, curtains, bed linen etc. We cannot alter the hotel because of its historical significance to the Country.

The rooms are certainly not musty in any way. It is a very warm hotel with geothermal heating and with its wrap around balconies offers natural light and ventilation. Being a geothermal city, we do have the natural smell of sulphur.

With an older hotel, you have the positives and negatives. One of the negatives can be the transmitting of sound, muffled as it is, it can be disconcerting to the noise conscious person. Can I suggest if people are conscious of noise, please request an upstairs room, there are 40 of these.

In regards to breakfast, we do offer a wide selection of choices. We pride ourselves in our service and strive for excellence. On an average, we do produce over 1000 meals per week. In a restaurant you can produce the same meal to 100 people, 98 people will enjoy, 2 may not. Human nature tells us you can’t please everyone.

Once again we assure readers we do strive for excellence. I am sorry if we did not meet expectations this time but trust our explanation helps for future visits.

Once again thank you for taking the time to write.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rochester NY
Level Contributor
193 reviews
78 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 164 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 January 2014 via mobile

Well, at least the sheets and towels were clean. The rug and tub were not, beer bottle caps and hair in the tub were in our room when we checked in. Yuck. We noted the carpet on the stairs from the lobby were dirty too. While we like historic properties they must be maintained to modern standards. Unfortunately the Prince's Gate fell well short of satisfactory.

Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Visit-upstate-NY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this review, 2 February 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

My wife and I are owners and operators of the Princes Gate Hotel for the past 28 years have always been passionate about our building, but more importantly, service and standards. And to have a genuine passion that offers the very best possible service at all times. We have always held the philosophy that there is nil tolerance to poor service and the identification of guest needs.

Unfortunately, due to my wife’s ill health, we have had to step away from the daily rigours of 7 x 24 x 365 operation of our beautiful hotel. We were left with a dilemma of what to do. There was no compromise in terms of health decisions but we did not want to sell our hotel and business that we have worked so hard to build over 28 years and one that had become such a big part of our lives.

We decided that we needed to engage someone else to love and continue our philosophy of hospitality and to run our business. We decided on another Hotel Company that being Distinction Hotels. To this day we have been pleased in the process but with all things, we knew there would be a transitional period that would throw up anomalies. At the time of writing this response, we accept your comments as factual but assure you and future travelers that measures have been taken to ensure that our beautiful hotel will continue to offer the very best in service and style.

In terms of our personal journey, we will continue to be involved and in some ways this will allow us more time to look more objectively at design and to continue with our upgrade to this truly magnificent building.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to write a review.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 January 2014

Unfortunately my husband and I were very disappointed when we stayed at the Princes Gate Hotel recently. We payed extra for a Designer Room, which was dark, gloomy and smelled stuffy. The bed was uncomfortable and the shower in the bathroom had no power. Free wifi was available in the reception area but was unreliable. To be expected to pay extra for wifi in your room was unreasonable bearing in mind we paid NZ $ 250 for the room, without breakfast. Very expensive for what it was.

Room Tip: Designer Room not worth the extra money
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Stancroft
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this review, 2 February 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

Like all colours, designs and architecture, people’s individual likes and dislikes are personal and so they should be. This is what makes us all interesting and as the old saying goes; it would be an extremely boring place if we were all the same. I therefore cannot say that the comments in the review on the colour and design are wrong other than to say a lot of guests enjoy the very same colours and design.

We do have free internet right through the hotel and it is chargeable in the guest rooms. We have reviewed your comment and thank you for it. I have said many times in the past that these Trip Advisor reviews when written positively off some excellent advice. We have decided to offer free internet in all of our Designer rooms.

With regards to breakfast, our charges are very inexpensive, depending on your choice. Unlike a lot of hotels that have one charge for cooked or continental breakfast, we offer an a la carte menu where guests for instance can have tea or coffee and toast for just $6.50. We also offer a bacon and egg special which includes tea or coffee for only $13.95. These prices include GST of 15%.

We are sorry if we did not meet your personal likes however do thank you for taking the time to write a review.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
354 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 152 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 January 2014

This lovely hotel is in a great location by the Government Gardens. The rooms are tastefully decorated in period style with chandeliers. The restaurant serves a small selection of meals -the entrees are far too big ! Thanks to Rudi our waiter from Austria, he was very helpful and charming! Breakfast buffet is OK but the tea was cold and very weak. We enjoyed our stay in this historic hotel. We stayed in Room 15 -a corner room on the first floor balcony.A little bit bigger than the other rooms because it is on a corner.Bathroom was modern and clean and the room was elegantly furnished.

Room Tip: Room 15 is bigger because it is on a corner. Verandha outside the door with table and chairs to sit...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Lois G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, General Manager at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this review, 15 January 2014
Thank you for your kind words. We are very proud of our Historic hotel and yes it is well situated with the Government Gardens, Museum and art gallery on one side and the Lake front on the other. Apologies for the tea not hot enough, not sure what happened there.
We look forward to welcoming you back in the future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level Contributor
17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 January 2014

I've been here two times. My husband had taken me here for Breakfast some time ago and so I decided to surprise my mom and took her here for a coffee and possibly breakfast on our way to Auckland.

Disappointed is an understatement. The guy in the counter was extremely rude and yelled out from behind the bar "what do you want" even before we were seated. There were only two more people at the restaurant and when asked if he was busy, he says, " yes I am what do you want"...I requested if someone else could serve us given that he was quite rude, he says, "no its only me here, what do you want." His manner was demeaning.

All the while there were two other staff members in addition to this guy who seemed to want to serve two well dressed executive type gentlemen.

We ended up ordering only a coffee.

I felt bad for my poor mom who had to be put through this horrible experience.

I wrote to the hotel and the manager did send an apology saying that she had spoken to the guy and that was sorry and he was tired etc- which is a good start and we appreciate it.

But seems a pity that the staff did not intervene when the problem occurred given that there were three more people about.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank SnehaPaulGray
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, General Manager at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this review, 15 January 2014
I refer you to my previous letter. Again my apologies and I assure you this will not happen again. Unfortunately this occurred during a very trying time of new management, new hospitality program training, new staff, all while running a hotel. Having said that, as stated in my letter this was unacceptable and has been dealt with. I hope we can have the opportunity to welcome you and your mum back in the future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Princes Gate Hotel

Property: Princes Gate Hotel
Address: 1057 Arawa Street, Rotorua 3010, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > North Island > Bay of Plenty Region > Rotorua District > Rotorua
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#10 Business Hotel in Rotorua
#28 Romantic Hotel in Rotorua
#29 Luxury Hotel in Rotorua
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Princes Gate Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 50
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Princes Gate Hotel, the ideal accommodation whilst staying in Rotorua. The most famous Hotel in Rotorua built in 1897. This timeless, beautiful hotel is privately owned and operated. Our hotel rooms offer style and sophistication that depict a bygone era. The Princes Gate Hotel is not just a hotel but also an attraction. It has been masterfully restored through passionate attention to details. We look forward to having you stay with us in our beautiful & grand Princes Gate Hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Princes Gate Rotorua
Hotel Princes Gate

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