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“Hotel lovely but hot, stuffy apartment was awful.”
Review of Princes Gate Hotel

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Princes Gate Hotel
Ranked #29 of 92 Hotels in Rotorua
Reviewed 11 April 2010

We chose this hotel for its central location and because it offered "a modern one bedroom apartment" as part of the hotel complex. When we checked in we found the apartment was in a older building next door (Mayfair Apartments). The foyer of the apartment smelt musty. Our apartment was upstairs and reasonably nicely renovated and decorated except for the bedroom. This contained a double bed and a single bed, a tacky little wardrobe, one bedside table between the beds and no other storage space. Oh well, we thought, it's only two nights, the sitting room was pleasant enough and the bathroom was good. But trying to sleep in this poky bedroom was a challenge. The room was extremely hot, there was no air-conditioning, and even with open windows there was no air flow. I just could not sleep under those conditions. In the end I pulled all the sofa cushions off, placed them on the sitting room floor in the coolest spot and slept most of the night there.

Next day we asked for a change of room. We were offered a choice of two hotel rooms, both very nice. We chose one on the upper level right at the end of the side of the hotel. We had the added benefit of a table and two chairs on the verandah outside our room. Again the room was very warm with no air conditioning but windows on two sides gave us enough air flow so that we could sleep.

The hotel itself was charming and the decor suited the age of the building. The bar was a bit sterile and service was slow. I ordered a liquor coffee and it took ages to come. Think they had to go milk a cow for the cream! The breakfast selection was small but interesting and tasty. We didn't dine in the hotel so can't comment on this aspect.

The hot pools were wonderful. There were four pools, three outdoors and one indoors (presumably could be used as a private pool). The larger pool was warm and the two smaller pools above it were hot and even hotter. I like my hot pools seriously hot but that one was a challenge to get in to! In fact all the pools were probably a bit too hot for the average traveller and I would recommend that the hotel reduce the temperatures by a couple of degrees in each case. Access to the pools was great from the apartments but harder to get to from the hotel itself - had to go through a function room / restaurant, I think, which seemed odd. Maybe there was another way out to the courtyard that I didn't see!

The hotel is in a great location, opposite the Government Gardens, and a short walk from the restaurant strip and the lakefront. There was plenty of free parking outside the hotel (side) and also valet parking if required at $10 per night. Most of the staff were pleasant and helpful, particularly the young man at reception. I'd stay there again but would be sure to book a hotel room not an apartment. Air conditioning or ceiling fans would solve the heat problem - something is desperately needed!

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank jjester
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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742 - 748 of 794 reviews

Reviewed 13 March 2010

You can read a lot of blabla about the (supposed) glorious past of this hotel (in the hotel itself or on the website). But the glory has been definitely lost...We spent two nights there and in spite of the quite good location of the hotel we have been very dissapointed by the room, the service and the restaurant.
(i) the room :
- the hotel is rather stylish (you like it or your don't) but our room was just a mix of outdated unmatched furnitures
- the bed and the mattress were probably older than the hotel itself
- the absence of air-conditioned and the single glass windows (not the case in every rooms) made the room warm and noisy
(ii) the service
- the room had been not been made after the first night , when we came back at the hotel at 8 pm. the staff did not apologise.
- the bath gel bottle in the bathroom was already half empty when we checked in
- we found rubbish (an empty plastic bottle) under the bed
- staff not that friendly and often unavailable
- swimming pool had not been cleaned up for a while
(iii) the restaurant
- do not expect to find in your plate what is specified on the menu...

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank BelgianJudge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 8 September 2010

I refer to the above comments. Obviously you can't please everyone. In regards to our restaurant, we operate breakfast, lunch and dinner with a specialty High Tea, turning over apprx. 1000 meals each week. The hotel is renowned for it's culinary delights and is a celebratory Hotel. Our menus are wide ranging offering something for everyone. I have mentioned in a previous comment in regards to it is very hard to comment on issues of housekeeping some 4 months later. All I can do is assure TripAdvisor readers, is with our 5 Star Rating we have implemented systems which have eradicated these problems that might have occurred. In regard to staff, the overwhelming comment we get from our guests is how professional and attentive our team is. I can only imagine that for this guest not to be satisfied, something unusual has happened.

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Reviewed 28 February 2010

I stayed here with a small group of tourists - it was our second hotel stop in New Zealand. I read the reviews and I thought what has my tour company let me in for! Well I was happy with what I got - a large room, large bathroom and comfortable bed, usual facilities in the room and a nice verandah outside my door with a table and chairs where I was able to enjoy a drink with our group. It was quiet and it was handy for the centre of town and the tourist office etc. The decoration was in keeping with the style of the property and the smell of sulphur comes from the fact you are in a geothermal area!! - but it is not that bad. I cannot comment on the restaurant as I did not use it preferring to buy at the local supermarket and eat on the verandah outside my room - very nice.

Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Fussyperson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 February 2010

Eat out - breakfast round the corner at Limes cafe.
Interesting because of its history.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank Nookman46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2010

This hotel is definitely old and very outdated, so much so we were afraid we might see ghosts considering the hotel was used as a hospital during the world wars. (We didn't actually see any though)
The decor is full of wallpaper and large, busy floral designs. Our room smelled very musty and like urine. There is no air conditioning, no gym, the pool was very small, and we were only allowed to eat a buffet for breakfast ($25pp), no a la carte (even though it was offered through room service). They do however have small tables set up along the street where you could enjoy a snack or coffee.
The location is good, only a 5-10 minute walk to the strip of restaurants in town.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled with family
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1  Thank Scrumble
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 8 September 2010

We feel privileged to have owned and operated the Princes Gate Hotel for over 25 years and over this time we have been constantly upgrading to the point that this year we achieved 5 Star status. We have different types of rooms which are symbolic of a 135 year old Hotel ranging from our suites, designer rooms, estate rooms and classic rooms. all these respective room types are priced accordingly. We have an interior designer who has been very focussed and devoted to make sure this heritage Hotel stays as one of NZ's finest establishments. Yes it has a lot of history and we realise it is not for everyone, however realising our high occupancy and guest satisfaction, we realise we are on the right path.

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Reviewed 14 February 2010

Albeit viewing their great website we were dissapointed with this hotel. We checked in with the owner who didn't seem interested in being there. If the historic look of the hotel was consistent between rooms and the lobby the quality could be much better. We stayed in the deluxe suite which was simple. No air con on a humid summer night with just a fan to suffice. The bed felt like it was two singles pushed together as there was a uncomfortable split down the middle. The bathroom is simple with a shower over the tub and shower curtain which emphasise more of a ensuite than a bathroom. The doorway onto the front deck provided no sound proofing for cars that drove up and down the street at all times of the evening and the old-aged bar fridge hummed all night. The only good point about the hotel is that it's very centrally located to Rotorua city centre if you intend to spend more time outside than in.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank toastynz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PrincesGateHotel, Owner at Princes Gate Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 8 September 2010

A very apt heading. I also feel very disappointed, knowing my motivation for my guests and guest satisfaction. No-one in our city would ever describe me as not interested. My wife and I, as mentioned earlier have spent 25 years growing our business, have been 3 times consecutive finalists in the New Zealand Tourism Awards, Winner of the Best Tourism Industry Award in Rotorua, Winner of the Best Medium to Large Business Award in Rotorua, and Winner of the Best Business of the Year Award in Rotorua. As anyone in business knows, these awards do not come lightly. I do agree however with the writer that we have a wonderful location overlooking beautiful gardens, the museum and art gallery.

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Reviewed 4 January 2010

If Nana had died and left you a derelict hotel it would look like this. All the money has been spent on the outside and the inside is just awful. We spent two sleepless nights listening to every murmured word and footstep on the creaky floorboards from neighbours from adjoining rooms. The people in the room above were up at 5am, and so were we. Location was good, and the breakfast was also pretty good (and the breakfast staff were incredibly friendly and helpful).

  • Stayed: January 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank DA_Wanderlust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about 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
#25 Luxury Hotel in Rotorua
#28 Romantic Hotel in Rotorua
Price Range: £54 - £199 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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