Even though the hotel isn’t situated near the city centre, it’s really no big deal because the hotel provides a complimentary shuttle service that leaves on the hour (on request) that takes about 5 minutes to reach the Rotorua i-site. For tourists like me, it’s all about location, location, location, and I only found out about this service after digging a bit deeper into the hotel website, so perhaps it’d be good for the hotel to advertise this service a little more prominently on their website? Prior arrangement can be made at the hotel lobby if you need a pick-up from the tourism i-site, or you can use the phone inside the i-site to arrange for one. Do note that the i-site closes in the evening (5.30pm I think), so please remember to arrange for a pick up if you intend to stay out beyond the i-site’s opening hours!
The hotel interior is quite clean and quite pleasant. What I like about the lobby is that there is this corner near the lifts dedicated to brochures for the individual tourist attractions, saved me the trouble of having to go to the i-site to get them. Even though some of these brochures fly off the shelves pretty quickly, they are refilled very promptly. The front-desk staff are generally polite and friendly; they never fail to greet you with a warm smile each time you enter the lobby. It was not all rosy smiles unfortunately; I approached the front desk and specifically asked for help on taking the CityRide to Skyline Rotorua & Rainbow Springs as it was much cheaper (NZ$2.30 per person). Much to my chagrin, the staff just brushed me off, saying that the service was “too complicated for a tourist to understand”. Instead he started recommending drivers for private hire or the CitySights bus which cost at least minimum NZ$30 per person. When I asked if there were any other cheaper alternatives, he merely suggested he could call a cab for me. I was quite disappointed because when I put the same question to the staff at the tourism i-site, I found out that the CityRide bus service isn’t “too complicated for a tourist to understand” at all!
My family signed up for our accommodation at Holiday Inn via a tour company, which offered complimentary dinner, where we had the option of Hangi dinner or buffet at Chapman’s. However since the Hangi dinner and performance wasn’t available that day, we opted for dinner at Chapman’s instead. Dinner was good, the food was delicious, and the spread was acceptable. It would be helpful if they could label their desserts; I didn’t have a clue as to what I was eating sometimes. Some of the desserts were too rich, and too much of an overkill in my opinion. Turns out that Chapman’s is really popular; the place was really crowded with diners. I think they were a little understaffed that day too; took a while before someone came to clear the plates. Near the end of dinner, while we were enjoying a cup of tea, one of the service crew came up to us and handed us the bill. Puzzled, we explained to her that our dinner was complimentary. She went off to check, so we waited, but the thing is, she never came back to confirm it with us. I wished she could’ve handled this more professionally.
My rooms were very nice and clean. The beds were awesome; my nights of sleep here were enjoyable and comfortable. The channels available on TV were great; I got to watch so many movies at night! The toilet was really clean; the shower’s water pressure was just right. You have to turn on the air-conditioning system to keep the sulphurous smell out of the room; otherwise it gets pungent and unbearable, especially in an enclosed area. My room was facing the thermal area, and actually high up enough to see the Pohutu Geyser erupting from afar. Unfortunately there was this tall tree right in front of it, so no photo moments from my room. Other than that, the rooms were fantastic; it made my stay so enjoyable.
Even though I encountered two little incidents mentioned above, it didn’t affect my stay here, because honestly, I have been nothing but impressed so far with the really high service standards in New Zealand, so these are probably just isolated incidents. Nevertheless, I still had a great stay here at Holiday Inn, and I recommend it with the hopes that you’ll find stay in Rotorua as great as I did!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Holiday Inn Rotorua is a modern hotel overlooking the Whakarewarewa Thermal Reserve and Historical Village. It features: • A free to use heated swimming pool and health club. • Free parking. • Kids Eat and Stay Free. (Up to 2 children under 12.) • Free Wifi for IHG Rewards Club Members. The air-conditioned rooms of Holiday Inn Rotorua offer a modern design and cable TV with free movies and 2 children's channels. Tea and coffee making facilities are provided. The award winning Chapman’s Restaurant and Bar offers an a la carte menu, and buffet, and serves contemporary New Zealand cuisine, matched with a fine wine selection. Room service is available 24/7. The Rotorua Holiday Inn is situated close to all the city's attractions and offers free shuttle pickup from the Rotorua Tourism Information Centre. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Rotorua Hotel Rotorua
- Heritage Hotel Rotorua
- Rotorua Heritage Hotel