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“No longer a B&B, not quite what we wanted”

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Historic Stone House Boutique Apartments
Ranked #16 of 45 Queenstown B&B and Inns
Reviewed 7 March 2011

A word of warning to prospective guests; don't expect Historic Stone House to be a B&B, as it is now self-catering accommodation (the hosts are not located on site but are quite responsive to phone calls). My mistake - I read the previous reviews here more thoroughly than their website. The website can also be a little misleading, as the "Rooms/Rates/Facilities" link from the homepage leads to information about a related B&B called Chalet Queenstown.

My husband and I spent four nights in the Alley Apartment, which is a wooden extension to the stone building. It has one bedroom, ensuite bathroom, separate living/dining and a small self-contained kitchen, which seemed to have been installed on the day we arrived. As a result, they were several hours late letting us into the apartment, and we were given a bottle of wine for the inconvenience.

Alley can be rented together with the larger Daniel's Apartment (which we didn't realise when we booked), and there is an interconnecting door between them. I wouldn't have minded, except that there was no lock on our side of the door, so we had to take it on trust that the guests in the other room didn't have access to our rooms. Also the door was thin, with glass panels, and we could hear every word of some conversations between the guests in there. This was unexpected and rather off-putting. If I were the owners I would look at installing an extra, solid door in the corridor between the two apartments and make it lockable from the Alley side.

The rooms were comfortable, a good size, clean and pleasantly decorated. We particularly liked the drapes - the light blocking effect in the bedroom was much appreciated. We also enjoyed the views of the mountains and lake.

The kitchen had all the equipment we needed. The mixer tap over the sink was a little unsteady in its moorings and had a disconcerting tendency to keep running for a few seconds after turning off, but it did provide instant hot water.

The bathroom had a toilet and shower (no bath). The shower worked very well despite having two taps rather than a mixer, but the curtain was not long enough to sit within the shower box so some water would fall from the curtain onto the cork-tiled floor. I would recommend the owners get a longer shower curtain or drop the current one lower by hooking an extra set of curtain rings above the existing ones.

The bedroom provided a reasonably firm king bed with plenty of good bedding including a goosedown duvet and four pillows between us. There was a telephone, robes, slippers, wardrobe with ironing facilities, hairdryers, shelving, and a television in an otherwise empty entertainment cabinet.

There was no remote for the television and when I managed to fix its on/off switch, I found it only had three of the standard six free-to-air channels (and none of the pay channels - fair enough, it wasn't advertised as having that). Given the choice, I'd prefer to have the TV set in the living room rather than the bedroom (since there was only the one). But we hadn't intended to watch much TV on holiday so that wasn't really a problem.

The dining table had rather low sides and I only found it comfortable sitting at either end, otherwise my legs were a bit squashed.

We liked the location; the steep hill walk was not a problem for us although we did walk around a longer gentler slope once or twice to get to the Queenstown Gardens area and from there to the town.

Overall, I don't exactly regret staying there, but if I'd known more about it I probably would have booked elsewhere as it just wasn't quite what I was looking for on this holiday.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank A_Gecko_Fan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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59 - 65 of 73 reviews

Reviewed 12 October 2010

Matt, our host was absolutely delightful. He made excellent custom-order breakfasts for us each morning, was incredibly helpful about our stay in Queenstown and was always cheerful.
It's a little spendy, but so much better value for the experience compared to many of the other places we looked into staying in town.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank cinnamon2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2010

This is a beautiful house and we were made so welcome by the host that it felt like arriving home. The rooms are beautifully decorated and very comfortable. Breakfast was a dream with self serve continental and individually cooked breakfasts.

We really didn't want to leave this wonderful property and lovely people.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank jakkiCheshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 March 2010

Fantastic room with ensuite, we had the room with the walkout to the patio. The lounge is elegant and tastefully designed, meshing with the heritage of the historic building. The room and bed was exceptionally clean and comfortable. It is also well decorated, except for the tv shelf, which I found a bit dangerous and out of place.
Matt was a superb host, extremely attentive and informative. Breakfasts were great, accented by Matt's flair for detail, presented much like in 5 star cuisine. Seating in the living room for breakfast is very nice, except for people who may prefer on occasion (like ourselves) to have a quiet breakfast alone. Matt's flexibility of breakfast times undoubtedly make for a much busier day for him, but it was an option well appreciated by us.
A top notch, historical, luxurious, boutique style b&b.

  • Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank CanuckJapan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 January 2010

When you need to stop, have personal attention, beautiful food, lovely ambiance then you need to spend a couple of days here. And downtown is only a couple of blocks down the hill. The manager is one special guy! The best B&B in New Zealand.

  • Stayed: November 2009, travelled with friends
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Thank bellevuebabe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 October 2009

I overheard another guest describe the Historic Stone House as a "sanctuary" and I agree completely. Yes, it's beautiful on the outside with the old stone work beautifully blended with a new addition. The inside is nicely and neutrally decorated but what I appreciated more than the decor was the ambiance--it felt good here, it felt cozy. There were lit candles, a fire in the fireplace (it wasn't yet summer), and guests actually sat and used the living room. Matt was a wonderful host (he's new to the Stone House and there until April 2010) who pretty much scheduled my whole itinerary, since I showed up with a few ideas about what I wanted to do but no real plans. He's able to figure out what activities work for different people (paragliding for some, bungee jumping for others) and dining choices (Vudu cafe for me, hot nightclub for others). The bed was comfy and the place was spotless. I only wished my room had a bathtub--but instead I went out to the hot tub!

  • Stayed: October 2009, travelled solo
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1  Thank JuleChicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 July 2009

From the moment we arrived Jon and Alex went out of their way to make us feel welcome. Jon primarily looked after us and it felt like nothing was too much trouble. They were incredibly knowledgable about the local area, ready with suggestions for rainy days and booked everything for us.

We left early one day to visit Milford Sound and John made us a pack up breakfast to take with us. I also mentioned that I loved cheese and Jon bought me some!

We were on honeymoon and Jon and Alex gave us a bottle of Champagne; we ate in one night and Jon had laid the table up for us with candles - it was little touches like that which made the stay so memorable.

The Stone House is only a few minutes walk from town, though it is located at the top of a hill. It's worth the walk though when there's a roaring fire waiting for you!

The rooms are a good size but do need the heater on when's a bit chilly! There's full use of the house so you're not confined to them either. The living room with the roaring fire is fantastic.

We would go back in an instant!

  • Stayed: May 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank Kipper21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Historic Stone House Boutique Apartments

Address: 47 Hallenstein Street, Queenstown 9300, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > South Island > Otago Region > Queenstown
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 45 B&Bs / Inns in Queenstown
Hotel Class:4 star — Historic Stone House Boutique Apartments 4*
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Only two minutes walk to central Queenstown, The Historic Stone House Boutique Apartments offer the opportunity to stay in a truly unique central Queenstown landmark. Built for the Mayor of Queenstown in 1874, the Historic Stone House has been divided into 3 self-catering apartments, with a choice of styles to meet your needs. Sleeping from 1 to 12 guests with all apartments offering King or Twin Beds with en suites, phone, robes and slippers. Separate cooking facilities are made available to each apartment, along with a lounge area. The best kept secret of these apartments is the onsite access to an outdoor heated spa pool, perfect for whiling away the evenings under the stars. A true 'Home Away From Home;' come and discover the beauty of Queenstown. ... more   less 
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