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“Just as we knew it was.....Outstanding”

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Duke of Marlborough Hotel
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Russell
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 17 May 2014

My wife and I stayed just 1 night at the Duke for our wedding anniversary. We are locals in the area and send people all the time to the Duke for dinner and lunches...as have we in the past..and this time we treated ourselves to an overnight stay.

Outstanding...both in value and comfort.

We had dinner ( with no desert) and portion sizes and tastings of dishes superb.

Excellent service from well versed staff who knew the dishes

Continental breakfast was of a high standard as well..Crumpets and 3 different breads, hard boiled eggs, salami, ham and cheese, bowl of feshly cut fruit and 2 tnned fruits, PLUNGER COFFEE!!!! Great touch and a choice of several teas. Really an excellent lay out of choices

Free wifi is a must these days..so thanks for that

Free parking on hotel grounds down the side and around the back.

We were not in time to book a seafront view room but were absolutely happy with what we had...down the side of the building with a glimpse of the sea. My only...observation... ( not a criticism!) would be that the room looked a little bland / sterile..painted white walls with no local art. The bed is a very very comfortable queen , triple sheeted in crisp white sheets. Keep up the great work Dukies!!..will continue to recommend you as Russell is such a great destination.

Room Tip: Seafrontage for the view..but side rooms absolutely fine!
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank KiwiLint
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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676 - 682 of 1,086 reviews

Reviewed 14 May 2014

Couldn't fault anything about our room during our stay - everything has been recently renovated & it appears from the room numbers that 2 rooms have been made into a large double. Lots of sunlight poured into our room from 2 large windows making the room airy & bright. The light fixtures provided good light, the curtains blocked the early morning sun, and the bed linen was of high quality making for a good night's sleep. We dined in the hotel's restaurant and thoroughly enjoyed our meal especially the deserts. The late check out time of 12 o'clock felt very decadent and not having to rush to breakfast, pack & check out was a total luxury. Free WiFi was also a bonus.

Room Tip: No lift so the rooms handy to the back entrance were easier for carrying your luggage to your room.
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Annette D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 May 2014

I have rated our stay a 3 but really it was 3.5. We spent two nights at the hotel and also had dinner in the restaurant one night. The setting on the waterfront is excellent and we were blessed with fine weather which enhanced the location.

However our "standard" room had only a sideways peep of the water, the bathroom was very small and the walls between our room and the next must be pretty thin as we were kept awake until well past midnight one night with conversation from next door. The room itself was a decent size but as it had a queen and a single bed there was no space left for more than one chair which was not ideal. The free Wifi had a just adequate signal in the room. The room was well appointed and was serviced well during our stay.

A self service continental breakfast was included each morning which was OK but not particularly interesting with cereal, tinned fruit, a couple of cold hard boiled eggs, a few slices of cheese and salami plus serve yourself toast and coffee etc.

Our dinner in the evening was good with some innovative items on the menu and a good and quite reasonably priced wine list. Service in the restaurant (both in the morning and evening) ranged from very professional to pretty amateurish.

All in all our stay did not quite meet expectations for a hotel that has a good reputation.

Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank blenheim72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 May 2014

This is a great place to stay, it is a very popular spot, and rightly so - great food and drinks served from a prime location in Russell. We had lunched here during our last visit to NZ (when we stayed in Paihia) and vowed to come back and stay on our next trip.

The Hotel had the first liquor licence in NZ -hence their punch line above, so some of the building is old - if you want a suite with a music wired jacuzzi, contemporary decor and state of the art spa you won't find it here. What you will find is history, charm and ambience that can't be bought... That said, areas of the hotel have been refurb'ed due to two fires, but they have very much maintained the traditional look.

My only regret staying here (for a week) was that we didn't book early enough to get a sea view room, and when we decided to extend our stay the place was fully booked (but found a fab B&B a short distance away-another story!), although it was over New Year! Our room in the DoM was fine, just small and basic, but (more importantly!) clean and functional. We had French doors which opened out onto a communal decking area which was nice to sit and have a beer in while you're getting ready/coming back for a shower and a change before you head out again, but we didn't leave the doors open at night which meant the room was quite warm as there were only tiny windows to to open above the French doors. There was nothing untoward I just wouldn't have felt comfortable sleeping at night with the French doors open onto a communal area (even a chain lock would let a bit of air in and make you feel a bit more secure).

Anyway, this is a super spot, and you spend no time in the room anyway. You could sit all day and drink beer and people watch and they have live entertainment in the summer, usually a solo artist with a guitar and some very soothing easy listening vibes. Super location for going on yacht/whale/dolphin tours etc as the pier is about 60 seconds away! Laundry facilities are limited to 2 washing machines and 1 dryer which look archaic but do for a freshen up. Car parking is included on site as is a cold/cereal/yoghurt breakfast - a cooked breakfast is additional $. Lunch and dinner are lovely here - food is a very good standard, nothing too complicated but very well done.

Staff for the most part are very helpful (one in particular was not a morning person...lol), although we did ask for an additional case stand and they didn't have one which I thought a bit weird, and replenishment of toiletries could be hit and miss, but maybe it was just the busy time of year. Most people maybe bring their own but when you're on a long trip it saves some weight and space using some hotel toiletries!

Overall, this is a fab place to stay, for all ages, it has a great atmosphere but is not rowdy, Long Beach is only a few minutes drive away... if you can drag yourself away from the cold beer and superb views of Kororareka Bay! Enjoy!

Room Tip: Book in plenty of time and get a sea view room as they are larger and more airy.... And go when the...
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  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank GoodWeeFeeders
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 May 2014

W have just returned from an overnight trip to This Hotel last weekend.We are regular visitors to Russell but have never stayed or dined there before so the Grab One we purchased was ideal for us to try it out.
The hotel is quite traditional and the dining areas and bars were good with comfortable seating.
Room was OK and what I would expect from a standard room. Wasn't too keen on the communal deck area but it was not a problem as it was Out of season.
Our deal included a 2 course meal of a main and dessert but we chose to buy an entree also as we wanted to have the whole dining experience which was a worthwhile decision.
Our starters of Tuna Tartare and Scallops with Pork Belly were truly delicious and the black bean and corn salsa with mango paint went beautifully with the scallop dish.
Main for us was a shared scotch beef fillet on the bone with accompanying vegetables- again great!
For dessert we plumped for the chocolate pudding and small portion of cheeses. We are not usually dessert eaters but these were very good as well.
The dining was the highlight of the stay for us and the wines which we chose for entree and main were served perfectly timed to accompany the food.
If I were allowed any critism it would be that the tables are a liitle too close together for chair space and that at breakfast it would have been nice to have the tea/coffee served to the table.
Would have liked the option of entree and main OR main and dessert but then we probably would still have gone for all 3!
Great value at the price we paid (drinks were extra as was entree)
I would point out though at this time of year not much else is open in the evening but it makes a great cosy evening stay with excellent food.If planning a trip to Russell definitely think about this place..

Room Tip: In the summer months a room looking out to the water is great.(if you could get one!)
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank jillyhg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 May 2014

We spent the first night in a back room which are quite small but functional and overlook the car park (sounds worse than it is!). These rooms were quite quiet for an old boned building and had comfy beds and were very clean. We moved to a sea view room at the front of the hotel for our next 2 nights and these are much larger with a sitting area, king beds and baths in large bathroom with separate toilet room. Nice white decor and very very comfortable. Only slight downside is the noise from downstairs when they start moving furniture to vacuum early morning - it is an old building so to be expected.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank StuckinBangers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 April 2014

The hotel is very well run and comfortable. The restaurant serves great food and is also efficient . There is a comfortable old style bar with leather sofas etc. opening out to the restaurant. The view at the front is beautiful out to the bay with 200 year old mature trees along the beach. There seem to be a number of community events at the place and it has a warm and friendly atmosphere.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
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Thank LDTravellerLondon_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Duke of Marlborough Hotel

Address: 35 The Strand, Russell 0255, New Zealand
Phone Number:
Region: New Zealand > North Island > Northland Region > Bay of Islands > Russell
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Russell
#1 Luxury Hotel in Russell
#2 Romantic Hotel in Russell
Price Range: £69 - £177 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Duke of Marlborough Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Duke of Marlborough has been Refreshing Rascals and Reprobates since 1827 and holds New Zealand’s first liquor license. The Duke, as it is affectionately known is located on the waterfront in the picturesque village of Russell in the stunning Bay of Islands and is a great place to recharge the batteries, catch up with friends or simply enjoy the moment. With easy access to an exciting array of activities or sipping a glass of wine on our balcony there is plenty to see or do. There are three levels of accommodation our waterfront rooms with views across the water to Waitangi Treaty grounds and Paihia, bigger family rooms when you need extra space or our convenient standard rooms. All rooms have their own en-suites, Sky TV, wifi accessibility and tea and coffee making facilities. With an award winning chef and restaurant manager the restaurant at The Duke focuses on a menu packed with fresh seasonal Northland produce. The bar has an extensive list of New Zealand wines and beers – something for everyone to enjoy while watching the sunset. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Duke Of Marlborough Russell
Duke Of Marlborough Hotel Russell, New Zealand - Bay Of Islands

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