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Reviewed 11 April 2014 via mobile

My family of sister, brother in law, father and husband all stayed at this beautiful historic hotel. Pat the general manager and his son, were very welcoming, friendly and helpful. We had a view over the new zealand bush, and my sister and her husband stayed in the magnificent suite overlooking waitomo. The food in the restaurant was also very good, and they had an extensive wine selection. The hotel is very old so you must expect it to be a little dated. But that does not detract from the magnificence of the place. Overall an excellent place to stay if visiting the caves.

Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
2  Thank ippigirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 April 2014

This is a grand old building, and one must make allowances for this when one stays.

The rooms are in need of a great deal of work, and the bathroom is screaming for a makeover [working the shower was an experience in itself!]. The furniture is mostly quite old and not particularly grand, but the bed was new, huge, and perfectly comfortable. The sheets were crisp and clean, the bathroom was spotlessly clean, and the room, although clearly old, was very tidy and clean, and contained everything we could have required for our stay. It was not unlike staying in "Grandma's spare room" but without the back-achingly strectched springs under the slouching mattress!

Any failings one might find with the quality of the rooms were more than made up for by the enthusiasm to please of current owners. Helpful, honest, friendly and a pleasure to talk to, they made our stay in this grand old hotel very comfortable and enjoyable.

Dinner in the restaurant was very pleasant. With basic homely fare and a selection of good wine, I enjoyed one of the best meals of my stay in New Zealand at this hotel. The meals were sizey, and very reasonably priced. The beetroot and chicken salad I ordered was divine and so large I had no room for dessert!

Proximity to the Waitomo Cave is an obvious advantage, and the views from the balcony and gardens were beautiful.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay, and look forward to coming back in the future to check on the restoration progress of this beautiful and much in need of love Hotel. With such an extensive and interesting history, she has a right to be a little bumpy around the edges! Go easy on her. She's old!

Room Tip: Having a balcony was a big bonus
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Jo M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 April 2014

DISAPPOINTING
We had a premium king room (No. 17). It appears that the hotel is being modernised but unfortunately they had not yet got round to doing our room which was badly in need of decoration. Wallpaper was missing in patches and was peeling off, the carpet was threadbare in places, there were splashes of paint on the walls and wallpaper and the curtains didn't fully cover the windows. The bathroom had been created out of a corner of the room and there was just enough room to contain a toilet, shower and sink, however the sink was so small it was difficult to wash without spilling water all over the floor and you could hardly get the kettle under the tap to fill it with water. However the bed was clean and comfortable. As we were going to the Spellbound caves for 10 we went downstairs for breakfast promptly at 8am. There were no staff on duty in the dining room so we helped ourselves to cereal and toast. By 8.15 there was still no sign of any staff so I went into the kitchen and gave my order for a cooked breakfast to the lone chef. The food was well cooked and plentiful. This was the only location that we stayed at that charged for internet access. I would certainly look at alternative accommodation if I were staying in this area again..

Ate at Huhu restaurant - excellent.

If you are travelling to New Zealand I suggest you take sufficient reading material, I ran out and a paperback cost £19.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Richard H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2014

The structure is old but the present owners are trying hard to freshen the place. Everything was clean and staff were helpful and friendly. The rooms are plain but the bed was the best of three we used during this trip. The restaurant provided a good evening meal and the breakfast was buffet style. Only toast, cereal and fruit - we didn't see any bacon and eggs etc. This was our second stay here and it is a pleasure to stay in this relic from the early days of New Zealand's tourist industry. It is a pleasant contrast to many modern hotels that have the appearance and ambiance of battery hen cages. Value for money.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Dennis R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 March 2014

We had the pleasure of staying a night there, for my 70th Birthday (we usually motorhome, but I love Historic buildings.) We had a lovely room, with ensuite to balcony, and enjoyed the light meal we had. Loved the history, ambience, comfort and views of the area, and enjoyed wandering around the property. Recommend to anyone, especially for a special occasion. Very helpful staff, and doing well upgrading back to its glory days. Keep up the good work!!

  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Binnie2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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