I have got to admit that on our arrival at Earthstead Villas, I was not entirely happy with my wife's choice of accommodation for our last night in New Zealand.
However we were unable to book anything at the last minute that was suitable in Hamilton and I suggested Cambridge.
Earthstead Villas was really a last resort option and really, in her defence my wife did not have much option.
After a drive from Taupo, a headache was making the last few kilometres uncomfortable and after initially missing the entry off the highway (at 100km/h) because we were ignoring the GPS, we found Earthstead Villas down a long dirt driveway.
Apart from the signage on the highway, there was nothing else to say we were on the right track.
The roundabout at the end had a large campervan parked there, making parking initially difficult.
Getting out of the car, a young gentleman was heard telling someone else that people had arrived.
We were absolutely thrown by Alistar. Asking if we had arrived in the campervan, we quite seriously said 'no', wondering why he didn't know who did...
He responded with an ecentric laugh and said it was actual his, and this really broke the ice perfectly.
Shown to our French-style Villa, I just wanted to take some Panadol and lay down.
The Villa, although not something I would normally go for, was 'pretty' and I would say it is a Villa the ladies would prefer rather than the men.
Alistar spent time to explain their background and what they were trying to achieve with the Villas.
I do believe being eco-friendly is important, but as I was not expecting the situation as it was unfolding, I was looking for the airconditioning and a place to lay.
2012/13 had been a long hot summer in NZ and that day was no different. The afternoon sun was streaming in and there is no airconditioning...
However, Alistar mentioned Suzy would drop-off a welcome platter later, that breakfast would be special "not your typical Bacon and Eggs", and left us to settle in. We wondered what he meant.
I did sleep for a couple of hours after closing the blinds - which did work in holding out the strong sun.
The bed was one of the more comfortable beds we had slept in during our two-week NZ trip.
At about 6:30pm I awoke with a clear head and hungry and we decided to head in to Cambridge centre for dinner. Onyx had a very nice Mediterranian Platter for Two.
On our return to the Villas (about 9:30pm), we found ourselves locked out and realised that we were never given a key - nor had we ask for one. We felt safe here. But the problem was how do we get in to our Villa which we had left unlocked, but obvoiusly had been locked for us while we were away.
Knocking on the main house doors and windows for several minutes we eventually got the attention of some other house guests, who told us that Suzy and Alistar were out.
They eventually found a key and let us in to our Villa.
Turning the light on we the found the promised and georgeous Suzy's welcome platter.
All homemade, if we had known what it would be, we would not have gone out. It was delicious dip, flat bread, cake, etc.
One thing we hadn't checked was the open bathroom window. Turning on the light drew in the moths and mozzies.
One suggestion would be to have fly screens on the opening windows. One window had one already.
There was not much space to place toiletries for a couple in the bathroom, but it was a small room.
The shower is good with a slight fluctuating water temperature (I suspect it may be an 'on-demand' water heating system).
The floor towel doesn't really fit under the shower door, but its no biggie.
There were plush dressing-gowns to wear, as well as slippers, although these are things we would not tend to use because an earlier guest may have.
Breakfast was brought to us by Alistar, who let out that laugh when we told him about our previous nights adventures.
Breakfast included a freshly baked loaf of 3 flour bread, including Spelt!!!
Home made Yogurt drizzled with home grown Honey, which was just perfect on Suzy's World Famous Muesli. And my goodness, was it good!!!
Although the accommodation style is not quite my cup of tea, and we didn't get to meet Suzy, the eco-friendly concept, the quality of the fixtures and fittings in the Villa, the superb quanity of the food and the interesting Alistar made us wish we had more time to spend here.
Ours was a French-style Villa, but the Villa next door was diffferent - a more modern style.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Why not treat yourself to a luxury retreat accommodation experience at Earthstead, with your hosts Alistair and Suzie Osmond. A range of B&B accommodation options for couples, groups and families near Hamilton. At Earthstead you can choose from a range of self contained holiday homes, all with distinct characteristics and furnishings. All of our accommodation has access to private gardens. Cambridge accommodation in a luxury retreat setting with great access to all that the Waikato has to offer. Waikato is a great place for people of all ages and with a range of activities and attractions in the area, you’ll always have something to do. From the Hobbiton Movie Set Tour and the award winning Hamilton gardens, through to Waitomo Caving Adventures, the famous surf beaches of Raglan, Hamilton Zoo, beautiful Sanctuary Mountain and Hamilton Museum, you don’t have to have a large budget to enjoy the local attractions in Waikato. ... more less
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