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“Absolutely memorable: a hidden gem indeed”

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River Birches Lodge
Ranked #1 of 9 Turangi B&B and Inns
Reviewed 24 December 2008

I found out about River Birches through the Trip Advisor website and contacted the property directly. We booked the Majors Room even though it was above our budget but it was sooo worth it! The room was large, wonderful and bright, a clean bathroom with both bath and shower, with a porch/deck to the beautiful garden. The lodge itself is hosted by a nice, professional and welcoming woman called Anthea and she got to know us over drinks when we arrived, and then a cooked dinner which was booked with her beforehand. The following day I had a massage in my room, also pre-booked, and it was absolutely sensational. My massage therapist also told me what a wonderful place River Birches is and how she loves working for them. Everything was top class - from the service, the food, the wine and location. It was a splurge - but so worth it! We definitely want to return.

  • Stayed: December 2008, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank RJMcDiarmid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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107 - 113 of 130 reviews

Reviewed 21 August 2008

We stayed at the River Birches for 3 wonderful nights. The house is elegant and modern, with beautiful gardens, the river a few steps away. The place is comparable with a very top end hotel, but much more enjoyable because it's small, personal, and cozy. The hosts prepare delicious breakfast (to order), and can prepare dinner (which was especially nice the night we arrived, after an overnight flights and drive from Auckland).

The hosts (Anthea and her husband) were gracious and generous. They are experienced in setting up guests with appropriate activities -- they spent considerable time making phone calls to organize our activities. Their personal attention really added to the experience.

You don't have to be into fishing to have a good time here. We didn't fish at all, but enjoyed the walking paths along the river, the nearby parks, and Lake Taupo.

One of the best experiences we've had in any form of accommodation, in any country! Well worth the price.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank massmerlin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 May 2008

My husband and I have recently returned from our 11 day stay at RB. We were absolutely blown away by the property, the location and just the entire ambiance of the place! We were lucky enough to have the place to our selves for our entire stay!
Anthea (the host and manager) was helpful with her knowledge of the surrounding areas and tourist attractions/activities, an amazing cook and by the end we felt like part of the family!!
An amazing place to stay for a quiet and relaxing holiday, quiet honeymoon even just to treat yourself for a night if you are traveling NZ and on the road. It is located close enough to all the great tourist attractions yet it is secluded enough to be away from the hustle and bustle!
You will not be disappointed!

  • Stayed: May 2008, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Ecidnac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 May 2008

I had a wonderful stay at River Birches in April 2008. My room looked out onto the beautiful grounds and my bath looked out onto a small private garden. The Tongariro is just behind the house. In the evening, all you could hear were the sound of the running river. Anthea, who manages River Birches, was the perfect host. Nothing was too much trouble. She picked me up at Lake Taupo and dropped me off at the airport after my stay! I was told that the kitchen at the lodge was not open every night so on the first night Anthea had booked me a table at the Tongariro Lodge. The food was average. On speaking with Anthea, I discovered that dinner at River Birches could be "on demand"......so for the rest of my stay I ate in! Anthea's cooking was wonderful - her dishes were simple but inventive and all filled with fresh veggies from her garden! After a hard day trout fishing it was great to come back to a hot bath, followed by wine and cheese and Anthea's superb sun-dried tomatoes before a delicious dinner! I highly recommend River Birches - it was a wonderful experience and terrific value for money!

  • Stayed: April 2008, travelled solo
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2  Thank Divinemsmay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 May 2008

We found River Birches at Turangi by accident, not being keen fishing enthusiastics. It is tucked away down a quiet road in the not very lively town of Turangi, but close to Lake Taupo. We have been on an extra long honeymoon trip around NZ/Aus mostly staying in B&Bs and RB was a little out of our price range. However, it did surpass our expectations and was worth the bit extra. The Lodge, as described previously is extremely well presented, and in pristine condition (even though it has been running 3 yrs I understand). We were lucky enough to be the only people staying for our 2 nights there and had the whole place to ourselves. Our only criticism would be that our host (unfortunately the name has been forgotten as it was several months ago!) was a little cool/offish at first, and we didn't get the friendly Kiwi welcome we had become accustomed to. She had been working solid for the last few weeks before we arrived, and we did feel as if she would have preferred not to have had any guests to look after for a few days.

  • Stayed: February 2008, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Broteas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 February 2008

We loved it. Stayed three nights and if we could of we would of extended. We did the the Tongariro Alpine trek. Fabulous wines and food. My wife loved the fishing.

  • Stayed: January 2008, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Bob_Greenwich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 September 2007

We had high hopes for the hotel, but were blown away by what we found. The property consists of a purpose built 'lodge' with 3 guest rooms. The lodge is entirely for the use of the guests, unlike most boutique accommodation.
The property is beautifully furnished throughout and to a higher standard than I have experienced in hotels that claim to be the world's most luxurious ( and expensive). The hosts were incredibly friendly and welcoming - nothing was too much trouble for them. Marilyn (one of the hosts) is an incredibly skilled chef and comes to the lodge to lay on a sumptuous breakfast and most nights cook an amazing 4 course dinner. The food we ate there was better than anything we experienced in award-winning restaurants across Australia and New Zealand.
If they hadn't been unavailable for the day after our booking we would have extended our stay as it was so relaxing.
The value for money was the most impressive part of it - I would have happily paid 3 times the rate and still have felt it reasonable.
You won't be disappointed!

  • Stayed: September 2007, travelled with family
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4  Thank MayesTripper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about River Birches Lodge

Address: 19 Koura Street | Taupo, Turangi 3334, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > North Island > Waikato Region > Taupo District > Turangi
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 9 B&Bs / Inns in Turangi
Price Range: £298 - £432 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — River Birches Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Superbly located for the Tongariro crossing, fishing, and skiing getaways. River Birches is an exclusive retreat alongside the Tongariro River. Listed in Travel & Leisure Magazine’s Best of 2007. It features luxury accommodation equipped with Wi-Fi, fitness room and onsite chef. Qualmark: Five Star rated. ... more   less 
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