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“Disappointing Stay at Awaroa Lodge”
Review of Awaroa Lodge

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Awaroa Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 7 March 2013

My parents-in-law-to-be suggested we check out this venue for a weekend as a possible wedding venue. I had some girlfriends who said it was stunning and lovely and also recommended it.

It must have gone down hill since they stayed there as it was very disappointing! Here was our experience:

- stains on bedsheets
- unclear what is complimentary in the room and what is extra
- reception closed at 7pm, no help available after this
- a hair in my partner’s pasta at lunch
- a piece of plastic in my ice cream at dinner
- blackened and burnt bacon for breakfast, sent back, and then charged for the replacement bacon! (Which we could not eat either.)

As it markets itself as an eco-lodge, it was also disappointing to see a diesel-run electrical generator, and those annoying automatic fly sprays in the bedroom that spurt chemicals out every 7 minutes.

The staff were young, friendly and nice, but not trained in the 5-star gourmet service supposedly on offer. There was no manager or leadership in sight, so they were just doing their best. Unpolished is one word that comes to mind.

When I told the receptionist the next morning about our stay he immediately deducted last night’s dinner from the overall bill, saving us $191. This was appreciated, and, we still spent a total of $1055 for three of us to stay one night, including the water taxi.

Needless to say we won’t be getting hitched there, or going back any time soon. I hope they can sort the management and marketing out (is it an eco-lodge, a backpackers, or a 5-star hotel?!) as it’s such a stunning spot it could be wonderful.

Room Tip: Don't stay here, sorry.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Charlotte H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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235 - 241 of 354 reviews

Reviewed 4 March 2013

This is basically a good hotel, but greatly overpriced for what it delivers.
The room was large and well equiped.
The restaurant dinner was very good and fairly priced.
Breakfast service was poor and buffet was uninspiring.
Staff were friendly and helpful.
Clearly there are additional costs of operating a hotel in this isolated location, but they are certainly capitalising on their unique position. There does not really appear to be any real alternative at this point on the Abel Tasman track, other than the DOC hut or camping! A shame.

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Rog008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 February 2013

The rooms were very good and the park is beautiful but we were a captive audience and every advantage was taken ..we were charged for Internet and breakfast which I believe should have been included in the price if the lodge..the breakfast was average with an average cold buffet and some cooked choices that were ok but not great. the dinners were the same 4 choices for the three nights we were there and were expensive., and just ok, except for the Peking duck appetiser which was very good. .there was a separate $15 charge for bread. The young people on the staff were lovely and hard working but were not trained and some barely spoke English. The lodge seemed to be understaffed.We were not offered any guided options and explored the trails on our own. The beach is gorgeous and of course the coastal walk is beautiful. I think there is much Peppers could do to improve this property and would love to see them do that. We had heard great things about the Awaroa Lodge and were sadly disappointed.

Room Tip: I think the rooms # 15 -25 seemed to all be the same and were lovely..
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Lucille G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 February 2013

big thanks for the wonderful feast that you served for my friend's 40th birthday last monday!
it was a wonderful day out from Totaranui and our campsite. The chef made us some special dishes of mussels which they gathered for us on special request, what a treat!!
especially loved the basil chilli vodka cocktail............yummy!!

the short walk from the watertaxi shuttle arriving at the beach to the resort is a great way to soothe into the bush and listen to the birdlife!

in particular catering for a large group at short notice was great and giving us the private room in the conservatory was wonderful!

thanks for a wonderful service and special attention

Room Tip: we were shown the rooms and you would definitely need to stay in a superior room as the outlook is w...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank dkw1-13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 February 2013

We stayed here for 2 nights as part of a driving holiday in NZ. The setting is spectacular and it's a great base to explore the park areas with fabulous walks and scenery. However, the food was by far the worse we had in 2 weeks in NZ which is made even worse by the fact that the lodge markets itself as part of the peppers gourmet trail and has its own vegetable garden with posters promoting fresh organic food. I'm convinced that all the food we ate was frozen and reheated. We had a terrible meal in teh restaurant on the first night, our lamb dish came out cold and the fish was still frozen in the middle. When we mentioned this to our waiter he didn't really know what to do. The next night we decided to opt for the little pizza place instead. Unfortunately it was equally bad with the 'home made' pizzas at $20 each being made with frozen packet bases and packet ham, pineapple and cheese.

We got the impression that the lodge is being run by young seasonal staff who don't really know what they are doing but are trying their best. This would be ok in a backpackers place but when we were paying over $300 per night it's not acceptable. In a country that prides itself on fresh ingredients and warm hospitality, this was the most disappointing place we stayed (and the most expensive) by a long way.

I'd suggest staying outside the park and boating in to walk each day.

Stayed: February 2013, travelled as a couple
2  Thank wurlycurly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2013

We had stayed at Awaroa lodge 7 years ago and had the most wonderful experience we had been hankering to return ever since.Last time we a had beautiful room, fabulous food ( The best whitebait fritters ever and freshly baked breads, crumpets and homemade jams for breaky) all topped off by amazing service. This time was unfortunately abit of a let down. Our room was okay but thought it was pretty overpriced for the facilities and general decor. Everything in the lodge looked the same as 7 years ago but abit tired and rundown. e.g broken blinds in the dining room, dusty dried flowers arrangements and a generally uncared for appearance.They still had the same clothing and jewellery items for sale at reception as 7 years ago?
The food was of a good standard but not amazing and as other reviewers have noted pretty expensive!! The buffet breakfast was a standard hotel fare with cereal ,tinned fruit and tip top bread and jam and a choice of cooked items on the menu. Again it was good but not great!
The waiting staff we encounter all seemed like trainees with no knowledge of the wine list and limited knowledge of the menu.Some struggled with understanding English.With the exception of one young man named Ben ,who did seem to know what he was doing,despite only arriving at the lodge days earlier apparently?
The lodge is now managed by Peppers and it would appear that cost cutting has effected the Awaroa experience. I'm hoping that they lift their game over the next year making improvements to the main building ,the food quality and service so that I can return again in the future to a world class lodge and facilities.
HOWEVER on a good note ,the setting is still absolutely beautiful, we loved the addition of the pizzeria ,had a great afternoon on the beach and loved the complimentary kayaks.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Jacquie P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 January 2013

Stayed at Peppers Awaroa Lodge for three nights earlier this month. What a beautiful place!
The location is stunning, with an almost deserted white sand beach less than a 5 minute gentle walk from the Lodge restaurant and cafe. I found the staff to be exceptionally friendly and helpful, and the accomodation to be spacious, clean, and very comfortable. And the food was fantastic!
This is an ideal 'retreat' from the fast pace of life. Accessible by boat, small aircraft, helicoptor, or via the walking tracks in the Abel Tasman National Park, it's easy to get to yet very remote, and it's a little piece of paradise I would highly recommend. Can't wait to return some time!

Room Tip: Stayed in a superior
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank David P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Awaroa Lodge

Address: 11 Awaroa Bay, Abel Tasman National Park 7143, New Zealand (Formerly Awaroa Lodge)
Region: New Zealand > South Island > Nelson-Tasman Region > Abel Tasman National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Abel Tasman National Park
Price Range: £99 - £323 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Awaroa Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Awaroa Lodge in the heart of the Abel Tasman National Park has no direct road access so it is essential you arrange transport prior to your stay; our friendly Lodge team can assist you with options, pricing and bookings. Transport is available from Kaiteriteri, Marahau or Totaranui by sea shuttle or water taxi or from more or less anywhere else at the top of the south (or Wellington) by fixed wing plane or helicopter. Just minutes from the Abel Tasman Coastal Track, the lodge offers a remote and spectacular coastline with magnificent scenery, wildlife and native terrain in pristine condition. The lodge 's 26 rooms consist of standard, superior and family suites featuring an ensuite, bar fridge and tea and coffee making facilities, with views of picturesque wetlands and native forest. All guests are encouraged to appreciate the natural surroundings. We make this a little easier without the distractions of modern day life - no mobile phone coverage or in-room televisions make this the perfect place to totally get away! Enjoy the lodge's facilities including a cosy fireplace in the library, internet access, an organic garden , where our onsite restaurant and outdoor pizzeria source the freshest ingredients. Let our team at the activity desk arrange your guided tours. Explore the natural surroundings by tramping or sea kayaking or just laze on the golden sandy beaches of Awaroa Bay. Awaroa Lodge is the ultimate secluded getaway perfect for a romantic escape, family holiday or unique group experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Awaroa Hotel Abel Tasman National Park
Awaroa Hotel Nelson

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