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“True luxury in a country setting.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Pillars Retreat

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The Pillars Retreat
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   7 Deborah Rise | Bonshaw Park, Taupo, New Zealand   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 73 Hotels in Taupo
Pincher Creek
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“True luxury in a country setting.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 4, 2014

Gilly & Brian are friendly, very welcoming and their home and gardens are stunning! The rooms are beautifully appointed with many extra touches such as fruit, chocolate, home made cookies and a variety of coffee, tea, & other beverage choices.
Our hosts were so interesting & engaging that we made a point of meeting them for the offered 6:00 p.m. glass of wine on both evenings of our stay.
The breakfasts were delicious and again included lovely homemade items such as raspberry muffins and yogurt.
We felt like royalty and definitely wish to return,

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

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2GillyJ, Owner at The Pillars Retreat, responded to this review, February 22, 2014
We are glad you enjoyed your stay with us as we did hosting you both. It was lovely to relax with you each evening, and hear about all your adventures in New Zealand and many other countries around the world. Look forward to meeting you again some day, Canada is certainly on our travel list !
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108 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (28)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Leamington Spa, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2014

A beautiful house in a beautiful setting. 5* accommodation in the Pillars Room, we could have played tennis in the huge bathroom but used the tennis court instead. Brian and Gilly were perfect hosts, genuine friendliness combined with excellent service. Couldn't fault the Pillars. Thoroughly deserves to be No.1 in Taupo.

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2GillyJ, Owner at The Pillars Retreat, responded to this review, February 5, 2014
Thank you for your wonderful review, we are working hard to be the best accommodations in Taupo, but there is always more we can improve on.We enjoy spoiling our guests and making them feel at ease and relaxed.The Pillars suite that you stayed in certainly has a large bathroom with plenty of space to store suitcases and unpack with a dressing room area as well.
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Brussels, Belgium
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2014

Brian and Gilly were incredibly welcoming and friendly and their B&B is not only spacious and palatial, but the gardens are gorgeous too. Too cool for the pool and too windy for tennis, but I enjoyed the conservatory and the common areas. Our room was very comfortable indeed and the best bed I have slept in in NZ. Our hosts offered a glass of wine at 6pm to guests which was a nice touch. The location is outside Taupo so no lake views but this is compensated by the beautiful surroundings and super star gazing at night.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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2GillyJ, Owner at The Pillars Retreat, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to comment on your recent stay, we really appreciate it. I am glad you found your room comfortable ( Tauhara Suite). It catches the morning sun, and the balcony provides a spot to take in the view of Mt Tauhara and our gardens.It was lovely to see you relax with a book and enjoy the guest lounge and conservatory after your busy travels throughout New Zealand.It was a pleasure to have you to stay.
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Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2014

Pillars surprised us in many ways, all positive. The house, garden and facility's are amazing! Breakfast is really good and Brain and Gilly make you feel more than welcome. They really understand hospitality.
The location is 10 minutes by car from Taupo, perfect for us. We stayed here for 2 nights and had a great time. Played tennis, enjoyed the beautiful garden. Had good nights of sleep and Brain and Gilly told us some great spots to visit in and around Taupo, that we otherwise would have missed.

We honestly don't know how to improve this place. Whenever we get to Taupo, we definitely stay here again!
Madeleen and Frank

Room Tip: We spend 1 night in the sunset room and 1 night in the Bonsaw room. Both are great. We had a change...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

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2GillyJ, Owner at The Pillars Retreat, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Thank you for writing us such a great review, we did enjoy chatting to you over a glass of wine in the evening and over breakfast. Although we are on the outskirts of Taupo , it is an easy drive into town and we can guarantee a quiet nights sleep in our rural setting.We enjoy hosting guests in our home and look forward to having many more come and stay to share our piece of paradise.
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London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

We came across The Pillars on Booking.com and booked just the morning of our arrival. Sadly we could only stay one night, but would have loved to been able to spend more time there. From the moment we parked the car, Gilly &Brian were welcoming and helpful.

We spent a fabulous afternoon in their grounds playing tennis, swimming and just relaxing on the grass reading. We then joined them for cheese and wine and a great chat before going for dinner in a restaurant recommended and reserved by them.

The attention to detail in the Pillars is exceptional, from the home made goodies in the rooms, to the cakes and jams served at breakfast where the ingredients come from Gilly and Brian’s own farm.

I would recommend the Pillars to anyone who travels through Taupo and is looking for something more personal then an anonymous hotel. Gilly and Brian’s knowledge of NZ is invaluable for people travelling around and they’re thoroughly nice people to spend time with.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

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2GillyJ, Owner at The Pillars Retreat, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
It was a pleasure having you to stay, and the beautiful sunny day was perfect for being outside for the afternoon and relaxing. Our pool is salt water and the water temperature today was 24 degrees celcius, so very refreshing after a long hot drive.We have tennis balls and rackets so no excuse for not playing tennis whatever your ability. It was great to see you utilize the facilities and thank you for your lovely review.
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Auckland Region, New Zealand
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

Pillars Retreat is a beautiful villa set in lovely gardens just a short drive from central Taupo. It felt like the best kind of hybrid between the luxury of a boutique hotel and the warmth and homeliness of a family b and b. We enjoyed exploring the gardens and wish we could have stayed longer to try out the swimming pool and tennis court. Gilly and Brian couldn't have been more welcoming and hospitable, they are great hosts.

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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2GillyJ, Owner at The Pillars Retreat, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
Thank you for reviewing us after your stay recently. You describe us well, a comfortable well appointed home with a few luxuries added to pamper our guests. The gardens are always popular and its great to see them being enjoyed, especially at this time of year, with an abundance of Lilies out.
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2014

Hosts really do have the ability to make good places great and that was certainly true here, as Gilly ('homemade' is her middle name) and Brian (an authentic New Zealander if ever I have met one) tender to your every need with an unrelenting warmth hard to achieve with paid-for hospitality, but this place has much more going for it than that. It is a most impressive mansion with pool and tennis court resting in the green hilly Waikato countryside, a short drive from Lake Taupo and various geothermal and Maori attractions, and could easily be the home of a famous celebrity or a hollywood movie set. But if you want the bright lights then look elsewhere, as this was very much a down-to-earth sort of place (albeit one of distinguished comfort and retro-glamour). Our room was huge, well appointed and clean with garden views. Complimentary wifi, laundry and cookies were all well utilised on our 2-night stay, as was the wine and fruit bowl we were greeted with on arrival. Breakfast lived up to the high standards of the rest of our experience, although best not to be in a rush as the hosts seem to enjoy a good yarn with their guests (and are all the better for it, in our opinion). We were on our honeymoon and of the 6 or 7 B&Bs we stayed at throughout NZ this has to rank as top choice for overall customer experience and best value for money. They are doing a superb job.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2GillyJ, Owner at The Pillars Retreat, responded to this review, January 25, 2014
So glad you enjoyed your stay with us as we did having you, and seeing you both explore and enjoy the Taupo area.We really enjoy sharing our home with guests from all over the world and our aim is to make everyone feel at home and be able to relax after a busy day of activities.We feel we have a" Hidden Gem" at The Pillars Retreat, for travellers to discover. Thank you again for writing a review of your experience here.
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Additional Information about The Pillars Retreat

Address: 7 Deborah Rise | Bonshaw Park, Taupo, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > North Island > Waikato Region > Taupo
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Taupo
#1 Romantic Hotel in Taupo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Pillars Retreat 4*
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Pillars Retreat is a modern Mediterranean style country manor close to lake Taupo. Brian & Gilly Jenkins as your hosts will welcome you with a homemade afternoon tea, followed by an early evening glass of wine and nibbles.A hearty breakfast next morning is made from fresh local or home produce including eggs from our own hens.Set in 3 acres of park like grounds to explore,with a gazebo,pond,tennis court and swimming pool for you to relax and unwind.The Pillars has four large beautifully appointed upstairs ensuited guest rooms, three with own balconies.The Pillars Suite,our most luxurious, has a californian king bed and large bathroom with a stand alone shower, plus raised bath.Our other suites are either king, superking or californian king beds with three suites being made into twin beds if required. All rooms have under floor heating,flat screen TV,radio clock,gowns,slippers,iron and ironing board,hairdryer,Koha Spa toiletries,tea and coffee making facilities.Home baked cookies,fresh fruit,bottled water and chocolates also compliment all rooms.WiFi is free and available through out the house.We have a complimentary laundry for guests use. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pillars Hotel Taupo

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