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“Don't believe the reputation” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley

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Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Ekerts Road, Pokolbin, New South Wales 2320, Australia   |  
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Hunter Holiday Package
Ranked #12 of 15 Hotels in Pokolbin
Sydney
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“Don't believe the reputation”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2007

To be honest a disappointing experience. Our room was absolutely tiny, the bathroom even smaller and with cracked tiles. The room had been updated with nice furniture and fittings but had tiny windows and the room was so small you wouldn't want to spend any time in it. Staff are excellent, warm and friendly. Breakfast was dreadful with even the staff apologising spontaneously for it.

We then moved to a suite, better but still not worth the money. Gardens are lovely but the pool house and facilities are looking very tired. Clearly once a prestige property now taken over by a chain and showing signs of unsympathetic control and management. Thought the Sebel Kirkton much better value and more pleasant rooms even if there is something tacky about the Sebel. Peppers for its faults some how manages to feel classy despite its short comings.

Stayed December 2007
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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320 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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37
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (78)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Brisbane, Australia
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2007

Set in a lovely location deep within the Hunter Valley, this hotel is set out like a traditional country cottage, with many more rooms.

The building is quaint, but the facilities are modern. The rooms are set around a central garden that is well maintained and attracts very cute, tiny birds.

The rooms are stylishly decorated, in neutral tones, and the bed has so many cushions it's hard to find it. Unfortunately, though, it was two single beds pushed together.

The double room I stayed in also featured an LCD TV with several channels, a well-appointed bathroom, an air-conditioner, fan and mini-bar.

Staff were friendly, and the guest lounge and dining rooms were stylish and comfortable.

I'd highly recommend this hotel for a weekend getaway - a quiet time in the country.

  • Liked — The setting, the comfortable rooms.
  • Disliked — The lack of energetic activities around.
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2007

It took just 2 hours from Sydney and we could have been 20 hours away! What a place. Loved it the moment I got out of the car. The Gardens are beautiful we felt instantly relaxed. Front desk staff were great on check in, very friendly, they gave us all the information we needed for our weekend of drinking wine and eating lots of yummy food! Our room was great, we could just walk out on the veranda and look around. We saw kangaroo's grazing - just lovely. We dined in Chez Pok that evening. They have an excellent winter menu - We didn't want it to end. The staff made us feel at home and even invitied us to sit near the fire in the bar to have our dessert wine! The next day we did a tour then came back and treated ourselves to the endota spa - well if we were not relaxed before we definately were then!! try the hot rock massage - awsome. The next day it was time to go, if we could have stayed we would have! We plan to go back next month and unwined again.

  • Liked — Staff, restaurant and day spa
  • Disliked — going home
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Guernsey, UK
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2007

2nd submission

My wife and I stayed at the property in February and found it the most disappointing experience of our five week holiday in Australia. The wording 'luxurious' was incorporated in the brochure which is extremely misleading. We stayed in Room 216 which was so small it would barely take our suitcases. The patio window was boarded up so we couldn't get outside. The ensuite was a similar size to a small cupboard and was virtually impossible to turn around. There was a chip on the washbasin and the airconditioning knob was missing so it was virtually impossible to put on.
On mentioning the very poor quality of the room the receptionist was obviously aware from previous customers of the problems and just apologised and wished us luck with our complaint to the management. I got the feeling there was little liklehood of anything happening as they seem to be living on the reputation of other Peppers establishments.

Stayed February 2007
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Sydney
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 9, 2007

We stayed at Peppers Guest House for our 10 year wedding anniversary. We love the Peppers brand and as we arrived we weren’t disappointed. Beautiful grounds, very quiet, tranquil and only a couple of minutes drive from vineyards, Hunter Valley Gardens and Harrigans Irish pub etc. Very ‘homely’ feel but at the same time large grounds where we could not believe it when we saw kangaroos grazing around.

The negative were all small things but when you add it all up it makes the stay slightly disappointing. Firstly the room was extremely small, noisy and no Foxtel which is the first time we have come across in the last 5 years of travelling. (There is a TV near the reception which has foxtel for shared use.).

We found our room dirty. For example there was a buildup of dust around the TV that you could wipe with a finger. There was a small hair in the sink in the bathroom. One of the robes in the closet had a cigarette in one of the pockets. The Hotel handbook seemed to have missing pages because it didn’t have any mains listed for room service.

Had to call reception (and got Margaret) to complain about noisy guests at night and she came down to sort them out which I guess was lucky for us and bad luck for them that she was on duty! We find her to be slightly abrupt (maybe that’s not the word) in the way she talked but otherwise had no complaints. She in fact advised us that they had free wine tasting in the lounge area as we walked past one afternoon.

To summarize I guess I would say the staff and grounds are great but the housekeeping needs big improvement. Didn’t eat at Chez Pok but went to Harrigan’s Irish Pub as its better value and atmosphere. Would we stay again? Maybe. We did get a great deal from a magazine offer so it was good value.

  • Liked — Resort Grounds, Lobby, lounge
  • Disliked — Housekeeping
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Lincoln
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2007

Peppers Guesthouse and Chez Pok must be living on an old reputation.
Peppers Guesthouse - The noise throughout the accommodation from plumbing noise in the walls to doors slamming was enough to wake us from sleep more often than 2 or 3 times throughout the night. Remarkably disappointing experience. Absolutely not worth the expense. Much better off trying your luck elsewhere.
Chez Pok – the food was OK but the service absolutely appalling. We had reasonably high expectations but these were quickly dealt with though the front of house café style direction to our table and further quashed by wait staff with no idea of the menu or any finesse in their service. Even average expectations would have met disappointment. If you do find yourself at Chez Pok you may wish to check the menu for amusing errors, we liked the Affrogatto. Peruse the menu for other errors. Albeit minor they seem to be indicative of the general service.
Breakfast service was (almost unbelievably) worse. With rap music playing on the skipping sound system at 9:30 am and no tables made up for service at that time (despite advertising breakfast service until 10 am). "Help ya selves to some toast" "Do ya want a coffee, it's filtered, or I can make you a expresso if you want". It's not the sort of service you are looking for at that end of the market!
You would be better off looking elsewhere. We wish we did.

  • Liked — comforatble bed
  • Disliked — noise and service
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peppers5, Director at Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley, responded to this review, June 25, 2007
We appreciate this feedback. Generally I am very proud of our team for their professionalism and committment. It appears you have struck someone that will need some further training and development, which they wll certainly receive.

With respect to spelling errors in the menu, we appreciate your detail and will review. I can assure you this is not indicative of our service standard or attention to detail.

With thanks
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2007

We stayed at the Guest house while traveling in Australia for a month. With the exception of the wonderful kangaroo sightings we would rate this property as one of the worst we stayed in. We can echo the comments of the couple who were met with the "blank Faced receptionist." This would be Margaret about whom we complained to the owner. To say the least Margaret simply doesn't like her job. Margaret rules the resort, the employees and guests with a stern iron hand. Two other employees confided that they had come to expect complaints about her interaction with guests. To be perfectly candid her short temper and lack of people skills ruined our visit. Be aware, one does not escape the Margaret at this resort. The rooms need updating and come complete with stains on the chairs, blankets, etc. Geographically speaking, once you are at Peppers, you are stuck there. No transportation to other restaurants, no taxi's. Peppers is a good chain but not this property. There are many good places to stay in Hunter Valley but this is not one of them.

  • Liked — The Wine Country
  • Disliked — Margaret at the front desk
  • Stayed April 2007
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peppers5, Director at Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley, responded to this review, July 2, 2007
We do take on board the feedback of all our guests and take
seriously any complaints.

After making us aware of their concerns these comments have caused
hurt and personal insult to a very hard-working and committed member of our team.

It was in fact Margaret that offered to provide complimentary
transfers even outside her normal work hours.

I felt we resolved the issues that were raised and were thanked on
check out by the guest for an enjoyable stay.

We appreciate our guests right to comment but feel to personally
criticize and name individuals, is going well beyond the boundaries of
what I feel is reasonable.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley

Address: Ekerts Road, Pokolbin, New South Wales 2320, Australia
Phone Number:
Location: Australia > New South Wales > Greater Newcastle > Pokolbin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Pokolbin
#8 Luxury Hotel in Pokolbin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley 4.5*
Number of rooms: 48
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled in the heart of NSW's Hunter Valley wine country, Peppers Guest House is one of the Hunter Valley's best loved retreats, offering a stylish accommodation base for exploring the region. Surrounded by beautiful gardens and overlooking vineyards, its intimate, relaxed atmosphere, the comfort and elegance of its hotel accommodation, and a long-standing reputation for exceptionally fine food and wine at Chez Pok restaurant, ensure that guests return to Peppers Guest House year after year. 24 Hour reception available. Maintenance Advise: Please note that the pool will be unavailable for scheduled maintenance from 6 September until 16 September 2014. We apologies for any inconvenience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley Hotel Pokolbin
Peppers Guest House, Hunter Valley Greater Newcastle/Pokolbin

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