My wife and I have stayed at Lupton Lodge many times now. It is always one of the highlights of our business trips around New Zealand - so much so that if no rooms are available for our planned dates, we re-arrange our itinerary to make sure that we can stay there.
Andy is always so welcoming and helpful - he knows a lot about what there is to see and do in the area. Even though we are always visiting on a working trip, when we get to Lupton Lodge we feel like we are on holiday. We have had some opportunities for local excursions too and Andy was very obliging with helping to organise those.
If you are visiting Whangarei on business or pleasure, you really should try Lupton. It's only 10 minutes out of town and on the road to the Tutukaka coast. The rooms are very tastefully appointed and breakfast is fabulous - the Lupton Special, yum!! Andy is a great cook so you don't even have to go in to Whangarei for dinner - just pre-arrange if you do want dinner.
Staying at Lupton is so much more personal than a run-of-the-mill motel/hotel. I can't imagine anyone being disappointed unless they actually like sterile hotels - you wont get that at Lupton Lodge.