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“Great two nights” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Donegal House

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Donegal House
Schoolhouse Road, Kaikoura 8280, New Zealand   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #28 of 34 Kaikoura B&B and Inns
West Coast
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Great two nights”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 21, 2011

Stayed two nights while on a work trip through Kaikoura. Six of us had an evening meal and it was great. Everyone enjoyed the food, lovely big meals. One of the group was vegan/dairy free and was catered too. The owner Murray joined us for a few drinks and we enjoyed the atmosphere. The grounds were beautiful and the rooms although basic pub/motel type accommodation were clean and comfy with great views over the gardens. Would stay again! Heard its well worth a visit on St Paddys day too!

Stayed July 2011, traveled on business
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63 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    6
    22
    12
    8
    15
See reviews for
8
28
4
3
Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
montana
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2011

It may not be on the beach, but it was a lovely place. It was an old homestead of an Irish family and has been turned into a B&B. The grounds are fabulous, the rooms clean and we had a great breakfast. It also has a bar and restaurant. I would recommend it if you don't mind not being on the coast, its about five miles inland.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Sydney, Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2011

We are fussy Aussie travellers and have been going to Kaikoura for the last 11 years when travelling in NZ. For the past 7 years we have stayed at Donegal House. The owner Murray and his staff are always welcoming and extremely friendly, the place is everything you would expect to find at a genuine Irish Pub and whatever you ask for is never any trouble. The motel section is very quiet, rooms are clean and comfortable with excellent tea and coffee making facilities. There are mini bar fridges in the hallway but I must admit on the odd occassion I would have liked one in my room.( Murray , take that on board). There are TV's in every room and great views of the mountains from every room. The food is very good and the overall value great! We travel to different parts of the world on a regular basis and find Donegal House right up there for value. To those who want or expect five star accomodation there are a few of that type in Kaikoura, however; "Donegals" will always be a great place to stay for us!! Kris and Vicki

Room Tip: Just tell Murray, Kris and Vicki from Sydney sent you!!!
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Saint Louis, Missouri
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2011

Overall, I would definitely stay here again. It is a fun place, a little outside of town with a lively bar. You are paying for the fun and charm of the place with the fact that the rooms are a little spartan and the price is a little higher.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2011

Read previous reviews posted by others because they're so accurate. Loud phoney irish music in the bar. Place is full of flies, There are no fridges, tv or tea/coffee making facilities in the motel rooms and the food is something to be missed, it's an uninteresting expensive menu and is not particularly nice to taste. Definitely not value for money in this place. The owner tries to make sure you spend as much as possible.. With hindsight, if I had read the reviews beforehand I'd of escaped having to stay at this place, but I'll know next time, the art of hospitality has escaped this place.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hastings, NZ
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2011

We had a wedding at Donegal House. The function and bar staff were great,as was the catering, no complaints there. Two days before the wedding we went to check the venue as the grounds were overgrown and littered with rubbish on a previous visit but we had been assured this would all be clean and tidy for the wedding. On arriving we were distressed to see weeds and rubbish about the entrance and the outside function area. When we asked that it be cleaned up, we were met with negative comments from the manager Murray, he even said he had waived the venue hire cost so we couldn't complain.(this was untrue, we had paid this ($500) as our deposit). We insisted it must be done, surely they also wanted the venue show cased to the best for guests? The men in the party even offered to do the cleanup themselves. We arrived the next morning to find the wonderful waiting staff out there in the rain doing a massive clean up-thank s guys:) We were overcharged for the bar tab, drinks not agreed for being charged and when I made comment to the manager via email following our return home, I received an extremely rude and disturbing email. Extremely unprofessional and downright unacceptable. If we had only had the staff to deal with I would be rating this venue highly, unfortunately management have let this down. Shame on you!

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Invercargill, New Zealand
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2011

We had our wedding here a few weeks ago. The service we received from the manager Kate and the other bar staff was fantastic. They made our day.

But the owner Murray is the most unprofessional person I have had the displeasure of dealing with. We paid a venue hire fee. On arrival the day before wedding the grounds were a mess (weeds and rubbish everywhere). When we mentioned this to the owner Murray, he just shrugged. We ended up offereing to come and help with the clean up, as we were getting married the next day! The grounds looked nothing like the photos on the website.
During our wedding (while eating our dinner) the owner came and stood in the reception area with a beer. Our guests were asking who this person was.
When we emailed to thank the manager for her great service, and suggest a few improvemnts (ie tidiness of grounds), Murray sent us back the rudest, most unprofessional email I have ever received. Murray bad mouthed both myself and my Mum, saying he felt sorry for the groom and my Father.
We were speechless. I will be telling every single person I know about our experience, and I hope you all do to. I feel so sorry for the staff at Donegal House.

  • Stayed January 2011
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Donegal House

Address: Schoolhouse Road, Kaikoura 8280, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > South Island > Canterbury Region > Kaikoura
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #28 of 34 B&Bs / Inns in Kaikoura
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 29
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Donegal House 'The Little Irish Pub in the Country'. Steeped with history of the Boyd family who came from County Donegal, Ireland in 1865, with host Murray Boyd continuing the Irish hospitality. Offering 30 Ensuite rooms, Bar, Restaurant, Function facilities, Gardens & Lakes enjoy the warmth & humour that Donegal House is now famous for. You don't have to be Irish to appreciate the atmosphere & hospitality dispensed at this Kaikoura landmark. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Donegal House Hotel Kaikoura

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