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“Pricey, but a unique experience” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass

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Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass
Cora Lynn Road | 16km east of Arthurs Pass Village, Arthur's Pass National Park, New Zealand   |  
Hotel amenities
Lake Tahoe (Nevada), Nevada
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Pricey, but a unique experience”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2014 via mobile

Our particular room had an amazing view. We took a wilderness trek with Nicky and found it well worth the time. She is an amazing resource of information. The meals were first rate and well presented. Michael gave the guests a tour of the sheep farm and performed a shearing with a very cooperative sheep who left none the worse for losing its coat. Is it expensive, yes and we could probably have saved some money at a venue in the area. But, I believe unique experiences are worth the occasional splurge. This lodge was worth the extra fees spent.

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tawaki, Owner at Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Dear Murray R,

Thanks for posting your review here on TripAdvisor. We always like to hear from guests who have enjoyed their time with us. I will pass on your positive comments regarding the food to head chef Jonny and let nature guide Nicky know that you really enjoyed your day spent exploring with her.

Offering a comprehensive and high quality experience in a wilderness location does mean that a stay at the Wilderness Lodge costs more than a roadside motel or large city hotel. We appreciate that in your opinion the experience provided value-for-money.

Kind wishes,

Michael & Claire McSweeney
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123 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (20)
Date | Rating
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English first
Phoenix, Arizona, United States
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2014 via mobile

One of the many highlights of our trip to the South Island was a night at Wilderness Lodge. It is a beautiful place, the food was excellent, the room was great and the tour of the sheep operation was wonderful. Next time we will stay for a few nights and use this as a base for the many outdoors activities in the area.

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tawaki, Owner at Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Dear Gary_Gotto,

Glad to hear your South Island travels were a success and that your Wilderness Lodge stay was a part of this. Combining quality accommodation, hospitality, food and guided activities in a remote location does have its challenges but also offers rewards in terms of providing guests with a memorable wilderness experience.

We really like sharing what happens on the Wilderness Lodge sheep farm with our guests. As a visitor getting the chance to experience life on a real working farm, meet the merino sheep and watch the sheepdogs work is often a highlight so it’s great that you enjoyed this.

We’d love to host you for a few days next time if you do return.

Best wishes,

Michael and Claire McSweeney
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Kennebunks, Maine
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2014

Claire and Michael certainly gave us a warm welcome along with the rest of the staff.
Room perfect, spacious with a glorious view of the mountains with an added touch of a fresh arrangement picked from their surroundings. Terrific shower and room service.!
Michael's evening walk was a wonderful way to start our visit and experience this incredible property.
I was rather sick with a terrible cold and missed out on most of the hiking. Claire took very good care of me serving tea and making me comfortable.
Sheep farm is incredible....Dinners were gourmet. Wonderful lodge. You will enjoy yourself!!

  • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tawaki, Owner at Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Dear Sandyj70,

Thanks for taking the time to review your Wilderness Lodge stay. We know from personal experience that being unwell while travelling is never much fun, so we’re glad we could help you to be more comfortable. It was great that you were still able to get out and enjoy yourself!

Warm Regards,

Claire & Michael McSweeney
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Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2014

We liked everything about this lodge. We were warmly welcomed by Michael and Clare and all of the other staff. We stayed in one of the Alpine Huts (I think that's what they are called) and loved the comfort and the quiet. A particular highlight were the hikes with Nikky who was both enthusiastic and very knowledgable. We went out with her five times. They make the most of their unique environment and it was impressive to see how well they care for it and the creatures who live on it. Michael taught us a lot about caring for and shearing sheep. The food was very good, with a good selection of wines. It got a bit crowded near the end of our stay as two separate groups arrived but this was handled in a way that did not at all disturb our stay. This is a location and an experience we will recommend very highly.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tawaki, Owner at Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Dear Cleo5244,

We really appreciate your comments – it doesn’t get much better than hearing our guests say “We liked everything about this lodge”! The guided nature and sheep farm activities are a highlight of a Wilderness Lodge stay and it’s great that you managed to participate in a number of these and learn something along the way.

Kind wishes and we hope we can host you again one day.

Michael & Claire McSweeney
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los angeles
Top Contributor
75 reviews 75 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2014

Arthurs Pass lodge is located in the mountains in a beautiful setting. The rooms are spacious and well equipped. The food was the best we had in NZ, both breakfast (don't miss the pancakes!) and dinner (both included in the price).
Best of all was the exceptional hospitality by Michael and Claire, the proprietors. They are so helpful and friendly! The day we arrived we missed the activity of visiting the sheep farm on the premises. The next day, instead of the scheduled walk, Michael offered to give another tour, and this was approved by the other guests on the tour. It was an absolute highlight: enlightening, interesting a fun (with the help of sheep dog Maggie).
We couldn't recommend this place highly enough. I would give it more than 5 stars if I could!

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tawaki, Owner at Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Dear Mayasl,

Thanks for taking the time to share your Wilderness Lodge experience with the TripAdvisor community. It is great to hear we succeeded in making your stay with us a memorable one. Glad we could share our special part of the world with you and that you managed to join us to discover the Wilderness Lodge sheep farm.

Kind wishes,

Claire and Michael McSweeney
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2014

Stayed for 3 nights and everything was excellent - room, food, staff, location. There are lots of walks in the area in all sorts of landscapes. And we did see a lot of different birds.

The reason for the 'But...' however is that we are not 100% sure about their actual eco-credentials despite all the words in the literature. During a walk we discovered a pit full of bottles and cans and when we asked were told that they dumped them rather than recycle. Of course this will not be relevant to many who stay at the hotel buy we found it disappointing and contradictory.

Room Tip: our room was on the first floor and we had great views from it
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tawaki, Owner at Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Dear Peb747,

Thanks for your review. It is great to hear that you enjoyed the accommodations, the food and the location of the Wilderness Lodge (as well as the birds). Thank you also for raising the question about recycling as conservation and the environment are at the core of what we do.

The Wilderness Lodge holds a prestigious ‘Enviro-Gold’ award under the New Zealand hospitality rating system and in 2012 was chosen by CNN as one of the world’s top ten eco-hotels. Half of the 6000 acre Wilderness Lodge farm has been protected as a nature reserve and we actively involve our guests in practical conservation work.

Waste management is also important and we run a comprehensive waste reduction and recycling programme. In New Zealand there is limited demand for recycled glass due to the country’s sparse population and limited industry. As such glass ‘bottle banks’ such as ours are commonly used as a temporary storage solution. This allows enough glass to be collected so that economies of scale can allow for its reuse. Typically this involves crushing to create material that can be used in road construction etc.

I hope this clarifies things and our apologies for not explaining this at the time.

Best Wishes,

Michael McSweeney
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West Bloomfield, Michigan
Top Contributor
96 reviews 96 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2014

We had a great room with a lovely view. The best thing was no t.v. on site. Peaceful stay. Second best was the free laundry room. Needed to do laundry and even the powder was included. Third best was the food. Very nice presentation, great taste, good portions and nice variety. Dinner menu changes nightly. You need to slow down and enjoy the outdoors in this great enviornment. Clare and Micheal are lovely siblings running this hideaway. Guided walks are offered, some free and some at a cost NO need to spend on the ones that cost if you can read the well placed signs along the tracks. However, the guided walks that are included are fun and informational. Michael's sheep sheering demo is wonderful. Go and have some peaceful fun.Only suggestion for improvement is Wi Fi. It is very restrictive.

Room Tip: Ask for a room facing the tracks. Upstairs the views are great.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tawaki, Owner at Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass, responded to this review, March 2, 2014
Dear Computernana,

Thanks for taking the time to share your Wilderness Lodge Experience. We appreciate that, while not particularly exciting, doing the washing is a necessary part of travelling and at both New Zealand’s Wilderness Lodges we make a point of providing complimentary laundry facilities.

It is excellent that you made the most of the activities and walking options on offer. We realize that the WiFi is quite slow and that this can be frustrating. Unfortunately the reality in remote New Zealand is that the only option for connecting to the internet is via a private satellite link and this does come with some limitations.

I will pass on your positive feedback on the food to our head chef.

Kind regards,

Michael McSweeney
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass

Address: Cora Lynn Road | 16km east of Arthurs Pass Village, Arthur's Pass National Park, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > South Island > Canterbury Region > Arthur's Pass National Park
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Arthur's Pass National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
2,400 hectares (6,000 acres) of our own private nature reserve and working farm surrounded by Arthur's Pass National Park. Discover spectacular mountains, lake canoeing, 30km of walking trails, alpine flowers and moss carpeted beech forest. Enjoy our high country farm featuring merino sheep shearing and sheepdog displays every second day. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Wilderness Lodge Arthurs Pass Hotel Arthurs Pass

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