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“All Around Superlative” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Farm at Cape Kidnappers

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The Farm at Cape Kidnappers
5.0 of 5 Small Hotel   |   446 Clifton Road, Te Awanga, New Zealand   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 3 Te Awanga B&B and Inns
Los Angeles, California
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“All Around Superlative”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

New Zealand now has several outstanding, world class lodges/small hotels and this one is right up at the top. Great mix of rustic chic that take full advantage of its fabulous site and amazing views, wonderful room design (kudos to the interior designer, who really has done outstanding job;luxurious without Four Seasons gilt and marble). Staff could not have been more friendly or helpful, cannot find one quibble to criticize about. And did I mention the food-even my husband, who is not terribly interested in fine dining couldn't stop raving about the quality, flavours and presentation-absolutely outstanding food!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Robertson J, Owner at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers, responded to this review, March 9, 2013
Dear sbh56

Warm greetings from New Zealand!

Thank you for taking the time to share your recent experience at Cape Kidnappers. It was wonderful to hear how much you enjoyed your stay. We especially enjoyed reading such a descriptive review and it was great to hear both you and your husband enjoyed the cuisine and dining experience.

We look forward to welcoming you back in the future, now having stayed at Cape Kidnappers and Matakauri you will have to visit Kauri Cliffs too!

Warm regards

Jay Robertson
Managing Director/Owner
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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79 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (16)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Nantucket, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2013

I was concerned that beginning our trip at Kauri Cliffs set the bar so high that there was no way it could get better - but it did at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers. While we preferred the design of Kauri Cliffs over The Farm, and Huka Lodge won the bathroom design award, Cape Kidnappers offered spectacular views, wonderful food, good rooms, - all within the context of a modern design riff on a farm.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 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.
Robertson J, Owner at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers, responded to this review, February 20, 2013
Dear NantucketJoe,

Warm greetings from Cape Kidnappers!

I am so thrilled that you got to experience two out of our three New Zealand properties during your vacation. The views, dining and staff are spectacular at all of our properties so we hope that you come and visit Matakauri Lodge at some point! Thank you again for your kind words.

Warm regards,
Jay Robertson - Owner/Managing Director
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fredericksburg, Virginia
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

The concept of luxury lodges is a brilliant one, and New Zealand seems to excel in this category of establishment. Spending a few nights in such an establishment is MUCH MORE akin to visiting your (Very) wealthy uncle at his retreat, as opposed to being a guest in a hotel.

In particular and in regards to the Farm at Cape Kidnappers, I cannot say enough good things. To put things in perspective, this was only our first visit to this property, but the second to the Trio of Robertson Family lodges (the previous stay being at Kauri Cliffs in April 2011). Additionally, we have previously stayed at the Huka Lodge, Treetops, Lake Okareka Lodge, and Azure lodge in previous trips. I am very happy to report that our stay in November 2012 at the Farm compared VERY FAVORABLY with all above experiences.

We stayed three nights in one of the Ridge Suites (number 19, I believe). Based on my observation, all their Ridge Suites were similarly located, and while I did not personally visit all of them I cannot imagine the view from either one of them being significantly different. I have posted a picture of the outside of our neighboring suite as well as a view from our balcony; simply breathtaking!

The pool is just gorgeous. It is part “infinity pool” in design, and is flanked by a very inviting hot tub. The water temperature in Late November was about 70F, which is a bit too cold for my taste. Since the pool has a dark “solar” bottom, I imagine there would be some variation in the temperature and as the days get longer, the average temperature would rise. I nevertheless availed myself of this tranquil oasis as much as I could, while my wife had her massage at the SPA (which she enjoyed as well).

I have also posted a number of pictures of the food included in our (and I am assuming most other) rate(s). The ingredients are first rate, and the preparation is fantastic. The wine list is extensive and the staff is happy to suggest a number of very unique local wines representing good value. We dined at the “snug” one night, in the main dining room the next, and next to the wine cellar (directly underneath the “snug”) on our last.

The friendly young staff comes from many different countries and it was a pleasure speaking with them throughout our stay. They were highly attentive while entirely unobtrusive. I felt our interaction with the staff added tremendously to our experience. They made us feel welcome and kept us entertained and engaged.

As for activities, we partook in the Quad Bike (that’s a Four-wheeler, for the rest of us!!!) adventure. Aiden was a fantastic, friendly, engaging guide who showed us all around the property including the Gannet Colony. For about 3 hours we crisscrossed the immense property and came to one jaw-dropping vista after another. Do not miss this one!

A very short, excellent, and very worthwhile local activity is a visit to the Elephant Hill Winery. I recommend having lunch there at least one day.

We hope this review was helpful. I’m glad to help with any questions.

  • Stayed November 2012, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Robertson J, Owner at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers, responded to this review, January 30, 2013
Dear Aramic,

Warm greetings from Cape Kidnappers! We are so glad that you had such a wonderful time partaking in all of the activities and the quad bikes are a great way to explore the property. We are so thankful to have such beautiful views at Cape Kidnappers and we are so glad that you got to come and enjoy them. Our staff will be thrilled to hear the wonderful comments you shared. Thank you for the kind words and we look forward to welcoming you back in the future!

Warm Regards,
Jay Robertson, Managing Director/Owner
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2012

After a magical experience at Kauri Cliffs to celebrate our engagement last year we were skeptical as to whether it could be matched by The Farm at Cape Kidnappers.

I can happily report that our recent weekend at this spectacular Hawke's Bay property was even better than we had hoped for.

Expectation built during the winding 7 kilometre drive from the farm gate and when we finally arrived the views from the lodge on a perfect spring day were spectacular. It was even clear enough to spot the snow covered peak of Mt Ruapehu on the horizon.

We were given a very thorough guided tour by Kerry the General Manager and had just enough time to settle into our room before my wife was due for the first of two spa treatments. While she was busy being pampered I sampled the homemade cookies and brownies that were the highlight of a very well stocked (and mostly complimentary) minibar.

Dinner on both nights of the stay was excellent and we were fortunate enough to be offered a private dining experience in the Snug on our first night. Its intimate setting, open fire and perfect food brought a very rare comment from my wife, describing it as one of her 'perfect life moments.'

As a golfer I was looking forward to two days on the 33rd ranked course in the world. This was the only letdown of the whole trip as I played terribly! The course itself was spectacular and very well maintained. I would give the higher marks to Kauri Cliffs for the views but I think Cape Kidnappers wins as a golf course in its own right.

Other highlights too numerous to detail include a walk past the lavender field, early morning sunrise spa pool excursion and what I rated as the best pancakes I have ever eaten (twice!).

One highlight which does deserve more explanation though is the service we received from everyone we encountered. As Kiwis we're not used to asking for much in the way of unusual requests but it seemed that the team were able to anticipate even our smallest desire. We also enjoyed their ability to realise that we were happier with a less formal experience than many might expect. Perfect in every way.

As we left we agreed that we'd come back to Cape Kidnappers one day. I still have a score to settle with that golf course!

  • Stayed September 2012, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kauricliffscollect, Owner at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers, responded to this review, October 5, 2012
Dear PhilNZ1
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your recent experience at Cape Kidnappers. I was proud to share your outstanding feedback with our team, and they were all thrilled to read your comments. We are delighted to hear that you had a wonderful stay and enjoyed all aspects of the Cape Kidnappers experience. We enjoyed seeing your photos of the Lodge too! Thank you again for your comments and we look forward to welcoming you back to our Lodges in the future.
Warm Regards,
Jay Robertson
Managing Director/Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2012

Our recent stay was excellent. The standards are outstanding and the staff couldnt be more helpful.
The suite was stunning and all possible amenities at hand immediately.
The food was wonderful
The golf facilities are excellent.
And to sum up it was faultless.

  • Stayed September 2012, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kauricliffscollect, Owner at The Farm at Cape Kidnappers, responded to this review, October 1, 2012
Dear Madelyn H,
We sincerely thank you for taking the time to write a review of our property on TripAdvisor. We are delighted to hear that you had a wonderful stay and that the staff, suite, food, and golf met your expectations. I will be sure to share your wonderful comments with our team. Thank you again for your comments and we hope you get the chance to visit us again soon.
Warm Regards,
Jay Robertson
Managing Director/Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2012

The Farm at Cape Kidnappers is one of New Zealand's most luxurious lodges. This is right up there with those for whom staying at 5++ star properties is their thing. You won't be disappointed. Sometimes in NZ hotels call themselves lodges or resorts and I wonder who gave them the 5 stars, but Cape Kidnappers is in a luxury band of its own.

We had a chalet on the ridge with sweeping views over Hawkes Bay (although it was a miserable rainy day so we couldn't see much!) Each suite has a gas fire and a super king bed, a huge bathroom with a bathtub for 2 under a window.

But the main lodge is a stunning building. Casual, rustic, iconic art on the walls, open fireplaces, plenty of private nooks and rooms for catching up with people. The all-inclusive 5-course meal was great and I loved the little breakfast touches the next day.

If money was no object, this place would be an annual event for us.

I was there to review it for my blog and have posted a bunch of pics so you can have a sneak peek inside... http://www.bloggeratlarge.com/new-zealand/nz-luxury-food-and-wine-at-cape-kidnappers-lodge/

Room Tip: Every room has views over Hawkes Bay, no room is a bad one!
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2012, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tokyo, Japan
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2012

I think perhaps they expect the beauty to be the wow factor, but for a really great hotel, other amenities should be stepped up a notch. The wine was quite difficult to choose from, and the servers were not that helpful in pairing wine with specific dishes. They were great at recommending specific bottles, but if you aren't going to offer a pairing with such a good dinner, then perhaps the by the glass listings could be better.
The activities were pretty expensive, as was the spa. We did a wine vineyard tour with a private guide, and that was well worth doing.
I agree with the other reviewer that there may have been a bit too much attention that did not always seem genuine.
It was a beautiful facility, but I'm not sure we would go back. I will say though that we consistently heard from locals around NZ that it was the best in the area.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.

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Additional Information about The Farm at Cape Kidnappers

Address: 446 Clifton Road, Te Awanga, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > North Island > Hawke's Bay Region > Te Awanga
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Te Awanga
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Farm at Cape Kidnappers 5*
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