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“A hidden gem in the Wakatipu” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Kinloch Lodge

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Kinloch Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Queenstown
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“A hidden gem in the Wakatipu”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 14, 2010

We stayed overnight for a special occasion to get out of Queenstown without wanting to commit to airfares or long drive somewhere out of the area. Kinloch offers a locals special at certain times of the year which we booked with a room in the heritage lodge and meals included. The surrounding area and drive there is so breathtaking it really makes you appreciate why New Zealand has such an untouched pristine beauty to it. The staff were friendly, the bed was comfy, the spa is an added bonus as is it is set on the hill and overlooks Lake Wakatipu. The heritage lounge and restaurant have a quirky funky rustic atmosphere which gives the whole place a bit of personality. The food was amazing and everything tasted homemade (probably because it is!). Dinner and breakfast were both very filling. My only complaint was staying one night did not give us enough time to relax as much as we would like. Highly recommended for people living in the area as a getaway or anyone wanting to treat themselves after a tough trek.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank biggiesalls
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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258 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (52)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
224 reviews
111 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 13, 2010

Average hostel in a nice, quiet location with friendly staff. Not quite sure why it's rated so favourably, as the place is old and it shows, but at least it's kept mostly clean. Visiting during the winter, the heating was insufficient in most areas and absent in the bathrooms/shower rooms. The shower room's power is on a timer, so when you're in the middle of getting dressed, the lights go out and you have to open the door to turn them back on. The kitchen is nicely equipped, and there is a rather extensive DVD selection, plus a spa out back. Unless you're doing one of the tracks, I wouldn't recommend going to Kinloch for anything more than a half-day trip from Queenstown (it is a beautiful drive).

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank tch77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore
Level Contributor
24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 24, 2010

I stayed at the lodge over two sets of dates, before and after Easter. Both stays were in the Heritage Double room in the main building. The first visit was related to a planned Routeburn hike. Although the tramp turned out to be a soaking to remember, my stay was very pleasant. The lodge has a lovely view of Lake Wakatipu framed by the surrounding mountains and one can sit on the porch and indulge in idle conversation or thought for hours. I had fine but cool weather on my second stay and enjoyed the night sky - which is really glorious - no light pollution and pretty unhindered views.

The owners - Toni and John take a hands on approach to running the place and the staff are mainly long stay travelers from faraway lands themselves and are fun to talk to.

The rooms were quite small and poky but waking up to sounds one associates with the countryside and in the comfort of a warm bed made up for that. A cozy fireplace and lounge where one can chat up housemates was great. The property was generally well maintained.

The restaurant was good place to have dinner but the breakfast offerings didn't appeal to me. No problem, you can bring your own and mingle with the trampers in the backpacker section of the lodge.

I found my fellow guests interesting to talk to - and the layout of the place encourages interaction.

As a starting (or ending) point for treks along the Routeburn, Greenstone, Rees and Dart Valleys, this is a nice warm abode to return to away from the madding crowd.

Overall, this is not a place for everyone but for the folks who have it in them to enjoy something different, away from the tourist traps in Qiueenstown and Wanaka, Kinlock Lodge is a gem.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Mike C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Queenstown, New Zealand
Level Contributor
101 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 19, 2010

I seem to have had a different experience to others here.

My wife and I stayed at Easter. The room we had booked was a double. We took evening meals and breakfasts in the restaurant.

We arrived before the 3pm check in and was firmly but politely told that the room wasn't yet available. We went for a short walk and returned for a spot of lunch.

During lunch the room was made available early so we went to settle in. Oh dear - what a disappointment. At best it was adequate and it smelled damp. It was next to the gents toilet in the shared amenities and - without further elaboration - there wasn't much sound insulation. We asked for a different room and were moved at an extra $20 a night to a room further away. We were now paying just short of $100/day which is absolute top dollar (in fact for what was delivered this was the most expensive room we have ever taken in NZ in 30 years of traveling).

We booked our evening meal in advance. The portions were small (top dollar once again) and the menu was limited. The beer selection was woeful - an opportunity to showcase NZ's beer craftsmanship lost.

The Breakfast menu had been dumbed down because it was Easter to continental only. NZ's stupid regulations around Easter mean that employing staff cripples anyone in the hospitality industry. So there was no staff as such. Instead the proprietors had to muck in. But I am not really sure why this is such an issue on the menu front when there were only a few people taking breakfast (in fact we were the only ones in the restaurant when we were eating). In addition in my experience Continental breakfasts on 'the continent' include a selection of breads, cheeses and meats (sausage and the like) along with cereal, yoghurt and fruit. Here there is no meat or cheese.

Anyway, after a very boring breakfast (at a massive charge just short of $20 each for what amounted to cereal and coffee - come on guys!!) we went for a walk.

The evening meal had the identical limited menu but had an additional 'Easter charge' to cover the aforesaid staff costs that Easter inflicts. So the price of mains went from top dollar to off the scale. We had to eat so had the soup with bread. Unfortunately the soup was dreadful and from what we saw on the menu there was no real alternative on offer to us without spend an additional $30+ each

The following day all staff were on hand and breakfast was fine.

Altogether we were very disappointed with our stay. The staff and proprietors were very friendly but there was no doubt in our minds that despite NZ's daft Easter regulations we were being royally overcharged for what we got.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank NZBeerMonster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kinloch_Lodge, owner at Kinloch Lodge, responded to this review, April 21, 2010
We are sorry that this guest did not enjoy their stay at Kinloch.

Kinloch lodge is a 4 star plus Qualmark backpackers and a 3 star plus guest and hosted bed and breakfast and has just been reassessed as such by Qualmark this week.

The guests commented on what we offer at Kinloch lodge. This is what we have:-

We have 10 different NZ beers on offer. Our pricing is cheaper than Queenstown though we do need to take into account freight costs to first Glenorchy and then collection of freight (52 km return).

Our breakfast menu has items from $7.50 for bacon, egg and swiss cheese in a bun, to our continental breakfast at $17.50 that consists of unlimited fruit salad, yoghurt, choice of muesli and other cereals, freshly baked croissants, muffins, home baked bread and a choice of jams, juices and bottomless tea or coffee. Over the Easter holiday period, we chose to serve this ourselves and not surcharge guests the usual 20% holiday surcharge that goes towards the extra cost of staffing a holiday period.

The first night the guests dined they shared a soup, a main and a dessert between the 2 of them. Perhaps that’s why the portions seemed small. Our mains are priced between $23 and $31 and are designed to be a good size for one diner.

At Easter the menu included a choice of 6 appetizers, 6 mains & 6 desserts.

Over winter we have a warming set menu, open fires, a warm welcome, a hot tub overlooking the lake and mountains and one of the most beautiful locations in the world with a bed from $30. If this is enough, we look forward to welcoming you to Kinloch.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
50 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 97 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 2, 2010

Our fifth visit although the first in three years, as always in the backpacker section. Kinloch was heavily refurbished a couple of years back and a lot of money was spent. We felt it is looking a little tired in some of the common areas, and one of the bedrooms we stayed in needed a new insect screen and guttering repair. 'Kiwi' the second room, was wonderful - good bed, great sheets and towels and a wonderful view.

Showers are clean, powerful and hot, and the DVD/Video room has months of entertainment with comfy sofas and beanbags. The other common room has a dining area and games, although the book swap has been robbed which is a shame.

The restaurant is classy but pricey and is out of our budget, but self-catering facilities are ok, with the exception of no glasses at all! We were told somewhat patronisingly that this is because they break or get stolen, but i don't think this is an excuse! The fridges need replacing too. (I gave all this feedback to the owners) Otherwise everything fine.

Outside areas are beautiful and well-maintained and it is right on the lake, although take insect repellent! At night you get lots of stars and just the sound of the waves. The road outside has been coated in oil to keep the dust down which I don't think is a good idea as it smells a bit. The road is sealed from Queenstown until 9km before Kinloch.

We took 6 days of food and drink as there is no shop within half an hours drive, and used the place as a base for day walks on the Routeburn and Dart. Owners Toni and John are very helpful and friendly, and their two now rather elderly, smelly but friendly golden retrievers are always up for a stomach scratching session.

Kinloch is pricey for a hostel due to its location but I felt it was still value for money, and really enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank fr0mtheb0rders
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kinloch_Lodge, owner at Kinloch Lodge, responded to this review, March 14, 2010
Its always good to get feedback and it is our passion to get things right. 2 replacement insect screens have been on order for the last month. There are glasses in the backpacker. Our restaurant has mains between $23 and $31 with everything you can expect from vegetarian options to Steak, duck and salmon. We have a small shop on site that sells basic food items and we happily order from Queenstown for guests if they need more groceries, though freight is expensive.... Each winter we update and paint and as an old building in always needs it. Thanks again
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC
Level Contributor
25 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 14, 2010

I spent one day at Kinloch and wished it were more. The setting is unbelievably beautiful. The couple who appear to own and run the place are so friendly and helpful! Kinloch made a large series of arrangements for me - from transfers to kayaking. We stayed in the backpackers portion of the lodge. The room was quite nice. The kitchen and communal living facilities are really nice, clean, and inviting. There is even a grill for the guests. There is also a very nice hot tub (best for use after you swim in the lake!). It is a unique and beautiful setting, and was one of the highlights of our trip.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Sue_and_Waldo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
40 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 4, 2010

A warm welcome, comfortable room and stunning setting. Loads of great walks in the area - and I was doubly lucky as I had several days of stunning weather. Fantastic sunrise photos over the lake if you're up early enough!

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank splodge_69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kinloch Lodge

Property: Kinloch Lodge
Address: 862 Kinloch Rd, Glenorchy, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > South Island > Otago Region > Glenorchy
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Glenorchy
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Kinloch Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set in a spectacular setting on the lakefront opposite Glenorchy township between the Routeburn and Greenstone tracks, a stay at Kinloch Lodge is a highlight of any holiday. One of just three places in the Southern Lakes to become an authors pick in the Lonely Planet guidebook. Kinloch is a haven for walkers, fishermen and people who want to feel close to their natural environment. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kinloch Hotel Glenorchy

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