We stayed here as a family with a toddler and 5 yr old during the first week of January (after Rhythm & Vines 3 day concert (R&V) had finished). Hotel was in disarray on arrival due to R&V with cases of empty wine bottles and beer bottles filling the hallways. Helpfully we had received a phone call on-route to say our room would not be ready until 5pm & was ready early at 4pm.
There were a number of positive attributes that this hotel has (and a few negatives). Despite the negatives (best summed up as a laid back attitude), we did have a great holiday and would consider staying for another week at this hotel (but next time a few days after R&V).
* Central location in Gisborne - we used our car once to drive up the Coast (well worth doing) and walked everywhere else.
* Room size - big space for us to spread out. Kids had own room and we had a King sized bed in the sitting room. This worked really well for our family.
* Dinner, Bed and Breakfast package - great value with $100 dinner credit each night. Chef for first two nights made the most outstanding chunky fries & beef tartar (3rd night chef provided raw chunky fries mentioned below). Breakfast offerings were on the light side (and more than once ran out of low fat milk) but given it was part of the package, we really didn't mind. Would definitely recommend this package to others (even if it is for a few nights of your stay only).
* Pool area - the area was well used by the kids but the big pool is very cold so the spa does fill up with people very fast. Numerous sun loungers available are great for parents to keep an eye on the kids.
* Working holiday staff (from outside NZ) - amazing attitudes and always willing to go above and beyond when asked. Sad to see the lovely lady from Vancouver leave on Day 5 (she was exceptionally helpful).
* Liquid Soap dispensers - very popular in eco-hotels that we have stayed in, in both Sydney and Melbourne in 2010 & 2011 so excited to see this easy eco-idea working so well in this hotel.
* The laid back attitude that pervades Gisborne is huge in this hotel (especially with local staff). This was reflected in many ways including the hallways filled with rubbish & dirty washing bags that were only removed late in the day/at night; staff complaining about being overworked/not having breaks to guests, being told the mini bar fridge is just a mini bar fridge and we shouldn't expect to put our own stuff in it & the raw fries being served to my 5 yr old as part of her dinner at the restaurant (which when we complained appeared to have been microwaved and sent back still barely cooked).
- Standard of cleaning. Cleaning was usually done to a very low standard (I would never let the kids on the balcony without shoes as filthy floor & mouldy or dirty chair covers meant we really didn't sit out on the balcony as much as we had hoped to); cleaning staff complain a lot about how overworked they were and nothing is ever done in a hurry. Cleaners we had on Day 5 or 6 were the exception and were incredibly thorough (including removing mouldy chair covers & cleaning balcony table).
* Timing of cleaning. Cleaning of rooms was done anywhere between 12pm & 8pm at night - which is very difficult when we are trying to have toddlers naps. This meant we had to make ourselves scarce late in the day/evening when we are trying to get kids to have naps/baths/getting ready for bed.
* Mini Bar System - while I understand that it is helpful for the hotel to have an automatic minibar system, the information in the hotel compendium about the mini bar did not match reality. Hotel compendium stated you could remove drinks on bottom shelf of door (which I did).....however I was to discover on checkout that I had been charged for all these drinks. Most galling was that the guy who did the minibar check everyday had said "oh I see where you have put the drinks from the door - that's great/not a problem" more than once during the week. Took a copy of the compendium to front desk on leaving to point out this issue (and that I was right in what I did) and was told "you must have been the only person to have read the compendium" and "it has been like this for a long time and we didn't know it said that)! Hopefully the compendium will be updated by the time we return.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- In the heart of beautiful sunny Gisborne you'll find the very welcoming Emerald Hotel & Conference Centre. It's a hotel that offers all the benefits of boutique accommodation right in the midst of the city centre, and is the Gisborne's first fully-integrated hotel and conference facility. Spacious rooms overlook stunning vistas across the inner harbour through to the historic Kaiti Hill, to the surrounding hills, across beautiful rivers and, from the executive apartments, out to Young Nick's Head. It's the perfect place to host conferences, meetings, weddings and gatherings. As a full service hotel guests don't even need to leave the hotel for anything, although it is close to other cafes, restaurants, shops and city attractions. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Emerald Hotel Gisborne