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“Overpriced motel”

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Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort
Ranked #27 of 92 Hotels in Rotorua
Certificate of Excellence
Singapore, Singapore
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Overpriced motel”
Reviewed January 12, 2010

I was fooled by Trip advisor... sorry this place is just an over priced motel.
Every good motel in Rotorua has geo-thermal baths, these are plain water, and not very clean. Good motels in Rotorua charge $200-250 per night- this place charges $450 per night. The room wasn't cleaned properly, with a half finished bottle of wine in the fridge, dirty cutlery, and the previous occupants things left behind. The rooms are small, nicely painted, but terrible value.
The pool is small, and not thermal. The layout is poorly thought out- was a motel and they converted to a "hotel". Restaurant is poor value and the service average.

No I wouldn't go again there are plently of better places in Rotorua please patronize them

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank LesSingapore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bryangh, Owner at Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort, responded to this review, January 19, 2010
Thank you for your comments which are appreciated. Unfortunately on the day that you were checked in the receptionist checked you into a room which had not been fully cleaned and serviced for which I as owner apologise as this is not the standard that we aspire to in terms of ensuring that our rooms are serviced properly before our guests are checked in. To ensure that this does not happen again we have put in place a further checking procedure so hopefully your experience is not repeated. Again I offer my sincere apologises.
The room which was booked was our 1 Bed room Superior Suite which included an a la carte breakfast for two .It has been professionally decorated and finished to a high standard with quality facilities for our guests to use.
As a qualmark rated 4.5 star hotel the resort has many amenities and facilities that are not available at a motel including the award winning Mokoia Restaurant and Wai Ora Spa.
In terms of value I appreciate you opinion and will ensure that the first impression that you received will not be repeated for future guests. A letter of apology and gift will be sent to Singapore to hopefully in some small way compensate for your experience
Bryan Hughes
Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
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  • Location
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  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
Carnegie, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
229 reviews
77 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 289 helpful votes
Reviewed January 10, 2010

I was a bit unsure of what I had booked as we drove up to this hotel, but as soon as we arrived and were welcomed, all those doubts disappeared! The location is kind of odd. It’s almost in a suburban area (and not an overly fancy one at that) but the resort itself is located on the water’s edge and quite self-contained as soon as you go through the gates. It’s about 10 minutes from central Rotorua so you do need car to get around.

The staff were terrific and very welcoming. The reception desk is not really set up like at a major hotel with a concierge so be prepared to do some of your own research about activities in Rotorua. They can book you anything you like though and were happy to do it.

Our room was great – really nice décor, clean and well serviced every day. All the rooms are located in a U shape and overlook the pool. The pool is mid-sized and it was cold! The lake is around 50 metres from the hotel and we saw people swimming but did not venture in ourselves. There could be more shaded areas around the pool as it’s pretty hot with high UV in the Kiwi sun.

Internet access once you connect your own PC in the room was free and fast. There is also a PC near the reception where you can access the internet.

The highlight was the food! We normally try to eat in different restaurants when we are on holidays but we could not bring ourselves to eat elsewhere! The dinner menu is terrific and the food was absolutely superb. The chef has recently won awards for the lamb and beef, and both were great. The pork dish on the menu is also delicious. Our tariff included breakfast and this was a la carte with some nice choices. Our daughter celebrated her birthday while we were there and the chef kindly made her a divine chocolate birthday cake.

We used the spa twice and it was great. Perhaps a bit on the expensive side (e.g. NZD150 for an hour long massage) but a very nice experience.

This is a great hotel that is relatively small and so this enables great service and an excellent experience all round. We would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Feeber
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Antonio, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
38 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed December 28, 2009

My husband and I stayed at Wai Ora for two nights after spending three days in Auckland. What can I say but we "LOVED" this place. I will most definatley recommend it to anyone as the only place to stay while visiting Rotorua. The staff are very kind & amazing which made a world of difference!

We had a great room on the lower level, as close the the lake as possible. The room was very modern/trendy, clean and VERY comfortable. From fresh fruit upon arrival in the room to a great fridge/coffee area. Plus it was a real fridge - not a mini-bar so you could put your own stuff in it if you liked. Bathroom was very nice and they supplied you with very plush & comfortable robes and slippers. Amenities in the bathroom were great and they replaced them and gave extra the next day :). We felt like we could just totally relax which we did the first night. On the first night we went to the bar for a glass of wine (they gave us a card in the room for a free glass of wine in the bar on the first night) before dinner then went to the restaurant for dinner which was amazing - we had a great prawn/scallop starter and then both had the lamb - amazing!!!! I don't think there was many people staying at the hotel. During dinner there was us an one other couple. The same guy who served us in the bar, served us dinner.

The hotel had a lot of the same staff on - mostly likely due to low season plus low occupancies. Breakfast the next two days was out of this world amazing - this was without doubt the best breakfast we have EVER had anywhere!!!! I'm very serious about this one :) - AMAZING!

They had free internet in the lobby for guests to use as well as a great spa that we unfortunatley did not get to use. As I mentioned that staff are really good - one day we came back completely soaked from a very rainy day and were chilled to the bone. We asked about laundry facilities as our clothes were wet and they offered to do the laundry for us free of charge!!! While they were doing that, they started up the hot tub/jacuzzi's that were outside in the back by the spa for us which we really enjoyed to warm up after a chilly day. I think we stayed in them for a good hour and twenty minutes :)

If you want a warm, cozy, modern experience with great food and staff, then stay here!!! We will next time.....

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lorio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed December 3, 2009

Fantastic staff, beautiful scenery and great quality service. All staff were exceptionally helpful which made our stay in rotorua in memoral one. Rotorua was definitely one of the highlights of my trip and was made that much better by where we stayed. Thanks for the good times.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Texassss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, CA
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed December 2, 2009

We arrived late - after 11 pm on a Thursday night. When we called for directions as we entered Rotorua, Brian (the owner) got on the phone and gave us step by step directions to the hotel. When we arrived at the hotel, we were greeted warmly and Brian and James accompanied us to the bar so that we could enjoy a glass of wine (with great recommendations from James) before heading to bed. Everyone else at the hotel was just as warm and welcoming. Service was first rate the entire stay. We didn't partake in spa services but used the hot tub/sauna and the spa staff was also very friendly. The hotel is located right on the lake, so there are lovely views from the front of the hotel. Not right in town but convenient enough to the roads leading to all the local attractions. If we are back in Rotorua, would undoubtedly stay there again.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LA_and_beyond
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 20, 2009

From the moment we stepped into resort right up until the moment we left the staff at Wai Ora Spa resort were amazingly welcoming and hospitable.

The beautifully quaint bar is one you can quite easily 'lose yourself' in... But the favourite part of my time there would have to be the outdoor luxury spas. Set in a picturerisque environment surrounded by natural New Zealand flora and fauna, which even has a little stream running through it. I couldn't have designed it better myself.

It's obvious that the team at Wai Ora spent a lot of time thinking of every detail ensuring the possible experience for everyone... Afterall it's the little things that count.

Top quality, friendly, genuine, 5 star service.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank JadE_Tang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 30, 2009

First the good stuff:
The spa has a terrific location.
The staff are really friendly and could not be more helpful.
The food in the restaurant was absoultely terrific.

Now the bad stuff (although I concede this is very subjective).
The muzak in the restaurant is appalling but probably appeals to those over 60.
The lack of appropriate use of lighting in the restaurant leads to a lack of atmosphere - it was like eating in a fully lit showroom.
The showing of a rugby game on TV - apparently at the behest of the owner, who was wathcxing the game - in the adjacent bar and the acompanying blaring commentary -
was hardly conducive to a pleasant dining experience - and this from a rugby fan. Tthere is a time and a place for everything. If I had wanted to see the (and hear!) the game, I would have gone to a sports bar.
So, in summary, great location, nice rooms, good staff, great food but poor atmosphere, at least in part due to a lack of thought on the part of the management.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank PBGBLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bryangh, Owner at Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort, responded to this review, December 13, 2009
Thank you for your reveiw and comments about the the food, service and location which is appreciated. In respect to the lighting of the Restaurant and Music I would have to agree with you as both items were not addressed in the normal manner which is more subdued lighting in the Restaurant by dimming of the main lights electonically and the lighting of candles to provide what many are sayiing is a very good dinning atmosphere. In terms of the music unfortuneately only one playlist was used on the night in question rather than the normal spread of music that we have. You will be pleased to know that the situation that you experience should not be repeated and I am soory that you had the experience that you did. We endaevour to provide the best experience possible but on this occassion we were not as good as we nromally are in terms of dealing with the details which is crucial for an enjoyable experience.
In terms of the rugby I must admit that I was present in the bar at time of the rugby game along with a number of in house guests who were looking forward to seeing the rugby on our large screen. In veiw of your comments we have now adpoted a policy of close the doors to the Manary English Lounge Bar so that the sound from this area is isolated from the restaurant . Again, thank you for your reveiw and the points that you raised which is very much appreciated as it helps us to improve on our customer delivery and remind us that it is easy to overlook how all of our guests may perceive their experience with us.
Bryan Hughes
Owner
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort

Property: Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort
Address: 77 Robinson Avenue | Holdens Bay, Rotorua 3010, New Zealand
Phone Number:
Location: New Zealand > North Island > Bay of Plenty Region > Rotorua District > Rotorua
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Rotorua
#7 Business Hotel in Rotorua
#12 Spa Hotel in Rotorua
#24 Luxury Hotel in Rotorua
#30 Romantic Hotel in Rotorua
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Wai Ora Lakeside Spa Resort is situated on the picturesque shores of Lake Rotorua in quiet parklike surroundings only 3 mins from Rotorua Airport,and 10 mins to the famous geothermal attractions of Rotorua. This award winning resort hotel features luxurious accommodation with private balconies or courtyards with views to the lake; New Zealand's award winning fine dining Mokoia Restaurant specialising in indigenous herbs and spices which creates amazing taste sensations including a daily full vegetarian menu; superb personal service; relaxing Manary English lounge bar and the internationally acclaimed Wai Ora Day Spa featuring the World Luxury Spa Award winning "New Zealand Cultural Spa "regime based on the geothermal muds of Rotorua and wellness practices of the Maori. Rotorua's only World Luxury Spa Award winner. Enjoy the tranquility of the landscaped gardens and serene sounds of the meandering spring feed stream as you enjoy the hot and cold pools, steam room and sauna that make up the Wai Ora Spa Water Experience. The ideal Rotorua relaxation, spa, food taste sensations destination and accommodation base for all other Rotorua activities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Wai Ora Lakeside Hotel
Wai Ora Lakeside Resort

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