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“Dream Come True”
Review of Solitaire Lodge

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Solitaire Lodge
Ranked #24 of 92 Hotels in Rotorua
Certificate of Excellence
Dunedin, New Zealand
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Dream Come True”
Reviewed September 24, 2013

Woow! It is hard to know where to even start!
I am blessed to have opportunity to stay at Solitaire Lodge, when i didn't even dare to imagine that places like this exist in reality. Here you fall in love again, in your partner, nature, life! Ingrid and Wayne made this place a perfect getaway, such a serene nature, view from room is astonishing, lake and sky are perfect blue and lush greenery to rest your eyes. Room is beautiful and comfortable. Newly renovated bathrooms offer baths with view, so I would be spending whole day soaking in bath if not for divine food! It is amazing to get through 5 course dinner and be surprised with every taste again and again, combination, texture. With every new course i did not want to start eat, to not spoil picture perfect plate presentation. Chefs David and Mirai are amazing, smart and creating, class A. They have eye for detail and just perfect perfect amount of food to get through night being spoiled with fresh cuisine. To not even mention breakfasts, anything you can imagine. I better stop or i will become hungry :)
I don't know how to describe Solitaire experience shortly, but it is perfect in all seasons, even in bad weather. There is much things to do, early morning hot water beach excursion is my favorite. Whole experience is so refreshing. Staff is so friendly and welcoming. We enjoyed chatting evenings away with host Graham and owners. I felt better than at home, because i could relax and be sure that everything will be taken care of. Thank you so much for this memorable experience, beautiful people and astonishing place to stay. We will be back, definitely!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Kaja M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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139 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (26)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
New York City, New York
Level 6 Contributor
165 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 228 helpful votes
Reviewed May 21, 2013

I would like to rate this 4.5 stars, but settled on 5 instead of 4.

The setting on the lake is fabulous, pristine, awe inspiring. The dining was excellent. We had a lovely hike to Tarawera Falls. The setting does not disappoint. I will long remember it.

The rooms are 80's decor. And only middle of the road quality, as well. A bit dowdy. That is my only complaint, and at the price point, I think it is a fair one.

PS We visited in January about 5 years ago.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank 6ContinentsNCounting
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed May 21, 2013

By far the best experience for us ever. We took this trip to celebrate our wedding anniversary and we loved every minute of our stay. Wayne, Ingrid, Graham were all great hosts and it was so nice to meet really lovely people who genuinely cared for their guests. The place itself is situated right on the waters edge and has sweeping views of the lakes and surrounding hills and mountains. The room we stayed in was luxurious and absolutely top notch with windows right around that gave views of the lake and surrounds. Loved the dining - David, thanks for the wonderful 5 course meals accompanied by Graham's wine recommendations which were spot-on. Oh did I mention about the complimentary mini bar? These guys were all really knowledgeable about the history of the area and it was great to listen to them relaying the history of the volcanic eruptions, the pink and white terraces, the geological formations that resulted - as well as the origins of the Australian wattles dotted around the area. To top it all off, the helicopter ride to the top of the Mt Tarawera was simply breathtaking. Thanks for an awesome experience, guys. We will be back.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank MikeC1109
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
rockstar1975
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed April 29, 2013

we had the pleasure of spending two nights at solitaire lodge and the only downside is we spent too little time there. it's rare to find a place that offers a gorgeous setting, impeccable accommodations, world-class dining and great service. solitaire has them all. proprietor wayne tomlinson loves what he does and he loves doing it there. that shows in every detail. of course, the location is also ideal with rotorua at hand and nestled right on lake tarawera. final stroke of wonderfulness: graham. solitaire's man about the lodge is a brilliant mixologist. i'm not one who is easily won over, nor do i post often. but in this case my experience can be summed up in three words: go there now.

Room Tip: only exquisite rooms, but there is a suite that boasts a jaw-dropping view.
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank rockstar1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Devizes, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
186 reviews
176 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 151 helpful votes
Reviewed March 16, 2013

A spectacular location for the lodge perched above the lake. Our gorgeous room was a delightful mixture of elegant and cosy, very spacious with everything we needed. In the morning I lay in bed and looked at the almost 180 degree view through the bank of windows. Very restful. Sitting on our terrace in the evening with a glass of chilled fizz (complimentary) from the mini bar was also delightful. Dinner was superb. No choice until 2 choices of main course and the menu gave nothing away but it didn't sound very exciting. So we were thrilled when we enjoyed one of the best meals of many good ones in a four and a half week trip. The only disappointment is my own fault - that I only booked one night! Would have loved to do the helicopter trip to White Island, and just to have longer to enjoy this special place.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank MyrtleWiltshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 11, 2013

Stayed for a week in this Gem of a spot. Days were hosted by the owners, and evenings by "Graham". Meals are a true feast and draw from local farms and suppliers. Wine list features NZ vintages and Graham always had a terrific suggestion. We loved the personalized menu we received each evening--given over during cocktail hour on the patio while chatting with the other guests. Activities included good hikes, great fishing, kayaking,a helicopter adventure to an active volcano 30 miles out to sea (they pick you up at the lodge) and getting out to meet the friendly locals. The view from our spacious, clean and comfortable suite was breathtaking.

A final note, we watched several visitors come through the lodge for just a night, or two. Don't shortchange yourself. Solitaire is worth the extra time.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank DRH58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooklyn, New York, United States
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed February 22, 2013

My new husband and I cannot stop thinking of our days at Solitaire, even two months later. There were so many diversions both in an outside the room (we wandered the grounds, of course, went boating, just sat in the gardens, and of course availed ourselves of the helipad), and the gracious hosts were just the perfect balance of creative recommendations and stepping back to let you soak it all in. And given the recreational opportunities, myriad ways to enjoy the natural beauty, and the beautiful food, I actually felt we got a great deal by staying there.

And as newbies to New Zealand, it was great to have the best food we had in our entire culinary tour of the country. And we really valued the chefs descriptions of the dishes, answers to our questions, as well as the homemade assortment of cookies in our room and available anytime.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Jessica M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Solitaire Lodge

Property: Solitaire Lodge
Address: 16 Ronald Road | Lake Tarawera, Rotorua 3076, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > North Island > Bay of Plenty Region > Rotorua District > Rotorua
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Romantic Hotel in Rotorua
#19 Family Hotel in Rotorua
#21 Luxury Hotel in Rotorua
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Solitaire Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Solitaire Lodge Rotorua, one of the first New Zealand luxury lodges, offers secluded luxury accommodation and attentive hosting from a spectacular lakeside location.Styled with comfort in mind, all 10 luxurious suites feature panoramic views of the glassy lake and magnificent volcano through grand picture windows. The subtle design brings the outdoors in, inviting you to unwind and soak up the peace and quiet of this tranquil setting.Renowned for its fine dining, Solitaire lodge serves mouth-watering modern New Zealand cuisine prepared with fresh local produce and complemented by superb wines from selected vineyards. Engage in lively conversation with fellow guests in the lodge’s dining room, or choose an intimate dinner for two in your suite.Minutes from your doorstep you will discover secluded private bays, hot water beaches and natural thermal hot springs beckoning you to soak in. Feeling adventurous? Embark on a scenic helicopter ride over volcanic peaks, skim across the lake in a kayak or enjoy world-class trout-fishing. The lodge is also the perfect place to simply relax, indulge and rejuvenate, left in the able hands of your warm, friendly New Zealand hosts. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Solitaire Hotel Rotorua

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