We were really looking forward to this part of our trip but were very disappointed. First, we did not realize this was a bed and breakfast. That is more on our travel agent than the property. But in previewing the website prior to our trip, it looked like a very warm and friendly place where the owners and their dog greeted guests, served afternoon tea, etc. for guests arriving. When we arrived, we had been traveling since early morning and arrived around early afternoon. We were greeted by the Manager who was very nice but seemed a bit distracted. We had to lug our luggage up a hill and stairs to get to our room. There was no "afternoon tea" as advertised on their website and there was nothing to eat because it was a B & B. We were starving and since we were traveling without a car, we were stuck. Luckily there was a menu for delivery and we go some food. In the entire stay, we never once saw an owner, they live next door and we never saw them or their dog. The property is run by two on-site Managers, very nice people, but not the owners as the website leads you to believe. The property itself is beautiful, but it has a cold feel to it. We were looking forward to spending some down time at the property but got the feeling we were just in the way, very uncomfortable. Almost felt like staying in a hotel but without the convenience of a hotel, i.e., restaurant or bar. The location is pretty far out from town and it is literally a $20 cab ride each way. So, if you are staying there wthout a car, it will cost you $40 round trip each time you go into town - and you have to go into town in order to get a lunch, dinner, or drinks. Once in town, Rotoura doesn't really have much to do for our taste. We found a couple good restaurants but they are mostly Indian and Thai restaurants - not our favorite. Also, they all seem to close down between lunch and dinner so if you are in town for lunch and don't want to spend another $40 for round trip to get back to Koura Lodge and come back in for dinner, you have to hang around until they open again at 5:30 ish. We did spend our last day at the Polynesian Spa in the mineral pools and getting a massage which was really nice.
I am sure for many, Rotoura is a great place is you can tolerate the smell of sulfur and want to visit all the geological parks and geysers - we have seen those in Yellowstone. It really was not a good choice for us, but again, that is on us. If you have a car and lots of activities to do, then staying at Koura Lodge is not a bad choice. Again, the property is beautiful and peaceful, but just not real warm and inviting as the other B & B we stayed at in Queenstown and certainly not convenient to town.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Koura Lodge offers boutique bed and breakfast lakeside accommodation in Rotorua, New Zealand. Enjoying an un-rivalled lakefront location, Koura Lodge is at the centre of it all. Just five minutes' drive to the city centre and even closer to many of Rotorua’s world famous attractions. Accommodating a maximum of 18 guests, our hosts are able to provide the individual attention you require, while ensuring your stay is restful in our tranquil surrounds. The Lodge offers a variety of accommodation, with all 8 rooms featuring magnificent lake views. A fresh buffet and cooked breakfast, lakeside open air hot-tub, sauna, canoeing, fishing are all part of Koura Lodge's real New Zealand experience. ... more less
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