Splendid views of Lake Te Anau and Fiordland, but very remote, which makes it difficult to use anything but the in-house restaurant.
Strangely for such a highly regarded lodge with a long waiting list, we did not enjoy our stay because of the staff. Don’t know if there had been a row, but there was an atmosphere you cut with a knife, total silence and not a smile between them. The seats in the lounge were arranged back to back as if to prevent conversations breaking out, you could hear a pin drop. We couldn’t understand why they needed to have a log fire in mid summer, but laughed to ourselves that it was probably to thaw out the frosty atmosphere.
Consequently we didn’t enjoy our evening meal in the restaurant, everyone was whispering and there was certainly no laughter, except us of course, laughing at the staff taking themselves so seriously. It is apparent that significant profit comes from the wine list which, whilst superb, is on the expensive side. I decided I wouldn’t be able to consume a full bottle of wine, so plumped to buy it by the glass @ NZ$17 instead of NZ$140 for a bottle which retails at NZ$28 in the local shops; that was mistake number one, all I got was a third of a small glass, so thinking it was a taster asked for the rest, that was mistake number two, from then on service deteriorated and they couldn’t get us out quickly enough.
Notwithstanding the atmosphere the place was fantastic. It’s as if the Architect got the scale wrong on the drawings, everything about the place is scaled up and huge, the joinery appears to be made from solid logs.
The rooms are large, there is no air conditioning, but free standing fans are supplied and the ground floor doors open onto a lawn. The en suite shower room was very nice.
In conclusion; a fantastic location, fantastic building, fantastic views, but spoilt on this occasion by complacent sulking staff. Maybe the staff incident was a one-off, let’s hope so, in which case I would highly recommend Fiordland Lodge, but the place is expensive by NZ standards and as a result of my personal experience I’m going to suggest you save yourself some money and go somewhere that appreciates their customers.
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- Also Known As:
- Fiordland Hotel Te Anau
- Fiordland Lodge Te Anau, Fiordland National Park