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“Unique and excellent- stay more than one night”
Review of Hapuku Lodge

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Hapuku Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
A TripAdvisor Member
Chicago, IL
341
Reviewed December 29, 2005

Hapuku Lodge perfectly blends an upscale and unique environment with a casual atmosphere and comfort. The architecture of the lodge and the amount of thought put into every item of the interior are simply stunning. Everything from the lighting to the bedding was carefully considered and selected for the purpose of creating a stylish but comfortable atmosphere. The common areas are filled with magnificent woodwork complimented by a large stone fireplace, all with views of the mountains or the deer farm next door.

The large rooms are completely silent, as they were designed to be. The carpeting is thick, and the tiled floors in the bathroom are heated. The lodge boasts that the beds provide the most comfortable sleep in the country, and they are probably right.

Surprisingly, there is no pretentiousness or stuffiness about what Hapuku Lodge has created. We found it to be one of the most friendly and casual places on our trip, and the staff and owners treated us like old friends. We especially appreciated the owner's effort in awakening early to personally make us breakfast before an early-morning excursion.

Don't let the fact that the lodge is 2 minutes out of Kaikoura discourage you, the town is easily accessible and the uniqueness of the lodge more than makes up for a short drive. Plan to stay more than one night to truly enjoy this place, you will not find anything like it.

  • Stayed: December 2005
    • Value
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3  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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285 - 291 of 306 reviews

A TripAdvisor Member
Albany, NY
12
Reviewed November 30, 2005

My partner and I recently returned from a tour of New Zealand's South Island. Looking back through pictures of our adventure, and while sharing our many stories with friends and family, we couldn't help but dwell for a moment on our stay at Hapuku Lodge. The location of the lodge is a truly magical place on earth, with the sea so close to the snow capped mountains. Adding to the natural splendour,the grounds of Hapuku Lodge are planted in native gardens. The Lodge itself combines unique architecture and style with all the comforts of home. Our hosts made us feel like old friends who had arrived to visit and assisted us in choosing activities and making the bookings. And at the end of the day, we returned to the Lodge for a flavorful dinner of fresh, local favorites. We only wish that we could have stayed longer and highly recommend Hapuku Lodge.

2  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2005

What a delightful surprise. We traveled all over the north and south island and no where was tougher to leave. In fact we extended our planned stay to almost double the time at the Hapuku lodge. It was the most relaxing place we stayed with a different view in every direction - beautiful snow capped mts to the west, rugged coast line to the east, and an olive farm and deer farm all within sight on the property. The staff were curtious and lodge offered excellant food with one of the best lattes I've ever had. I would definitely recomend this place.

Stayed: February 2003
3  Thank paramoreSF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
North Carolina, US
12
Reviewed September 21, 2005

Our favorite stop on a month long honeymoon adventure through the South Island- views from the Olive House made me want to roll around in the grass like Colfax (Colfax is the not-so-fierce canine guardian of the property). The grounds are beautiful and peaceful, just what a person needs for a relaxing sojourn.... excellent food, super friendly staff. We are definitely going back - wish i could give it six stars.

  • Stayed: August 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
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2  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Auckland, New Zealand
12
Reviewed September 13, 2005

I was looking for somewhere to get "away from it all", and a colleague had recommended Hapuku Lodge in Kaikoura. I'd been to Kaikoura before, but that was many years ago and Hapuku Lodge wasn't there in those days - I've since found out that it's only three years old. I flew to Blenheim and hired a car and set off on what I can only describe as a drive down one of the more spectacular coastal roads in New Zealand to the lodge. Upon arrival I was checked into my room, which had been pre-heated in anticipation of my arrival, and then adjourned to the bar in the Hapuku Cafe. It just happened to be the night that the New Zealand All Black's were playing against the British Lions, so there was a good crowd at the Cafe to watch the game on the big screen. The food was superb (can highly recommend the Hapuku fish steaks), and I had a great night with the other guests at the lodge as we watched the All Blacks win. Breakfast the next morning was in the lodge's dining room, and again, the selection of food was superb. After breakfast I took a wander around the lodge's grounds to visit their olive press, the olive grove and to see the deer (didn't realise they ran their own deer stud farm). I was scheduled to drive to Christchurch that morning, but didn't really want to leave (and wished I'd booked another night), so took some time out relaxing and reading my book in front of the fireplace in the lounge before having lunch in the Cafe - NZ mussels in a coconut cream sauce! I finally had to drag myself away and head off to Christchurch, but I will definitely be back to stay at Hapuku Lodge again. The staff were friendly and helpful, the room was very comfortable (they even had heated floors in the bathroom!), and the food was outstanding! I only wish I'd booked another night there before heading down to Christchurch, but I'll know better next time. Thanks Hapuku Lodge for a great stay and look forward to staying with you again.

  • Stayed: June 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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2  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Los Angeles, CA
13
Reviewed September 11, 2005

Imagine waking up to a stunning vista of snow capped mountains through one window and hearing the sound of crashing waves through another. Only 10 minutes north of Kaikoura Hapuku is a stunning, well appointed, contemporary Lodge accessible to a myriad of activities and the great outdoors.
I loved staying at Hapuku simply for the peace and traquility. I really felt that I had escaped from the noise and clutter of the outside world. What interested me the most was that the buildings, the gardens -that conjured up images of a dried river bed over grown with native New Zealand plants, the furniture and the furnishings are all designed by the owners. This gives it it's own unique feel and ambience.
If there is one thing that impressed me the most it would have to be the beds. Made specifically for the lodge I don't recall having slept so sound in a long time. I certainly got out of my visit exactly what I had come looking for - to live, per chance, to dream. As for the heating, my room was very cosy when I arrived and we had other heating beyond the one behind the curtain. They obviously resolved any dilemma's they may have had.
My entire travel experience went well. I found the owners to be extremely helpful and willing to ensure that I enjoyed my visit. They offered help with local activities if necessary but I had already booked Whale Watching and Maori Tours before I left. Even though the owners (or managers) are there for you I liked the fact that they weren't always around because it made me feel as if I had this amazing place to myself - well I am allowed to dream.
My only regret was that my agent had only reccommended one night (I extended my stay). If you are going to Kaikoura make sure you stay at least two. I discovered so much to do and I don't think my travel agent was aware of it. After Whale Watching and Maori Tours I went swimming with seals, hiking, star gazing and if I had more time I would have added the Dolphin swimming and maybe even the swim with sharks.

  • Stayed: March 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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3  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 17, 2005

We found things to be a bit disorganized at the Hapuku Lodge, both in trying to make our reservation and in coming for our stay. The first person that we e-mailed with disappeared, and only after some prompting did we get another reply from someone else. Initially we were told that we could stay for both of our desired nights, and later were told we could only stay for the first night (it is notable there were no other guests staying there when we were there, so I'm not sure if this was just to discourage us from staying or if perhaps a large party was coming the next day). We were also told that their website entry page was secure, but on all of the computers that I used the entry page came up as insecure, which I brought to the attention of the manager. I did not feel comfortable entering my credit card info on an insecure site, so needed to phone in a credit card. When we arrived for our stay the lodge was deserted - luckily we had a cell phone and called the lodge's 800 number in order to contact one of the lodge keepers. They had gone out to the farm and had assumed that we would not get there until later (we had told the manager that we would be there at 6pm at the latest; we arrived at 4:30pm). We were also told that there would be a bottle of olive oil awaiting us on our arrival and there was not (on check out I inquired and they gave me a bottle of olive oil). On the plus side, the lodge itself is very beautiful, and located on both an olive farm and deer farm. There are views of both the sea and the mountains from the room we stayed in (#6). Our room was large, beautifully decorated, and had a decadent bed. However, there were a few inconveniences, such as not being able to have the heat on and the curtains closed at the same time (it presented a fire hazard due to the curtains covering the heater when closed), and a fan in the bathroom that would run without the ability to turn it off (although it would generally turn off in about 7-10 minutes). It was also necessary to keep the room key in a slot in order to have power in the room - although good for conserving energy, it can be inconvenient if one person needs to leave while the other remains sleeping in the room. Breakfast was a lovely continental breakfast, including cereals, fresh fruits, bagels and toast, juices, tea and coffee. The people who were managing the lodge when we were there are part-owners who were filling in for the usual manager who was away at a conference - that may have been the reason for some of the confusion during our stay. They were extremely friendly and pleasant people who seemed invested in us having a good stay. Overall we found the lodge to be a very nice place, beautifully decorated, and staffed by friendly people. However, given the cost and some of the inconveniences I think I would have prefered to stay elsewhere.

4  Thank hliss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hapuku Lodge

Address: State Highway 1 At Station Road, RD 1, Kaikoura 7371, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > South Island > Canterbury Region > Kaikoura
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 36 Specialty Lodging in Kaikoura
Price Range: $639 - $1,245 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Hapuku Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hapuku Lodge and Tree Houses is distinctive boutique luxury accommodation set on a deer farm and olive grove in one of the world's most beautiful locations, between the Kaikoura Mountains and the Pacific Coast of New Zealand's South Island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hapuku Hotel Kaikoura

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