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“Bad Management”
Review of Aspen on King

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Aspen on King
Ranked #1 of 18 Hotels in Timaru
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 6, 2013

The service at this motel was extremely bad. I will not even consider staying here again while current management is in place.

Friends (including children) were coming from Dunedin; I was driving down ex-Christchurch. When I made the booking on 1 January I advised that we would be arriving late morning on 2 January, would wish to check in then and required use of the room immediately it was available (i.e. at least by normal check in time of 2:00 pm).

My friends and I arrived at approximately 10:30/11:00 am. I checked in. The man on reception (who later identified himself as the manager) advised that the room would be ready by 1:30 pm and gave me a key.

We enjoyed Caroline Bay. The weather turned. Cafes became busy. We went back to the motel, keen for lunch.

We returned at 1:56 pm, just a few minutes prior to usual check-in time. There was only one other car visible on the premises at that time. Ladened with bags, we climbed the stairs. The room was not ready. Most other rooms appeared to have been cleaned. The housekeeper advised that it would be "about 40 minutes or longer" before we could enter the room. We asked if we could check into a different (available) room instead and that this one be given to a later arriving guest. She gave this no consideration, replying immediately 'no' as we required four separate beds. We explained that we required facilities to make lunch for the two children (both under 12) and asked where/how we might do this, i.e. could we borrow cutlery, kettle etc from the room. The housekeeper refused to assist us, stating that there were no facilities available for us to use.

I went to reception, where I found the manager speaking with the housekeeper on the phone. He kept me waiting while he finished speaking with her. He then refused to listen to my requests for assistance. I explained that the room not being ready was unacceptable especially as we had been so careful with communications regarding our requirements. The manager stated that it was holiday time (yes, our holiday time), that his staffing levels were insufficient (not our problem or our business), that our requirements were 'difficult' (four separate beds) and we would have to wait (receive less than we would pay for). He offered no solutions at all and refused to listen to any solutions from me.

Three possible solutions:
1. Borrow utensils/kettle/blanket and have a picnic on the lawn.
2. Use the kitchen next-door for an hour - we would have been very tidy and the housekeeper would have needed to spend only 10 minutes refinishing the room.
3. Check into the next door unit - the housekeeper would have needed to spend only 15 minutes altering the double bed to two singles - and put later-arriving guests into the room intended for us.

I am particularly surprised to find such bad management at Aspen on King, especially as there is so much competition from so many lovely motel businesses.

My friends and I went elsewhere, to an absolutely excellent motel, to which we will happily return.

Neither my friend or I will ever again consider supporting Aspen on King while current management is in place.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
    • Service
1  Thank Stephanie D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aspen o, Manager at Aspen on King, responded to this reviewResponded January 21, 2013

Thank you for your review and the opportunity to respond.
In fact your arrival time was closer to 9.50am which is prior to standard 10am checkout for resident guests. Due to this it would be difficult for us to have a room ready for your arrival.
We have checked our correspondence and we have no record of your intention to arrive prior to standard check in time.
At your 9.50am arrival you were given a key and advised your room would be ready at 2pm, we explained that an early check in would not be possible – not from being short staffed, simply because we had a full turnover of units to manage.
Your arrival to your room was again prior to the 2pm check in. Unfortunately we do not have the exact time as you went directly to the unit however we understand it was approximately 1.40pm.
Our housekeeping staff will always refer a guest back to the office to discuss the status of check in and would not enter a discussion as they are not aware of room availability.
We were in a position to move you into another available room or your unit would have been ready by 2pm however we were unable to discuss this with you whilst you were so upset and you had already made the decision not to stay with us.
Under the circumstances of your disappointment we are happy to waive the 24 hour cancellation policy and are glad that you found satisfactory accommodation at another great Timaru motel after their 2pm check in time.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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136 - 142 of 177 reviews

Reviewed January 3, 2013

We stayed with friends and their kids in unit 16 which is 3 bedrooms, it was perfect! Plenty of room for the kids to spread out and play and had everything we needed. The free wi-fi and the trampoline topped it off as the kids and parents were happy!! The beds were comfy and the kids loved the hot tub bath! The port a cot was even made up for us on arrival. We have booked again for next year!!

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank sub865
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 15, 2012

We stayed in one of the units at the back of the motel. First class accommodation. Room well furnished and enjoyed eating breakfast on the large balcony. Large room and a large bathroom with a spa bath. Arrived late in the evening and appreciated room serve from the motel's restaurant. The blue cod was delicious. Check in and check out both showed excellent customer service - nothing was too much trouble. Hotel on the edge of the town near to a lovely garden

Room Tip: ask for a room at the back of the motel
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank BurnleyKathryn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2012

We came in from the country NZ where we lived to stay in Timaru for a night to see friends and just wanted something nice but not too expensive. Finally managed to book a place short notice, Aspen on King, and when we arrived we were really surprised, it's on a quiet street but still central and the rooms are great value for money. It was large, renovated, had a big spa bath (we booked the spa rm) and separate bedroom. Bed was comfortable and it was really quiet, good sleep. We would book there again!

Room Tip: Pick the spa room!
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Beth31990
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 26, 2012

I've stayed at this place on business and whilst on holiday and find it consistently very good, reasonably priced and always very clean. It has all the facilities you would want LCD TV, DVD, decent sized fridge/freezer, microwave and hotplate. A good sized bathroom with spa bath, king size bed (very comfortable too) also has a good size lounge dining area. The added bonus is the on-site restaurant, really good food at a very competitive price (lamb shanks!!!). Also within a few minutes’ walk is a superette for any last minute essentials....

Room Tip: One bit of advice is book, if you can, the units at the back as they have all been refurbished and o...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Gebs832
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 24, 2012 via mobile

Fantastic location well appointed units that are close to everything but quiet. Restaurant has good food that is moderately priced and the staff are professional but really friendly. We have stayed here a few times and keep going back

  • Stayed: October 2012
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Thank R0sie1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 3, 2012

A nice clean Motel. Room was large with good equipment and TV in both rooms. Seperate Shower. Great Resturant for Dinner. Salmon Pate was delicous, Steak was good and cooked to order. Huge Breakfast freshly cooked to order, no need for lunch.

Room Tip: Upstairs Rooms are quieter.
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Bob52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Aspen on King

Address: 51 King Street, Timaru 7910, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > South Island > Canterbury Region > Timaru
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 18 Hotels in Timaru
Price Range: $100 - $140 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Aspen on King 4.5*
Number of rooms: 29
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Aspen On King Timaru

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