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“great location, great accomadation, great food and atmosphere”
Review of Rainforest Retreat

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Rainforest Retreat
Ranked #7 of 13 Hotels in Franz Josef
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 10, 2009

Splashed out on a tree hut as a treat during our trip around NZ. Well worth it. Lovely log style cabin. Clean, comfortable and the best two nights sleep we have had. Along with this, it is located just off the main street and has all the facilities you need. We had a private spa pool to un-wind after our glacier walk and the food is excellent and affordable from the on site bar/restaurant. We even got vouchers that made the bill even more affordable. To end the night, they put on some simple but fun entertainment that gets all residents having fun together.

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank ross0009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 8, 2009

My partner and I stayed here in a standard ensuite room for 2 nights. The room was tiny, we could barely fit our luggage in! It was VERY basic, nothing like we have ever stayed in before. You can hear everything in the rooms next door/above, so dont expect to get a great nights sleep! The retreat itself does have a good mix of facilities but it seemed to be more of a backpacker place than anything else. Location is good and it is cheap but we definately would not return.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Miss_Gorge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 30, 2009

I chose Rainforest Retreat because it seemed to be one of the nicer places in Franz Josef and was in a good location. When we arrived we found that FZ is so small that ALL accommodation is in a good location!!

Rainforest Retreat has a wide range of room types from backpacker to self contained. The self-contained Tree Lodge rooms (which we stayed in) are in 3 raised buildings with two rooms in each, right on the edge of the rainforest. Ours was at the end, so we had a private balcony looking into the forest.

The room was clean and well designed, but unfortunately was let down by poor maintenance. Paint was peeling off the wall behind the toilet and it appeared that it was painted in a hurry when it was constructed/last renovated and bits were missed.

The hotel's facilities were good with hot tubs (complimentary for our room type, but we didn't give it a go) and the Monsoon restaurant, which was quite good. Reception also has a mini supermarket with reasonable prices.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Larena W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 27, 2009

We stayed in a double ensuite here for two nights to do a Franz Josef Glacier hike. The place was generally ok, however the notably dissapointments were the lack of knowledge of staff, size of the room & the noise.

Be warned this is the regular stop for the Kiwi Experience & other backpacking party organisations like stray & magic. Therefore the constant coming & going of loud groups is inevitable. The worst part is the walls & roof is so thin that you can hear everything - we have drunks above and hippies singing in their room on the otherside.

Also the onsite bar 'monsoon' has the potential to be great with is wooden alpine decor and log fire, however at 9 pm families are forced out to make way for loud drinking games laid on for the Kiwi Experience, which then decended into drunk 18 year olds crashing into tables etc.. We thought the saving grace would be the outdoor hot tub, however to our dismay we arrived hoping for relaxing dip to find the Kiwi Experience having their pre-binge drinking warm up in there, if you believe 30 people can fit in a tub designed for 10.

If you like this then this palce is for you.. otherwise stay at one of the numerous other motels.

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Duke_of_Cheshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2009

Stayed in the log cabin and absolutely loved this place. A little bit more expensive than the standard rooms but well worth the extra $'s. Rooms are huge with a selfcontained kitchen/cooking facilities. These cabins are nestled in amongst the rainforest and the rooms are spacious with plenty of glass windows to absorb the environment and have a balcony and modern bathroom. Log cabins are cojoined but privacy is not an issue with a fairly good buffer zone between the two so no noise is heard from the next door (or vice versa). As the cabins are away from the carparks, and the ground is covered with gravel, the march up to the cabin with your luggage isn't the most fun, but this is once in/once out and certainly is not inhibitory. There is also a private" spa which we found OK but probably not best described as "private". The establishment also has a restaurant and pub area so not far to walk/stumble back to the cabin, and it is across the road from the hot pools there.

Staff were very helpful and allowed us to check in early (8:00 am) as the room was unoccupied. One definite highlight of our stay in Franz Josef.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank AussieNewbie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 12, 2009

The Rainforest is a sweet place to stay, better than expected. The staff are really lovely, so helpful and friendly we even extended our stay by 1 night. It's like being in a little village, the dorms are clean, showers good and kitchen and laundry rooms are nice. There is a great pub here that has a wicked happy hour, nice food and a great spa. It's just across the road from the Glacier hot pools and around the corner from the Glacier guides place. Don't bother going to stay anywhere else if you're going to Franz just go straight to the Rainforest!

  • Stayed: August 2009
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1  Thank JoMac5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 10, 2009

Compared to the other parts of NZ, there is a dearth of accomodations in Franz Joseff but Rainforest Retreat worked out pretty well for us. We were booked into a tree hut, which is a log cabin elevated above ground by some short stilts, with our own private balcony and car park. The log cabin was surrounded by trees, which were planted in line with the rainforest theme of the place. A bit cheesy but we did like the feeling of waking up to trees around us.The bed came with heated blanket, which the reception neglected to tell us but was a major plus - unfortunately we only discovered it on the second night so we spent the first night freezing as the heater was inadequate.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank h00ked0ntravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Rainforest Retreat

Address: 46 Cron Street, Franz Josef, Westland National Park (Te Wahipounamu) 7886, New Zealand
Phone Number:
Location: New Zealand > South Island > West Coast Region > Westland National Park (Te Wahipounamu) > Franz Josef
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Franz Josef
Price Range: $28 - $432 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Rainforest Retreat 4.5*
Number of rooms: 90
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Deep In the heart of West Coast Glacier country, Rainforest Retreat is a rare find, with a range of accommodation set amongst lush native bush in Franz Josef township. Enjoy privacy and sanctuary in secluded cottages and tree huts, relax in the spas and sauna, dine out and have fun at the bar/restaurant, or just relish the bush setting and cook up barbecues with new friends. From luxury tree huts to backpackers rooms, Rainforest Retreat has accommodation to suit every style of traveller; from couples to family groups to young individuals on a budget. Rainforest Retreat provides excellent value and a special atmosphere; with a focus on superb service, cleanliness and a range of great facilities to satisfy all of our guests. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Rainforest Retreat Hotel Franz Josef

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