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“Great location, mediocre accommodations”
Review of Punakaiki Resort

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Punakaiki Resort
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Punakaiki
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
United States
Level Contributor
39 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“Great location, mediocre accommodations”
Reviewed April 24, 2009

We had one of the standard rooms on the beach side of the street. It was a very plain, basic motel style. Nothing more. The beds were old and tired, as was the decor. The window screens of our room were thick with dead sandflies, as were the window sills themselves. The few buzzing around in the room itself were quickly vanquished by yours truly. We had dinner in the restaurant in the hotel. It was just OK. The server was not pleasant, but a bit arrogant. It was a lovely setting, though, with full glass windows floor to ceiling for a view of the ocean . The sunset we witnessed while we were eating was quite beautiful. I would only recommend this hotel because of its location. It is close to Punakaiki Rocks and was a good place logistically to stop over on our drive south along the coast after a full day's drive from Kaikoura. Breakfast was not included in the price of the room, unfortunately.

  • Stayed December 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank eyesee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
Auckland, New Zealand
Level Contributor
44 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed March 30, 2009

We only used the restaurant because of the amazing location, but our waiter was hopelessly inexperienced and the service terribly slow. With such high prices we expected a good standard of food but we were very disappointed. Rip-off prices and the wine list was very limited.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Sn00k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra, Australia
Level Contributor
66 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed March 14, 2009

There are not a lot of places to stay in Punakaiki but the resort is a solid hotel right on the beach and just a few hundred meters from the pancake rocks and blowholes, the main attraction of Punakaiki. It's worth a stay here, though there's not a lot to do in town. The price was certainly right for such a decent hotel.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank David K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Malota
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2009

Stay over the hill there is another hotel there, looks more like a local pub\hotel and I only noticed it as we were leaving northbound.

Below is an excerpt of the email I sent to the person I booked my reservations through outlining my (poor) experience! (NB:I stayed in the newer Eco rooms - 511 - which is better styled but still was not fully functional)

1. We went to the bar and ordered some drinks\nibbles before dinner. For starters the glass of bubbles my wife ordered was not chilled, it was like the bottle was only thrown in 30 mins ago.
2. The chips that were ordered with the drinks were luke warm (They took ages to get to us and were probably sitting somewhere for someone to deliver them)

We didn't bother mentioning anything as we had been driving all day along the west coast and were hungry and just wanted something to tide us over for what we were hoping was going to be a spectacular dinner.

3. After receiving our order (Lamb Rump) we were quite disappointed in the quality of the meal (remember this dish is $33 a plate! The dish we were presented with was something I would expect from a pub)
a. The Lamb itself was over cooked and dry (no option given as to the how we would like it done e.g. Well Done/Medium/Rare). There was also large chunks of fat still on the meat.
b. The Kumara mash was a shocker. It had a burnt skin on it that was almost as tough as leather, once you peeled that off you could then get to the mash below it.
c. The beans... this was probably the worst, it was as if they had been microwaved and dished up on the plate full with water dripping all over the place.

I couldn't be bothered complaining as it was late (we only managed to get an 8:30 booking for dinner) and I was tired, couldn't be bothered and thought I'll just write it down and then pass it on in the morning when I settle the bill.

4. When we get back to the room to write down on your comments sheet I find that there is no pen.
5. I then goto my car and get a pen, come back and try to turn on the lamp to fill out the form only to find that it does not power on.
6. I try to turn on the TV next to the lamp and find that it has no power either.

I then grab my cell phone charger and plug it into the same socket, and find that it doesn't work, after some investigation it appears that the power outlets in the bathroom, by the TV, by the lamp and behind the Sofa all do not work. The ones by the bed and in the kitchen do. I even went as far as to check the fuse box to see if one of the fuses had tripped but they all appeared ok.

Obviously as I mentioned before it's late and by now all I want to do is sleep.

Obviously the price we payed for this visit does not equal anywhere near the experience I expected to get from it.

The next day I took over the piece of paper and handed it to the lady behind reception and briefly went over those points, but I am outlining them again in more detail to you in the hope that it will be looked into and the level of service raised to match the price you are charging.

Never will I recommend this facility to anyone.

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Malota
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Broomfield, Colorado
Level Contributor
87 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed February 8, 2009

I loved Punakaiki resort. Our room was right above the beach. We could hear the waves all night. The room was nice and comfortable. The "beach" was not a sandy beach, but rather a pebbly beach. The pebbles were all different colors. At each end of the beach were small examples of the pancake rocks.

The restaurant at the resort was also very good. I had duck and my husband had mussels and salmon. Breakfast in the morning was a tasty buffet.

The resort is less than 5 minutes from the pancake rocks which was a unique area to visit.

  • Liked — location
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ColletteLovesTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Monica, California
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 8, 2009

The west coast of the south island of New Zealand is rightly famed for it's virtually untouched natural beauty. And the Punakaiki resort is testament to this beauty. Set on the beach front within a quick (uphill) walk to the famous Punakaiki 'pancake rocks', the accommodation here is sublime. Beautifully appointed rooms, overlooking the rugged beach, and backed onto native forest, waking up to the sound of the waves crashing and the unique bird song really is something I'd recommend.

The restaurant serves first class cuisine, albeit the staff in the restaurant need to be taught the basics of service. The again being in such a relatively remote location I guess experienced or well trained service staff may be hard to come by?

Highly recommended, and very reasonably priced for what you get.

  • Liked — Beautiful rooms with beautiful views
  • Disliked — Waiting staff in restaurant poorly trained
  • Stayed January 2009
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SlipSlap
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
218 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 211 helpful votes
Reviewed January 25, 2009

I should start by saying that we booked this place on the basis of comments on Trip Advisor - and that now concerns me somewhat.

We (myself, Mrs Haggis and our 2 kids aged 6 and 8) stayed here for 2 nights in mid Jan 2009. We were in interconnecting standard rooms (207 and 208).

Good points - stunning location. Whilst it's on the main road there was no noise at all. Beautiful sunsets.

Bad points - the rooms were very dated and basic. Both rooms smelt musty and although they appeared to be clean there were small stains on 3 of the bed spreads. The balcony had bird and possum droppings on it.

What turned us off completely was the restaurant and staff. Here's a summary of dinner...

I call ahead to book dinner for 7.30pm but am told only 7.45pm is available. We arrive at 7pm and they agree to let us dine quickly as the kids are hungry. We wait 20 mins after getting menus and have to find the waitress to ask to place the order. She forgot one starter and doesn't bring the kids food as requested. She forgets the wine. She then pours the wine into a glass with lipstick on it - not mine ! When we point this out she removes the glass, gets a clean one and continues to pour - I've now lost half a glass of wine !

The mussels are good but she drops the plate on the floor, complete with rice and left over mussels & sauce and then leaves it for 15 minutes before cleaning it. Dinner arrives 90 mins after we arrived. My bok choi is bruised, wilting and clearly not fresh. My wife gets lamb served on a very very dirty plate. The kids chicken nuggets are burnt and disgusting. The fish special is inedible as is the lamb. To be fair they acknowledged this and offered replacements but as my daughter pointed out - I'd rather starve so we pay up and leave. We get the lamb meal for free but it still costs my $150 with the wine.

We all agreed that without doubt it was the worst meal we had ever eaten.

And not sure why they couldn't offer us a table at 7.30pm as we wanted, the place was empty.

The staff were mostly young girls. Whilst polite and friendly they were useless. I can accept that this is not a big town and being so remote perhaps I am being unrealistic. If you charge the prices they do though I fully expect a decent meal and good service.

We paid $760 for the 2 rooms for 2 nights. I paid less for far higher quality places in Franz Josef and Queenstown. This place is a rip off.

Avoid it like the plague.

  • Liked — Great views
  • Disliked — Restaurant, staff, overall value for money (or lack of it)
  • Stayed January 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Haggis_Supper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Punakaiki Resort

Property: Punakaiki Resort
Address: State Highway 6, Punakaiki 7873, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > South Island > West Coast Region > Punakaiki
Amenities:
Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Punakaiki
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Punakaiki Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 61
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on the wild West Coast, 30 minutes north of Greymouth and 300m south of the famous Pancake Rocks and Blowholes, the Resort is surrounded by the Paparoa National Park and only metres from the beach. Floor to ceiling windows in the Waterline Restaurant and Bar mean you can admire the gorgeous sunset while dining on local West Coast food.Few places in the world can offer such comfort so close to the wild action. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Punakaiki Hotel Punakaiki

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