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“Unique, fun hostel in gorgeous location”
Review of Solscape

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Solscape
Ranked #6 of 11 Specialty Lodging in Raglan
Brighton, UK
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Unique, fun hostel in gorgeous location”
Reviewed March 10, 2010

We stayed in a caboose which I loved. It was very romantic and cozy once your body heat warms it up! We checked out the tipis but the thought of having a six inch gap between the canvas and the ground put us off for both weather and bug reasons. I'm not sure I'd brave this place in the winter, even in the height of summer with a bit of rain it was cold and muddy.

This place is a lot of fun, really a surfer's hang out, eco friendly and you do feel close to nature. You will need a car though which is a shame. The shared kitchen and dining area is really nice and there is internet access and even wifi in your caboose (not free).

The only reasons we didn't give this place five stars is because the shared bathrooms were in need of a little TLC and despite a promised 10pm curfew there was a sing along around the fire until late the night we stayed. Fine if your caboose is down the back, but ours was right by the fire :)

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank brightondebs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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189 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
uk
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed February 16, 2010

I booked this direct with Solscape and got a deal for 3 nights stay in a caboose (railway carriage) and 2 days surf tuition for 2. Our surf instructor Andrew was great we felt like we had really turned a corner. It was great value but at the time I didn't know it was a YHA. I would say its only a "retreat" if you actually stay in the Tipis in the really secluded area. its more of a quirky hostel than a retreat.
We did really really enjoy our stay and the staff were very friendly. Our main problems were that the shared kitchen is not really practical for more than 3 people at any one time and the open compost bin attracts so many flies its really unhygienic. Maybe they need to rethink the layout of the kitchen and put a lid on the compost or some flyscreens on the windows and doors.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank blueberrywig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SolscapeEcoRetreat, Manager at Solscape, responded to this review, May 25, 2012
Thank you for reviewing us, we're glad you enjoyed your stay and we appreciate your feedback to help us make improvements.

All our compost bins now have lids. Every so often after the daily clean of facilities the lid may not be replaced by one of our workers. We have made it clear that this is an important task. Our core staff now checks this daily.

Communal kitchens are all about sharing, and for the occupancy of our accommodations we provide adequate sized facilities. Having seen other hostel facilities around the country I know this to be true. This said, we do also have plans to make what improvements we can.

Solscape is intended to be a 'Retreat' in the wider sense of the word. Many people mention to us that when they step onto this land they immediately feel a deep sense of relaxation and peace, of retreating away from their busy lives. For many travellers, Solscape and Raglan in general, is an isolated location, worlds away from overpopulated areas of the planet, and so for them, they truly do feel the description is perfect for them.
Scattered around our 10 acre property we have a diverse range of accommodations to suit different needs and for those who seek absolute solitude we can provide this.
We certainly do not recommend our backpacker styled rooms with shared facilities to those wanting to be alone.
We are a YHA associate hostel for Raglan, but this is only part of our operating business.

Also we consider our environmentally conscious business operations create a retreat away from the global mainstream of unsustainable accommodation providers for travellers.

Thanks again.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Buckingham, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
230 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 203 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2010

This Eco Lodge site is an interesting and eclectic mix of accommodation delightfully situated with long views over the surfing bays of Raglan. It is quite wonderfully isolated, with only the sounds of the Tui and the surf to disturb..no ..form....the peace. We stayed in Ivy Cottage, in my view the best of the options. This is old characterful small cottage, truly picturesque if a little basic...but who cares...you are here for the view. Go for it.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Peter3152
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Plymouth, New Zealand
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed June 30, 2009

We stayed in summer house studio unit. It was spacious and beautiful. The window panelled walls gave light and warmth and the "restored" nature made it really special. The only issue I found was that the bed was rock hard but everything else was gorgeous. Friendly bunny rabbits hopped around the unit and a few metres walk gave beautiful views.

A great escape.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank chellaws
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wellington, New Zealand
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed January 4, 2009

We spent 4 nights at Solscape over the New Year break.
Even in the peak holiday season, Solscape provided a peaceful and relaxing escape.
We stayed in a caboose, - a converted steel carriage with a bed and windows - very original and the beds were very comfy with good quality linen.

Solscape are doing their best to be eco-friendly... For a NZ campground however, there were some issues with cleanliness. Several of the bathroom facilities were in need of repair (ie with broken toilet seats and showers with broken shower heads). The result of saving power meant that the lighting around the grounds was very poor and showers were often cold.

The location on the hill above the coastline was stunning and the perfect hang out for surfers and beach lovers and a short drive in to town.

It is definately a unique destination!

  • Liked — A real attempt at eco-friendly accommodation
  • Disliked — Lack of maintenance. Staff weren't particularly friendly
  • Stayed January 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank travellingchickn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed June 4, 2008

My husband and I are avid surfers and were looking to book a place in Raglan.
I found Solscape on Tripadvisor.com and we loved it. Nice people, responded to our emails quickly, reasonable prices, lovely grounds. The accomodations range from shared, hostel-style set-ups to self-contained cottages. We stayed in a self-contained converted train.
It was very original, had great character, and was clean with a nice kitchen.
The entire community at Solscape has a good feeling to it; they are big on recycling and composting. Sheep, horses, and other animals graze in fields next to the place.
If you are an Inter-Continental/Westin, 5 star, sterile hotel person, this place is not for you. But if you love the laid-back environment, good vibes, and proximity to the main surf break (about a mile down the road), getting a cottage such as the Ivy (reviewed by another reviewer here) or our converted train (the Overlander) are perfect.

  • Liked — the accomodation's character
  • Disliked — not a great deal of privacy
  • Stayed February 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank chitamaid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Cruz, California
Level 5 Contributor
25 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed March 16, 2008

We stayed in the Summer House for a night in March. The whole Solscape ' complex' is very unique and beautifully perched atop a hill overlooking the ocean. We loved the idea of the caboos cabins, tho' they weren't for us. We liked the convenience and spaciousness of a large studio unit with kitchen and ensuite bathroom. It was a very peaceful stay. Dominique was very friendly and helpful. One dissappointment was that the unit wasn't very clean. (Dust, spider webs, dirty windows, dirty TV screen). Otherwise, a good value and a nice stay.

Stayed March 2008
Helpful?
Thank Sproketz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Solscape

Property: Solscape
Address: 611 Wainui Road, Raglan 3297, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > North Island > Waikato Region > Raglan
Amenities:
Free Parking Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 11 Specialty Lodging in Raglan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Solscape 2*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Diverse eco accommodations from beautifully simplistic to luxurious with options to suit all budgets - each lightening our ecological footprint. Our self-contained options offer a comfortable stay with private facilities for couples, families or small groups. For those happy to share facilities take your pick from recycled railway cabooses and earth domes or experience glamping in our Tipi Forest Retreat set in native bush. The Te Ao Whanga Eco Camp provides a limited number of tent and van sites with solar heated showers and an indoor-outdoor kitchen. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Solscape Hotel Raglan

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