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“Pretty basic”
Review of Discovery Lodge

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Discovery Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 14, 2013

We stayed for three nights in August. Unfortunately the weather wasn't the best possible on the mountains, so got only one day of skiing done and were not able to do the Tongariro Alpine crossing. In such a time the accomodation is of course very important. The room was clean but quite basic, with quite a bit of cold air blowing through the windows. There were self cooking facilities in the room, but they were pretty limited.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Anna E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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163 - 169 of 273 reviews

Reviewed September 3, 2013

We stayed here for 1 night with out 3 teenage children in the motel accommodation. Our room looked out over a paddock and I enjoyed laying on the bed in the afternoon with the sun streaming in. Our room had a queen bed, set of bunks and a rollaway bed. Very adequate little kitchen with everything we needed. The room was lovely and warm and very clean. Very handy after a days skiing at Whakapapa. Very friendly staff. We will stay here again. Also love the 24/48hr cancellation policy.

Stayed: September 2013, traveled with family
Thank Love2Explore67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 2, 2013

How can you not love a room with a national park right outside your window? And even better, the nice, clean room was wonderfully spacious with great kitchen facilities (sink, microwave, small fridge, burners), a small island, queen bed, single bed, closet, good-sized bathroom with shower stall and separate toilet stall. There's also a small heater in the bathroom near the ceiling, plus a small heater on the floor to warm the bath towels hanging above. The firm bed had a nice heating element that was exactly what I needed to keep the winter chill out of my bones. Free parking is right outside the door; makes it easy to load and unload the car.

The best feature of this room were the windows lining one wall that looked out into open pastureland. I experienced one of my favorite moments on this trip while in this room—I was sitting on the bed with my laptop and felt the late afternoon sun warming up the room through the windows. Looking outside, it was utterly serene as cows grazed in a nearby pasture...extremely peaceful.

The lodge itself has a small dining area serving breakfast and dinner that can accommodate about 40 people; you need to make reservations at the reception desk. I didn't eat breakfast there, but I did enjoy dinner twice and the food was delicious! Note: You can't eat the Tongariro Burger the traditional way, but it's yummy.

This stand-alone lodge is the perfect home base for tramping and snow activities. It's about a 10-minute drive from Whakapapa Village that has two diners, the Whakapapa Visitor Centre and Tongariro Chateau. Further up that road is the Ruapehu ski area. You can park in the public parking area across the street from the visitor centre and access nearby tramps of all lengths.

The only downside to my stay here: you can hear your neighbors. A bummer when they're noisy. But overall, I would definitely return for another stay. The staff was extremely friendly and it's just such a cool place to return to at the end of the day.

Room Tip: I like parking right outside my door, however, you might want to request an upstairs room so you won...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled solo
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Thank Sarah808
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 1, 2013

Booked the backpacker ensuite double room for 2 nights at a great price and the stay was well exceeding my expectation.

Love the fact that the room was spotlessly clean and toasty during the cold winter nights, and shower was hot with very decent water pressure. The heating system worked so well that we have to tune in down a little because we were feeling too warm inside the room (but we definitely have no complaint for that!). Small pantry area with coffee and tea supply, fridge and toaster came in really handy for a quick breakfast. Service at the reception and restaurant were both excellent. Location is excellent for our skiing trip at Whakapapa ski field.

The room condition surpasses many other motel rooms that I have stayed in and it can be easily pass off as "ensuite room" instead of "backpacker ensuite room".

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Raymond K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 28, 2013

We stayed here one night in June. Fabulous cabin-- great amenities in it. Good water supply for shower and beds were comfortable. Extra blankets but still not enough to keep warm at night.
Needed more heaters or heavy duty electric blanket on pull out couch. I wore wintercoat in bed and wrapped head in a scarf and wore mittens and was still cold. Having said that....I would stay here again in a second---right across from stunning volcanos- incredible view. Cottage was modern and well equipped. We did close curtains once sun set to keep in whatever heat there was but brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr I froze.
Great location for Mountain Air flight, and time in National Park!

Room Tip: in winter- make sure all beds have working electric blankets. make sure room has sufficient space he...
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
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Thank LaurieLovestoTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CallumHarland, Owner at Discovery Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 30, 2013

Dear Laurie,

Thank you so much for choosing to stay with us and for your feedback. I am happy you liked the Chalet and you would choose to stay with us again.

I am sorry you found the Chalet cold. This surprises me greatly, as I will explain. All the Chalets have modern double glazed windows and doors. New insulation was installed in all walls and ceiling spaces only three years ago to the maximum rating possible. The heaters are rated higher than they need to be for the space. We have never had this feedback before. We have people staying from warmer climates such as Dubai, Singapore, Australia, Hong Kong etc etc. People usually comment about how warm and cosy the Chalets are. I personally have not stayed in a Chalet, but I have been inside them many times while the heaters are on, and usually they are far too warm for me (guessing 25 + Degrees Celsius).

So like I said, a big surprise to hear this from you. The only explanation I have is there are quite a few settings on the heaters and maybe you did not select a high heat setting, or you did not have the thermostat turned up. I cannot think of any other explanation as I know the Chalets are well insulated and well heated.

Thank you once again Laurie for your feedback. We do appreciate it. And we hope to see you again one day.

Kindest regards, Callum Harland

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Reviewed August 23, 2013 via mobile

We had such a big family, 35 all up including the kids & the lodge was very accommodating.
The heaters in the rooms kept us warm & the guest room even had Sky Tv so we got to see the All Blacks win altogether.

Thanks team for letting us use the microwave in the kitchen.

Great team, great service. See you next time.

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank DeShannon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CallumHarland, Owner at Discovery Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 30, 2013

Dear DeShannon,

Thank you for your nice feedback. We really enjoyed you staying with us. I have to tell you, it was a real pleasure for us to see a large extended family altogether having fun. I admire you all for getting away from the city to explore in this amazing nature. It was great to hear you had so much fun on your adventures while here. You guys certainly know what it means to be a family!! Good on you and hope we see you again.

One more thing, we really appreciated you guys being so tidy and wanting to help out get the rooms ready for cleaning before you left. Much appreciated!! Hope to see you again.

Best wishes, Callum Harland

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Reviewed August 23, 2013

The location of Discovery Lodge is perfect for exploring the National Park and Whakapapa ski fields. We booked a chalet which was modern and warm (visited in winter) with enough utensils to keep us for a few days (hot plate, pans, fridge, plates etc.) Food and petrol is available 5mins down the road. The staff were extremely friendly and helpful, especially in giving tips regarding rental equipment for the ski fields.

I would recommend the Lodge to family and friends and will stay here again when we next visit the area.

Room Tip: My wife and I were travelling around NZ and wanted to save some money so we choose to cook our own b...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Thank ExplorerRich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CallumHarland, Owner at Discovery Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 30, 2013

Dear ExplorerRich,

We really appreciate you staying with us and we are very happy you enjoyed your stay. I agree, the Discovery Team does an amazing job of looking after our guests. Thank you so much for taking the time to write your review.

We hope to see you again.

Best wishes, Callum

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Discovery Lodge

Address: State Highway 47, National Park Village 3948, New Zealand
Location: New Zealand > North Island > Manawatu-Wanganui Region > National Park Village
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 9 Specialty Lodging in National Park Village
Price Range: $14 - $240 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Discovery Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Chalets & Motels. Surrounded by nature with spectacular panorama of the Tongariro Volcanoes. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Discovery Hotel National Park Village

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