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6 Kowhai Lane, Stewart Island 9530 New Zealand
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About

#7 of 12 Specialty lodging in Stewart Island
Location
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Kowhai Lane modern house offering en-suite rooms with a modern self catering kitchen and extensive guest lounge. It overlooks Halfmoon Bay, is only 4 minutes stroll from the waterfront and an ideal base from which to explore Stewart Island. Kowhai Lane is fully centrally heated and newly refurnished and decorated. Kowhai Lane's managers are professional guides and happy to assist guests enjoy the peace and beauty of Stewart Island.
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clairejR8995LF wrote a review Jan 2021
Greater Wellington, New Zealand67 contributions16 helpful votes
We very much enjoyed our stay. Beds were comfortable and linen to a high standard. Everything you need is provided ( with the exception of free wifi - so we used data). The hosts were incredibly helpful and knowledgeable about Stewart Island and in particular the flora and fauna. Peter is an ex ranger and knows Ulva Island like the back of his hand. He and Iris picked us up, dropped us off and were happy to pick us up after walks. The house is shared with others but you do have your own ensuite and while there is a shared kitchen and lounge we enjoyed getting to know the other guests. A few games of 500 and a joint New Year Celebration was had. Most of the Island this time had kiwi tourists which was really great and unusual. We all got to appreciate our own backyard and to learn about things we take for granted. Thanks Peter and Iris you are treasures! Oh yes and we saw a real kiwi i( feathered kind) in daylight!
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Date of stay: January 2021Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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nannaduck709 wrote a review Feb 2020
Seattle, Washington3 contributions1 helpful vote
We had several problems/issues arise with both the listing and the hosts for this lodging: 1. The lodge was advertised as having free wifi in all areas. This is wrong. They do not provide wifi at all, but instead refer you to a company that charges. 2. Our room was listed as a king room where it was actually two (very soft) single beds, each with their own linens. The beds kept sliding around, and we were constantly falling into the gap! We felt misled. When we tried to raise this concern with our host, he did not apologize or express any regret for the misleading listing. In fact, when we suggested that it might be a good idea to change the wording in the website description for future bookings, he became hostile and angry. (Note: The hosts changed the listing description on at least one site just after we left, so even though we were treated poorly, apparently at least it sunk in.) 3. The check-in process lasted over an hour, not including the transport from the flight. The other host sat us down and gave a painfully detailed lecture about the kitchen, the toaster, the cooker, the thermostat, how to dial an emergency number, etc. It was really overkill. We hadn't eaten yet, and by the time it was over, all of the restaurants in town had closed for lunch. 4. The booking includes a half-day trip to the Ulva Island bird reserve. However, when we contacted the host the night before, we were told--not asked--what day and time our Ulva tour would happen. He didn't ask us whether we had any other bookings that might have conflicted with this. (FYI, it is only a NZ$20 return ferry ride to Ulva island, so an independent trip is easy.) 5. The listing says there is a 2.5% surcharge for credit card payments. We contacted the host the night before arrival to confirm our stay, and mentioned we were planning to pay cash to avoid the surcharge. He thought about it for a second, then told us he would not accept cash! Every other place we stayed in NZ accepted cash, and most preferred cash. The listing did not indicate this issue at all. The surcharge added almost $40 to our bill. (We also noticed that another reviewer also had a bad experience with the host when they raised this payment issue .... we were apparently lucky that our reservation wasn't actually cancelled!) 6. Last, the hosts encourage guests to feed a threatened species of bird (the kaka) on the porch, directly against Department of Conservation (DoC) guidelines and widespread signage in town imploring people to *not* feed the birds (“A fed bird is a dead bird”). Even the healthiest human food is not their natural diet and it habituates them to humans, which makes them less safe. If you care about conservation, you will likely find it upsetting to see wild, protected animals acting so unnaturally and begging for food. Overall, these outright misrepresentations in the listing, and the host’s unfriendly and even hostile reaction to our raising them, really soured our experience. There are better options on Stewart Island--do yourself a favor and avoid Kowhai Lane Lodge.
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Date of stay: February 2020
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Room Tip: Be aware: Kereru "King" Room is not a king; it has two soft single beds that roll apart.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Response from Peter T, Manager at Kowhai Lane Holiday Home
Responded 3 Mar 2020
This booking was made through booking.com, and the advertisement photograph clearly shows two king single beds, with the description "2 beds" . King singles are marginally narrower than standard singles." I have to wonder what part of 2 beds together with a photograph a senior educator does not understand. On complaining the client was offered the adjacent queen room, but as it was a garden view was declined. He... the booking was made in the males name .... then suggested that they be given a room already booked, obviously thinking that somehow they were more important than guests who had booked many months before him. The client phoned us later in the evening ... I was in bed ... and complained about the twin beds. I pointed out that they had not been misled, and they had turned down the offered queen sized bed. I pointed this out and then was informed we were "going to have an argument". So I hung up. It should be noted that the room, when finally vacated had orange pips scattered across the floor under the window, mud from dirty boots on the carpet and took over double the normal time to clean. The shared kitchen was a pigsty, and we know the other guests were very tidy, as was apparent when they left some days later. Date stamped photos can be supplied. Included in the room tariff is a 4 hour guided tour of Ulva Island. The client made no mention of conflicting activities when informed on arrival. I was later informed by text that the client would not join the tour ... which is fine, there is no refund. But we found later they in fact did go on a tour with another operator. We offer our guests free transfers on arrival and departure, and the client asked for a 1000 departure, but when we arrived they had left, and interestingly the chronic back pain which had precluded him lifting his luggage on arrival had miraculously cured itself as it is a 10 minute walk to the air terminal In summary I think the client booked what may well have been one of the last rooms available on Stewart Island for that time, and either didn't read the advert, or only saw what they wanted to see. The messy room may well be the way they themselves lived, or perhaps an act of childish petulance at not getting their way. That and the early departure after requesting a transfer, thus wasting our time seems just an attempt to "punish us". The 2.5% card surcharge totals $37.80, and we pointed out to the client before arrival that there is no bank on Stewart Island, and we were unable to accept large amounts of cash. I am sure the New Zealand Tax Department would love to know the names of hosts preferring cash payments. It should also be noted that the guest also saved more than this on the discounted airfare our guests enjoy. What is also interesting is the booking was made by the male ( a psychologist) , all the interactions were with him, but it is his partner who made no comment at all over the room and appeared quite relaxed over it, who appears to have submitted this review. We, and many in the village will put out fruit for our visiting birds. Which they will and do take from our gardens if available. The food that should not be offered is bread, nuts and other processed "food". DoC are well aware of our feeding birds, and we have discussed with them food hygiene around feeding bowls, which are not used at Kowhai Lane
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lifesucketh wrote a review Dec 2018
Petaling Jaya, Malaysia762 contributions44 helpful votes
Cancelled reservation when asked if payment arrangement can be done differently to avoid the card surcharge which at 2.5% for $2k. If alternative payment is not acceptable then say just so and we can decide if we are ok to pay the surcharge or cancel the rsvn. There is no harm asking as it is a question and not one where the guests insists.
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Date of stay: December 2018Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Shelley C wrote a review Jan 2018
5 contributions1 helpful vote
Peter and Iris have created an outstanding holiday home. Peter meet us and delivered us to the start of track. Every bedroom has its own magic . With a good size kitchen and 2 lounges there is plenty of room for groups to spread out as our group of 6 did. The added bonuses of the wonderful deck looking over the township, keruru roosting in the garden trees and cheeky kaka popping in for a piece of apple added to the magic. Peter taking us to Ulva Island was a wonderful extra addition.
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Date of stay: January 2018
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Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Susan S wrote a review Mar 2017
Bournemouth, United Kingdom11 contributions1 helpful vote
We stayed 3 nights in the self catering apartment which was cosy, well equipped and very comfortable. Peter met us from the ferry and took us on a short trip around the main area of Oban before taking us to Kowhai Lodge where we were greeted by Iris his wife. Despite the rain the half day trip to Ulva island with Peter was extremely interesting as was the 2hr trip around the island.
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Date of stay: March 2017Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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jmankelow wrote a review Mar 2017
london45 contributions11 helpful votes
We stayed for 4 nights and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. The self catering rooms are en suite and share a kitchen plus 2 large lounges. They are well equipped and our hosts did everything they could to make our stay enjoyable. There are a number of cafes eat in town and the supermarket is pretty well stocked for DIY catering.
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Date of stay: March 2017
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Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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SydneyIrene wrote a review Feb 2016
Sydney34 contributions22 helpful votes
We spent three nights at Kowhai Lane and really enjoyed it. Comfortable bed, hot shower, lovely views, use of a kitchen and 2 lounge areas. Iris and Peter were friendly and most accommodating, and Peter's tour of Ulva Island was excellent. Highly recommended.
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Date of stay: February 2016
Value
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Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: Front room has the best view and king-size bed.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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Su A wrote a review Feb 2016
Wanaka, New Zealand37 contributions9 helpful votes
Spend a few days here with Peter and Iris Tait as your hosts, and you won't want to leave. From the time Peter collected us from the ferry until when he dropped us back, they were there when we needed them and in the background when we wanted time to just soak in the atmosphere by ourselves. We had 2 of the 4 rooms in Kowhai Lodge, both with ensuite and so clean you could eat from any surface. Our rooms were beautifully appointed, quiet and with views down to Oban and the bay. Everything had been thought of - from apples to feed the Kaka sitting on the deck railing, to torches for kiwi-spotting, and ample suggestions of how to spend your time. Their guided trip trip to Ulva Island (see separate review) was exceptional. Very highly recommended.
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Date of stay: February 2016
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Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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midcoast_resident wrote a review Apr 2015
Rockport, Maine26 contributions9 helpful votes
From the time you get off the ferry or plane, Peter and Iris will help you enjoy what Stewart Island has to offer. Kowhai Lane Lodge is comfortable, clean, and well-equipped. The view is superb. Make sure to book the Ulva Island tour. Peter has extensive knowledge of the flora and fauna. Far more than a nature walk! The Taits will take care of restaurant bookings and make sure you get to go kiwi spotting with the right guide! Book in advance!
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Date of stay: March 2015
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Location
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Trip type: Travelled with friends
Room Tip: Some rooms have water view. There is cell service, but no wifi.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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TravelBag13 wrote a review Dec 2014
Cheshire164 contributions57 helpful votes
We had a lovely two days staying here and Peter & Iris made us very welcome. Nothing was too much trouble. I'm sure that if they could have improved the weather, they would have done. The accommodation was excellent, everything we needed, comfy bed, great amenities and tastefully decorated. Such a lovely place and a lovely couple who are only too happy to share their knowledge and advice with you to ensure you have a memorable stay.
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Date of stay: November 2014Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
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PRICE RANGE
US$197 - US$304 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
LOCATION
New ZealandSouth IslandSouthland RegionStewart Island
NUMBER OF ROOMS
5
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Frequently Asked Questions about Kowhai Lane Holiday Home
Which popular attractions are close to Kowhai Lane Holiday Home?
Nearby attractions include Ulva Island (3.3 km), Rakiura Museum (0.5 km), and Rakiura Track (3.8 km).
Is parking available at Kowhai Lane Holiday Home?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Kowhai Lane Holiday Home?
Conveniently located restaurants include Church Hill Restaurant, KaiKart Takeaways, and South Sea Hotel dining room and pub.