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All reviews fresh fruit visiting hobbiton hot tub enjoyed our stay ann eddie hosts cambridge nz matamata
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Reviewed 21 March 2016 via mobile

If you only need three words - just do it - the grounds are amazing, the food was incredible and words cannot describe the building itself. Attention to detail knows no bounds at Lake Karapiro Lodge and to top it all off Ann and Ed are the best hosts one can ask for - their kind nature, inviting personalities and willingness to spend time showing us around the house for a private tour was the cherry on top of an amazing weekend. We will definitely be back!

Stayed: March 2016, travelled as a couple
Thank cdwriter2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 March 2016 via mobile

Great service, lovely rooms and amazing view. Stayed one night and didn't want to leave. The people who run the lodge really make the place, not taking away from the beautiful building itself. Would definitely recommend. 10/10 experience.

Stayed: March 2016, travelled as a couple
Thank Liam A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 March 2016 via mobile

We went to the lake karapiro lodge for my brothers birthday on the weekend and had an absolutely fantastic weekend the breakfast we had upon arrival was amazing and the 3 course dinner was incredible. Would definitely recommend staying here.

Stayed: March 2016, travelled with family
2  Thank JessHale25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2016

This is the first time even that I have been aggrieved enough to post a substantive review on a website.
It all started with our daughter seeing an advert for one night at Lake Karapiro Lodge for $250 down from $500 and thought it would be a great anniversary gift for my wife and I. Even at the reduced price most people would agree its expensive by New Zealand standards. On the way we had a wonderful experience at a motel in Taupo for $139. I know from my many stays in hotels that for the kind of dollars that the lodge was wanting you can stay at some of the more luxurious hotels in the country. I have stayed many different places such as the Wairakei Resort on business for around $250. That has 2 hot pools, spa baths, tennis courts for use by its guests.

My daughter could only surmise what a room worth $500 per night would mean. So did we. Hence when we arrived at the lodge our expectations of what was ahead of us was high.

It did not take long to have our expectations shattered. It started with us parking in the wrong place (even though there were no signs)-I guess we were expected to be mind readers. We were rudely asked to move the car which we did straight away. Upon arrival, my wife got the run down from Ann who is one of the owners. The room was nice, the shower and bathroom were nicely updated but for us the biggest let down was we could not even make a hot drink in the room. I know my wife asked about a microwave and was given a firm 'no' and that this was seen as a significant issue later on. They don’t even have one in the shared lounge /dining area. That was not a major for us. We have stayed at many places were there are no microwaves, we just needed to know the answer. To be blunt though we have never stayed in what was deemed a 4 or 5 star accommodation where we were not able to make a hot drink in the room. Even today, hotels like Sky City which don’t have kitchen facilities in rooms have a jug that you have to fill from the bathroom. People don’t complain and there are plenty of places close by to get food etc.

We arrived early it seems. It was not meant to be until at least 3 pm (although the web site states 4pm). We got there I think around 1.30. As things transpired that became an ‘excuse’ for many of the ‘ills’ we were confronted with. I'm sure guests arriving early is one thing that all 'hoteliers' etc get constantly. All that had to be done to defuse this was point out to us the fact that we were early and whilst room was ready other things like the grounds, including pool etc, were not. Nothing like that happened. We were not the only people to arrive early. There was at least one other couple who had a room in the 'barn' block.
There was a reason why we arrived early - we needed to know what was provided, how things worked as we knew we had not booked for meals. Unfortunately you cannot get that information off the website. Perhaps if a bit more information was included on the lodge’s website then less people like us would arrive early. Lucky we did arrive early as it told us we could not do what we originally had hoped to be able to do for meals and gave us time to change our plans.
As the weather was warm we decided to get into our togs and try the pool. Big mistake. There were leaves that had fallen off the surrounding trees littering the bottom of the pool. There was scum, grass material, dead crickets, mosquito’s and bees floating on the top. Not appealing at all. There were 3 chairs by the pool but more than 3 guests and no sign of any more. I quickly found that my feet were getting covered by ants so I started to have a look around. The pool fence is covered in ‘lichen’ so they obviously had not even watched the advert ‘spray and walk away’. The pool fence was about chest height and immediately behind that were dead branches of trees that had long ago been trimmed but nothing done with them nor any attempt to clear any of them away. Closer to the barn was hoses, firewood and downpipes just lying there in plain sight. No trellis to hide etc. Best of all were the weeds growing among the pavers- some were a good foot or more high. This is 5 stars we pondered. I took some photos of most of this. The unkemptness of the grounds became a common theme when you looked at the gardens.

There is a 3 tier fountain where the guests enter. This was very rusty and consistent with the unkemptness of the grounds. For a 5 star lodge the pool is nothing to rave over and the unkemptness was a real turnoff.
By 3pm were gone on our way to Cambridge. Were we a bit disenchanted but determined to carry on and make the most of things. We managed to have a wonderful time in Cambridge and Hamilton with a great meal back in Cambridge. We then brought a bottle of wine, some cheese for desert and came back to the room for the rest of the night. My wife checked the spa as we returned and had a quick discussion (with the owner’s son) who only then pointed out that there had been problems with the thermostat and it seemed to have returned. So no spa only added to our disappointment.

Our daughter rang us around 6.30 pm to ask how it was going. I guess you can guess how she felt once we conveyed our experiences. We asked her to just leave things but no. Unbeknown to us she did ring the Lodge (at 7.30pm) and spoke to Ann. Really her world, her expectations for us had come crashing down. What we are seeing I guess is the classic case of where marketing strategies to overstate the experience so you price things higher than their real value create expectations which in our case simply did not match the reality. Our daughter felt ripped off to put it mildly. Hence her anger. We did say not to make a scene but obviously she did not heed that and admits she was short and to the point in discussions with Ann.

We were then completely taken back when Ann knocked on the door of our room around 9.15 pm (some 1 and ¾ hours after the phone call) and told me to ‘look at this’ holding something she had printed off Facebook allegedly from our daughter. I tried to point out that I had my wrong glasses on. Ann demanded I put my glasses on to which I think I initially said no as I was still trying to get my head around what was happening. Before I had time to start asking questions Ann said that she did not want our type here and we should leave right now. Although taken back I said okay if that's how you feel we will. Ann went to the office and reimbursed the money our daughter had paid. Ann continued to give us a ‘serve’ as we left. Lucky we were able to find accommodation through friends but a lot of people would not have been able too.

We never did get to discuss that Facebook entry. I have subsequently read it. To my dismay the ‘posting’ never mentioned in any way the Lodge. So anybody reading it would not know what she was talking about either. Yes she talked about 'trip adviser', 'words of warning' and 'got a bit of a rage on tonight' but it never mentioned the lodge. Equally the call to Ann earlier also was one to one so nothing yet had made 'public' in terms of the Lodge. Yet we were evicted. There is no other way to phrase it.

I am over 65 years of age, my wife is close to 60. At no stage did I raise my voice. My wife is a school principal and we both don't make scenes. Neither of us has ever been evicted ever before.
Initially we could not believe things and laughed about it. Our anger has grown since and in posting this I hope nobody ever has to experience the same. Before posting this we did send a ‘private’ email to the Lodge to give them an opportunity to put things right. No response at all.

I can only suggest that people avoid this place like a plague. I would call it a 2 or maybe 3 star at best, the rooms are great but the grounds need a major overhaul.

  • Stayed: March 2016, travelled as a couple
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16  Thank Tony H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 March 2016 via mobile

Warning: this place is not a hotel. It is a glorified B&B. It claims to be a "lodge" but it is in fact a family home renting out some nice bedrooms. The female owner has exceedingly poor customer service skills. From start to finish and on its website this place misrepresented itself.

My wife organised a grabone night away deal online. She was contacted by Ann and was asked to consult and choose from a menu emailed through, which we did. I thought this a bit odd.

When we arrived we weren't exactly greeted warmly by a girl in jogging pants and told our room might not be ready although it was 3pm. We were shown to our room which I have to say was very pleasant, clean, well appointed with a modern en suite bathroom. Although there were no tea or coffee making facilities en suite or a phone.

We mentioned dinner to the male owner at which point we were informed for the first time that it was to be a shared dining experience... And there was no restaurant as my wife had been led to believe. This was disappointing as it was a night away for Valentines.

Later on I wanted to borrow an ironing board.... I knocked on a hallway door and hearing voices opened the door. Ann the owner was on the phone. I said hi and she blanked me... When I spoke to one of the younger women who had greeted us... Ann literally shouted at me not to talk to her daughter and that I was in their private area even though there was no sign saying private and it was where the dining area was.

I mentioned that we might not eat there... Ann's response was "I don't care where you eat". Apparently she was stressed because she had double bookings to fix!!! Was that my fault??

I was astounded by her rudeness... We didn't eat there and avoided any interactions until we left in the morning without even seeing anyone. I noticed two other couples do similar. Says a lot I think!!

Probably the most uncomfortable situation we have found ourselves in after years of travelling.

Beware overpriced and rather misleading advertising.

Stayed: February 2016, travelled as a couple
13  Thank Jonathan H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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