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Travel Blogs from Wellington
I had a wonderful , wonderful final few days on the South Island. I had ample time to explore the bays, beaches, communities and vineyards of this region of NZ. My stay with long lost friend Julie and her husband Kevin was not only warm!, welcoming and lovely but it was great to visit with folks who had made this country home. Julie is from US, …
... a bit lower than the 32 he reckoned should be in there!
From there we were about 10mins to the Ascot Motel and we checked in just after 4:15pm. We had a nice room with a single and a queen bed and Karly was happy yo have Wi-Fi.
I went out and got us bottle of white wind and a Coke about a 5minute walk at a 4 Square.
I was tired. It had been a long drive and so after about half a bottle of wine, we went looking for a meal.
I had been ...
... we left Christchurch in the middle of cyclone Lusi. We were only caught in the outskirts but even then it just seemed like a storm to Lottie and I... So we're not sure if NZ doesn't usually have storms of any form so a cyclone is a pretty big deal, but it didn't disrupt our drive or anything. When we arrived in Kaikoura it was still pretty miserable but luckily we were staying in a really homely hostel so there was an awesome fire and sofas with a big tv ...
Well dear reader, we got home and I carefully unwrapped all the shells I’d collected having kept them in my cardigan for safe keeping. That’s when I saw him. He raced out from one of the sleeves and onto my desk, a little brown crab!! Arrrrrrrrrgh!! I went completely crazy, more from fright. ‘KIIIIIIIITTTTT!!!!!!’ I screeched, ‘There’s a freaking crab in my bedroom!!!!’ ARRRRRRRRRRGH!’ It was ...
... the ground, while lots of kids (young and some definitely not so young) enjoyed playing cricket with tennis balls on the outfield.
Having missed out on a Valentine's Day dinner the previous evening, we had a nice meal at a Mexican style restaurant (called Sweet Mother's Kitchen), before we went back to Camp Elsdon, sunburnt, but happy, prepared for some gaol time in our bunks.
Next day, we visited Te Papa (Maori translation: "Our ...
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Historical Traveler Reviews InterContinental Wellington
OK but some real problems
Booked a junior suite with a view direct thruough the Intercontinental site 4 months before staying. No-one to help with bags at check in, we did not have much but would have expected it. That was really no problem until we got to the room.The room had a big office block looking straight into the sitting area and the harbour could just be seen by peering over the desk. I complained and as the hotel was full I was stuck with it but it was a huge bit of cheek to be then told by reception staff that 'in Wellington that is a city view'. Rubbish - anywhere that is a view of a big office block with literally hundreds of workers able to look in the room - the office block is just across the road. There are junior suites with great views BUT it is very wrong for them to list this as a view room (and that was why I booked it and paid a premium price for it). It is not worth paying the premium and getting this - and I was told that the better view rooms cannot be selected when booking. The room does also stretch the definition of a 'suite'. It was a reasonably sized room with the bathroom jutting into the middle of it - it was really only a room by most good hotel's standards and NOT a suite. I thought service was poor, the 'suite'sub-standard and the hotel's website to be very misleading. Probably an OK place if you get a good cheap deal or are lucky enough to get a view room - but you can pay big bucks for not a lot here - a bit of a dissapoinment.
Make sure you have a view !!
Having looked at the other reviews of this hotel which we've just returned from it is clear that you can have very different experiences at the same hotel.
We arrived after a long car journey from Mt Ruapehu and were delighted with our room overlooking the harbour on the 8th floor. It was actually a junior suite with an adjoining room for our kids. The room was very stylishly fitted out and the view was absolutely excellent. Watching the wide variety of craft coming into and out of the very beautiful harbour is a delight only matched in a few other cities like Sydney (where we live) and Vancouver.
Whilst I'd have to agree that the lobby areas are pretty much standard/bland business hotel and fairly charmless they are hardly offensive. We don't spend all that much time in hotel lobbies, preferring to look around the towns we're holidaying in and so I don't put too much emphasis on the mega-grand entrance.
The restaurant is par for the course for this type of hotel, efficient but nothing overly special. Since Wellington has a wonderful foodie scene set all around Courtney Place with tens of stylish and enticing restaurants, I'd question why you'd eat here anyway except for breakfast which is quite acceptable.
We found the concierges very friendly and helpful too. The pool area/gym is absolutely fine and they are the only hotel with a pool in Wellington - big consideration with our family !!
I suppose that if we'd had a smaller room facing away from the harbour we wouldn't have been quite so impressed. We always book through the internet and I thought that the NZ$230/room that we paid was more than fair for what we got.
Disappointing and soul-less
The InterContinental Wellington hardly deserves its five star rating and has to be one of the most soul-less, dull and uncharming hotels I have ever stayed. Despite being asthmatic and specifically having asked for a non-smoking room, I was put in a stale-smelling room on a smoking floor and told that to move to a non-smoking room I would have to pay an additional charge by a very unsympathetic and unfriendly receptionist. After complaining to the manager, we were moved to a non-smoking room, but only after much persuasion. Even the room we moved to was not perfect, tired and dreary with no view and little charm about it. Certainly not worth the expensive five star prices that it charges, this hotel seems to be mainly frequented by businessmen who do not require charm or soul. Not recommended for holiday-makers.
Great experience - want to return as soon as possible
Thoroughly enjoyed our brief stay there in mid-December and hope to return. Paid only US$118.78 through chain website (non-refundable, advance rate). Got the option of adding on 'club level' at arrival for NZD$65 and found the free breakfast, afternoon tea including cakes and pastries, and evening h'or doervres-drinks that resulted to be well worth it for my husband and I. (We were quite surprised throughout our trip that food prices seemed to be relatively inflated when hotel prices were so reasonable.) When we arrived, we found the parking lot confusing and found that you really need to do valet at NZD$10 per day, but it gives you unlimited in/out priviledges and no tipping is expected. They also happily unloaded and loaded our luggage (5 pieces) between the car and our hotel room and left before could be tipped. Room was very tasteful and of reasonable size. Concierge staff was very helpful in booking day tour and asked tour operator to adjust slightly to our wants. Also came up to us in lobby while we were pondering our activities and offered helpful advice. Staff was thoroughly professional and helpful throughout. Could not have been happier with our stay there -- it was by far the best of the 4 different hotels we stayed in while in NZ (all of which were quite nice).
Any floor except the 2nd floor !
The Intercontinental (formely the Parkroyal, for those whith a long enough memory) is supposed to be the best hotel going in Wellington. Well, if you stay on any other floor apart from the 2nd, I am sure it is. Got put in to the yet-to-be renovated second floor and it looked tired from the moment you step out of the lift. Most of the other floors have been done up and look good. Sure, the final of the rugby championship might have had something to do with that but it was a merely average stay and, without wanting to be completely disrespectful, I might have been better off staying the night at the Ibis which is almost next door and saving a bit more money. Almost everything comes from Parkroyals days and is up to its use-by date, frankly.
Service was, however efficient at both check-in/out and concierge which was good. It's proximity to the CBD (offices and shopping) is of course a plus. I would stay there again, but I hope that I can get a better room next time !
My home away from home!
My husband and I stay at the Intercontinental Hotel when we come down for his business 2-3 times per year. We usually stay for about 10 days at a time, so we know the staff very well now. I feel like this place is my home away from home. Everyone there makes us feel like family. We prefer the 9th floor suite rooms, with the separate den, since my husband likes to watch TV late at night while I'm already long asleep. The rooms are quiet and the beds are so comfy! I can't wait to get back down there this December and see all my friends at the Intercontinental!
Average business hotel
Nothing special about this hotel. But it was quiet, clean and had free washer and dryer facilities for guests. Very good location though.
Breakfast was pretty mediocre but the same restaurant for dinner was outstanding!!
Average Accommodations, Above Average Prices
This hotel bills iteself as the "only 5 star" hotel in Wellington, but there is no evidence of 5 star service or accommodations here. The rooms, even refurbished, are indistinguishable from any average 3-4 star business hotel on earth. The gym was comprehensive, but the gym locker room was like a public washroom- nothing remotely luxurious or even 3 starabout it- 2 star. The location is fine, but the James Chancellor's is better- and the lobby at that other hotel is hip and lively whereas the IC Welington seemed dreary, unstylish and dead as a doorstop, even at 5:30 on a Friday. I think that if I had paid about 60 USD for this hotel I would not be complaining, but I paid over 100 USD and I'm not happy that I did. Almost any hotel in Wellington's CBD will be well located and safe. There is no need at all to be fooled into thinking this is a deluxe property worth a "splurge" it is not and you should save your money and spend it on something else in the city.
The Best Staff in the World
The ParkRoyal Wellington, now an Intercontinental, has the best hotel staff in the world. For the better part of three years, I was here on a monthly basis and saw them at their best and at their worst, but their worst was still very, very good. The building needs some work, but with a staff like this - the doorman, the drivers, everyone - you really don't mind at all.In tried almost every place else in Wellington from B&B's to the Duxton, and this is the ONLY place to stay. Across from Queen's Wharf, where you'll find the best food.If you're going to Wellington, you need look no more.
Inter-Continental Wellington is the BEST!
This was one of the best experiences I've had at a hotel. It is in a wonderful location with views of the bay and within walking distance to many attractions. The staff is extremely service oriented and very friendly. The rooms are well laid out with stylish contemporary furnishings and nice linens. The bathroom is devine, large and well lit and has a two person tub with jets. Room service breakfast is delicious and a wonderful value. Very good fitness center with a personal trainer available, also has indoor heated pool, jacuzzi, and sauna. I would live in this hotel if I could!