Review: Down to Modern Middle-earth – Waterfront Suites Heritage Boutique Collection Paihia

CX 197 HKG – AKL 343 Y
Treetops Lodge and Estate Rotorua
Exploring Rotorua
Waterfront Suites HBC Paihia
Exploring Paihia
Exploring Auckland
NZ 087 AKL – HKG 772 Y

Ranking: Location 5/5 Service 3/5 Modernity 5/5 Little things 3/5 Meals N/A Overall 4/5

On a cloudy Wednesday morning we headed north from Rotorua, over to Auckland for a good fish lunch. Details on that later.


Live Fish Restaurant

After that we drove for three more hours (six hours in total) to Paihia, New Zealand, where our hotel was located right on State Highway 11.


The Waterfront


Rooms and rooms

We checked in at the small reception table at the first floor, and went up the small staircase to the second.


Stairway (dorm style)


Room 202

Waterfront Suites Paihia (Heritage Boutique Collection)
Check-in: Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Room Type: Three Bedroom Penthouse
Room Number: 202
Stay duration: 3 nights
Check-out: Saturday, February 8, 2014

Damn, was I impressed.


View of the Room from Entryway


Living Room


Road to Toilet (1st Floor)


One of the balconies (1st floor)


Living Room and Staircase


Laundry Room (not that any of us used their facilities)


Penthouse Stairs




More beds (different room)


Beds of the first room when pushed together (I slept on an add-on)


Stairs going down


Balcony (Second Floor)


Marsden Road


Last Bedroom

The views were amazing, and we were impressed by this hotel as much as we were with the Cottage, for first impressions.

Then I went back to my room. I tried to turn on the air conditioning, but it wouldn’t open. After a few fiddles I realised that it was broken. We called the management, told them about it, and they said that that night we’d have to live with it and tomorrow they’d bring in a fan.

Not the best service ever, but Ana apologised so profusely we couldn’t do anything. We went down to have dinner as there were many great restaurants nearby.


Slightly meh…

So while the air conditioning wasn’t fixed yet (I doubt if it’s fixed now given that Paihia doesn’t really have the best facility amounts in New Zealand), the two little ones moved to their parents’ rooms, while I got an extra bed (and two fiddly blankets) to sleep in. It was a fair tradeoff, getting a double bed with one less air conditioning. I can’t express my gratitude to my friends and family, not only for the extra bed but also for planning the trip.

We explored Paihia (details to come later) the next day, and while there was a (noisy) fan as they promised us, they didn’t pay attention to details as much as Treetops (Rotorua) did.


Now this is what I call detail… (Rotorua)

We had a pleasant three nights, and the place was good for hotpot. However, working in the hotel is a distraction, since the TV and the best working places are in the same area. The bedsheets were not as straight as those in Rotorua.

Also there was a noticeable difference withOUT a coffee machine.


Those good old three days ago

On the bottom line, this was a pretty good hotel, with a few things that a good hotel needs that it kind of lacked. Hey Waterfront, if you’re reading, go get that air conditioning fixed!


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