Hawkes Bay - where to (and not to) stayTweet
Please mention MarksTravelNotes.com when contacting these fine establishments. I have stayed at all these hotels.
Whitehouse Homestay Bed and Breakfast (14 Woodford Heights, Havelock North, New Zealand) - Karin and Doug, who own and run the Whitehouse Homestay Bed and Breakfast , are excellent, hospitable hosts with a deep knowledge of the local region. Rooms are spacious, comfortable and well maintained. Views from the property, which is on a hillside, give an excellent view of sunsets over the Plains. Karins breakfasts are second to none. A spa is avalaible for guests to use - as is the lounge in this fine property. Faultless.
The County Hotel (12 Browning Street, Napier, New Zealand) - Asserting itself as Hawkes Bay only 5-star hotel The County Hotel really shouldn't be on a caveat emptor list of any kind. But it is on this one. On my last stay during off season, I discovered that the restaurant and bar was only open on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights during the off-season. Unacceptable for a 5-star hotel - esp as they purport that reservations are essential. Otherwise, the hotel was excellent with its own library and some courtesy ports to enjoy as you read. Rooms were excellent and comfortable, decorated in the appropriate style and all named for native birdlife. Otherwise, reception was decent. While the continental breakfast was limited, the cooked was worthy. Free wifi is available. (July 2010)
Scenic Circle Te Panier (45 Marine Parade, Napier, New Zealand) - Standardised, santised chain hotel with chaotic breakfast service on my solitary stay. Returned to the Bay twice since and haven't returned. OK for the price but not outstanding. Paid wifi is far, far too expensive. (December 2009)