Tuesday 19th June, 2018

Millennium Hotel, Queenstown, New Zealand

I've reviewed this hotel before, and found it one of my favourites in New Zealand. Queenstown is located in the South island, about a 1 hour flight from Christchurch. It is built around Lake Wakatipu and is a year-round resort. It is one of the country's top skiing venues with resorts at Cardrona, Mount Remarkables, Treble Cone and Coronet Peak. The village itself, and nearby areas offer a broad range of activities over the four seasons of the year, including white water rafting, jet boating, paragliding, bungy jumping, helicopter rides, and lake cruises. A great spectrrum of restaurants, taverns and bars is on offer, including the Hard Rock Cafe, the Pig n' Whistle English pub, several Irish pubs, a Lone Star Cafe, and there are two casinos. I arrived at the 220 room Millennium Hotel, in my estimation a 4 star facility. The reception and foyer was very classy with the main entrance area leading up to an open bar and the main restaurant. The receptionist was welcoming and the check-in was brisk. I had booked 3 days on a package basis including full breakfast, and a massage on one of the days. There was no mention of this, no explanation of what was included, vouchers given or instructions on organising the massage. I let it go, collected two key cards and was directed down one level to the second floor. The reception is on the 3rd floor of the five floor property. Down one level and around to room 204. On opening the door I came into a lounge suite setting on one side, and the entrance to the bathroom on the other. Two large settees greeted me and from there the room opened up to the main bedroom area. This was a junior suite, of which there are two on each floor. Quite spacious, well decorated with timber furnishings, blue carpet and bedspread, and beige curtains and chair coverings. The lounge suites were in a gold and red striped colour. There was a work desk, a large TV cabinet which also contained 6 spacious drawers, crockery, electric jug and glassware. The TV was connected to local channels, CNN and Sky Movies. There were two arm chairs in the room, two timber bedside tables, one with a phone and one with a clock radio. There was also another large timber cabinet which housed a mini-bar. Back to the entrance and there was a large wardrobe directly in front of the door and to the side of the bathroom. It contained an iron and ironing board, and two spare pillows. The bathroom was fair in terms of size, not overly large. The bath served as a shower as well. The shower facility was a flexi type, not fixed to the wall. It had a good jetstream of water. The vanity bench was barely adequate, there was little space to accommodate toiletries. There was an open toilet at the end opposite to the bath. Not a lot of room but quite well decorated and adequate. I then came to set up my laptop and began looking for the broadband internet access as indicated amongst the facilities on the Web site. Alas there was no connection, not even a separate modem link. The only access appeared to be by disconnecting the phone and providing an adaptor to link to the telephone line. As I was isolated in Queenstown this was a pre-requisite I had allowed for. I got on the phone to Reception and asked how I could connect. I was disappointed to be told there was no broadband Internet access available at the hotel at all, in any room, suite, or even in the Business Centre. I pointed out broadband was listed among the facilities in the Web site I had made the booking through. After a short while the receptionist came back and said, "no, this is not the case. The person who handles that has told me that is not the case." I knew this wasn't right but let it go. I later checked the Web site again and sure enough broadband was listed. Despite the problem with broadband I was able to link up through the phone, and access a national toll free number for AT&T. I dined at the hotel in their fine dining room on the first night. It was very classy. Restaurants in New Zealand generally I've always found very good. The country seems to attract some top lines chefs from around the world. The Millennium has certainly snared a good one. The service too was excellent on the night.

The hotel overall was a really good standard hotel, well managed, and the staff motivated. The only issue I had was the property advertised it had broadband Internet access, when it didn't.


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