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“Owners away, manager couldn't care less”

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Bella Vista Dunedin
Ranked #38 of 61 Hotels in Dunedin
Certificate of Excellence
Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
37 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Owners away, manager couldn't care less”
Reviewed 18 December 2011

I booked for 4 nights, starting 26th November 2011. The booking was made direct several months in advance, over the phone, for a wheelchair-accessible room. On the Wednesday prior to travelling, I phoned and arranged for a late checkin due to flight schedules. The owners knew we were travelling to Dunedin for a conference on disability (the motel was on a list of accommodation for this conference). They also confirmed that due to an Elton John concert in town all other ground floor accommodation in the city was fully booked.

We arrived at 7pm to be told the owners were away, leaving a manager in charge. The manager said she had swapped our booked room with someone who had arrived in earlier and that we were allocated a room on the upstairs floor, reachable only by a set of steep outside stairs. On being told the wheelchair user could not reach that room she shrugged and said that wasn't her problem. She told us the only other accommodation available in Dunedin was at a backpackers in South Dunedin - a long way from the conference venue. She would not phone around to find accommodation for us and refused to contact the people in our room to see if they were willing to swap back to the room they had originally been allocated. Throughout all this the manager kept laughing and making inappropriate comments about disability. She treated the whole situation as a joke.

We were left at 8pm on a Saturday night in an unfamiliar city, with nowhere to go. I was in tears. Apparently this just made it all funnier to her.

We managed to find other accommodation some time later but on arriving at the conference the next day we learned another wheelchair user, a friend and his wife, had also been booked at the Bella Vista. They had received a call earlier in the week from the owners saying the motel was overbooked and there was no accommodation for them. This caused a great deal of trouble for them - it's hard enough finding accommodation when a major concert is on without the added restriction of needing ground floor, accessible rooms.

I sent an email to the motel to give them an opportunity to explain (or even just apologise) and have not had any response.

Stayed November 2011, travelled on business
Helpful?
3 Thank SpidaChik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
bellavistadunedin, Manager at Bella Vista Dunedin, responded to this review, 16 January 2012
Dear ElpiNZ
We were mortified to see your review. As you can see when reading our other trip advisor comments, we pride ourselves, as owner operators, in going "that extra mile" to ensure our guests have a great experience. We have had very positive feed back about the warm friendly nature of our motel minder by past guests, so I am very sorry that you did not experience that same level of hospitality. To date we have not received your email, so if you could kindly redirect that, we would be happy to respond to you on a more personal basis.
Sincerely Robyn
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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142 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (26)
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English first
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
Reviewed 16 December 2011

I stayed at the Bella Vista for 3 nights and was impressed with the way the room and ensuite were each day on my return. Spotless and fresh! Although the decor and bedding is now a bit outdated the linen was spotlessly white and soft. Good pillows too. Only a 10 minute walk to the beautiful Dunedin botanic gardens, one of the best i've ever seen. Good location if you're visiting the University.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank 2605Traveller2605
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
bellavistadunedin, Manager at Bella Vista Dunedin, responded to this review, 16 January 2012
Thanks very much for your review. We really appreciate that! Your comments regarding the decor have been noted also. As you can imagine refurbishing is an ongoing exercise, and the smaller studios (like the tylpe you stayed in) are at the tail end of the list. :-) Our staff will enjoy hearing your feedback about the cleanliness of your room. Hope to see you some other time in the future! :-)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Swansea, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 13 December 2011

I stayed here for a conference with a colleague all the way from the UK (Wales).

We were really pleased with our room it was clean and spacious.

The hosts could not have been more helpful...when our taxi did not arrive for a function our host jumped in her car and insisted on taking us to the venue (even though she didn't know where it was herself). We found it thanks very much!!!!

I would recommend the Bella Vista to anyone looking for a stay that is excellent value and great hosts.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Debbie J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Preston, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 31 October 2011

I stayed at The Bella Vista, Dunedin, twice during The Rugby World Cup and it was perfect. We had a one bed roomed apartment. This had a double bed in the main room, a side room with two singles and a bathroom. It has a cooking area with microwave and all the cooking utensils you may need. It was clean, warm , well equipped, with very comfortable beds. It is a walking distance of about 15 minutes to Dunedin and 20 minutes to the new Stadium. If I ever come to Dunedin again I would stay at this Motel.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jorgus50
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
27 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 October 2011

Mum and I stayed for 7 nights in the access studio room. It was just right for the two of us. I chose Bella Vista because they had free onsite parking, free wireless internet and a kitchenette with microwave, jug, toaster as well as a hotplate and saucepans and plates and cutlery and fridge. There was also tea and coffee and hot chocolate. We had to buy herbal tea and tissues. The owners were very friendly and helpful offering advice and directions and a town map. The beds were comfortable and the area was quiet for sleeping. The location was perfect. it was about 20 mins walk to the coffee shop or museum or the botanic gardens and a few minutes drive to the town centre or supermarkets. We were very happy.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ValofBrisbane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Bella Vista Dunedin

Property: Bella Vista Dunedin
Address: 704 Great King Street, Dunedin 9016, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > South Island > Otago Region > Dunedin
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #38 of 61 Hotels in Dunedin
Price range (per night): $127 - $179
Hotel Class:4 star — Bella Vista Dunedin 4*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This modern Dunedin motel accommodation is a great spot from which to explore the city and the surrounding Otago region, in New Zealand's beautiful south. We realize you might have a limited time frame, so our systems are easy to ensure that you make the most of your hassle free stay. Your hosts, Robyn and Garry are warm, friendly and helpful. There is so much to see in and around Dunedin and they are more than happy to share all their knowledge and ideas. They want your stay to be enjoyable, whether its business or pleasure, so they will go the extra mile to ensure you have a great stay. If you'd like Robyn and Garry help you plan your Dunedin trip - you need only ask! Bella Vista Dunedin is centrally located and within walking distance to Restaurants,City Centre, the University of Otago, Otago Museum, Dunedin Hospital, Forsyth Barr Stadium, Logan Park, Alister McMiillan Hockey Turf and the Botanical Gardens and we are just a short drive from Mercy Hospital. Our motel-style accommodation comprises 16 superior suites, featuring one and two-bedroom motel units, with a comprehensive range of facilities. The self-contained, non-smoking suites are available in an assortment of configurations to suit families, corporate stays and travellers alike. ... more   less 
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