The Best Hotels in Rotorua for Every Traveller

The Pohutu Geyser, near Rotorua
The Pohutu Geyser, near Rotorua | © Ian G Dagnall / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Thalita Alves
27 January 2021

Rotorua, on New Zealand’s North Island, is the gateway to a symphony of landscapes. Situated on a volcanic fault line, it’s home to geothermal hot springs, geysers, still-blue lakes and Te Wairoa, a ghost town buried by an eruption of Mount Tarawera. The opportunities for adventure are numerous – think white water rafting, kayaking and zip-lining through ancient forests – but you’ll need a base to call home.

Treetops Lodge & Estate

Eco Hotel
Map View
Treetops Lodge & Estate_Rotorua
Courtesy of Treetops Lodge and Estate / Expedia
Live out your forest-dwelling daydream in one of these grand lodges nestled among the trees. From cosy terrace rooms to cottages with rustic kitchens and stone fires, each place offers homely warmth in a woodland setting. Explore nearby natural gems like hot pools and waterfalls, enjoy signature massages at the spa, or try the Wild Food Cooking School. Food is proudly ‘‘estate to plate’’, with much of it grown seasonally on the land for unique tasting experiences. Round off your day watching the sunset from your balcony.
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Peppers on the Point

Chain Hotel
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Peppers on the Point
Courtesy of Peppers on the Point / Expedia
This former 1930s mansion channels its original charm and character through its classic timber-panelled dining room, library and billiard room, adorned with local artwork and collectables. Boldly-coloured furnishings add a modern twist in the rooms, and adventure is never far away, either: you can go fishing on the estate’s private beach, boating on the lake, or wandering among towering redwood trees in Whakarewarewa Forest, with over 140,000 acres (56,000ha) to explore.
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Hamurana Lodge

Bed and Breakfast, Inn, Guesthouse
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Hamurana Lodge
Courtesy of Hamurana Lodge / Expedia
Settled on 15 acres (6ha) of farmland home to animals and native birds, this lodge promises a personal experience that connects guests with Rotorua’s world-famous natural attractions, such as the geothermal parks and hot springs. You could comfortably spend an entire day exploring or bathing in your beautiful surroundings, before heading home to an outdoor pool and country-chic room, with sweeping views of Lake Rotorua and Mokoia Island rolling out before you.
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East West Apartments

Apartment
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East West Apartments
Courtesy of East West Apartments / Booking.com
Need a base to explore Rotorua from? This simple but stylish self-contained studio is right in the thick of it, just metres from the city’s mall and best restaurants. Crisp, earthy tones breeze through the apartment which overlooks a geothermally heated outdoor pool. Hosts Kristin and Stuart, who live in the main house, can serve you a homemade breakfast every morning.

Koura Lodge

Bed and Breakfast, Inn, Boutique Hotel
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Koura Lodge
Courtesy of Koura Lodge / Expedia
This boutique bed and breakfast combines rustic touches including exposed wood ceilings with vibrant decor such as patterned rugs and colourful plush cushions. Sparkling Lake Rotorua sits right at the foot of the lodge – you can admire the view either from your tree-fringed veranda (the perfect spot for your buffet breakfast), or from your lakeside hot tub. Kayaks are available for hire, so you can take to the water for an even closer look, when you feel ready to explore. Though you’d never guess it, central Rotorua is only a five-minute drive away.
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Lake Okareka Lodge by lebua

Serviced Apartment, Lodge, Hotel
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Set on the edge of Rotorua, this five-star lakehouse is all about luxury. There are just three suites, with the flagship Lake Okareka Suite – an upscale option with predictably epic lake views and its own spa-style bath – occupying most of the top floor. The luxury doesn’t stop there: you can hire your own chef to prepare pre-dinner drinks and canapes, before a five-course dinner, and there’s 24-hour butler service too. Spend your days fly-fishing off the jetty, cruising Lake Okareka by kayak or speedboat, windsurfing, sailing or even water-skiing – all can be arranged with the friendly staff at reception.

Prince's Gate Hotel

Boutique Hotel
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Prince's Gate Hotel
Courtesy of Prince's Gate Hotel / Expedia

Set in a beautifully restored 19th-century building, the Prince’s Gate Hotel is the ideal choice for those wanting a sophisticated place to stay that’s within close range of the city’s finest attractions. Rotorua’s Government Gardens are within a five-minute walking distance from the accommodation, and the hotel’s restaurant is quite popular among locals, hotel guests and other passing visitors. All rooms come with free wifi, flat-screen TV, a minibar and tea and coffee making facilities. The elegant bedroom suites also have their own living space and kitchenette for the ultimate weekend escape.

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Quest Rotorua Central

Serviced Apartment, Hotel
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Quest Rotorua Central
Courtesy of Quest Rotorua Central / Hotels.com

Quest Rotorua sits right in the city centre, and is quite close to public transport if you’re looking to venture a little further out. There are 36 serviced apartments for guests to choose from: the hotel-style studio suites which come with their own kitchenette, plus a selection of one and two-bedroom apartments that aptly cater for large groups and holidaying families. Breakfasts are available for an extra fee if you don’t want to fix your own meal in the mornings.

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Millennium Hotel Rotorua

Chain Hotel, Hotel
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Millennium Hotel Rotorua
Courtesy of Millennium Hotel Rotorua / Expedia

Millennium Hotel Rotorua is a modern hotel within close range of attractions such as Lake Rotorua and the Polynesian Spa. Child-friendly facilities including a toddler swimming pool make this an ideal choice for families. Eco-friendliness is this hotel’s strongest selling point: heating is primarily provided by geothermal resources, which are also incorporated into the accommodation’s very own spa facilities. Many of the rooms come with lake and garden views, and there’s a fine-dining restaurant right on the premises.

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  • Regent of Rotorua

    Boutique Hotel
    Map View
    Regent of Rotorua
    Courtesy of Regent of Rotorua / Expedia

    The Regent of Rotorua is a boutique hotel known for its opulent decor and luxurious amenities. Both the accommodation and its fine-dining restaurant have won several awards for their service and prestige. All rooms and suites come with complimentary internet access. Families and large groups can choose between staying at the lavish two-bedroom family and executive suites, and there are Cutie rooms available for solo travellers and couples wanting a cosy hint of glamour.

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    Regal Palms Resort

    Resort, Independent Hotel
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    Regal Palms Resort
    Courtesy of Regal Palms Resort / Expedia

    Regal Palms Resort has something for everyone. Holidaying families like this accommodation for its mass offering of leisure activities (there’s a heated swimming pool, outdoor BBQ area, mini-golf course and a tennis court on-site). Business travellers are drawn to its conference packages and function rooms but you will be in good company if you’re happy to enjoy a quiet weekend getaway with a spa pool, incredibly stylish suites and bedroom apartments to suit all group sizes.

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    Apex on Fenton

    Motel
    Map View
    Apex on Fenton
    Courtesy of Apex on Fenton / Expedia

    Apex on Fenton is a motel with an upscale flair. It’s set in a quiet street that’s quite handy to the city and has private spa facilities for guests seeking a bit of indulgence. All rooms are equipped with self-catering amenities and range from spacious vintage and queen studios to one- and two-bedroom spa suites. The Pohutu Geyser is only a five-minute walk from the accommodation.

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    Distinction Rotorua Hotel & Conference Centre

    Hotel
    Map View
    Courtesy of Distinction Rotorua Hotel & Conference Centre / Expedia | Courtesy of Distinction Rotorua Hotel & Conference Centre / Expedia

    Distinction Rotorua is adjacent to the Redwoods and Whakarewarewa Forest, a popular mountain biking destination. True to its location, the hotel has its own bike hire, storage and cleaning facilities. Its Maori cultural experiences feature a hangi feast (cooked using a pit oven) and traditional performances. There is an extensive range of rooms spread across five different floors. Children under 12 can stay in a parent or guardian’s room for free and there are interconnecting rooms available for those travelling in larger groups.

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    Executive on Fenton

    Motel
    Map View
    Courtesy of Executive on Fenton / Expedia

    The Executive on Fenton is one of Rotorua’s newest motels. Its location is one of the most convenient you could ask for. Not only is the accommodation quite close to the city, it is also notable for its ease of access by car and proximity to the popular Urbano Bistro restaurant. Each room has a kitchen with basic cooking amenities, along with featuring their own individual spa pools or baths, the option of queen or king-size bedding, plus free internet access throughout the premises.

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    Kim Gregory contributed additional reporting to this article.

    These recommendations were updated on January 27, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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