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Budget hotels & hostels
Guesthouses and B&Bs
Bowentown Beach Holiday Park
Having nabbed a stunning stretch of sand this impressively maintained holiday park makes the most of it with first-rate motel units and campers' facilities. The barbecue area even has a water feature.
Ambassador Motor Inn
This tidy motel has noise-reducing glass for peaceful sleeps, a swimming pool, and a long list of 'new' things: TVs, kitchens, bedspreads, towels, sheets... Some rooms have spa baths; all have kitchen facilities...
Tuscany Villas Whakatane Heritage Boutique...
This mod motel may be a long way from Florence, but still offers a few rays of Italian sunshine with interesting architecture, wrap-around balconies and floral plantings wherever there's room...
Belle Mer Luxury Apartments
A classy beachside complex of one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, some with sea-view balconies and others opening onto private courtyards (though you’ll more likely head for the resort-style pool terrace)...
This spotless, ranch-style motel is the pick of the half-dozen dotted along the Landing, with spacious, well-kept units and comfy beds. Large spas in executive suites are a great fringe benefit.
The Tauranga On The Waterfront Luxury...
This quiet place, only a short walk to the centre, has some excellent harbour-view suites if you’re feeling romantic. Some rooms have deluxe spa baths that will get you back into the mood if the architecture fails you.
Princes Gate Hotel
The Princes Gate is a well-loved and warmly welcoming 19th-century dame with 54 different rooms, such as the opulent Marvelly suite − perhaps too pink for all but Barbara Cartland. Sink into the bottomless bath, however, and all is forgiven...
Trinity Wharf Tauranga
This blocky high-rise near the harbour bridge has a slick, contemporary lobby − all retro white vinyl and trendy plush greys − leading to the upmarket in-house restaurant Halo (mains lunch $14 to $32, dinner $30 to $39)...
Harbour City Motor Inn Tauranga
With a winning location right in the middle of town (and with plenty of parking), this newish, lemon-yellow motor inn has all the mod cons. There are spa baths in each room, and friendly staff who can offer sound advice on your itinerary.
The friendly Vic has seen a lot of competitors come and go, maintaining its foothold in the market with individual-feeling rooms: the studios are particularly attractive with their thermally heated plunge pools...
Ann's Volcanic Rotorua Motel And Serviced...
Ann’s is an affordable motel that has family charm and an ever-friendly host with loads of advice on things to see and do around Rotorua...
Lake View Penthouse
Lake views and a central but secluded location make this unique lodge a persuasive option. The upstairs penthouse is ideal for couples, while downstairs is better for families or groups (three bedrooms, three bathrooms)...
Millennium Hotel Rotorua
The slick Maori-inspired lobby sets the scene for this elegant five-storey motel. Lakefront rooms afford excellent views as does the club lounge, popular with the suits and internationalists swanning about...
Tuscany Villas Rotorua Heritage Boutique...
With its Italian-inspired architecture and pointy conifers, this family-owned eye-catcher is the pick of the Fenton St motels...
Six On Union Motel
Hanging baskets ahoy! This modest place is an affordable bonanza with pool, spa and small kitchenettes in all units. Rooms are functional, and the new owners (from Yorkshire) keep the swimming-pool area in good nick...
White Island Rendezvous
An immaculate 26-room complex run by the on-the-ball White Island Tour people. Lots of balcony and deck space for inhaling the sea air, while interiors are decked out with timber floors for a nautical vibe...
Regal Palms 5 Star City Resort
Winning the Qualmark award for New Zealand's best self-contained and serviced motel in 2005, this place is packed with features to recommend itself, from wi-fi throughout to DVD players and a tennis court...
Ambassador Thermal Motel
Handily located in a quiet corner just a few minutes’ walk to town and the lakefront, this mildly kooky motel boasts no fewer than four pools: two indoor mineral pools, an outdoor spa and a large figure-eight swimming pool...
Peppers On The Point Lake Rotorua
This luxury complex in a supreme location has seven suites, two cottages and a larger villa house that cater for visiting movie stars and honeymooners...
Hotel On Devonport
City-centre Devonport is top of the town, with bay-view rooms, noise-reducing glass, slick interiors and sassy staff, all of which appeal to business travellers and upmarket weekenders. No in-room wi-fi is a surprising downer.
Yha Rotorua Backpacker
Bright and sparkling-clean, this classy, purpose-built hostel is great for those wanting to get outdoors, with staff eager to assist with trip bookings, and storage for bikes and kayaks...
A well-kept, deceptively big YHA with a large grassy backyard and a nearby mangrove swamp boardwalk to explore. Inviting dorms have individual lockers, and there’s info available on local walking trails and a noticeboard for all things green.