Whether or not you like the "Steam Punk" genre in general, you can't help but appreciate the care and attention that has gone into the refurbishment of this hotel.
We stayed for four nights, using it as a base from which to explore the Wairarapa by foot, bicycle and car. The staff were warm and welcoming, helpful and friendly. Whilst they don't have a dedicated secure space (yet) to store bicycles, when asked about options they happily suggested storing them overnight in a secure room inside the hotel rather than locking them up outside.
We opted for a superior room, with a walk in shower and large, comfortable bed. Our room had all the facilities you expect (kettle, fridge, teas & coffee selection including plunger, fan & heater), with the exception of it not having a wardrobe as there wasn't quite room for one and they obviously didn't expect people to stay in the room for as long as we did. Having said that, there were ample coat hangers (at least five, which is more than you usually find in most hotel wardrobes) and plenty of wall hooks on which to hang them, so the absence of an actual wardrobe cupboard was not a problem.
The room decor was rich and inviting, with deep, moody wall colours and opulent, velvety soft fabrics, reminiscent of the Victorian period in which "Steam Punk" is based. In the ensuite there were nods to "Steam Punk" styling in every direction, from the light fittings; to the exposed (feature) copper toilet pipe work; to the tap fittings; even the hand soap dispenser on the sink was in keeping with the overall design.
Being a small business based outside of a major metropolitan area the front desk was not always manned, but staff were always available; all you had to do was go into the bar or ring a bell and wait for a minute or so for someone to arrive from whatever part of the hotel they were currently in. For those city slickers used to 24/7 service, this could be seen as a staff being inattentive or an issue of some kind, but this is not the case.
We ate dinner at the restaurant twice. The first night we had the steak and the chicken dishes. Both were huge portions (we could not finish them), with superbly cooked seasonal vegetables. My steak was cooked to perfection and incredibly tender.
We also spent an enjoyable evening in the middle of our stay just sitting in the bar area reading books and playing board games.
We found it a great place to relax and unwind. If we stay again for more than three nights, we will probably book one of the bigger rooms (Executive) to give us a little more space, but we'd happily stay in the Superior room again for a stay of up to three nights.
Whether or not you are staying in one of their rooms, if you are in the area, it is definitely worth popping in for a drink or meal.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC