NZ accommodation #1: Malfroy Motor Lodge @ Rotorua, North NZ

Rotorua is a tourist capital in North island, famous for its geothermal activities. Once we drove into the city, we could smell the sulfur. In fact, the entire area is full of rotten eggs smell. Anyway we did not find the smell too strong or too bad.

The first thing we did was to check in to Malfroy Motor Lodge. Great that the Garmin gps we brought was working fine and for that we save NZ$10/day(GPS rental price in NZ).

We booked a studio room where we could just park our car in front of our unit. We had the nearest unit in the picture.

We opened the door to a warm and cozy room with an attached bathroom. After the NZ trip, we concluded that we like this type of self-contained unit the most. The room has a queen-sized bed, two seater sofa, dining table and chairs. It is also equipped with kitchenette which enable us to do some simple cooking.

The glass door in the room led to a beautiful backyard garden where the heated pool and mineral pool are located.

The highlight of Malfroy is the geothermal mineral pool, next to this outdoor heated pool. Their pools are opened 24-7, so we went for a soak before sleep. Do note that not every accomodation in Rotorua has their own mineral pool. Since we have no plan to go to the expensive Polynesian Spa thermal pools which cost NZ$43/person, we make sure we booked the stay that has a mineral pool. :)

Malfroy thoughtfully provided us with a very useful "treasure box". It has some salt, pepper, sugar, cream, ground coffee, chocolate drink and cookies packets.

Food that we bought from Pak n Save, a bottle of olive oil, a pack of bagels, 2 pieces of Angus beef, a pack of mushroom, half dozen of eggs, peaches and blueberry(NZ$38.71).

I was busy cooking dinner while the photographer was checking out the place.

NZ offers top quality beef and one of their top rated is Angus breed. We managed to spot Angus steak on Pak n Save's rak and have it for our first dinner. The steak was so tender, juicy and sweet even though I just grilled it with some olive oil and seasoned with some salt. Unfortunately, we did not see Angus beef again in any hypermarket for the remaining of the trip.

Heavy breakfast the next day with Pokeno Bacon & Sausage before we had a visit to Waiotapu. Most of the NZ hotel/hostels except budget hostels(BBH or YHA) will provide a small packet of fresh milk for your coffee. We love this service!

Overall, I think Malfroy is a best value choice. For NZ$99 studio, it had exceeded my expectation in many ways. One of the sweet memory for us was the soak at the pools before we slumbered the night away. Did I mention that the room price comes with free internet? Oh, so much facilities and freebies to fill up our one night stay. :)

Malfroy Motor Lodge
view website
view tripadvisor review

NZ: The perfect 14 days

Finally, I have stepped on NZ land, a place that I wanted to visit since years ago. The trip was in NZ's end summer/early autumn, from 19th March to 1st April, 14 days to be exact. On 18 March, we took JetStar to Singapore and then a direct flight to Auckland the next morning. In Auckland airport, we picked up a rental car and drove from North to South. For the next 14 days, we had a very packed itinerary but it was definitely one of the most memorable trip for us. It was 2nd April when we flew out from Christchurch with JetStar.

19/3/11(Sat): Auckland aiport --- Pukekohe --- Rotorua
20/3/11(Sun): Rotorua --- Taupo --- Napier
21/3/11(Mon): Napier --- Wellington

22/3/11(Tue): Wellington --- Picton --- Kaikoura --- Hanmer Spring
23/3/11(Wed): Hanmer Spring --- Westport --- Punakaiki --- Fox Glacier
24/3/11(Thu): Fox Glacier --- Wanaka
25/3/11(Fri): Wanaka --- Queentown
26/3/11(Sat): Queentown --- Milford --- Te Anau
27/3/11(Sun): Te Anau --- Invercargill --- Curio Bay
28/3/11(Mon): Curio Bay --- Dunedin
29/3/11(Tue): Dunedin --- Oamaru
30/3/11(Wed): Oamaru -- Mt Cook --- Lake Tekapo
31/3/11(Thu): Lake Tekapo --- Christchurch
1/4/11(Fri): Christchurch

Next I will blog about the accomodations in NZ. Stay tune!