Wednesday, July 23, 2014

My Homes Away From Home

Nomads Fat Camel (note the camel graphic in the window on the left)

People have been asking me where I stayed during my epic Middle Earth trip. In Auckland, I stayed at a placed called Nomads Fat Camel at 38 Fort Street. I picked it because the price is cheap. I booked a double room with no window (although it actually had a window) at $60 per night. I stayed there for 5 nights. The front desk staff is friendly, and every night they offer free snack size meal to guests. The problem with this place is its next door establishment called "Lipstix" Massage Parlor. I don't really think it's a massge parlor but more like a night club that opens all night. They would have the doors wide open every evening and blast music until sunrise. Will I stay there again? No.  There are a lot of hostels in the area, so there is no shortage of budget accommodations.

The Setup Accommodation is in between Subway and Wishbone

In Wellington I stayed at The Setup Accommodation, which is also a budget hotel, located at 15 Dixon Street. Downtown Wellington is very walkable. I could walk to the train station on the other side of the town in 20 minutes. I had a single ensuite room, which is a single room with private shower for $70 per night. Unlike the bare room at The Fat Camel, The Setup room has flat screen tv in each room, free WiFi, mini fridge, coffee/tea maker, and assorted tea bags/instant coffee packs in each room. I was pretty happy with the unlimited WiFi.  Will I stay here again? Yes!

Sitting area of Hotel 115

Wellington was going to be my last stop, and I picked a real hotel to stay with. Hotel 115 at 115 Worcester Street is a new hotel that opened up after the earthquake. The cost is $115 (New Zealand Dollar) per night. I guess they like to stick to the number 115.  I was immediately impressed with its decor. After I entered my room, I stepped out and took a video clip of it. I stayed there two nights then headed to Lake Tekapo. I stayed at YHA Lake Tekapo for 2 nights. The hostel is right next to the lake, so the view is fantastic, but the price was almost as much as Hotel 115. I had a double private room with shared bath, and it was $90 (NZD) per night.  The room was bare just like the one at Fat Camel. My room also happened to be right next to the men's bathroom and the kitchen, so it was noisy most of the time until quiet hours. Will I stay here again?  Probably not.

YHA Lake Tekapo

Luckily I had one more night at Hotel 115 before I headed back home. I got a different room with a different layout. It turned out that every room is a little different at Hotel 115 due to the shape of the building.  Will I stay here again?  Yes!

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