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Glenn2011
Titirangi, New Zealand

Lovely spot

4.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed Jul 15, 2022
We stayed 2 nights here and it was a great and affordable base camp for us. Room was cool in the evenings and we never saw a mosquito at all. Kitchen is basic but has what you need. Avetea Cafe is a 5 min walk and people came from all over the island to have food there and we were able to make it with a short walk - which we did several times! Our hosts Des and Tutai could not have been more hospitable and were only a phone call away if we needed something.
Date of stay: July 2022
Trip type: Traveled with family
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Reviewed October 17, 2021

I booked to stay here, but before we stayed there, we had read the reviews, which read REALLY poorly about management and the reception you could except, so I cancelled WITHIN the correct period. Luckily we didn't stay there! What transpired was this: Upon going back over my bank statement at a later date, I saw that I had been billed $600 for a non existent stay - we DID NOT stay there! So, I rung gGina's, and had a conversation with a VERY rude, belligerent man, who swore to god that no one but no one had booked the week I said I had, told there was no monies accpeted AT ALL that week, and no onoe had stayed. Fine. I left it, stewed on it, and tried again a week later. Low and behold, he knew EXACTLY who I was, and who he was talking to, knew that I had initially booked in that week, even though he lied to me and initially said that NO ONE had booked that week at all, told me I was a no show (even though I had cancelled), that he was entitled to my money, told me to shut up, and hung up on me!! So, I am now out of pocket $600, and I am furious! I am taking steps to enlist the help of the Auitataki Police, Expedia and Consumers Rights NZ, and I WILL NOT stop until I get the monies owed to me.Sadly for him, my bank statement has got Gina Garden Lodges clearly on it, so it is proof that he pcoketed the money. I am determined to get my monies back, as I am not a walking ATM!

The below is copied and pasted from my internet bank statement
Visa Purchase
Ginas Garden
Card number: 4835 **** **** 6269
$600.00
16 Sept 2021

Date of stay: October 2021
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank 69rosiew
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Tutai Clarke, Owner at Gina's Garden Lodges, responded to this reviewResponded October 24, 2021

Regarding Rosemary Watson ( AKA Rosie Watson.) booking 14.9 to 19.9.21
Kia Orana.
I will make this as short as I can.
If Ms Watson had read very poor reviews before booking with us, then why did she book with us in the first place?
Rosemary Watson ( aka Rosie Watson) rang me up about this approximately two weeks ago, but quoted a booking from another online travel agency ( Expedia) . There was no record of any booking made by her with this particular agency and I informed her of this. We had no record of a booking from her from Expedia. In her letter to Trip Advisor she is still referring to Expedia – which is not correct.
I was neither rude nor belligerent in our telephone conversation.
I investigated later and found out that she had made two bookings through another online travel agency - Booking.com - she had double booked so I had cancelled one of her bookings – leaving the other booking. We were expecting her and her travelling companion to arrive at 11.20 am on Tuesday 14 September. Her booking was charged to her credit card on 13 September.
She and her companion did not show at the airport. Our staff member who went out to meet the two of them and transfer them did not find them – although there were two people she thought would be them but they dodged her. So they were NO SHOWS. The staff at Aitutaki airport can verify this.
There was no cancellation of her booking by her. Booking.com will confirm this
I then rang Air Rarotonga in Rarotonga , and they confirmed that Rosemary Watson x 2 were on the plane. So she deliberately dodged our staff member and stayed somewhere else which was in my view very dishonest
Our policy is that NO SHOWS are liable to pay the full price of their booking. As well as this cancellations at any time are not liable to refunds although this is up to us to decide what is fair and reasonable.
I deeply resent her suggesting that I have lied to her. This is untrue.
In my conversations with her I did my best to be courteous and helpful and at no stage did I tell her to shut up.
The Aitutaki Police came to see us, and we discussed this matter. I provided them with full details of the booking. They are satisfied that our actions and procedures are correct.
I do not think that Ms Watson should have written this letter to Trip Advisor.
Kind regards
Des Clarke
Director
Gina’s Garden Lodges
Aitutaki

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 10, 2021

DON'T STAY HERE.
I stayed for 10 days here in Sep 2021, during NZ lock downs. Quite possibly the worst host I have ever met. There are hundreds of roosters that start crowing loudly around 4 am, and go ALL DAY, the owner couldn't care less.
And the swimming pool is empty and run down. And the TV doesn't work.

I asked for a refund of a week in order to go somewhere else, she was unapologetic, stubborn, arrogant, dismissive and plain rude. Obviously hadn't done any customer relations courses. What a downer for the holiday that was otherwise great (whales, turtles etc).

No peace and quiet at all.

Date of stay: September 2021
Trip type: Traveled solo
Thank Paul H
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Tutai Clarke, Owner at Gina's Garden Lodges, responded to this reviewResponded September 21, 2021


This is a single booking for one person and booked in via Booking.com as Paul Henson, which I believe is his real name.
Mr Henson is the most difficult client I have had in over 21 years of operating Gina’s Garden Lodges.

There are about 1500 people living on Aitutaki island, but there must be 50,000 or more wild chickens, half of which would be male roosters. I am unable to stop them crowing. No-one can stop them crowing. They are spread all over the island.
When arguing with our housemaid, Mr Henson started to violently slam doors in the lodges, so for the first time since opening in 1999, I called the Police to avoid damage to the property. I was on site when the Police arrived. The Police Senior Sergeant informed him about the roosters and said that their crowing was beyond anyone’s control. He also told Mr Henson that he could not demand a refund. I told Mr Henson that there are mosquitoes everywhere on the island, but many beaches are worse with sandflies.
Despite what he has said, we don’t have a lot of mosquitoes at my Garden Lodges, but like everywhere else on the island, there are some. This is the tropics. We have electric mosquito destroyers provided in all our lodges.
I have the two can openers here with me and they work.
The internet service is a Vodafone “Hotspot” owned and operated at the Garden Lodges by Vodafone. It does not belong to us. We try to ensure that it works well and gives good service, but at the end of the day it belongs to Vodafone and the quality of service provided is their responsibility
We never have offered Booking.com clients a swimming pool, and our pool is out of commission due to a water shortage in our area.
Mr Henson was abusive and before the arrival of the Police used obscene language directed at me using the F Word. He attempted to blackmail me into refunding his booking money which i refused to do. He has threatened to write a lot of bad reviews and no doubt he will. This review on Trip Advisor is one example.
He moved out on 11 September. I checked the TV set. There is only the one local channel. He had been fiddling around with the tuning. I set it right and it works fine with a beautiful picture.
His behaviour does not reflect well on him personally. I am sorry that he didn't enjoy his stay with us.
Mrs Tutai Clarke
Owner and Managing Director,
Gina’s Garden Lodges Ltd
Aitutaki


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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 3, 2019

I've been coming to Aitutaki regularly and normally stay up at the Ootu beach area. I chose to stay at Ginas Garden Lodges this trip as it was close to where I needed to be ( Tautu ) and its price point was good. I've been here a month now ( I had to extend my stay twice ) and have been more than happy to stay on at Ginas. There are things to be aware of;

1. It is fairly distant from most facilities (shops, cafes etc) so organise your transport. Get a scooter or even a bicycle but don't get here and complain about it (being here a month this has occurred at least a couple of times).

2. It is self-contained, I loved being able to manage my own meals but don't expect breakfast, lunch or dinner options. You need to organise yourself and they will stop at the shop on the way from the airport. Get your water, get something for dinner if you're on the earlier flights (or brekky if you're on the later one). There was tea, sugar in the unit on arrival. If you're organised scooter/drive off to the store and stock up. Better still, bring food in, I bought crackers, salami, olives, smoked salmon, brie, cheese slices, muesli, tinned chicken, tinned salmon etc etc... half a suitcase of food. It made for the best platters and I ate out only a couple of times .

3. The scooter/car rental will deliver to the lodge if you organise it that way (recommended). It is a fair distance from the rental offices.

4. Be aware over all Aitutaki, roosters aren't educated, the noisy little critters may start crowing at midnight or 1am or 2am or ... you get the gyst. You may need ear plugs (but that is everywhere on the island).

5. The lodges are large, generous even and for the price for Aitutaki in my opinion exceptional value (and add to that the book 7 days get one free) and once again my opinion great value for money. Sleeps 5 easily, decent full sized fridge (no freezer box in mine), TV which was great as Rugby World Cup was free to air ( 1 channel only though) and a really generous deck.

6. They don't come in to clean on Sunday, if you're a messy it might bug you, but knowing is being prepared (see point number 5)

7. They are Garden Lodges, and it is a lovely setting. I always stayed near the coast previously but the quiet and lovely garden has been a great change.

8. Good shower...good pressure and I found the temperature great.

9. Cruises will all pick you up from here

10. Beware of Sally who looks after the lodges daily, she might sit down with you and chat, she might even make you laugh, nek minit you lost half an hour :)

11. Relax

To Do:
Lagoon Cruise (who cares which just get out on the lagoon)
Bubbles below Dive Shop - Best coffee and muffins
If you're here Sept/Oct Whale watch with Bubbles below
Ziona Tapu church service - Traditional Hymns are spine tingling (plus its the oldest church in the cooks)
Go up Maunga Pu for the view
Scooter the island
The Boatshed for a beer/cocktail or meal
Pacific Resort pool bar - great view, good food, and they have Schubert Pinot Noir (NZ, Martinborough)
You'll see filtered water stations around to fill your bottles, near the market at the port, Ngapuariki hall, along Amuri

Date of stay: October 2019
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank avee8or
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed February 2, 2019

Gina is really a nice and kind lady. We met her at the airport and she welcomed us with an amazing lei. Before our arrival it was very easy to get and keep in touch with her to organize our trip. When she picked us up, she brought us to have a grocery and get our scooter.
There are 4 lodges and all of them look like 4 huge houses with private spaces and entrance. Our lodge was very clean and tidy. only one thing, if you think to stay here, ask Gina to organize you a scooter so is gonna be easier to get around the island.

Room tip: any of them would be perfect as they all look the same
Date of stay: August 2018
  • Trip type: Traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank ScarlettOtto
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed December 6, 2018 via mobile

First of all I’ll start with the positives - the lodges are big, clean, and have good hot water. The location is terrible but as long as you have transport that shouldn’t matter too much. However the reception from the owner was by far the worst I have ever had travelling. I booked the lodge by email a week or so in advanced. A couple of days before when she was enquiringly about transfers I requested just a one way transfer as a boat your was going to drop me at the airport. Upon saying this I was accused of being a fake and penny pincher, and was told my booking had been cancelled. I had been offline and only found this out at the airport on my flight to Aitutaki! For her to reinstate my booking I had to plead and get return transfers (when I didn’t need one leg). I arrived in Aitutaki not sure if I had accommodation and it’s not like you can walk to the local hotel there. Not worth the hassle - avoid at all costs

Date of stay: November 2018
Trip type: Traveled solo
2  Thank cams638
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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