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“Nice enough property, but not good value for money” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Estate Tuscany

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Estate Tuscany
Ranked #5 of 15 Hotels in Pokolbin
Certificate of Excellence
Cremorne, Australia
Level Contributor
102 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Nice enough property, but not good value for money”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 March 2012

This property has extremely mixed reviews and now I've spent 2 nights there I think I understand why this is the case. It's actually quite a nice property overall and certainly in a very picturesque location. However, it's rather overpriced for what is on offer. The reviews that give a good reponse are the ones that are mid-week or used voucher offers. I can understand that when you're paying $130 or so a night, you would be quite content. However, the general weekend and undiscounted price of $250 to $275 is very steep for what is essentially a motel where you park at your front door.
The room (olive grove I think) was quite spacious and the sleigh bed comfortable but there were cracks in the walls and the amenities are reminiscent of a motel rather than a resort. Also, the shampoo and tea-bags were not replaced in the room on the 2nd day and there was no sweetener. I requested fresh milk twice (which was supposed to be available on request) with no response. The bathmat was not replaced and the towels (which we retained to be environmentally conscious), were re-hung folded over so they remained damp. They're all small things, but they indicate fairly sloppy management.
The tapas food and wine in their casual dining area is pretty expensive - we paid about $150 for 2 people and there wasn't much food. (However, the cafe over the road, Blue Tongue is even worse food and also knows how to charge!)
We understand that Tuscany charge an additional $15 per day for internet access, which is more usually complimentary these days. They also charge extra for upgrading the continental breakfast (which was included) to a cooked breakfast. Unfortunately most of the buffet food is uncovered and numerous flies were having a free breakfast. Staff had to be asked to bring more of everything - cups, hot water, bread, bowls, glasses - they just don't seem to be switched on enough.
This only amplifies the problem with the cost - if you're paying mid-range motel prices, you'll get over it pretty quickly, but if you're paying serious money, you expect more and this property just doesn't seem to understand this. I notice that management replies to all positive tripadvisor reports and ignores all critical ones. Says a lot!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank rbinsydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TuscanyWineEstate, General Manager at Estate Tuscany, responded to this review, 5 June 2012
Robin, thank you for your feedback and apologies for the delay in responding, your comment on rates reflects availability and cost of operation with significantly different rates for mid-week and weekends. We believe that Tuscany is good value for money within the region of which we operate, The Hunter Valley, I am sure you will know that our rates are up to 50% less than some operations and would have been very happy at checkout to discuss your circumstances Your reflection regarding car parking it appears reflects your expectation of our layout which was not to have parking adjacent, however I am not sure why this was a negative As being able to park adjacent your room makes loading and unloading much easier, but certainly we are not a fully enclosed building and this may have been what you were expecting. In relation to the toiletries we have reviewed this and have added to our rooms accordingly. Thank you for your feedback and this has assisted in making the improvements.

Housekeeping issues are certainly not the normal standard and when we are able to find your room number we can talk to the staff in question as review where they have caused a problem and what the reason could be.

The Brokenback Bar prices range from $14-$26 per dish with pizza’s being approx. $23, until I see your dockets I am unable to offer any comment except that this is priced and to allow you to have a good quality meal and a glass of wine for under $40 per person I am more than happy to review you docket to see if the charging was infact correct.

In the country flies do seem to be constantly with us and can be a source of frustration. All our cooked food is presented in covered bain maries, however it is a staff challenge to both keep the flies out when guests arrive and to keep them off the food, or utensils. We do charge an upgrade fee when you upgrade from continental to full cooked breakfast however this is an industry norm and we believe offers the facility for those who may not think they want a full cooked breakfast when booking but with an appropriate country inspired appetite, which to upgrade. Not being able to keep up supply is however an issue which should never occur!

As the leader of the Tuscany hospitality team I feel very personally when we have failed a guest, not only for that guest but for the integrity of all the staff who rely on us all doing our jobs properly in order that guest depart having enjoyed there Tuscany experience
When there are any issues we always wish to discuss the problems with our guests as it is only with client feedback that we can lift our standards where we may have failed guest a guest or there is some process which we may be able to improve upon. Comment is always sought at reception on check out, via our email to every guest asking for feedback after they arrive home and our guest feedback forms which are given to every guest on check-in and are always addressed.

Guest feedback is our life blood, so even when the observations may not be to our liking we truly appreciate comments being offered, the opportunity to respond immediately and at the time. If you would be prepared to contact me at the hotel I would be only too happy to discuss how we could have you see Tuscany as it should be.

Regards Kirsty Woods
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632 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (181)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 February 2012

We recently celebrated our wedding anniversary at Tuscany wine estate. The olive grove room was very tired, bathroom in desperate need of an upgrade, the service very average and the facilities average too. The breakfast however was superb, the service at breakie was fabulous & the view from the restaurant was serene for a quiet weekend away. Overall we still had a great weekend away but would choose a different location on our next visit.

  • Stayed February 2012
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Jazeva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TuscanyWineEstate, General Manager at Estate Tuscany, responded to this review, 28 May 2013
Appreciate your feedback and agree it is disappointing to find a heading such as disappointing. We take on your thoughts and have actively placed these in refurbishment program which we are currently working on.

On the positive side, wonderful that the service your experienced, dining and the location you really enjoyed. Also that you did have a lovely time away.

Although you did note you would not return please try us again and if you could personally ask for myself; I would like to look after you.

Sincerely Kirsty Woods
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane
Level Contributor
99 reviews
72 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 February 2012

We stayed on two separate occasions in the last month and had a pleasant stay both times. The rooms were nicely decorated, clean and comfortable. We ate at both the Mills restaurant ( where the food was nice but the service lacked the professionalism of fine dining) and the bistro where we enjoyed a tapas and wine as the sun set over the vineyard - very pleasant. Mid week prices were reasonable and it was a quiet setting though that might not be the case if there was a big function on.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank oztravellers1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TuscanyWineEstate, General Manager at Estate Tuscany, responded to this review, 5 June 2012
Thank you for your feedback and glad both stays were pleasurable. We have a new Restaurant Manager and look forward to the service improving greatly in relation to professionalism. Appreciate you commenting regarding noise as others have; noise is indicative of other guest manners or consideration we find; fortunately it is very rare we experience anything else but lovely and considerate guests.
Looking forward to you return.
Thank you Kirsty Woods
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Port Macquarie, Australia
Level Contributor
64 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 166 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 February 2012

We stayed here thinking that the 4 star rating that was on this place meant it was a 4 star hotel NO NOT TRUE. I would rate this at best 2 1/2 star it was clean and yes it had a view of the vines !!!!!! Great till the sun went down then??? well any way the places was clean yes the taps leaked and dripped all night that is if they didn't come of in your hand when you used them the tiles were mouldy and the shower head well you had to run around in the bath to try and get wet water went everywhere but not where it was support to go IE on you and the space was so small you didn't want to turn to quickly or you would end up on your ####. With no room service and limited places to go it was ether pay the step prices next door or go find something else. NOT GOOD and the price $275.00 for a night you have to be joking we have stayed at 4 and 5 star hotels and this is no way anywhere near that standard as I said it would at best be 2 1/2 stars no more. So no this is not one to stay at if you want any sort of quality, as this is your bare and I do mean bare basic cheap old hotel at a very high price not worth the money.

Room Tip: stay somewhere eles
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Allen M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TuscanyWineEstate, General Manager at Estate Tuscany, responded to this review, 5 June 2012
Housekeeping issues are treated with the highest of regard, mould is unacceptable and in reviewing cannot locate any and as you noted twice the room being clean.
Any maintenance issue we will always attend to immediately please note there is always staff onsite to assist and rectify any issue. The thermostat controller can affect the water supply and this we have reviewed and is in fully working condition.
You are correct we do not have room service, we offer takeaway; you call from your room, place the order and then pick it up from Brokenback Bar, which is on our property, likewise The Mill Restaurant our a la carte restaurant. The Brokenback Bar prices range from $14-$26 per dish with pizza’s being approx. $23, until I see your dockets I am unable to offer any comment except that this is priced and to allow you to have a good quality meal and a glass of wine for under $40 per person I am more than happy to review you docket to see if the charging was in fact correct.
In relation to the rate you stayed a single night (which are not always available) in the Hunter Valley and consequently pay a premium rate for a 1 night stay on the night which in greatest demand of any given week also included was full cooked breakfast for 2.
When there are any issues we always wish to discuss the problems with our guests as it is only with client feedback that we can lift our standards where we may have failed guest a guest or there is some process which we may be able to improve upon. Comment is always sought at reception on check out, via our email to every guest asking for feedback after they arrive home and our guest feedback forms which are given to every guest on check-in and are always addressed.
Guest feedback is our life blood, so even when the observations may not be to our liking we truly appreciate comments being offered, the opportunity to respond immediately and at the time. If you would be prepared to contact me at the hotel I would be only too happy to discuss how we could have you see Tuscany as it should be.
Regards Kirsty Woods
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Liverpool, Australia
Level Contributor
93 reviews
78 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 February 2012

Nice room with view overlooking vineyard. Added advantage that you park your car under cover at the room door. Its closer to restaurant etc too than olive view rooms. Great bed & only room downside is that shower is in the bath, thus a tight squeeze. I found the brokenback bar great for ambience and tapas (entree for restaurant). As per Hunter Valley restaurants portions are on the small side, whilst you pay high. Mill restaurant was excellent food and waitress was kind enough to offer a free glass of wine due to meal taking a bit longer than it should of (PS she did this on her own - i didn't whinge etc). I'd suggest arriving way b4 5pm so you can sample the wines and cheeses. I'd stay again

Room Tip: I'd go for Vineyard view, a bit extra but worth it. All rooms are quiet.
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Brad290
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TuscanyWineEstate, General Manager at Estate Tuscany, responded to this review, 19 February 2012
Dear Brad
Appreciate your kind words and glad you enjoyed our new beds and feather/down bed toppers; the view from the Vineyard View rooms is like a postcard and 1 of the very few places in the valley with under cover parking. We have thought about taking the bath tubs out and just having showers but we find people want to have a bath when they go on holidays; tricky one…Glad the waitress looked after you; we pride ourselves on attentive staff.
Look forward to your return.
Thank you & regards

Kirsty Gregson
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newcastle, Australia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 February 2012

My friends and I had lunch at The Mill restaurant last weekend. The food was beautiful and the service was friendly and efficient. Afterwards we were shown the accommodation, as we were inquiring about a future stay. The rooms we saw were well-appointed with a lovely outlook - very quiet and peaceful. I have now made a group booking for later this year and am looking forward to staying!

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Judy W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TuscanyWineEstate, General Manager at Estate Tuscany, responded to this review, 14 February 2012
Dear Judy

Glad you enjoyed our food and we are looking forward to your stay later this year. Thank you for taking the time to write about lunch and looking forward to meeting you when you are here next.

Thank you Kirsty Gregson
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 February 2012

Romantic weekend from hell.

My husband and I had dinner at Mills and my husband had food poisoning from this restaurant. He was so sick from 2am right till 9am in the hotel room. I had to drive him to the hospital in an emergency as he was so dehydrated. He was on a drip for 3 hours and his blood pressure dropped so low that it could hardly be detected. We then returned back to Tuscany. We had to stay an extra night due to how sick my husband was. We were so surprised that we were charged for the extra night and 1/2 of the dinner. SHOCKING!!!

The hygiene level was so poor at the restaurant which I noticed on the day of check-out.. I saw a cockroach crawling on the table, fresh items such as bread were not covered. The flies were all over it. What a huge difference since we were at this resort a year ago.

I was advised during checkout that someone from the management team would get in contact with me regarding this as we were completely out of pocket for an extra night that was caused by their restaurant. “No correspondence at all”.

This whole experience was extremely unpleasant and stressful. I will NOT be returning.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank fitz2202
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TuscanyWineEstate, General Manager at Estate Tuscany, responded to this review, 28 May 2013
Thank you for your feedback and we take food poisoning accusations very seriously. Consequently we spent a lot of time in correspondence with you on this issue.
"Diagnosing correctly that illness is caused by food poisoning and identifying the particular cause can be difficult. Identifying the cause is not always possible." Taken from the Food Authority NSW website.
Another point to consider again taken from the Food Authority NSW website:
"Food poisoning: fact or fiction?
I was sick after eating a certain food, it must have been what made me sick
Symptoms of food poisoning, particularly vomiting, can occur within a short time after eating contaminated food. The last meal you ate may indeed have made you sick.
But it is also possible that the illness was due to a food eaten quite a long time before you became ill.
Onset of the first symptoms after consumption of the contaminated food is different according to the specific bugs (pathogens) that caused it. So consider all the foods eaten over the 3 days before symptoms first appeared.
Some bugs carried by food can also be passed person-to-person or from contaminated surfaces that people encounter in everyday life. The symptoms are the same and can start just as suddenly.
For a list of foods typically contaminated by particular pathogens and illness onset times, see foodborne illness pathogens."
It would appear only your husband was taken ill out of the 67 guests who dined in the restaurant that night, with 7 other guests eating the same dish. Thus it would be highly unlikely it was caused from food eaten at our premises.
The food on the breakfast buffet is still presented the same manner it was a year prior to your last visit
We are very upset that you feel it was due to Tuscany your weekend was spoilt and sadden that you feel it necessary to publicly make such serious accusations without proof.

Sincerely Kirsty Woods
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Estate Tuscany

Property: Estate Tuscany
Address: Cr Hermitage rd & Mistletoe ln, Pokolbin, New South Wales 2320, Australia
Region: Australia > New South Wales > Greater Newcastle > Pokolbin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Pokolbin
#4 Luxury Hotel in Pokolbin
#5 Family Hotel in Pokolbin
#6 Romantic Hotel in Pokolbin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Estate Tuscany 4*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Estate Tuscany Decades of Hospitality & Award-Winning Service. Only two hours from Sydney, located at the foothills of the Brokenback ranges in Pokolbin, Hunter Valley (NSW). Guests can experience a relaxing stay in Tuscan-style accommodation, with uninterrupted mountain views in the heart of Australia's premium wine country. The grounds present a stylish blend of modern and rustic decor, set amongst 26 acres of beautiful countryside. There are two stunning eateries onsite. The Mill Restaurant offers guests a fine dining experience, while The Brokenback Bar presents a cafe-style bar where guests can sample wine and beer from the region. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tuscany Wine Estate Hotel Pokolbin
Tuscany Wine Estate Pokolbin
Estate Tuscany Greater Newcastle/Pokolbin, Australia

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