When I first visited New Zealand now more than twenty years ago, we camped for the most part – camped and hiked and occasionally took in a small boutique hotel, which btw, is still a great way to explore New Zealand. If, however you go the adventure route for a couple of weeks and want to end your trip in luxury, here are a few choices that are worth exploring on both the North and South Islands.
Kawaha Point Lodge on Lake Rotorua: (above)
Kawaha Point Lodge is a beautifully restored family owned retreat on the shores of Lake Rotorua. Set in one acre of mature gardens with panoramic views. The lodge offers eight double ensuite bedrooms each with garden or lake views.
Golf lovers will love this place as you can choose to play golf on your choice of three, eighteen hole golf courses. You an also fish for famous brown and rainbow trout in some of New Zealands most beautiful lakes and rivers which are nearby or experience geothermal activity by day and Maori culture and traditional Hangi (feast) by night. On site activities include swimming pool, sauna, petanque, croquet, picnics and lake cruises.
Old Saint Mary’s Convent Retreat in Marlborogh’s Wine Area:
In the heart of Marlborough’s wine growing area lies Old Saint Mary’s Convent Retreat — a haven for the discerning traveller, Old Saint Mary’s Convent Retreat is situated on 60 acres of vineyards and parkland and surrounded on all sides by the vineyards and olive groves Marlborough is famous for. Spring Creek, with its abundant bird life and trout, meanders lazily through the property.
Old Saint Mary’s Convent Retreat is located just a 10 minute drive from Blenheim or 20-25 minutes from Picton on Rapaura Road.
The retreat includes a full gourmet breakfast, complimentary bar prior to dinner, tea & coffee, complimentary WIFI, use of all facilities including outdoor swimming pool, sun beds, croquet, petanque, billiards room, library, games and DVD.
Lodge at Kauri Cliffs:
Set on 6,000 acres near Matauri Bay, Northland, the Lodge at Kauri Cliffs affords spectacular 180-degree views of the Pacific Ocean. Cape Brett and the offshore Cavalli Islands are part of the panorama which can be viewed from the verandas, living room and card room. It’s a great choice if you’re a golf lover.
The main lodge which overlooks a golf course and the Pacific Ocean. There’s also gourmet a la carte dining in the main dining room or you can opt to sit on one of the peaceful verandas if you wish.
Eight outlying guest cottages, each with two guest suites, offers its own private porch, comfortable bedroom with sitting area and open fireplace, walk-in wardrobe and bathroom. The cottages are nestled on the edge of a native forest overlooking the ocean and golf course. If you want to rent a suite, each one has its own private porch, comfortable bedroom with sitting area and open fireplace, walk-in wardrobe and bathroom.
Evergreen Lodge in Queenstown:
The lodge overlooks Lake Wakatipu and while its only 3 kilometers along the lake edge from the town centre, the peace and tranquility creates a relaxing unabashed luxury feeling.
Each of the three tastefully furnished bedrooms have breathtaking views of the lake and mountains. The en-suite bathrooms have separate bath and shower and one of those heated towel racks. There’s also a drying room for your stuff if you ski.
The lodge also has a gym sauna and solarium as well as a hair stylist on site. It’s a lodge largely for adults, so children under the age of 16 are not permitted.