Five of New Zealand’s most unusual places to stay

Published on : Monday, January 20, 2020

New Zealanders pride themselves on their ingenuity, and this round-up of some of the more curious places to stay around the country is a good example – choose from pods, lodges and tree houses. Take your pick and enjoy great Kiwi hospitality, and the beauty of Aotearoa.


Te Arai Lodge Mangawhai Auckland

Opened in October 2019, Te Arai Lodge is an eco-friendly oasis offering boutique luxury and warm hospitality only 1 hour 15 minutes north of Auckland. The lodge is run and hosted by a New Zealand family; owner Vince is a chef by trade and an entrepreneur by nature, wife Kathy is a passionate gardener, yoga, pilates and tai chi instructor, daughter Nicola is the Lodge Manager, a multilingual host and passionate garden-to-table chef, eldest son Doug is in charge of the website, marketing, social media and new initiatives and younger son Harry is fly fisherman who offers guests trout guiding experiences around New Zealand and saltwater fly fishing in the local waters. Surrounded by 20 acres of ancient podocarp forest and native bush, guests can enjoy the organic permaculture gardens, garden-to-table dining, yoga studio, spa and pool.


A sustained pest eradication programme over the past 15 years, together with the planting of over 4000 native shrubs, trees and plants, has transformed the surrounding landscape and the ancient podocarp forest into a haven for native birds. Binoculars are available in each guest suite for guests’ use during their stay together with a New Zealand bird book to identify and to observe the birds in their natural environment. Te Arai Lodge is a proud sponsor of NZ Forest & Bird with a percentage of profits being donated annually to this iconic NZ institution.


The Hotel Britomart, Auckland – opening mid-2020, Hotel Britomart will be New Zealand’s first 5* Green Star Hotel, and a cornerstone development in the Britomart precinct’s commitment to sustainability. The downtown Auckland precinct is a vibrant hub of hospitality, high-end boutiques and transport in walking distance to all Auckland’s main attractions. The rigorous commitment to sustainability extends to the fit out and operations of the 99-room / 5-suite hotel that occupies a heritage site and is constructed in handmade bricks. Amenities will include custom guides to running and cycling routes.


Hapuku Lodge – Kaikoura. Treehouses reach new heights at Hapuku Lodge in New Zealand’s South Island, where every detail has been lovingly crafted by a New Zealand family of architects and builders. Set ten metres high, in a canopy of manuka trees (native to New Zealand), guests have views of Kaikoura’s dramatic mountains and Pacific coastline. Clad in native woods and copper shingles, the treehouses give guests the feeling they’re sleeping in the treetops, nestled into the environment. Interior furnishings are utterly elegant, from the doorknobs to the way the light shines through the rough-hewn slats.


The Tree Houses allow guests to nest in the tree tops in a beautiful version of a child’s tree house, closer to the birds, to the mountains, to the ocean and the sky.  Each house is named after the native bird that showed the most affinity for the house when under construction: Kereru (the NZ native pigeon); Piwakawaka (the Fantail) for the second; Kotare (the Kingfisher) for the third; Tui for the fourth; and Korimako (the Bellbird) for the fifth.


If you can bear to tear yourself away (the food will blow your mind), you’ll want to head for the shore to admire dusky dolphins, albatrosses and whales.


Mahu Whenua, Wanaka –  is an exclusive luxury accommodation, eco and wildlife experience set on a vast high country property near Wanaka, in New Zealand’s Southern Lakes region. Mahu Whenua means ‘healing of the land’ and 2019 marks 10 years since New Zealand’s largest conservation project began on this vast 55,000 ha private high-country farming estate (and the results are already beginning to show).  Owner Robert ‘Mutt’ Lange’s vision is to combine conservation and sustainable farming to create a sanctuary for native fauna and flora. With 1.5 million trees and grasses planted and pest-proof fencing to protect wildlife, the landscape is blooming once again, allowing native birds such as the buff weka and pukeko, and bee populations to increase.  Guests in the lodge can be involved in conservation work on the land, helping with planting or bird conservation. New for 2020, dedicated voluntourism weekends are in planning to bring together like-minded guests to work on specific projects.


The Pods at The Lindis, Southern Alps. Recently opened in November 2018, The Lindis is an architectural tour-de-force featuring a roofline that follows the natural undulations of its South Island high country resting place. Nestled in a conservation park in a dark sky sanctuary, The Pods at the Lindis, offer guests a truly unique experience. Nestled gently into the landscape — out of sight but only a stone’s throw from the main lodge, these cosy, compact structures bring the environment well and truly into the fore while offering the ultimate in privacy and escape. Meticulously designed with double glazed mirrored glass walls on three sides, and a gloriously efficient 18m2 footprint, these luxuriously heated and totally private pods allow guests to experience the ever-changing environment in its most nuanced forms.



Source:- Tourism New Zealand

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