Determined to be different, then New Zealand is the place for you. From Queenstown in the south, to Hawke’s Bay on your way up to Matauri Bay, almost as far up the North Island as you can get, there are three lodges that will blow your mind and take your New Zealand experience to a level you aren’t soon to forget. We discovered this group of luxury sister properties and have decided that they are top-notch and one of the best ways to see the country. Although each is unique and has its own distinct flavor, there is a commonality that is inescapable, throughout each of them. The organic hospitality, generously bestowed upon each guest, coupled with a local flare, is served up with more than a touch of class; it’s delivered with a penchant for luxury.
A perfect example of this is when you’re considering Queenstown, the undisputed adventure capital of the two-island nation. Sure, there are more adrenaline pumping activities packed into this 3,361 square mile bastion of natural beauty, but nestled on the shoreline of Lake Wakatipu lies Matakauri Lodge, offering a high-end launching pad to everything the destination has to offer. When we discovered this lodge, launching was almost the furthest thing from our minds. With only 12 suites, the lodge is a wisp of luxurious accommodations, facing the Remakables mountain range. Simply stunned by the majesty of the mountains, still capped with snow, at the end of our spring visit, and watching the iconic steamship – the TSS Earnslaw traverse the lake as she has done for over 103 years was so pleasing, over a glass of wine, that getting up and going was not always necessary. The lodge was built to showcase these views from almost every aspect of the property. We watched this scene replay from our bathtub, sitting in front of our fireplace in the living room, and best view ever was at sunrise from our bed. It’s an inescapable vista and why on earth would anyone want to avoid this? There were those days though.