Mt Michael Lodge
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Top 10 dreamy luxury lodges in New Zealand

If you are an avid traveller, and you like exploring all corners of the world, then New Zealand should definitely be on your list of places to visit. It seems remote, and it might be for some, but it is one of the most beautiful and spectacular destinations you could ever hope to visit. Majestic snow-capped mountains, rugged glaciers, pristine sandy beaches, and lush rolling hills, New Zealand is a feast for the senses, and truly unlike any other. For those planning to visit, here are some of the best regions and luxury lodges to stay in to experience this amazing country. Queenstown & Otago Set in the dramatic landscapes of the Otago Region, along the shores of Lake Wakatipu, is the resort town of Queenstown. Although known for adventure sports like bungee jumping, jet-boating, and skiing, it is also a great base for exploring the region’s many vineyards and historic mining towns. Mahu Whenua Breathe in the fresh air and stunning scenery at this luxury lodge and eco-sanctuary in Wanaka, only an hour drive to Queenstown. Boasting 55,000 private hectares, this exclusive country retreat is ideal for weddings and corporate events and consists of a homestead, a family bunk room, and two cottage suites. It also offers plenty of activities for you to enjoy, including hiking and biking, picnics, and conservation tours. You can also arrange to go skiing, fishing, and hunting nearby. Or simply relax by the outdoor swimming pool while savouring Mahu’s scrumptious meals and refreshing drinks. Mahu Whenua Azur Luxury Lodge There’s plenty to love about this luxury lodge in Queenstown. The amazing views of Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables Range from your free-standing villa are one. There is a private sundeck, spa bath, and open-plan layout that shows off the jaw-dropping surrounds. Another is its prime location which is just five minutes to downtown Queenstown, meaning you can enjoy shopping, dining, and fun outdoor activities quickly. And couples will love the exclusivity and tranquillity since there are only nine villas tucked away on 3.5 acres of land. Azur Luxury Lodge Mt Michael Lodge Featuring an elevated location overlooking Lake Dunstan, Mt. Michael Lodge is a modern luxury retreat featuring a large outdoor pool, spa bath, and kitchenette in the picturesque Southern Lakes region of Central Otago. Get away with your loved one or celebrate special occasions by indulging in a myriad of activities, including wine tasting and dining at world-class vineyards and restaurants. If you love the outdoors, you can take the Otago Central Rail Trail, Heliview Flights, or Goldfields Jet Boat tours, or simply grab a bicycle to explore the property and nearby areas. Mt Michael Lodge Canterbury and Nelson Canterbury on New Zealand’s South Island showcases grassy plains, clear lakes, and snow-capped mountains. It’s centred around Christchurch, which is known for its art scene and green spaces like the riverside Botanic Gardens. Nelson, a city facing Tasman Bay, is known for its local arts, galleries, and crafts stores. It is also a popular base for those interested in caving, wines, and hiking as the Abel Tasman National Park is located in Nelson. Hapuku Lodge & Tree Houses Surrounded by lush flora and mountains, this contemporary country hotel is located on a secluded deer farm in Kaikoura. The epitome of rugged luxury, this exceptional accommodation features treehouses on stilts, an onsite restaurant, and a lap pool. It is only a short walk to Mangamaunu Bay where you can surf, whale or dolphin watch, or spot fish. About 10 minutes drive from the lodge, you’ll find Kaikoura Town where you can dine, shop, explore, or arrange a day trip out on the water. Hapuku Lodge & Tree Houses Mt Cook Lakeside Retreat Overlooking the blue waters of Lake Pukaki and the white peaks of the Southern Alps, Mt Cook Lakeside Retreat offers a European farmhouse-style villa plus a 2-bedroom homestead. Enjoy a game of tennis or croquet on the lawn, or relax at the onsite private Spa. Days can also be spent hiking the forest tracks that surround the property, exploring the nearby Tasman and Mueller Glaciers, or going on a Lord of the Rings tour in the Twizel area. Mt Cook Lakeside Retreat Otahuna Lodge Tucked among the verdant hills of the Canterbury region, Otahuna Lodge is a historic estate with more than 30 acres of lush gardens. It boasts seven luxurious individual suites in a Victorian mansion style, which are set against a majestic ancient volcano. You’ll enjoy a host of amazing experiences and sites that you can explore by foot, bike, or horseback. Take in the beautiful vistas on one of the world’s greatest train journeys aboard the TranzAlpine. It’s bound to be memorable. Otahuna Lodge Split Apple Retreat Experience pristine living and complete relaxation at this award-winning health and wellness retreat at the edge of Abel Tasman National Park. With only three luxe suites, Split Apple Retreat has been designed with wellness and healthy living in mind. It offers spa services, saltwater infinity pool, healthy gourmet menu, and private beach access. For the adventurous, there’s sailing and dolphin spotting on the Tasman Sea, and scenic helicopter rides to enjoy. Split Apple Retreat North Island New Zealand’s North Island is known for its verdant national parks, pristine beaches, active volcanoes, and modern cities. Explore magnificent landscapes of The Coromandel, Bay of Plenty, Taupo, and Helena Bay among others. Or stop by Auckland, the largest city in the country. Helena Bay Lodge Featuring five luxurious suites and a stunning waterfront location, Helena Bay Lodge offers unparalleled indulgence and privacy. This exquisite retreat sits on 750 acres and offers an array of holiday experiences onsite. Hike or bike down the trails that lead to coastal headlands and secluded beaches. Grab a kayak and some fishing gear, or enjoy the nice weather and go on a picnic. Helena Bay Lodge Poronui Live wild and free at Poronui, a top-notch sporting lodge sitting on 16,000 acres in the foothills of Kaimanawa Mountains. Enjoy a range of exciting outdoor activities including fishing, trekking, biking, and hunting. Explore the expansive property while hiking over rolling hills and rivers. After a day of adventures, relax in one of seven luxury cabins, or go glamping in one of only two safari tents. PoronuiTe Arai Lodge Expect to be pampered at Te Arai Lodge. Personal and bespoke service from the hosts and meticulously appointed suites affords you comfort in a beautiful setting surrounded by acres of ancient podocarp forest and native bush. And with four luxurious cottages and suites, onsite restaurant, and superb spa services, Te Arai Lodge promises to be the ideal holiday in New Zealand for couples or groups of friends. Te Arai Lodge Plan a visit to extraordinary New Zealand and be sure to have a holiday of a life-time. Mat Lewis is Co-Founder & CEO of View Retreats. View Retreats is a boutique travel agency featuring handpicked, luxury accommodation across Australia & New Zealand. If you would like to be a guest blogger on A Luxury Travel Blog in order to raise your profile, please contact us.

Mat Lewis

Mat Lewis is a co-founder of View Retreats and has been in the travel and hospitality industry for over two decades. He established View Retreats in 2013 in Australia as a specialist platform for luxury hotels, resorts and one-of-a-kind havens of relaxation where unforgettable travel memories are made. The online travel company now features over 5,000 properties in more than 120 countries worldwide. Mat is a self-confessed travel junkie who has lived in Asia, the UK and Europe, and currently resides in the beautiful Barossa Valley wine region in South Australia. He loves fine wines and local culinary creations that tell the story of the land. His epicurean tastes don’t get in the way of enjoying life’s simpler pleasures though, and he enjoys gardening, bush-walking, and exciting street food flavours too!

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  1. If you ever wanted to visit New Zealand, you definitely should! I was there last year with my dad who did the Ironman race in Taupo. I flew into Auckland, staying for a night and enjoyed a great meal at a nice hotel there. We drove down to Lake Taupo the next day, and I had never seen anything so beautiful and open, green and brownfields, for miles and miles. Staying on the lake was incredible. Then we drove down to Wellington (which was another astonishingly beautiful drive) and flew to Queenstown. We didn’t stay there, but some of the places mentioned in this article made me wish we had. Instead, we stayed in Wanaka — and it is just stunning there. The lake, the friendly small-town vibe. It’s really a one of a kind place, both islands. I’m gonna have to show my dad the cabins at Poronui! That looks wildly incredible too. Also, the stars in New Zealand at night were one of the best experiences, too. So much to see there! I can’t wait to go back.

    1. Sounds like you had such a great trip in NZ! The incredible scenery is everchanging. Nature at its best. Do show your dad the cabins at Poronui – this is a great place to stay when discovering New Zealand. And I totally agree with the stars…haven’t seen anything like it before.

  2. Love the picture that goes with Azur Luxury Lodge! Being able to have a bath like that is all part of the luxury when you’ve got 9 villas spread out that much.

    Having a bath with views of the Remarkables Range – plus the lake with the unspellable name – plus a glass of wine as well – all adds up to decadence and luxury for me.

    Amazing too that it’s just 5 minutes from Queenstown.

  3. New Zealand is one of those places where the air tastes and smells different when you are in the great outdoors.

    The worrying thing is that it didn’t use to. We’ve got so used to living with polluted air and I’m not just talking about places like Shanghai, Ho Chi Minh City and Delhi that we just take polluted air for granted and when you get air that is clean you can tell the difference.

    It’s sad to have to write it but the sort of unpolluted air you get round these lodges has become a new luxury.

    1. I agree Piers – the air quality in a lot of places around the world is shocking. This is why we should go out and explore the great outdoors to breath in that healthy air. New Zealand definitely has lots of fresh air :)

  4. New Zealand has been on my ‘must do’ list for quite a while now but it’s trying to find the best opportunity to go that’s been the problem as I’d like a couple of weeks there ideally. My friend’s son is hoping to study there this year. I wish I had thought of university in NZ many years ago, I think it must be a fantastic place to spend your study years. These lodges are all so luxurious, I’m not sure how anyone could choose between them really. What an amazing thought, to get up around nature with sunshine and warmth, and head out to surf, watch the dolphins, go for a hike and a picnic later on. It has that relaxed, chilled out vibe. Like there’s so much to do, but no pressure to rush it (which I’ve sadly felt a lot of the time in the places I’ve travelled to). You’d never want to leave here.

    1. The best time to go is always now ;) if that is not possible, go as soon as you can! When flying to the other side of the world you definitely want to spend a bit longer. However, focus on some oarts of the country rather than trying to see it all. I think this is the perfect way to discover a place. Otherwise, you’ll e rushing through and spend more time in the car travelling around (although, this will give you incredible views!). Also, it’s never too late to study ;) Maybe another good reason to come to NZ

  5. What I like about this type of post “10 dreamy lodges” or “10 luxury villas” is whether you want it or not your brain goes into overdrive selecting your favourite. Though then you realise that favourite isn’t the right word. I’d want different things at different times. It gets you thinking about which lodge would be best for a hiking get about and see nature holiday. Or which one would be best for a family get together where you really want to be based at the lodge. It makes me realise that I go on breaks and holidays that are very different.

    1. I agree Jen, each lodge is perfect for a certain type/style of holiday or getaway. Maybe that’s the best part – that you don’t have to choose. The only decision to make is then ‘which one first’ :)

  6. Wow, such amazing locations for all these properties. I can see that most have that amazing mountain views, with some waterfront properties. I am actually not surprised that such wonderful surrounds exist, after all, this is New Zealand. I’ve been to many parts of the country and I’ve yet to see somewhere that doesn’t take your breath away. These properties know how to take advantage of this blessing and have certainly made it a point to complement with equally gorgeous accommodation.

    1. Great to hear you have visited this beautiful country already Reginald! Every corner has a new surprise waiting to be discovered. NZ’s nature is truly spectacular and these lodges harness this very well.

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