This chic, designer hotel, located within a 5-minute walk to Queenstown’s centre offers the warmth of personalised hosting with pre-dinner drinks and canapes every evening. Sophisticaed style and luxury; each of the stylish rooms feature their a spacious ensuite and kitchenette. And there’s free Wi-Fi too – the perfect choice for Queenstown. Winner of Expedia Insider’s select Award for 2013 – recognised Queenstown Park Boutique Hotel as one of the top-ranked properties on Expedia worldwide.
Extracted from the South China Morning Post 01 December 2013 - Ed Peters
“PUBLIC AREAS” IS HARDLY THE TERM FOR THE LOUNGE (ABOVE), COCKTAIL BAR AND LIBRARY, WHOSE WALLS ARE BEDECKED WITH CONTEMPORARY ART.
Where is it? Give a rugby ball a solid punt outside the front door and you’ll hit Auckland’s Harbour Bridge. Mollies Luxury Boutique Hotel lies close to the heart of New Zealand’s largest city, sure, but it can claim the best of both worlds by being in the distinguished suburb of St Marys Bay. Dating from the 1870s, when it started life as the mayor’s residence, Mollies became a hotel half a century ago, run by the charismatic Mollie Wilson – hence the name. While Auckland has its fair share of five-stars, business hotels and bed-and-breakfasts, three-storey, gabled Mollies – equally adaptable for both business and leisure travellers – sits squarely in the top rank of boutique accommodation. It is small and smart, and (most importantly) the current husband-and-wife owners, who took over only in October, are in-house and take a personal interest in everything running smoothly.
Fine, but what’s on the inside? The overall ambience is like that of a friend-of-a-friend’s extremely smart townhouse that has, as an added bonus, put the “it” in heritage. “Public areas” is hardly the term for the lounge, cocktail bar and library, whose walls are bedecked with contemporary art. All exude an air of grace, ease and elegance. Witness the grand piano, which stands open for anyone inclined to tickle the ivories. To the rear of the hotel, the trees, shrubs and wide manicured lawns simply add to the feeling of homeliness.
What about the rooms? Some boutique hotels tally their rooms by the score; Mollies has just 10 suites, with those commanding views of the water the most popular. Gentle creams and browns dominate the palette, and each suite has either a balcony or a terrace and an open fireplace, while the bathrooms are crisp, spacious havens of marble. The most luxurious suite, Mollies, occupies the top floor and includes a kitchenette and spa bath. Wherever you’re staying, a warm and homely feeling predominates – a happy reminder that this was once a private residence and not a property designed by a hotel architect with an accountant hovering over his shoulder. While there is no spa per se, a therapist is on site (as opposed to on call) and able to deliver a variety of massages and other treatments.
What’s the food like? Breakfast is one of the high points of the day at Mollies, with fair-trade coffee, free-range eggs, home-grown herbs and similar eco-amicable produce jostling for prominence on the à la carte menu. Tuck in at the restaurant, or on your balcony. Come evening, the dining room is placed off-limits to the hoi polloi and hotel guests can indulge in New Zealand fare that, like the breakfast, emphasises its organic origins. Given enough notice, the kitchen can cater private dinner parties, either in guests’ suites or the dining room. The cellar hosts a fair showing from the country’s vineyards, yet overall the wine list is catholic and thoughtfully curated.
We’re refreshed and replete; what’s next? Auckland likes to bill itself as a “SuperCity”, but from many vantage points this incredibly leafy burg (gardens are the rule, rather than the exception, and high-rises remarkably scant) looks more like a vast agglomeration of tree houses clustered around the totem pole that is the 328-metre Sky Tower. Beaches, sea and harbour – whether for surfing, fishing or a short cruise – are all within easy reach while hiking trails lead off through the forests that edge the city. In the immediate vicinity, Ponsonby and Jervois Road buzz with cafes, restaurants and (Kiwi) designer boutiques.
What’s the bottom line? Rates start at NZ$695 (HK$4,435) per night including breakfast.
For more information, visit www.mollies.co.nz.
For more information, visit www.mollies.co.nz.
Waiheke makes the New York times place to go in 2013 list
We’re excited about Oamaru – an iconic historic township located in
North Otago on the East Coast of New Zealand’s South Island and just a
1hour 20min drive north of Dunedin. Mt Cook is a two-hour drive through the
lovely Waitaki Valley.
International visitors are finding this little gem of a town and
experiencing a luxurious stay at Pen-y-bryn Lodge. This beautiful historic
homestead is located a few minutes from the township and offers unrivaled
visitor accommodation, fine dining and warm friendly host – many guests just
wish they could stay longer!
We would love you to know more about what the North Otago region has to
offer your international clients. Take a look at the following link and see
AND if you want to know more about Pen-y-bryn Lodge – you can view their
website ….. www.penybryn.co.nz
Swimming, kayaking, diving, walking along a deserted beach at sunset, playing golf at world renowned courses, trout fishing, watching the penguins and other wildlife, or just relaxing with an alfresco lunch at one of the many stunning wineries which you will find throughout New Zealand.
Our little country downunder is packed full of interesting places to see and things to do and Boutique Hotels & Lodges brings you a collection of luxury boutique properties in which to relax and enjoy. All offer complimentary wi-fi, many offer superb cuisine and all have fantastic hosts.
From the main international hub of Auckland head north to the historic township of Russell and relax at Cloud 9 Luxury Villa – holiday at your pace – it’s self-contained and every room has sea views – www.cloud9.co.nz
Follow the road north to Kerikeri and head east to Huntaway Lodge at Te Ngaere Bay – this contemporary lodge is barefoot luxury with stunning sea views and gorgeous golden bays – www.huntawaylodgenz.com
Take a Ferry from downtown Auckland or a helicopter transfer directly from Auckland International airport to Waiheke Island – the New York times list of top places to go in 2013. Relax a few days at The Boatshed, a hip luxury hotel set above the sun-drenched bay of Oneroa. Take a mini-moke for a tour of the island and return to a romantic dinner overlooking the ocean – www.boatshed.co.nz
Drive South to New Zealand’s largest lake – Lake Taupo. We can show you two luxury lodges at Lake Taupo.
Play golf at world-renowned courses, walk the famous Tongariro Mountain Crossing, go heli-fishing, fly over volcanic craters
You choose - Acacia Cliffs Lodge – think chic boutique – designer decor, fabulous hosts and divine cuisine. Fabulous lake and mountain views – www.acaciacliffslodge.co.nz
Conde Nast Preferred -The Point Villas – set in a wooded private estate. Two spacious luxury villas each with its own pool and glorious lake and mountain views. Self-cater or choose to take the whole luxury lodge experience. – www.thepointvillas.co.nz
A two hour drive east takes you to one of New Zealand’s iconic wine growing regions. Nestled in the beautiful countryside is the luxurious Glen Aros Country Estate; Michelin experienced on-site Chef, Wine library, golf courses nearby and helicopter landing pad for those who wish to arrive in style. Enjoy wine tasting during a personalised tour of local vineyards, or a safari to Cape Kidnappers, home to colonies of gannets. Relax and enjoy world class cuisine in the evening – www.glenaros.co.nz
And that’s just North Island…. next month we’ll take you on a tour of South Island.
So many guests staying at 5* luxury boutique Pen-y-bryn Lodge have remarked that a single night does not give them a chance to enjoy the attractions of Oamaru and the delights of Pen-y-bryn itself.
So, to help visitors spend a bit more time in this wonderful part of New Zealand, Pen-y-bryn is offering a two-night special.
Just $1200 including GST – a saving of over $200!
Two nights in a standard room complete with full breakfast each morning
Complimentary premium tickets to the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony’s spectacular evening viewing
A four-course gourmet dinner on of your nights at Pen-bryn Lodge (your other night in town is free to enjoy the excellent dining at Riverstone Kitchen or Fleur’s Place in nearby Moeraki, or choose to dine at Pen-bryn a second night for an additional charge.
Bookings to be made directly with Pen-y-bryn Lodge – telephone +64 3 434 7939 or email quoting “Two Night Special” in the subject line.
Photographers, looking for a unique experience? Manakau Lodge in Kaikoura has opened. Neil, the owner and host, is an avid photographer and offers photography workshops, taking guests to places off the beaten track.
Guest quote on Trip Advisor -
“Stunning setting, fantastic food, ultimate relaxation”
This boutique lodge is located in a tranquil rural setting at the base of the Kaikoura Mountain range, with views to the mountains and the Pacific Ocean. Four spacious guest rooms, each with its own verandah and views. King-size beds, ensuite with walk-in showers; the Deluxe rooms offer deep freestanding bathtubs.
Manakau Lodge is the first accommodation provider in New Zealand to offer complimentary use of an iPad to guests, for the duration of their stay. Pre-loaded with links and guides to local restaurants, visitor attractions, and other services, access to email and the internet will literally be at guests’ fingertips. The iPad will also deliver a selection of newspapers from around the world each morning, a library of current-issue, multi-lingual magazines, real-time weather forecasts, driving maps and onward travel advice. It will also come in handy as a remote control device for streaming music and movies from the lodge’s digital library, directly to the 32″ TV in guest rooms.
A hearty breakfast is included in the rate, together with complimentary Wi-Fi.
Dinner is available on request – guests have commented ‘easily the best rack of lamb I’ve ever eaten’
Visit – www.manakaulodge.co.nz
The new Lonely Planet guide to New Zealand, recently released, has a vastly expanded section about North Otago and the Waitaki District, reflecting the increase in tourist attractions and facilities in the area. After visiting the region in late 2011, the writers of the newest 16th edition realized that there was much more to do and see than previous editions had listed, and have given the area multiple pages. Now, in addition to the long-standing coverage of the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony, there is also a listing for the Yellow-Eyed Penguins, the numerous gourmet attractions of the area, skiing, and of course the wineries of the Waitaki Valley.
In the accommodation section, Pen-y-bryn Lodge remains the lead property, with glowing reports about the work they have done to revitalize their 123-year house and to establish their reputation for exquisite hospitality and gourmet cuisine.
Pen-y-bryn Lodge has recently revised their pricing structure and has introduced three-tier pricing. Offering two “lodge” rooms in the main part of house at NZ$625, the two larger “annex” rooms at $550 and the smaller “annex” room at $475. These rates all include pre-dinner wine and canapés and full cooked breakfast, and include NZ taxes. Dinner is available with prior notice at $125 per person
Oamaru’s renowned hospitality duo is celebrating their second anniversary at Pen-y-bryn Lodge by offering a gift of their own to mark the special occasion.
‘Foodies’ and local personalities James Glucksman and James Boussy re-opened this luxury 5-star lodge September 1 two years ago.
A Celebratory Package includes accommodation for two people for two nights, an exquisite dinner for two one night, and 20% discount on an evening viewing at Oamaru’s famed Blue Penguin Colony. To top it all off, this also includes a special gift from the Pen-y-bryn kitchen – two jars from its range of delectable homemade jams and preserves. Priced at $1200 per couple, representing a saving of 20% off the normal rack rate.
James says – “a two night stay is the perfect length of time to give to this amazing region. Too often our guests regret not allowing more time to explore the sights of Oamaru, particularly the penguin colony”.
The Pen-y-bryn Celebratory Package is available from 1 September to 30 November 2012 and is subject to availability. Reservations are essential by calling Pen-y-bryn Lodge or by emailing the lodge – email@example.com.
Boutique Hotels & Lodges is delighted to welcome the luxurious, and elegant The Point Villas to our portfolio. The Point Villas is a member of the prestigious Condé Naste collection
Located at The Point on the edge of Lake Taupo, The Point Villas is a private estate comprising two extremely spacious villas designed to blend harmoniously with their environment. Expansive windows open out to spacious decks and your private swimming pool with views to the lake and mountains.
Large bedrooms, dressing rooms and bathrooms with floor to ceiling glass walls bring the outdoors in. Choose a lodge experience with all-inclusive full catering and servicing, or enjoy a self-catered break in your villa’s superbly equipped kitchen. Award winning chef Prue Campbell can be hired to prepare exceptional private gourmet meals.
Peg – your host – knows everyone and can arrange a private helicopter trip up the Rangitekei River to hidden fly fishing havens (a helipad is on site).
Fish for trout in the lake or take a champagne sunset cruise
Play golf on world-class 18 hole courses or trek the Tongariro Alpine Crossing
If this sounds too strenuous- just relax and book a private spa treatment in the privacy of your villa
Visit – www.thepointvillas.co.nz
Take a break to the historic township of Oamaru and a weekend at Pen-y-bryn Lodge. Built in 1889 Pen-y-bryn is rich in history and is owned by the Jameses – Americans who have travelled and lived around the world and know how to look after their guests. James Glucksman is an accomplished chef with a wonderful repertoire of cuisine. As members of the Slow Food Movement the Jameses use local produce wherever possible and delight with an amazing repertoire of cuisine.
There is so much do in Oamaru and the Waitaki Valley – where to begin?
Tear yourself away from the breakfast table laden with the freshest juices, granolas, home baked light feathery croissants, locally sourced bacon and free range eggs then stroll around the beautiful gardens surrounding the lodge to walk it off.
Then take a drive down to Oamaru’s historic Victorian precinct and visit quirky and interesting shops selling antiques, books, and clothing.
A reviving coffee at Steam café – the only coffee roastery in Oamaru, then visit the Whitestone Cheese Factory and sample their award winning cheeses – the gooey Lindas Pass Brie is our absolute favourite and will match any French Brie
Drive south to the mystical Moeraki Boulders strewn along Koekohe Beach and lunch at Fleurs – the famous fish shack built on the edge of the sea
And you really must visit the Little Blue Penguin colony in the early evening to watch the penguins– you may see up to 80 making their way in from the sea and up the craggy rocks to their nests – soo cute and quite a spectacle. Oh – and Pen-y-bryn Lodge even provides a soft cushion for your comfort!
Sunday morning the local Farmers market is an absolute must – such a wide variety of local produce. Pick up a loaf of freshly baked bread, fresh terrine and a selection of Whitestone cheese and drive out to the Waitaki Valley for a picnic lunch accompanied by a glass or two local wine from this newly developing wine region.
Return to Pen-y-bryn in the evening to a pre-dinner drink and canapés, explore the vast library with a section dedicated to cookery books or maybe a game of billiards on the Italian slate billiard table. Dine at the lodge or at one of the many local cafes and restaurants in the township.
An easy 3 hour drive from Christchurch, 1.30 drive from Dunedin and a a 3.5 hour drive from Queenstown.
Two New Zealand properties have been recognised in a list of the world’s best new hotels . Conde Nast Traveler magazine has released its 2012 Hot List, which features 121 hotels across 49 different countries. The luxurious Bishop’s Suites in Nelson impressed the magazine’s anonymous travel reviewers enough to make the cut.
Conde Nast Traveler says: “This gracious, secluded home feels like a country retreat, and being greeted like long-lost friends is just the beginning.
Built in 1875 for the first Bishop of Nelson, the homestead and grounds have been restored and transformed into luxury accommodation with an elegant classical ambience. The Bishopdale Estate is set among 20 acres of park-like gardens including a large swimming pool and just on the fringe of Nelson city.
Luxury stand-alone apartments – spacious warm and inviting, each with a style of its own. Rich fabrics and elegant furniture. King size beds draped with Irish linen, gas fires, complimentary wireless internet.
Thoughtful touches – soft bathrobes, L’Occitane toiletries, scented candles, fresh fruit, handmade chocolates and home-baked shortbread, and your mini bar offers complimentary wines, beverages and port.
Rates start from $1380 + GST and include 5-course degustation dinner accompanied by house wines, served in the Homestead, the library or drawing room. Or, on a warm summers evening dine poolside. Wake to a gourmet breakfast and check out when you wish – your welcoming hosts Peter and Mary will fit in with your plans.
Experience a luxury boutique break – visit www.bishopssuites.co.nz
THE FRENCH COUNTRY HOUSE – this 2-night luxury romance package offers a chance to unwind together at this enchanting property located in the countryside just north of Tauranga city.
Arrive to pre-dinner drinks and Canapes followed by a gourmet Degustation dinner for two including fine New Zealand wines
Retire to your romantic French inspired bedroom, hung with chandeliers – luxuriate in a bath for two lit by candlelight
Wake to a farmhouse breakfast and relax around the 40 acres of farmland, take Cheyenne – the resident donkey for a walk, or arrange an invigorating horse trek over the farm or the beach.A ‘goodies fridge” is stocked with treats for your enjoyment at any time.
In the evening enjoy pre dinner drinks and canapes followed by a 3 course French Country House dinner for two including fine New Zealand wines.
Your final evening – relax by the fire in The Great Room and retire to your romantic bedroom
Wake to farmhouse breakfast before returning to reality.
RATE NZ$1690 + GST FOR TWO PERSONS
The chic, stylish QUEENSTOWN PARK HOTEL located in downtown Queenstown and the hip design HOTEL DE BRETT in the heart of Auckland, have been voted by Trip Advisor Traveler’s Choice Awards in both the top 25 Luxury and Trendiest Hotels categories for the South Pacific.
Historic and luxurious PEN-Y-BRYN LODGE in OAMARU has been granted Qualmark Enviro Silver status in recognition of their continued work to reduce their environmental impact. Visit for superb fne dining and fabulous hosts.