Mt. Cook Lakeside Retreat, Lake Pukaki www.mtcookretreat.nz
There are few places to stay this close to the brilliant blue waters of Lake Pukaki, but that’s not the only thing that makes the all-inclusive Mt. Cook Lakeside Retreat unique. It’s entirely possible to spend days here without seeing another soul, particularly if you hunker down in the 195sq m Ashley Mackenzie Villa. Then again, it’s the kind of place that you’ll (maybe) want to share with family or friends. The two-bedroom luxury house has its own gym, massage studio, sauna, and private spa overlooking the lake, complete with views of Aoraki.
Make it a full retreat with the two-night wellness package, which includes two nights’ accommodation, a massage and a private yoga class. Packages for the main lodge start at $2280 for two nights
Te Arai Lodge, Mangawhai www.tearilodge.co.nz
A midweek retreat is do-able when the resort is this close to Auckland. Near Mangawhai, the family-owned Te Arai Lodge is an eco-friendly oasis of hospitality. Surrounded by ancient forest and native bush, it has panoramic views of the Brynderwyn Ranges and nearby beaches, islands and coastline.
This getaway can be whatever you want it to be, whether that means taking advantage of nearby hiking or cycling trails, relaxing at the lodge’s pool, or stretching it out at the on-site yoga studio. Or you can take advantage of the three-night Wellness Package (starting at $4995) which includes a guided hike or bike ride, a personal yoga class, a massage and garden-to-table meals with paired wines. Be sure to ask about Te Arai’s autumn specials, which run through April and May.
Rimu Lodge, the West Coast www.rimulodge.co.nz
With vast swathes of native virgin bush and massive rivers that run out to sea, there’s a particular serene quality to the West Coast region that you’d be hard-pressed to find elsewhere in the country. It’s also where you’ll find Rimu Lodge, the area’s only Qualmark-rated five-star bed and breakfast.
Offering luxurious yet sustainable accommodation, the lodge doesn’t any organised “retreats” per se — this is the place for “choose your own adventure” style getaways. It’s just 10 minutes from Hokitika, so you can spend your days fossicking for jade at the beach, cycling along the West Coast Wilderness Trail, exploring the new loop track at the Hokitika Gorge, or watching birds at Lake Mahinapua.