Made up of two stunningly beautiful islands in the Pacific Ocean, New Zealand is sadly often overlooked by visitors in favor of its sun-soaked Australian neighbor. But with new luxury hotels springing up amidst the picture-perfect scenery and in the heart of the culture packed cities, New Zealand shouldn’t hope to stay off the radar for long.
Whether you’re looking for Lord of the Ring’s charm, adrenaline fuelled adventure sports or simple relaxation in one of the excellent luxury hotels in the dramatic countryside, New Zealand is the place to go in 2010.
1. Milbrook Resort, Queenstown (South Island)
A favorite with the Clinton family, this gem of a luxury resort lays a short but spectacular drive away from Christchurch. Nestled below snow-capped peaks and beside turquoise lakes, the golf and spa hotel is a truly seductive taste of nature – with all the amenities you’d expect from a luxury city crash pad, and more.
The championship golf course and excellent skiing are two big draws, but inside the rich rustic colors and natural, timbered style offer understated opulence. Plush rooms have huge beds and bathtubs for two, or guests can take a dip in the steamy outdoor hot tub and stretch their legs in the vast 25 meter pool.
2.Huka Lodge, Taupo (North Island)
The charming Huka Lodge is set in lush riverside grounds near the popular Taupo resort. Natural beauty is the key to this small boutique hotel’s success – in the bathroom, glass ceilings look up to the trees and vast blue skies above. Enjoy a soak in the big sunken tub to revel in your proximity to the unspoiled scenery outside.
Named a ‘Leading Small Hotel of the World’, facilities include a spa, fitness room and tennis courts. The magnificent views are complicated by a discreetly beautiful 1930’s minimal style. In each room, the gardens seem to flow seamlessly through the interior.
3. The George, Christchurch (South Island)
In the bustle of old-fashioned Christchurch, The George is the epitome of excellent hospitality and olde English luxury. Twice voted ‘Best Hotel in New Zealand’ in Conde Nast Traveler, the tranquil vibe and personal service make this the perfect place to stay in the city. With views over lush gardens, The George is also just steps away from all the top attractions, from markets to theatres and restaurants.
The George has two of its own world class restaurants, however – the Pescatore and 50 on Par both draw in visitors from across the city and beyond. A chic design and spacious, airy rooms top off the intimate charm of this fantastic luxury hotel.