New Zealand is one of 2018’s hottest destinations. If you’re looking to visit Down Under, consider The Marlborough Lodge. Located in the north of South Island, The Marlborough Lodge makes for a top base for exploring New Zealand’s largest wine-growing region and its 110 wineries. Love Sauvignon Blanc? This is the region to visit.
The hotel opened in November and we hear it’s adding a standalone spa, a guest entertainment area and new suites. At the spa, guests can expect organic, New Zealand-made products and house-made blends for the massage oils. The new entertainment area will have large chairs, coffee tables, books, board games, a bar and a retail area. It will open out onto a deck with additional chairs and a lawn with a large outdoor fire place.
Wine and cuisine are definitely at the forefront of the lodge. Head Chef Sam Webb leads the lodge’s Harvest Restaurant. Cuisine focuses on local seafood (like Chinook salmon, greenshell mussels and Cloudy Bay clams). Guests can dine at the Chef’s Bench, take a tour with the chef through the lodge’s vegetable and fruit garden, take cooking demonstrations and more. To learn more about the property, guests can tour the gardens and vineyards with the lodge’s head gardener.
The Marlborough Lodge is offering two new foodie experiences. One takes guests to see how Cloudy Bay clams are processed and cleaned before returning to the lodge where Chef Webb conducts an interactive cooking demonstration, followed by a lunch with wine pairings. For the more adventurous, the lodge will take guests by helicopter to fish off of a reef for blue cod; it is followed by a beach lunch with blue cod sashimi, grilled blue cod, fresh salads and baked bread — all paired with local white wines or craft beer.
The lodge has bicycles and maps to explore the area, a freshwater pool and grass tennis courts. It can organize private wine tastings and tours with the winemaker; museum tours, such as the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre; helicopter tours; kayaking, hiking or biking in Marlborough Sounds; fly-fishing tours on the Wairau River; whale watching and dolphin tours; cruises and boat tours and more.
There are 10 unique guestrooms and suites set on the 16-acre property. (There are over 200 types of trees and vineyards with four varieties of grape.) Tip: The Kingfisher Suite was originally a nun’s chapel and the lodge retained its original arched windows, vaulted ceiling and stained-glass windows.
The Marlborough Lodge can be accessed by Blenheim, Nelson or Christchurch Airports. Contact Angela Dillon ([email protected]), managing director and owner.