Otahuna Lodge is an exclusive, seven-room Relais and Chateaux property located in a restored Victorian mansion located 25 minutes south of Christchurch city and CHC International Airport. The house, built in 1895, exhibits grand architectural features including carved panelling and mantelpieces, stained glass windows and 15 wood-burning fireplaces including many in guest bedrooms and even a few in guest bathrooms. The original dining room with its crackling fire and gilded wallpaper elicits grand visions of Downton Abbey for guests that wish to dine communally, while elsewhere private tables may be set for dinner in the wine cellar, library, turret, verandah or a range of locations in the garden.
Outside the Lodge, 30 acres of restored gardens invite guests to meander and explore a variety of themed areas. Otahuna’s gardeners are always on hand to offer a complimentary tour of expansive vegetable garden, orchard, Victorian outbuildings and extensive decorative gardens. More than 120 varieties of fruit, vegetable nut and mushroom are harvested every year for the kitchens which also offers mushroom foraging in season for porcini mushrooms on the property’s own oak trees. Cooking classes – either 1 hour demonstration style or 3 hour immersion – are also available by advance arrangement.
Three nights is the perfect amount of time to explore the local Canterbury region including the Banks Peninsula, an extinct volcano which rises more than 1000 feet out of the ocean. Just an hour east from Otahuna Lodge, the peninsula offers the charming colonial fishing village of Akaroa with its beautiful harbour and rare dolphins.
Guided tours of the peninsula offer cruises to see the dolphins followed by a picnic along the crater rim of the volcano or in a private garden perched on a sea cliff. West of Otahuna, guests can enjoy the Tranzalpine scenic railway – one of the world’s most scenic – which wends its way across the Canterbury Plains and along the precipice of the Waimakariri river gorge before transversing a number of alpine valleys on its way to Arthur’s Pass National Park. Guided hikes to waterfalls and limestone monoliths are a requisite of this day trip as well as introductions to the local flora and the world’s only alpine parrot, the kea.
Travelwizard.com Guests Receive:
- Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
- Daily full breakfast, for up to two in room guests
- A complimentary lunch or picnic basket
- for up to two people per room once during stay, excluding alcohol, taxes and gratuities.
- Early check-in/late check-out
- subject to availability