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Helicopter tour over Kahurangi National Park from Edenhouse - © Gavin Conroy

Best Luxury Hotels in New Zealand: Grand Awards 2017

January 2017 Hideaway Report | By Andrew Harper

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Grand Award Winners

Mr. Harper's favorite hotels & resorts from the past year of travel

Poronui, Edenhouse

New Zealand is blissfully aloof from the world’s troubles. On previous visits, I have played golf on some of the most dramatic courses on earth and passed happy hours in the country’s exceptionally hospitable wineries. This time I went fly-fishing for trout and discovered a sporting estate that was a leading candidate for my Hideaway of the Year.

Poronui

Taupo, New Zealand

Aerial view of the Taharua River and Poronui

New Zealand has innumerable fly-fishing lodges, as the country boasts the best trout fishing in the world. However, in my experience Poronui is in a class of its own. Set on a 16,000-acre private estate, it comprises a main lodge with seven lavish cabins, Blake House (for exclusive use) and the Safari Camp with two tented suites. Guests may fish on the Taharua and Mohaka rivers, which flow through the grounds, or opt to be ferried by helicopter to remote streams high in the mountains. Aside from the superlative fishing, Poronui is distinguished by fine cuisine, extremely comfortable accommodations and an exceptionally professional and charming staff, organized with exemplary skill by the delightful manager, Eve Reilly.

Read more about Poronui in the June Hideaway Report »

Edenhouse

Ngatimoti, Nelson, New Zealand

Main living room at Edenhouse

Edenhouse is an idyllic hideaway set amid 50 acres of gardens at the northern tip of New Zealand’s South Island. It comprises just two spacious suites in the main house and a separate two-bedroom garden cottage. Here, you feel like the private guests of Peter and Bobbie Martin, a worldly and amusing couple, whose residence this is. The entire staff at Edenhouse live in the neighboring valley and are clearly considered to be part of an extended family. As a result, the atmosphere is unusually relaxed and welcoming. The talented cook uses local ingredients whenever possible, and the food is memorably delicious. Guests may hike or kayak in nearby national parks, visit local wineries or, with advance notice, go heli-fishing for trout. Despite all these attractions, the principal reason to stay at Edenhouse is to experience the Martins’ extraordinary hospitality. They are consummate hosts.

Read more about Edenhouse in the June Hideaway Report »

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Andrew Harper Photo Andrew Harper is the editor of the Hideaway Report, a luxury travel newsletter that first appeared in 1979. He travels anonymously and pays his own expenses in pursuit of unique properties that offer unusually high levels of personal service. Hotels have no idea who he is, so he is treated exactly as you might be.

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