Huka Lodge in Taupo, New Zealand


Huka Lodge in Taupo, New Zealand


If you’ve ever wanted to be absolutely blown away by a resort… need to go to the Huka.  Right now, if possible:)

A couple of years ago, The Good Doctor and I took a “herd” to New Zealand. Kids, friends, biz acquaintances all in for 3 weeks. We started the trip in Australia. We gathered in Sydney at the Four Seasons.  After a couple of “rest” days in Sydney, we were ready to start our next adventure.

In order to get to Huka you have to fly in an incredibly small plane (my travel tote just fit….I felt like I was wearing the plane) over some spectacular and treacherous-looking mountains.   For all of the snow and the size of the plane, the trip was smooth.  The landing was  interesting.  They tend to have enormous fog banks move in and it completely blocks the view of the landing strip.   All you see is water…… great landing and time to get into the Huka cars and off to the resort.

The entrance is stunning.  The resort sits on the Waikato River.  As you step out of the car, a butler with a little Champagne greeting is waiting for you.  Quite obviously, the “celebrating” thing is a genetic flaw….

The grounds are lush and quiet.  There are only 18 Lodge Suites on the grounds and each one is a tasteful masterpiece. And, every suite has a wall of glass facing the river for the most spectacular and romantic view.

The main house is a true retreat but deliberately simple in approach.  The design  allows the beauty of the river and landscape to dominate.  Huge fire burning fireplaces in every room.  Butlers serve wine and nibbles while cigars are being lit and enjoyed.  And, again, I must circle back to the monogrammed bed linens and fresh baked biscuits delivered every morning.  Seriously, when I run away from home…..this is where I’m going!

But, first a stop in their fully equipped gym and steam room (although there is a steam shower in your suite).  For those that follow and know about my fitness obsession……you can see that there is yet another DNA concern for my daughters!  The retreat features tennis courts (both grass and clay), bocce ball lanes, pool, bikes and fly fishing (more on this and the importance of good insurance later).  After a week of sheer bliss….off to visit Mudbrick Winery.  I think the Good Doctor put this in as an incentive for me to leave peacefully.

Just to be completely transparent, it took quite a few of them to get me back into that car…..

Our tribe arrived by car but, I did notice the helipad on the roof of the main building. Enough said. The wines were amazing every. single. glass.  The vineyard did a multi-course food pairing with each of their wines…..I’m shocked that any of us fit into the plane after this visit!

I cannot say enough about the people in both Australia and New Zealand.  Friendly and warm and always willing to take time to show you their beautiful country.  This is definitely on “repeat” when it comes to future trips.

Have you been to New Zealand?  I’d love to know what spots you visited.




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