Luxury lodges down-under: Blanket Bay

Stunning scenery and great peacefulness - guests at Blanket Bay Lodge find a hideaway haven in a heavenly setting for golf, fly-fishing, horse riding and Queenstown adventures.

When Blanket Bay opened its doors in December 1999, it began a new chapter in the history of luxury lodges in New Zealand, setting the standard the premium sector has been judged by ever since.

Blanket Bay has become world renowned as one of New Zealand’s select group of premier luxury lodges, offering guests an experience that must be seen to be believed.

Nestled amongst snowcapped mountain peaks and sitting on the shores of the majestic Lake Wakatipu, Blanket Bay Lodge is situated in one of New Zealand’s most spectacular, absolute lakefront locations.

Guests are invited to celebrate the art of pure relaxation.

History and Blanket Bay

During the gold rush of the 1860s miners came to this place seeking their fortunes, first at the Invincible Gold Mine in the Rees Valley and later at 'Wyuna' where still exist remnants of over 20 sheelite mines.

Later the region’s pioneering farmers used the area as a place to stay during the sheep-shearing season, and the lodge’s name is a throw back to these hardy souls who slept under shelters made from rough woolen blankets.

Today, things are a far cry from those early conditions, and while rooms have the same jaw-dropping views of the lake, guests sleep in king-size beds in suites with large decks and a steam room in the bathroom.

Built in naturally occurring schist and both native and imported timber, recycled from old bridges and steamer wharf beams, the lodge was designed by US architect Jim McLaughlin for minimal impact on the pristine environment.

Location

Blanket Bay Lodge is located near the small township of Glenorchy, in a stunning lakeside setting. Just 40 minutes drive from New Zealand’s premier destination, Queenstown, guests arrive via one of the world’s top ten scenic drives.

At the head of Lake Wakatipu, Blanket Bay lies on the edge of one of the greatest alpine wilderness regions in the southern hemisphere – a brief helicopter ride from the stunning snow-capped Mt Earnslaw Glacier, the beautiful quiet trout-filled rivers of the Greenstone Valley and the dense pre-historic rainforests of the Mount Aspring and Fiordland National Parks.

Activities

At Blanket Bay guests have the rare opportunity to combine sheer luxury and world-class comfort with the vast array of activities in New Zealand’s adventure capital of the world.

There are few places on earth where there are so many activities so close by - from fly fishing to an exhilarating jet boat excursion on the Dart river, or a day out heli-skiing. Some of the best nature walks in the country are nearby with the start of the world-renowned Routeburn Track just a short drive past the head of the lake.

Next door to the lodge is a 12,000-acre working sheep station where visitors can experience farm life, usually on horses that are cared for at private stables, exclusively for Blanket Bay guests.

Cuisine

Changing every night, the Blanket Bay degustation menu features the best of local, seasonal produce.

The food is prepared by an all-star line-up of award-winning New Zealand chefs, including the 2013 New Zealand Pastry Chef of the year.

The Lodge

Accommodation at Blanket Bay is provided in five intimate Lodge Rooms, three generous Lodge Suites in the Main Lodge, and four superb Chalet Suites, all luxuriously furnished.

Natural schist rock and native timber are showcased throughout, echoing the Lodge's integration and interaction with the environment. All rooms are placed to take full advantage of the awe-inspiring vistas.

On the Lodge's lower level, the Blanket Bay Spa features a treatment suite, steam rooms, gym and a jacuzzi with magnificent lake and mountain views. In addition there is an 18m x 6m outdoor heated pool hidden beside the lodge.

Blanket Bay is regularly awarded top accolades, reaffirming its status as an internationally-renowned luxury lodge.

Awards over the past 15 years include being named the World’s Ultimate Escape by the UK Sunday Times magazine, the Best New Zealand Lodge in 2011 by the Australian Hotel Management Publication and several times taking the title of Andrew Harper’s Hideaway Report’s Best Hotel Under 50 Rooms category.

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