The Ultimate Guide to the Best Wine Hotels in New Zealand
All our New Zealand wine hotel collections:
- Wine hotels in Marlborough
- Wine hotels in Nelson
- Wine hotels in Hawke's Bay
- Wine hotels in Northland
- Wine hotels in Auckland and Waiheke Island
- Wine hotels in Canterbury and the Waipara Valley
With the world’s most southerly vineyards, New Zealand has ten major wine-producing regions spread across the North and South Islands, from Northland down to Canterbury and Central Otago. So, if you’re looking for the best wine hotels of New Zealand, you can plump for just about any part of the country and find somewhere to tempt both your wine palate and your holiday plans
.New Zealand wines are such a staple of our wine merchant’s shelves - or our own modest cellars - it’s a shock to discover that, until the 1970s, the wines were barely known outside the country. Since then, however - particularly with the discovery that the Marlborough region was superbly qualified to grow the sauvignon blanc grape - New Zealand has become synonymous with quality wines.
Home of the country’s most famous wine - sauvignon blanc - Marlborough, at the north of South Island, is also New Zealand’s biggest wine-producing region. Dry and sunny, its most popular area is around Blenheim and Wairau valley. This means, when looking for a New Zealand wine hotel, you can choose either to be based in the city or the country.
- For an urban base, Hotel d’Urville in the heart of Blenheim is a smart choice. The art deco, boutique hotel has just 11 stylish rooms, individually themed from colonial to vintage to retro; some with four-poster beds. Great cocktail bar, too.
- If you prefer to be deep in the vineyards, Lake Timara Lodge is a luxurious alternative. With English-country-house styling - antiques, window seats, elegant drapes - it sits in a five-acre, rose-filled garden with outdoor pool, tennis court and, of course, a private wine cellar.
The tiny region of Nelson, at the northern tip of South Island, is a distinct, self-contained area cut off from neighbouring regions on three sides by mountains and, on the fourth side, by the magical Tasman Bay. Hence it has a very distinct micro-climate, well-suited to growing aromatic grapes such as Riesling and Gewurztraminer.
- Food-lovers will be charmed by A Culinary Experience, a boutique B&B just outside the city of Nelson. Gourmet breakfasts, cooking classes and wine tours are some of the attractions while its two luxury suites have balconies overlooking Tasman Bay.
- Even closer to Tasman Bay, on Nelson’s waterfront, Wakefield Quay House has a huge veranda, perfect for sundowners. The 1905 villa has two large and elegant, light-filled rooms, with antiques, original art and modern bathrooms.
On North Island’s east coast, Hawke's Bay is New Zealand’s second-largest wine-producing region, particularly known for its Bordeaux-blend wines. Here are some of the country’s oldest vineyards, originally planted by missionaries for sacramental wines.
- It may be surrounded by farmland, but The Farm at Cape Kidnappers is far from rustic accommodation. Bedrooms are contemporary classic, lounge areas are rustic-chic, and light streams in everywhere. With its coastal hilltop position, it enjoys far-reaching views. There’s a spa and golf course, too
- Similarly, Greenhill Lodge, although surrounded by farmland, is far from country-basic. This lavish lodge offers roll-top baths (some on private terraces), open fires, antiques, large beds and fresh flowers - as well as a pool, gym and turreted look-out tower. Very romantic.
Found, not surprisingly, in the north of North Island, the vineyards of Northland are predominantly around the Bay of Islands and on the west coast near Kaitaia. This means that many of our New Zealand wine hotels in this area make for a great beach holiday, too. Northland’s wine production is modest but the region can lay claim to having New Zealand’s oldest vines, planted in 1819. Syrah and Pinotage are the dominant grape varieties.
- In the village of Kerikeri, Bed of Roses is a charming B&B with French country-style bedrooms, private terraces and a luscious garden. Extensive breakfasts will set you up for a day exploring the vineyards; the hosts will arrange wine tours.
- If you want to combine wine-tasting with sunbathing, take a look at Paihia Beach Resort, a stone’s throw from one of the Bay’s prettiest beaches. Light, contemporary style bedrooms have balconies plus there’s a spa and fishing trips on offer.
Auckland in North Island may be best known as New Zealand’s largest city but it is also a wine-producing region in its own right with vineyards - growing mainly chardonnay and Bordeaux varieties - within easy striking distance of its centre. Some of its most famous vineyards are on Waiheke Island in the Hauraki Gulf, a small, hilly island with an engaging population of hippies and artists. Much of the area’s grape harvest is used by boutique wineries.
- You can’t get much closer to the vineyards than at Dellows Waiheke. Within walking distance of eight wineries, including its own boutique operation, Dellows offers simple, bright self-catering accommodation, all with private terraces.
- If you’d prefer someone else to do the cooking, Te Whau lodge is a smart, modern, chalet-style affair, close to both beach and wineries, with lots of natural woods, glass and expansive views.
Tucked between the Marlborough region to the north and Central Otago to the south, Canterbury spreads around the city of Christchurch on the east coast of South Island. With its cooler climate, it is particularly known for elegant, balanced wines made from pinot noir, chardonnay and Riesling grapes. The sheltered Waipara valley, in particular, is famed for its Riesling vineyards.
- Between Christchurch and Waipara Valley, Stoneleigh Lodge is set in 20 acres of grounds which, entertainingly, include an alpaca farm. Wonderfully private, with just two very large and elegant suites, there’s also an indoor heated pool.
- If you’d rather have an urban base, The George is a crisp and stylish affair in the heart of Christchurch. Rooms are light and comfortably minimalist and there’s a choice of two award-winning restaurants.
New Zealand may be a small country - not much bigger than the UK - but it packs in a huge amount of variety of both landscape and wines. Use our guide to the best wine hotels in New Zealand to discover this surprising little country for yourself.
Hotel D'Urville Blenheim 11 rooms from £100Restaurant - Specializing in locally sourced produceFour poster beds - For romantics.Local markets - Good for local colour.BoutiqueRecommended by - Fodors
1920s art deco style boutique hotel in Blenheim with 11 stylish and unique rooms, each with individual themes from classic to retro. Four poster beds, original art works and free wifi. Great restaurant and cocktail bar. An ideal base for exploring the Marlborough wineries. See More
Lake Timara Lodge Blenheim (RD 2) 4 rooms from £341Restaurant - Gourmet cuisine featuring locally sourced ingredientsBirdwatching - Native wood pigeons, black swans, teal, geese, ducksLakeside - Private man-made lakeGreat walks - Queen Charlotte Track
Luxury lodge with English country house feel in the heart of NZ's Marlborough wine region. Rooms with antique furnishings, bright wall paper, comfy double beds and seating areas. With a swimming pool, 5 acre garden with deliciously scented roses, tennis court and private wine cellar. Just charming. See More
A Culinary Experience Nelson (Atawhai) 2 rooms from £170Views - The patios and decks have stunning viewsLocal markets - Nelson holds a market every SaturdayGreat walks - Good for walkers.Sailing - Can be booked nearby.
Boutique B&B outside Nelson with two large, light and luxurious suites adorned with original art. Hot tub, private wine cellar, private verandas and large garden to relax in. Gourmet breakfast, cooking classes and wine tours available. Close to beaches and great walks in Abel Tasman National Park. See More
Wakefield Quay House Nelson 2 rooms from £170Views - Overlooking Tasman Bay and Nelson's Harbour entranceGreat walks - Abel Tasman Coastal TrackSailing - Can be booked nearby.Hideaway - Tranquil and intimate.
Luxury B&B in 1905 historic villa on Nelson's waterfront with glorious views over Tasman Bay. Two tasteful, elegant and spacious ensuite rooms with antiques and original artworks. Close to Abel Tasman National Park, wineries and within walking distance of restaurants. Great for a weekend break. See More
The Farm at Cape Kidnappers Hastings (Te Awanga) 23 rooms from £380Golf - Private, award winning golf courseFamiliesBirdwatching - Cape Kidnappers is the home of the largest mainland gannet colony in the worldGreat walks - Variety of trails including forest, ocean and cliff walksRecommended by - Mr & Mrs Smith, Tablet
Charming luxury accommodation in the heart of 6000-acre sheep farm. Rooms are rustic and elegant, with top modern amenities and fantastic sea and farm views. Great walking, riding and mountain biking tracks on the property, as well as birdlife. Family-friendly rural retreat. See More
Greenhill Lodge Hastings (RD4) 5 rooms from £387Views - Viewing turret 3 storey's high looks across gardens and Te Mata PeakBack to Nature - Set on 73 acresSwimming Pool - OutdoorRemote - Off the beaten track.
Paihia Beach Resort and Spa Hotel Bay of Islands 21 rooms from £272No petsRestaurant - Poolside, seasonal menuViews - Out to Bay of IslandsSwimming Pool - Heated saltwater
Luxury hotel with light, clean and spacious suites with features such as French oak floors and large balconies. Only metres from Paihia's most picturesque beach, completed with spa, swimming pool and restaurant serving seasonal food. Ideal for tours of Bay of Islands, golfing and fishing trips. See More
Te Whau Lodge Waiheke Island from £325Views - Overlooking Putiki BayRestrictions on childrenSailing - Can be booked nearby.Local markets - Good for local colour.
Contemporary boutique lodge with panoramic views across Putiki Bay, and access to a private beach. Rooms are modern, elegant, light and spacious and all have a private deck with table and chairs. Fresh breakfast from ingredients grown in garden. Close to wineries, beaches and great walks. See More
Stoneleigh Lodge Christchurch (Ohoka) from £160Swimming Pool - Heated indoor poolGreat walks - Good for walkers.Fishing - Excellent fishing nearby.
Two suites in a luxury lodge set in 20 acres of landscaped grounds with three lakes and a working alpaca farm. Rooms, large and light with modern amenities. Use of an indoor heated pool during winter, and close to wineries, skiing and whale spotting destination. Ideal for an action packed holiday. See More
The George, Christchurch Christchurch 53 rooms from £216Views - Overlooking picturesque Hagley Park and River AvonSights nearby - Short walk from museum, botanical gardens, casinoHideaway - Tranquil and intimate.TennisRecommended by - Tablet, Fodors