A stay at Mahu Whenua is magical… It’s so much more than pampering, silver service and a luxurious bath robe. It’s exactly what luxury and comfort should be: inviting, personal and a totally unique experience
From the moment you step through the generous wooden doors the sumptuous and relaxed homestead immediately eases you into a sense of serenity which is only intensified by the jaw dropping views which stretch out over Lake Wanaka and the surrounding majestic mountains. Escape and relax amongst the high country with us in a location where you will feel a million miles away yet Wanaka township is just 25 minutes’ drive.
It is hard to capture the majesty of the mountains and landscape that surrounds Mahu Whenua – with 136,000 acres of private land making up the Mahu Whenua property, stretching from Lake Wanaka to Arrowtown, take time to explore our playground and learn more about the Mahu Whenua conservation story.
Mahu Whenua is New Zealand’s largest private conservation project, covering 136,000 acres of land. The owner of the property has worked hard to rejuvenate the land to its original state with extensive research undertaken and planting of native trees, resulting in increasing numbers of native birdlife in the area.
The lodge offers five luxury suites. All the suites are individually styled and offer magnificent views, luxury linen and unparalleled service.
The Ridgeline Suites
Five luxurious Ridgeline Suites offer incredible views and supreme privacy. Sleeping up to two people each they feature a king or king-split bed and ensuite with bath, and are equipped with WiFi, television and a telephone. The Komako Family Suite also has an adjoining bunk room which can accommodate 2 additional children <16 years old.
With each suite stay you’ll have access to all of the Homestead facilities including two open fireplaces, a large open living area with expansive views and a fully equipped farmhouse kitchen. Inside the Homestead you’ll also enjoy two dining areas, library, as well as plenty of storage.
Outside, there are several spots to unwind – two dining areas, a spa pool (hot tub), sheltered swimming pool and large decking area to make the most of the incredible views and location.
Three of the five Suites are located inside the Homestead and boast uninterrupted views of the mountains and Lake Wanaka.
Tui Master Suite: king bed and ensuite with bath (sleeps 2)
Kereru Guest Suite: king or king-split bed and ensuite with bath (sleeps 2)
Komako Family Suite: king or king-split bed and ensuite with bath (sleeps 2) – adjoining bunk room available for max 2 additional children <16 years.
The two Cottage Suites are adjacent to the Homestead and nestled privately amongst native beech forest with fabulous views of the Motatapu Valley, mountains and stables.
Weka Cottage Suite: king-split bed and ensuite with bath (sleeps 2)
Pukeko Cottage Suite: king-split bed and ensuite with bath (sleeps 2)
The lodge itself is an attraction in its own right.
It is luxurious, homey, charming, welcoming and paired with the most heart-warming hospitality. It is designed in the style of a high country homestead. Throughout the lodge there are so many spaces to hideaway and unwind. Relax with a book, or if you are travelling as part of a group, socialize with friends in the great room enjoying fabulous wine and food, fun and uninterrupted alpine and lake views. Enjoy dressing up for dinner to celebrate a special occasion or just stay as you are after a day lying by the pool, or enjoying some of our favourite lodge activities including e-biking, horse riding, yoga, skiing and hiking.
The team of staff at the lodge make every part of your stay a truly exceptional indulgence.
And when you get there Wanaka township is only twenty minutes away which means that guests also get to enjoy everything this quaint lakeside town has to offer. There are an unlimited number of activities to enjoy in this picturesque part of the world from strolls around the lake to golf and jetboating to sampling multi award winning wines and world class cuisine from local cellar doors. And what cannot be done in town, Mahu Whenua more than caters for with their own range of activities which include hiking, biking, horse riding, riverside picnics, helicopter excursions or relaxing with a good book by the pool. There is literally something for everyone.
Although easily accessible Mahu Whenua still manages to exude total privacy and seclusion. It’s as if it’s your own personal national park with a sprawling 136 000 acres (55 thousand hectares) of sustainable land made up of lush green valleys , forests and towering mountains covered with acres of native forest which is constantly being regenerated. Honestly this eco sanctuary boasts some of the most dramatic natural alpine scenery you’ll ever see.
Horse riding allows you to explore the miles of custom-made trails through dappled woodland and meandering rivers. Or for the more curious, their informative four-wheel drive excursion takes you into the heartland of the property, where you will soak up the history of this iconic place, learning stories of the early settlers and prospectors and take a first-hand glimpse at the largest private conservation undertaking in New Zealand’s history.
Though the Lodge doesn’t allow hunting on the property after all Mahu Whenua literally means Healing the Land, their team are more than happy to set up hunting trips for you on neighbouring stations.Then when you have finished a day’s exploration, this stunning lodge offers some exquisite five star cuisine pairing some of the regions finest produce and wines prepared by Mahu Whenua’s own private chef. Relax with an aperitif beside one of the crackling open fires and watch the sun go down and the clear night sky explode with a thousand stars before you retire to one of Mahu Whenua’s sensuous suites.
And when your stay comes to an end you will be pining to return as soon as possible. Because Mahu Whenua truly nourishes the soul, because it’s out of this world. It’s simply magical.
Please know there will be additional costs for some of the activities listed below.
With such an expansive area to yourself, helicopter is the absolute best way to get to know the Mahu Whenua landscape and the nearby regions of Fiordland National Park, Mt Aspiring National Park and Milford Sound.
Ridgeline Peak Picnic
From the on-site helipad, you’ll take a short helicopter ride to a mountain top nearby. The helicopter will land and shut off while you enjoy a glass of Central Otago wine and soak in the stunning alpine surroundings. Last flight time is 5.30pm pick up from the Homestead.
Luxury Winery Lunch Flight
Your helicopter taxi will pick you up directly from the on-site helipad at Mahu Whenua to begin this exceptional wine lovers experience. Enjoy a scenic flight to a privately owned vineyard to enjoy 6-8 tastings before moving on to Bannockburn to enjoy a platter lunch at Mt Difficulty. Following lunch, the heli will drop into the beautiful Cardrona Distillery for a final tasting before your return by scenic flight back to the Homestead.
Mt Aspiring National Park and Glaciers Scenic Flight – local exploration
Be whisked away for a scenic flight up the Matukituki Valley to Dragonfly Peak where you’ll enjoy an alpine landing. After you’ve had time to take some photos, you’ll lift off again and fly around Mt Aspiring (one of New Zealand’s highest mountains) where you can soak in closeup views of impressive glaciers, magnificent ice formations and crevasses.
From here in the middle of the Southern Alps you can view the rainforests and ocean of the wild West Coast in the distance. Another two landings will find you high on the Isobel Glacier and then back in the Mahu Whenua alpine where you can relax with champagne and canapés before returning to the Homestead.
Milford Overhead Flight & Glacier Landing – further afield
Fly through the grand Southern Alps, over rainforests, frozen lakes and south to the majestic Milford Sound. Then touchdown on an age old glacier – the perfect place to capture those once-in-a-lifetime photos. Milford is a mystical world where you’ll feel far far away, yet it’s easily accessible from Mahu Whenua by helicopter.
Milford Southern Alps Highlights – the ultimate heli-adventure!
Explore the best of Mt Aspiring and Fiordland National Parks on this day trip. Visit three alpine lakes, Sutherland Falls, Milford Sound and West Coast beaches. Fly through the Olivine Ice Plateau, land on a glacier, fly around Mt Aspiring, and land on Dragonfly Peak before returning to the Homestead.
There are five landings along the way, so plenty of time to stretch your legs and grab some photos. You’ll also enjoy a picnic lunch on location.
With the impressive stables just a short walk from the Homestead, it is hard not to get involved with the beautiful horses. If you have little experience with horses, you may wish to just pat them at the stables or be led around the grounds. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, there are plenty of trails designed for horse trekking taking you through river crossings, native beech forest, over rolling hills and up valleys.
Station Orientation Farm Tour
Mahu Whenua stretches all the way from Wanaka to Arrowtown, so there is a lot of land to explore! Whether you’d like to take an introductory immersive 4WD tour or to delve deeper into Mahu Whenua country, there are options for everyone – spend a half-day exploring the old roads, shepherds’ huts and the working farm, or a full-day excursion where you can travel deep into the heart of the valley, with multiple stops along the way.
Hiking / Heli-Hiking
There are endless trails for hiking around Mahu Whenua. Wander down to the stables for a short walk, down to the gorge to go swimming, or to the river to pan for gold. For a bigger adventure, get picked up by helicopter on the front lawn of the lodge and spend a half or full day exploring one of the many beautiful corners of the property. Your chef can provide a picnic to enjoy mountain top, or beside a meandering river on your journey.
Explore Wanaka by mountain bike or, for a more unique experience, have a helicopter pick you, your guide and your bikes up from the on-site helipad and drop you atop a mountain. Enjoy the fun trails as you descend while taking in the incredible scenery. Guided heli-biking can be tailored to your skill and confidence level.
Central Otago Wine Tour
This is the ultimate tour for wine aficionados encompassing the iconic Gibbston Valley, Bannockburn and Lowburn wine making regions.
You may feel like a massage after exploring Mahu Whenua or a spa day with a group. The terrace in front of the Homestead is the perfect place for a morning vinyasa flow or pilates practice. There are several different treatments that we can arrange for you at your Mahu Whenua haven.
Come winter you are snug in the middle of New Zealand’s Southern Alps with winter activities right at your doorstep. Treble Cone and Cardrona ski fields are within driving distance for skiing and snowboarding. Or you may wish to go guided backcountry ski touring or split boarding, cat skiing or heli-skiing. If going downhill at speed isn’t your thing, other options include cross country skiing, snow shoeing and snowmobiling.
Rock Climbing (Via Ferrata)
The Via Ferrata rock climbing tours are located close to Mahu Whenua and are perfect for beginners and families.
Fly or Spin Fishing
We can design fly or spin fishing trips as you wish. There are some fantastic fishing spots nearby where you can fly or drive in with your guide. Enjoy a delicious packed lunch prepared by Mahu Whenua chef as you break on the river’s edge.
Art & Photography Workshop
Mahu Whenua is the epitome of dramatic New Zealand alpine scenery. Whether you think you have artistic flare or not, our guided photography tours and art classes are a great opportunity to relax amongst beautiful landscapes and learn something new – maybe even take away your own creation in memory of this special place.
With Mahu Whenua located in the Queenstown Lakes region of Central Otago, it’s no surprise that there are plenty of ‘on water’ options nearby. Options include guided kayaking and paddle boarding on Lake Wanaka and jet boating.
Rates are valid until 31st March 2023
Children aged <16 years can be accommodated in the Komako Suite only, and incur an additional charge of $550 per child per night. If the Komako Suite has no availability, we will be unable to accommodate the reservation. A portacot can be provided on request for guest use if required – this must be arranged in advance of your arrival. Children aged over 16 years old are considered full rate paying guests.
Final payment is required 30 days prior to the reservation check-in date, except for bookings made for stays during the Peak Season where full payment is required 60 days prior to the reservation check-in date.
Date changes for stays are subject to availability and incur a NZ$250 administration fee.