The Guest List At Huka Lodge Is A Celebrity Overload
Oct 26, 2012
Joan Collins. Michael Douglas. Bette Midler. Barbra Streisand. John Cleese. Queen Elizabeth II, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, and Queen Margrethe of Denmark. What do all these people have in common?
They’ve stayed at Huka Lodge, one of New Zealand’s most exclusive hotels, and a perfect Fantasy Friday candidate. Located on the Waikato River, near Taupo and Rotorua on the North Island, this is one place that’s on our personal hotel bucket-list.
We’re assuming each of these famous guests (celebrity, royal, and otherwise) shacked up in The Owner’s Cottage, which sounds much more palatial than the name suggests: four en-suite bedrooms, a living room, dining area, kitchen, and den, with local art throughout. An outdoor deck with cantilevered infinity pool and views over the river towards Huka Falls downstream. Browsing through the pictures, we are seriously swooning over this place. Given the roster of guests, there are also Escort Rooms, “very simple single rooms designed for children traveling with parents, for accompanying staff such as nannies, personal security, drivers, etc.” Does the casual “etc.” crack anybody up, or is that just us?
Since money clearly will be no object, we’d like to venture out in style for The Huka Experience, combining a scenic helicopter flight over the New Zealand wilderness with a cruise on Lake Taupo, the country’s largest lake. Come time to eat, there are over 20 spots in- and outside the lodge that can be used as the backdrop for a meal. Perhaps a table for two hidden somewhere in the 17-acre grounds? Or gather with friends and family by the log fire in the library? It’s all possible.
We hate to break the bubble of fantasy with something as pedestrian as prices, but a “Time Together” package starts at a celebrity-worthy NZ$4,000 (about US$3,300), depending on the time of year. That does include two nights’ accommodation for two in a Junior Lodge Suite, full breakfast, drinks, canapÃ©s, and dinner, a bottle of Champagne upon arrival, a Huka Lodge book and perfumed turn-down candle, as well as use of all lodge facilities. Rates for The Owner’s Cottage are, as you’d expect, “upon request”.
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