My first visit to New Zealand was 1989. At that stage the country had a few good courses but none with significant international profile. I am just returning from a two-week trip escorting a group of PerryGolf clients through the North and South Islands of New Zealand and can unequivocally say that New Zealand is one of the great golf and lifestyle destinations. The intervening 30 years has seen a remarkable evolution in the golf and hospitality industry.
Matakauri Lodge, Queenstown is the sister property of Kauri Cliffs and Cape Kidnappers. It opened in August 2010 and has recently appeared on the “Condé Nast Traveller Hot List 2011” (click here for details). Matakauri is an outstanding property and a fantastic addition to Queenstown; it is a must stay while in the area as there is plenty to do and see and some of the scenery in this region of New Zealand is out of this world. The golf is also excellent with Jacks Point which boasts a backdrop of 2300 vertical metres of the razorback Remarkables mountain range. Need I say more!
Further to my post last May noting that Hilton were planning to open a hotel in Queenstown, they have thought better of this and decided to open not one hotel, but two in the Adrenaline sports hot spot. You can see further details by clicking here.
It should be noted that Queenstown is not just for the thrill seekers – there are some great courses including Jack’s Point and Millbrook, and just up the road in Arrowtown, you will find The Hills – which until recently was home to the New Zealand Open. It is also a great base from which to travel to the stunningly beautiful Milford Sound and has some excellent wineries on its doorstep.
Owned and operated by American financier Julian Robertson, Kauri Cliffs and Cape Kidnappers were recently joined by a third N.Z. property, The Matakauri Lodge, in the ski and adventure sports Mecca of Queenstown. The Matakauri would subsequently make Condé Nast Traveller’s “2011 Hot List”, and, like its sister lodges, it’s almost absurdly scenic, chic and luxurious.
Queenstown and the Matakauri are something of a departure for …
It seems the currently homeless New Zealand Open has still not found a definite residence for 2011. The event has been staged at the fantastic Hills course just outside Queenstown since 2007, but looks unlikely to be held there again in 2011. Recently the favourite to hold the event has been Clearwater in Christchurch which is also a great course but not in such a beautiful setting. We will await the final decision with interest and hope the event will actually go ahead.