Why you'll love it here...
- Huka Lodge is a premium global member of Relais & Chateaux with outstanding hospitality
- Queen Elizabeth II and the Queen Mother have both stayed here
- The five-course dinner is one of the finest dining experiences in New Zealand
- The 17-acre parklands at Huka Lodge are a perfect setting for gentle activities including yoga, pétanque and croquet
Perfectly perched on the banks of the Waikato River near Huka Falls, the aptly named Huka Lodge more than matches its heavenly New Zealand setting with a sublime sense of style, Michelin-standard cuisine and a host of five-star facilities throughout.
There is simply no denying the brilliance of Huka Lodge, as in addition to countless international awards – including the Top 20 Hideaways in the World, the Best Hotel in New Zealand and Top Honeymoon Destination in Australasia – the lodge has also attracted the likes of Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Mother over its illustrious 100+ year history. Indeed, Huka Lodge’s humble beginnings as a fishing lodge in the 1920s seem a very long way off now!
Starting with the setting, however, it really speaks for itself, with Huka Lodge being secretly studded within nearly 20 acres of preened gardens, lawns, flower beds, forests and hedgerows that overlook the Waikato River, which gushes right by. These magical vistas of native trees and plants hugging the river’s verdant shores, up to nearby Huka Falls, can be fully admired whether spending time around the grounds, out on the lodge’s al fresco dining terrace or from your own room, given that most of the 25 suites here open out towards Waikato and beyond.
That is only the beginning of the story though, as the Huka Lodge experience certainly doesn’t stop at the unbeatable setting alone. While here, you can expect a lodge that prides itself on effortless service and the kind of interior design that strikes a perfect balance between luxury New Zealand lodge and rustic-chic boutique; think antique-style cabinets, grand candlestick holders and high wooden beams, meets private infinity pool, and designer daybeds galore. Then there is the Michelin-standard fine dining at Huka Lodge, all included, which can be savoured either in their main (and very regal) dining hall or one of 20 secluded spots, set up just for two and found everywhere from a gazebo by the river to the building’s original wine cellar, or tucked up next to an outdoor firepit pit on a romantic private patio.
There is simply so much to love about staying in a suite at Huka Lodge – the rooms themselves are beautifully adorned and perfectly placed, there is history and authenticity here, and the highlights of Taupo are also on your doorstep. Then, to round it all off, time between day trips, hiking and biking tours can be spent on one of the lodge’s tennis courts, in the spa, gym, by the pool or around those fairytale gardens, the choice is yours.
- Gym / Fitness Centre
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Huka Lodge’s 25 suites (of varying sizes) are a triumph of design, expertly bridging the divide between farmhouse-chic and outright boutique stylings. They are all magnificent spaces that enjoy tall ceilings and a light colour scheme, comfy furnishings, modern bathrooms, plenty of privacy and outdoor space, lots of light thanks to sliding French doors and all the essential mod-cons too. King-size beds, a deep-soak bathtub, minibar and underfloor heating all come as standard while the standalone multi-room cottages then come with extra lounge areas, gardens and terraces that open up on the river, plunge pools and full kitchens; great for families.
Junior Lodge Suite
Alex van Heeren Cottage
Alan Pye Cottage
Activities and Entertainment
This particular area of New Zealand is ideal for all kinds of outdoor adventures, with Huka Lodge’s surrounding lakes, rivers, forests and hills just perfect for scenic walks and intrepid hiking trails, as well as kayaking around Taupo, jet boating near Huka Falls or white-water rafting Tongariro River’s stunning route of rapids. There are then sightseeing helicopter tours over the mountains and Wairakei International Golf Course is just around the corner (if visiting in summer), though come winter, you also have skiing and snowboarding throughout Tongariro National Park right on your doorstep. And if that weren’t enough, the sports courts, pools, spa, mountain bikes, beauty salon and even whisky tasting are all available at the lodge itself.
For such a cosy boutique hideaway, Huka Lodge certainly packs a lot into its picturesque perch on the Waikato River. While here, you will have a spa, beauty salon, massage rooms and two Jacuzzis at your disposal, plus an additional outdoor swimming pool and gym, tennis courts, a croquet lawn, mountain bikes for hire and acres of beautiful gardens to admire. Then, while there is no formal kids club at Huka Lodge, both family-friendly activities and babysitting can be arranged if required.
Restaurants and Bars
The gastronomic experience at Huka Lodge is a major highlight of any stay, thanks to no less than 20 individually located private dining spots dotted around the grounds. From secluded courtyards surrounded by hedgerows to cute wooden terraces by the river, down in the building’s atmospheric wine cellar or beside a roaring outdoor fireplace – each one has its own unforgettable appeal. This pricelessly intimate touch makes mealtimes even more special, though the central restaurant hall is also a delight throughout the day and night. Importantly, the delicious food served at Huka Lodge is a daily-changing menu of seasonal specialities, edgy flavour combinations and inch-perfect presentation, whipped up by head chef Paul Froggatt who cut his teeth in a variety of Michelin-star restaurants all over the world.
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