Pen-y-bryn Lodge

Pen-y-bryn Lodge is an utterly charming place to stay in Oamaru, and certainly the most boutique accommodation in town.

This delightful homestead was built in 1889 during the Victorian period, and still preserves its original qualities such as European antiques, English oak interiors and a beautiful white and yellow timber façade, surrounded by perfectly manicured gardens.

Steeped in history and character, Pen-y-Bryn Lodge is undoubtedly the best hotel in Oamaru.

Owners James and James took over the lodge in 2010 and have made every effort to protect the heritage of Pen-y-Bryn. The building has been expanded to incorporate an Annex where three rooms are housed, while the other two guestrooms are found in the original homestead; each flaunts a unique character with individually decorated interiors. Elsewhere in the property, there are warm and handsome rooms to explore: the attractive lounge, where pre-dinner aperitifs can be enjoyed together with other guests; a library; the snooker room with an antique billiards table; and the dining room, where a culinary three-course masterpiece is whipped up by James himself.

Then, when it comes to exploring Oamaru, you’ll find that unusual Penguin colonies – the Blue and Yellow-eyed species – are just down the road at Bushey Beach, a real highlight of any visit to this Victorian settlement. You can also enjoy walking through the Old Town, or venturing further afield to encounter mighty landscapes; all right on your doorstep at Pen-y-Bryn Lodge.

Facilities

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Accommodation Options

There are only five guestrooms at Pen-y-bryn Lodge, three of which are located in the Annex and the other two found in the main lodge; all are individually designed. In the Annex rooms, expect a Nespresso coffee machine, satellite TV, Wi-Fi and air conditioning, plus an en suite with heated floors, a bathtub and separate shower.

The Garden Room
The largest room at Pen-y-bryn Lodge, this 48sq m space flaunts a California king-size bed (which can be converted into a twin setup if required) and a living area with comfy sofas and a TV. This room is found in the hotel’s Annex, with windows that look out over the gardens.
The Nest Room
Also situated in the Annex and with a generous floorplan of 45sq m, the split-level Nest Room has a California king-size bed on polished wood floors, with steps leading up to the bathroom on one side and another set connecting to the living area. This room flaunts views of the ocean and Kakanui Mountains.
The Park Room
This Annex room overlooks the garden and grounds of the hotel, as well as Awamoa Park beyond. A 46sq m floorplan means there’s plenty of space, from the super-king-size bedroom with seating area to the sleek bathroom with lots of natural light.
The Victoria Room
The Victoria is a quaint room set in the main building, with patterned rugs, floral curtains and wooden furnishings, as well as an en suite with a heated, traditional tiled floor. It is an accessible room that features a queen-size bed and views over the terrace and garden. Note that this room doesn’t have a TV, Nespresso machine or air conditioning, but it does provide Wi-Fi access.
The Elizabeth Room
For an authentic space with period features, stay in the Elizabeth Room, located in the main building with a bathroom that still has the original porcelain bath, brass taps and tiled floor. Wooden furnishings, a queen-size bed, classical paintings and lace curtains are just some of the décor aspects that make this a charming little abode. Note that this room doesn’t have a TV, Nespresso machine or air conditioning, but it does provide Wi-Fi access.

Restaurants

Pen-y-bryn Lodge Restaurant
Pen-y-bryn Lodge Restaurant

 An intimate hotel merits an intimate dining experience, and that’s precisely what to expect at Pen-y-bryn Lodge, where a delectable breakfast, evening canapés and three-course dinner is laid out each day in the handsome dining room complete with roaring fire. Co-owner James is the head chef (and also the New Zealand chancellor for the Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, no less) who fuses local ingredients – from the kitchen garden, wherever possible – to create mouth-watering fare. You might start with confit salmon, followed by North Otago venison, and finish with sachertorte and homemade vanilla ice cream; though the menu changes according to the season and guests’ dietary requirements.

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

Activities and Entertainment

During your stay at Pen-y-bryn Lodge we highly recommend exploring Oamaru town, with its Victorian past still evident in the streets of Old Town. Enjoy a stroll or walking tour here, visiting the harbour, Clark’s Mill and Totara Estate too. Another must-do experience is getting up close to the Blue and Yellow-eyed Penguins at Bushey Beach, five minutes away, or heading half an hour down the road to Moeraki, home to an old lighthouse and intriguing boulders that look like dinosaur eggs. On top of this, you can go cycling, kayaking and fishing; discover Elephant Rocks, Maori rock art and the Anitini Fossils; take lunch at a winery nearby; or opt for a scenic drive or flight to absorb the stunning landscapes around Oamaru.

Facilities

Although it is a very small boutique lodge, Pen-y-bryn offers more than you’d expect: unlimited Wi-Fi, a compact gym and concierge service, as well as the chance to book in-room spa treatments. Help yourself to complimentary tea, coffee and soft drinks in their inviting lounge, grab a book from the library, or play a game of snooker in the billiards room come evening.

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