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Holiday Home V's Hotel Room

Posted by Release Wanaka on February 12, 2018

Holiday Home V’s Hotel Room - no contest in our eyes!

If you are anything like us then being on holiday is all about relaxation, comfort and doing what you want when you want. A holiday home can offer all these things plus more, giving you flexibility, convenience and enjoyment.

Here are our top 3 reasons why you should stay in a holiday home rather than a hotel room.

1st there is ‘Space’ - If you are traveling with kids or in a group you will appreciate space. 

  • Space for all the equipment you may bring or hire  - ski gear, bikes, kayaks, push chairs, guitars.
  • Space to escape to if you need some alone time, everyone needs alone time.
  • Space to unpack a bag and not live out of a suitcase, no more searching for that pair of socks.
  • Space to exercise and work on those yoga moves, dance moves, gymnastic moves…….
  • Space to entertain friends or family, without having to crowd around a bed drinking wine!

2nd is ‘Privacy’ - Knowing there are people on the other side of that wall is not relaxing.

  • Privacy gives you the option to talk as loud as you want knowing you won’t disturb others. 
  • Privacy allows you to dress in whatever you feel like, PJ’s at dinner?
  • Privacy to use the pool or hot tub and not share it with other guests.
  • Privacy lets you relax in your own living area, feet up in front of the fire.
  • Privacy gives you the option to work away from everyone else having a siesta!

3rd is ‘Flexibility’ -  You can do whatever you want, when you want.

  • Flexibility to eat when you want, breakfast at 11am, why not!!
  • Flexibility to drink wine for as long as you want, forget closing time.
  • Flexibility to use the facilities when you want, not during allocated hours.
  • Flexibility to cook for yourself and not eat out ALL the time.
  • Flexibility to decide when the music goes off, no more listening to a live band until the small hours.

There are plenty more reasons to stay in a Holiday Home and with Release Wanaka, Contact Us, if you would like more information about any of our wonderful properties.

Release Wanaka - Te Kahu

Posted by Release Wanaka on January 17, 2018

Wanaka residence features on BBC

Release Wanaka - Te Kahu (Te Kaitaka) has featured on the BBC as "one of the world’s four most extraordinary mountain residences".  Te Kahu (Te Kaitaka) is nestled into its environment at perfect peace with its 50-acre surroundings of tussock and natural bush. The architecturally designed luxury villa has timber cedar cladding inside out and blends beautifully with the outstanding natural landscape upon which it sits.

Articles in the NZ Herald and Otago Daily Times acknowledged the achievement and wrote -

"A multi-award-winning Central Otago house designed by two Auckland architects and owned by a pioneering skin specialist has featured on the BBC as one of the world’s four most extraordinary mountain residences.

Te Kaitaka is outside Wanaka and was designed by Nicholas Stevens and Gary Lawson of Parnell’s Stevens Lawson, and it featured on the BBC’s The World’s Most Extraordinary Homes.

The BBC show’s hosts, award-winning architect Piers Taylor and actor and property enthusiast Caroline Quentin, also presented a Californian house which incorporated the wings of a Boeing 747, a Swiss Alps chalet and a Tucson mountain retreat in Arizona.

The hosts enthused over the Wanaka home, showing off its unusual shape.

“Designed to fit within strict planning regulations, the house was inspired by the surrounding trees and mountains and is camouflaged using wooden cedar cladding to cloak the building and with fireplaces cast in concrete,” the BBC said of the home.

The New Zealand house is around half an hour outside Wanaka, sits above the lake, is beneath a main flight path and is an origami-style structure which took about three years to build.

Stevens said the clients were Mark and Suzanah Gray.

“It’s very satisfying and exciting,” Stevens said of the BBC programme.

“Te Kaitaka refers to the timber draping over the building like a cloak. The house was built in 2010 with timber which wraps around the whole house, so tonally it looks like tussock. The timber weathers off, developing a tussock colour, so that’s why it has that camouflage sense. The geometry is also quite angular, like the mountains and rocks. It’s a very, very special house, to do with how it relates to its environment. You might call it spirit of place.”

Mark Gray is a pioneer of cosmetic dermatology who founded the Skin Institute national chain of specialist medical centres. His profile outlines his main areas of interest.

“Dr Gray’s special interests include skin cancer, in particular complex skin cancer surgery involving reconstruction of the head and neck area utilising the Mohs micrographic method. Dr Gray has been practising Mohs surgery for over 10 years. Dr Gray is currently working in a multidisciplinary group of specialist surgeons from head and neck surgery, facial plastic surgery, ear, nose and throat surgery, plastic surgery and general surgery within the Skin Institute group of clinics,” his professional profile says.

Lawson said he was delighted with the BBC programme on the Wanaka house.

“The fact that it was one of only four was pretty flattering, it’s an amazing, amazing thing,” Lawson said. “It’s a concrete structure with concrete internal walls and a reasonably complex build in a very challenging environment.”

The house was about 400sq m, had four bedrooms and was built into the hillside which made it cool in the summer and warm in the winter, he said. It was built by local firm Tony Quirk Builders, pre-cast concrete features were made in Ashburton and David Trubridge’s Snowflake pendant lampshades were specified in the architectural plans, Lawson said.

Floors were of local schist and oak. Skylights feature in the hallway area, kitchen and living area.

The job was challenging, Lawson said, because the lake and main views were to the south, making it harder to capture warmth and solar energy from the north “so we had to orientate the house to take in the dramatic lake and mountain views”."

This private award winning residence sleeps up to 8 guests in 4 ensuite rooms. For more information contact Release Wanaka.

 

 

The Wanaka Fixer

Posted by Release Wanaka on November 23, 2017

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the Wanaka Fixer service is like a secret society working underground to find the best places and activities for you to enjoy - that’s right folks, these people do exist! Providing you with endless amounts of local information our Wanaka Fixers are here to guide you and ensure that your vacation dreams are realised!

Our head “Wanaka Fixer”, Andrea, has lived in Wanaka since 2002 and has worked in the NZ Tourism Industry for over 15 years. She has worked in the ski industry in several countries including NZ, France and the US as well as in Adventure Tourism and Water sports.
Originally from the UK, Andrea has become a familiar face around town after working for companies including Cardrona, Skydive Wanaka and Paddle Wanaka. Her local contacts and knowledge astound me but don’t surprise me, as she is friendly, chatty and inquisitive. She has yet to have been asked a question about beautiful Wanaka and NZ that she cannot answer.

Andrea admiring the view at Release Wanaka - Whare Kea

“Wanaka Fixer” came to fruition after Andrea joined Release Wanaka. She has developed and expanded our concierge service providing guests with an experience and an opportunity to enjoy Wanaka to its maximum. This is not something that can be achieved by going online, it takes contacts, word of mouth and involvement. These are things that Andrea excels at and previous guests would agree:

- “I can't possibly say enough about the experience and support providing by Release Wanaka, which greatly exceeded our expectations. I spent almost 6 months researching and planning for this trip and without any prior knowledge about New Zealand. Andrea and anyone covering when she wasn't available, made us feel like visiting family, both during my endless emails and phone calls, as well as the arrival and during the visit. I really appreciated Andrea's patience with my endless questions and uncertainty about the activities initially thought to be well outside of our budget. From helping persuade me to convince my parents to enjoy their first helicopter ride, to restaurants recommendations, arrival gifts, home walk through, etc.....” - Mike, New Mexico

- “To Andrea and the Release Wanaka team: Thank you so much for your assistance in making our visit to New Zealand a dream come true. The house was beautiful and a perfect retreat for my family of 4. The lake/mountain views were incredible and pristine. Andrea was incredibly responsive throughout the planning phase, helping to facilitate everything from lift tickets to a surprise selection of craft beers for my husband (in the refrigerator upon our arrival)......” - Raven, Ryan, Australia

Here at Release Wanaka we have a combined local knowledge bank of over 40 years and we would love to share it with you. Let our Wanaka Fixer’s treat you to that local knowledge and show you an abundance of opportunities that you may otherwise never hear about.

A luxury holiday provides not only accommodation but those personal touches that stick with us forever! We would love to help make that trip to New Zealand a trip of a lifetime, contact our Wanaka Fixer here

The 'Food Truck' culture hits Wanaka

Posted by Release Wanaka on November 07, 2017

We have all experienced food from a truck at some point in our lives, whether it’s ice cream or a gourmet wrap. It can be a risky choice and there is always a chance of a wrong decision but if you get it right then it can be a culinary experience you will never forget. Wanaka has now joined that ever growing ‘Food Truck’ culture with an array of trucks serving international cuisine.  

Check out these permanent Wanaka food trucks for great food and drinks which are quick and tasty.

1/ The Good Spot

The Good Spot is a funky coffee and food caravan situated on the Good Corner, in an ideal outside setting. Our focus is to serve good quality coffee and food with a touch of style and flair. We like to think outside the square and up-cycle where we can, as can be seen by the creation of the caravan and the evolving garden and seating area around it.”

2/ Francescas Pizza

A food truck stemming from the infamous 'Francesca’s Italian Kitchen', it serves delicious wood fired pizza and garlic bread with a weekly changing special - “Fran’s Special”! Based on Brownston Street, Wanaka, Francesca’s Pizza was one of the first food trucks to hit town and a real favourite with the locals.

3/ Charlie Brown

“Delicious French sweet crepes and gluten free savoury galette made with organic buckwheat flour.” This funky little retro van looks the part with great signage and lighting. Try the “Pomme D’Amour” - “oo la la, tres bon!!”

Image from www.lakewanaka.co.nz

4/ The Dripping Bowl

The Dripping Bowl - “We are a small food truck located in the heart of Wanaka. We make fresh homemade Soups served with The Peoples Bread co. sourdough and beautiful toppings such as roasted seeds and Raglan coconut yogurt. We are primarily focused on supporting local farmers and producers. We don’t use any stocks, thickeners or preservatives, and all of our Soups are gluten free!”

5/ Burrito Craft

Choose your filling and heat level and sit back and enjoy a taste of Mexico. With a selection of delicious Burritos and yummy Tacos, Burrito Craft has definitely stamped their mark on the Wanaka food truck scene. 

6/ Buddhas Corner

Offering a selection of indian curries and dumplings Buddhas Corner has some tasty choices. Cooked fresh while you wait you can expect authentic cuisine and generous portions. The “Naughty Naan” is a popular choice.

There are also a selection of mobile food trucks which are perfect for events. For more information about places to eat in Wanaka, ask our "WanakaFixer" at [email protected]

Relax and stay a while - Training in Paradise

Posted by Release Wanaka on October 13, 2017

Training for an event? A challenge of a lifetime? Or, maybe it's your everyday job?

Wanaka, New Zealand is the ultimate training ground for anyone who wishes to push their limits or wants a relaxing setting to prepare their body for a task ahead. Located within the Southern Alps there are numerous terrains to train on from flat trails and tracks to steep mountains and rugged surfaces. The opportunity is there to maximise your capabilities or relax in a natural environment and escape into the middle of nowhere.

Wanaka has the perfect climate to train depending on what you require and is a great place to escape the Northern Hemisphere seasons -  

  • Winter provides the snow and mountains, a place to hit the slopes and work on muscles that generally don’t get used in other activities. A place to come face to face with extreme weather conditions and test endurance, persistence and stamina.
  • Summer provides hot and dry conditions, the perfect place for your body to adapt to heat and develop strategies to maintain energy levels and fluid intake.
  • Spring and Autumn are much more forgiving. Although these times of year don’t provide the extreme conditions of Winter and Summer, they do provide a comfortable training environment with cooler temperatures, blue skies and quieter roads and tracks.

The terrain that surrounds Wanaka is diverse. The roads are long and quiet (with great views), there are endless amounts of tracks, the mountains are steep and challenging and the lakes and rivers are crystal clear and inviting, the perfect training environment!

Image by Tim Pierce

The town offers numerous amenities to enhance your training schedule including yoga & pilates classes, massage therapists, world class physiotherapists, chiropractors, fitness professionals and gyms offering various activities and membership options. There are whole food and organic food stores to buy speciality foods that provide you with the ingredients to maintain your training diet and eating regime, along with numerous dieticians, local health coaches and elite local athletes that can give you advice and information.

Release Wanaka can point you in the right direction of who or what you require and organise appointments, training sessions, gym memberships, equipment hire and specialised chefs. We can accommodate you in a luxurious holiday home where you can relax and unwind after a day of pounding the tracks. Somewhere to retreat to and evaluate your training schedule with stunning views amongst the fresh mountain air. A place you can spread out and feel at home with space for a personal yoga class or to host your training buddies and talk “Swim, Bike, Run”!

For more information you can contact us here.

Relax and stay a while - Work/Life Balance

Posted by Release Wanaka on October 03, 2017

Planning a sabbatical? Or are you lucky enough to be able to work from home?

Taking a sabbatical is a luxury in itself and to spend that time in Wanaka, New Zealand, can revive and rejuvenate your work ethics. Taking time out for yourself and family is so important in today’s crazy world, where people get so caught up in the rat race that they forget what living is all about. Wanaka can offer so much, from a calming retreat to an adventurous playground. The climate is ideal with hot, dry summers and cold, snowy winters. The fresh mountain air clears the head and allows your mind and body to give in to relaxation and prepare you for your next journey. It is a little slice of paradise amongst the Southern Alps of New Zealand.

Image by Tim Pierce

If you are able to work from home then why not make Wanaka home for a while. Imagine waking up to the sunrise over the lake and mountains, doing a few hours work in an office with an amazing view, then hitting the trails on your mountain bike or taking a stroll along the lake shore. Becoming one of the locals opens up a wider variety of choice as you learn of the best places to go, see, eat, drink, relax, swim, bike and so on! The family can join local clubs and sports teams and the schools welcome short term pupils with open arms.

New Zealand is 12 hours ahead of London, 17 hours ahead of New York and 20 hours ahead of LA. Take advantage of the time difference.  As your work colleagues sign out at the end of the day, you have the afternoon ahead to enjoy life.

It’s all about achieving that work/life balance to increase productivity in your working life and eliminate stress. You will feel better for it and so will your family as you enjoy time together in an environment that is healthy and rewarding.

Here at Release Wanaka we can offer guests a long term solution to accommodation, travel and activities. We are happy to negotiate a great long term rate on accommodation and we can negotiate a competitive rate on car and equipment rental. Our holiday rental accommodation is a home away from home and gives you freedom and flexibility.

  • Enjoy hosting family and friends when they come to visit and show off that lake view. 
  • Stay in an environment that is clean and healthy.
  • Enjoy the space inside and out.
  • Great locations close to the lake and walking/biking tracks.
  • All the mod-cons including Wi-Fi, Satellite TV
  • Luxurious Linens and optional weekly cleans.
  • A garden or balcony to relax in the sun and top up that Vitamin D.

Release Wanaka - The Managers House

It is all sounding very tempting, Yes? Take a break from that monotonous routine that we are all guilty of at some point in out lives and become a Wanaka local. Make the dream a reality! Contact Release Wanaka for more information.

Are you a looking for the ultimate training location? Our next blog will focus on why you should choose Wanaka, NZ as your training ground!

Relax and stay a while - A Family Affair

Posted by Release Wanaka on September 28, 2017

Coming to Wanaka, New Zealand for an extended trip makes sense, especially if you are traveling from the other side of the world. Who wants to travel all this way for a rushed, short vacation? No way! Staying for a longer period is definitely the way to go!

Traveling with the family can be stressful at the best of times but throw jet lag into the equation and it's a recipe for a rocky start to your holiday, even more so if you have little ones. An extended trip allows everyone time to adjust, get used to the time zone, climate and being away from home without the thoughts that you are wasting precious holiday time. 

Basing yourself in one place also adds to the benefits of an extended family holiday. A home away from home where you can relax, spread out and be flexible with your plans. Holiday Rental Homes / Vacation Rentals are a perfect place for your family to retreat to, get privacy with no disruptions and do what you want when you want. 

As a family, pleasing everyone can be difficult, some may want to go sight seeing, others may want to mountain bike. A Holiday Rental Home / Vacation Rental offers that haven to come back to and compare stories and marvel in the spectacular views that surround you. 

Here at Release Wanaka we believe a Holiday Rental Home / Vacation Rental in Wanaka is the perfect place to base yourself and discover the region. Wanaka is situated in the South Island of New Zealand, a fantastic place from which to explore Mount Aspiring National Park, Milford Sound, The West Coast, Mount Cook, Lake Tekapo, Queenstown, Southland and beyond.

Image by Ross Mackay

So consider this………..

- Unpack once

- No living out of a bag

- Spread out and have a room for everyone

- Home cooked meals

- All mod-cons

- No time frames

- Separate kids space

- Garden for the kids

- Space for bikes, skis etc.

- Basecamp to explore at your pace

- Beneficial to your wallet

- Negotiate long term rates on accommodation

- Negotiate long term rates on bikes /skis /kayaks /SUP boards /car rental

…………..this is just scratching the surface!

Taking 8 -12 weeks off work is not always possible for everyone, therefore a work /life balance might be a better option. Our next blog will focus on the benefits of staying long term in Wanaka while working from your Holiday Rental Home and achieving that balance.

For more information about Holiday Rental Homes / Vacation Rentals in Wanaka and long term rates, please contact us here.

Top 10 FREE things to do in Wanaka

Posted by Release Wanaka on September 13, 2017

Sometimes you just want to get up and walk out the door and do something that doesn't involve buying tickets or booking a time. Wanaka has lots of FREE activities to do to entertain the family.....check out our Top 10!

1/ Walk Up Mount Iron 

A moderate walk up Mount Iron will reward you with spectacular views. An approx. 1.5hrs return with some steep uphill and downhill sections, but a must for the whole family when visiting Wanaka.

2/ Visit Wanaka Lavender Farm 

This is a hidden gem and a great place to wander around relaxing amongst the lavender. Speak to the farm animals (alpacas and lambs in spring), have a game of 'Petanque', sample some of the yummy smelling products in the quaint shop or try the delicious homemade lavender ice-cream.

3/ Play Disc Golf 

There is now a Disc Golf Course at Eely Point as well as Lismore Park. Eely Point can prove to be challenging with all the trees and Lismore Park offers spectacular views. Buy, hire, borrow (if you are in the know) or bring your own disc and get that competitive side of you going!

4/ Mountain Biking 

If you are lucky enough to have access to bikes during your stay in Wanaka, get out and discover the endless tracks which cater for all levels. An easy cycle around the lake or a more challenging course through sticky forest.....so many to choose from so little time!

5/ Hang Out At The Lake 

Lake Wanaka offers beautiful views all year round. Grab that camera and picnic blanket and head on down to relax and watch the ever changing scenery and if you are brave enough, jump off the wharf for a refreshing swim.

Photo from Wanaka Tourism

6/ Wanaka Skate Park 

If you are traveling with kids be sure to bring their scooters or skateboard. Hours of fun can be had at the skate park by the young ones (and some cool oldies to)! If you don't fancy a roll then watching can be just as entertaining as the teens hit the bowl.....the views are pretty good from here to!

7/ A Scenic Drive 

Who doesn't love a scenic sunday drive? Whichever way you head out of Wanaka you will be greeted with stunning views. For more information and ideas you can speak to our Wanaka Fixer who will send you off in the right direction (not that there is a wrong one)!

8/ A Playground Marathon 

Need to entertain the kids? Then go on a playground adventure and visit some of the best in the area.  Our top picks would be The Dinosaur Park (@ the lakefront), Hawea Park, Luggate Park and Domini Park. There are heaps more, so just ask!

9/ Wanaka Artisan Market

Every Thursday from 3pm a group of talented people set up their stalls outside the Speights Ale House on Ardmore Street along side Bullock Creek. The market runs until 6pm and sells an array of items from artwork to jewellry and delicious foods.......get there early if you want to buy something as the food stalls sell out pretty fast!

10/ Climb A Mountain 

There are plenty of mountains to choose from around Wanaka. For ideas and information, go to www.lakewanaka.co.nz or visit the "Mount Aspiring National Park Visitor Centre" on the corner of Ballantyne Road and Ardmore Street.

Photo from Wanaka Tourism

For more information about any of these activities contact us here.

Release Wanaka's Top 5 Wanaka Family Activities

Posted by Release Wanaka on August 15, 2017

Looking for some fun activities for the whole family?

The team at Release have put together their top 5 family activities in the area to keep everyone happy and entertained.

1/ Cardrona Alpine Resort

Cardrona has plenty to do in both winter and summer. If you are here over the winter months there is of course skiing and snowboarding, but you can also go tubing, hiking and sightseeing. With this years introduction of the Chondola, it is a great way to take in the view without having to put on those skis. Summer months offer just as much fun with Mountain Bike Trails and Mountain Carting. They are also introducing a "Geo Adventures Family Day" - "This is an activity day for new & experienced geo sportsters to experience a range of different activities in our alpine environment. Orienteering & Frisbee Golf courses will be available for anyone & everyone to try & there will be heaps of deals on our usual summer activities!  Bring your friends & family for a fun day out!"

2/ Wildwire

"A Must Do Wanaka Activity. Our via ferrata tours are perfect for anyone who loves waterfalls and beautiful places.  Our tours are also suitable for beginners and families. We start in Wanaka and you will climb alongside Twin Falls, one of Wanaka’s most iconic waterfalls on our via ferrata tour. If you can climb a ladder, you can do it! There are hidden pools beneath towering falls, picnic swimming spots along the way and the views to the surrounding mountains and lakes are breathtaking."

3/ Wanaka River Journeys - Glacier Jet (Heli Combo)

"This is an incredible opportunity to fly by helicopter direct from the jet boat located deep in the mountains, on a thrilling up-close look at the glaciers. On this scenic glacier helicopter flight see hanging valleys where glaciers once lay and waterfalls that cascade from under giants of ice into the streams and rivers that feed into the Matukituki River. Land on the spectacular Isobel Glacier and disembark the helicopter for photos before flying back to join the guided wilderness walk and return leg of the Jet Boat Journey. Flight time with Aspiring Helicopters approx. 25 minutes includes a Glacier landing"

4/ Paddle Wanaka - Heli SUP

"Begin your adventure with a spectacular 40 minute helicopter flight, getting you up close and personal with Titea (Mt Aspiring), and remote glaciers along the way. Once at our secluded mountain lake, 1000m high above sea level,  explore the pristine area, fully guided by a qualified and experienced SUP instructor, before relaxing on the shoreline with a decadent gourmet picnic. Be spoilt once again with more scenic helicopter flying over the stunning landscape below as you return to Wanaka."

5/ Wanaka Bike Tours - Explore the Clutha

"A local favorite! We cut out the hassle and supply your transport, bike, and of course the best guided service! It is the combination of the scenery and terrain which makes this the perfect ride for all abilities. With our local and knowledgable guide, you will get to see and experience so much more that just riding including a cup of tea and some home baking while overlooking the Clutha river as well as finishing off with a delicious lunch at the historic Luggate Pub."

For more information about any of these activities, contact our Wanaka Fixer.

Release Wanaka - The Dacha

Posted by Release Wanaka on August 07, 2017

The Release Wanaka website reads "The Dacha is one of New Zealand's finest residences and epitomises the elegance of modern architecture. Absolute luxury with commanding lake and mountain views." A truer word could not be said of this unique property. A property which was designed by Wanaka architect Eliska Lewis, who was a winner in the Housing Category of the NZIA Southern Architecture Awards this year. The judges described The Dacha as "a generous house designed to take full advantage of an amazing view........the Wanaka house captures the magnificent landscape from every room, and throughout the architect has handled scale thoughtfully and with careful attention to details and materiality."

Can you believe that you can actually stay here? Yes, you can holiday here throughout the year.

Do you have a special occasion coming up ? or a family get together ? or the mother of all ski trips planned ?.....this is the place for you. Not just accommodation but an experience, an entry into your long term memory to share with others forever!

To find out about availability at Release Wanaka - The Dacha, contact us here.

Release Wanaka - The Dacha sleeps up to 16 people, 14 in the main house in 5 bedrooms and 2 people in the extremely stylish self contained apartment - The Banya. It has numerous sitting areas all of which capture the breath taking view of Lake Wanaka. It has a pool, hot tub and beautiful gardens and not forgetting the luxurious interior, it really does have the wow factor!

The main criteria for this build was the view. The owners wanted to capture the view from all rooms, from all angles and they certainly achieved this. The view is awe-inspiring and you would be forgiven to think that it is a backdrop, a painting, a photo shopped picture, but no, it is real and breathtaking!! 

For more information about Release Wanaka - The Dacha, check out our website.

Release Wanaka - Matagouri Ridge

Posted by Release Wanaka on June 29, 2017

Release Wanaka - Matagouri Ridge ticks all the boxes for a luxurious holiday home. Stunning views, a beautiful interior with lush furnishings, fantastic entertaining areas, amazing outdoor spaces and to top it off, a private swimming pool and hot tub. This architecturally designed home radiates comfort and luxury and offers you a chance to stay in one of the most prestigious properties in Wanaka. Located only a 30-min drive to the ski resorts of Cardrona and Treble Cone, this is the perfect place to come home to after a day up the mountain. A hot tub, a glass of wine and an amazing sunset over the lake! Set in the grounds is Matagouri Apartment which has a tennis court, gym and again, fantastic entertaining areas. The main house sleeps 6 and the equally luxurious apartment also sleeps 6. Plenty of space for extended family or 2 families traveling together. With sophisticated style and well thought out interior design this property provides private luxury for weekly stays.

Release Wanaka are offering a promotion at Matagouri Apartment (only) through to the end of September 2017. Stay for 7-nights and pay for 6-nights. A great opportunity to get a group of friends together or a fellow skiing family and head to Wanaka to enjoy the sun, snow and apres ski! For more information regarding this promotion contact Release here.

Release Wanaka - Matagouri Ridge

Wanaka Activities (minus the snow)!

Posted by Release Wanaka on June 19, 2017

Wanaka is a winter wonderland and a snow lovers dream with plenty of snow related activities. But, not everyone is here for the skiing or snowboarding, some of us wish to enjoy the winter months minus the snow!

The team at Release Wanaka have put together their favourite non-snow activites:

1/ Wanaka Wine Tours - "Wanaka Wine Tours has been in operation since 2001. It is the original wine touring company in and around Wanaka. We take you to the best places to sample award winning wines and to hear the local stories. As we travel our friendly and knowledgeable guides will tell you tales and stories of the people and land as you enjoy the stunning scenery." 

2/ Eco Wanaka Adventures - "Come with us to see glaciers in World Heritage Mt Aspiring National Park, or walk through Middle Earth, following the very footsteps of the dwarves and wizard as they traversed the Misty Mountains, as seen in the hobbit movies. Let us take you on a helicopter flight to three pristine Alpine Lakes, Bear Grylls training ground seen in the series “Get out Alive”."

3/ Wanaka Bike Tours - "Wanaka Bike Tours is like no other adventure guiding company. For us, the outdoors is not only a passion, it's a whole lifestyle, and it's this experience we will share with you on each tour. Many of our biking locations are exclusive to us and off the beaten track to really give you a sense of adventure, from NZ's highest heli bike to a breathtaking beautiful leisure ride around Lake Wanaka."

4/ Cardrona Hotel & Cardrona Distillery - Visit the iconic Cardrona Hotel with its rustic charm and delicious, traditional pub food. While you are out that way, take a look at the Cardrona Distillery and join a tour, which run on the hour daily. There is also a photo opportunity beside the Cardrona Bra Fence where donations are appreciated for a great cause!

5/ U-Fly Wanaka - "A U-FLY flight over the beautiful mountains and crystal clear Lake Wanaka offers the finest alpine scenery in the South Island of New Zealand. This may be your first flight lesson - YOUR chance to fly the plane will be an incredible highlight of your holiday. Rated as the #1 must do activity, you will be assisted with an experienced and friendly flight instructor."

If you would like anymore information about these activities or if you would like to enquire about one of Release Wanaka's luxury holiday homes, please contact us here.

Audi Quattro Winter Games New Zealand 2017

Posted by Release Wanaka on May 24, 2017

The fifth biennial Audi Quattro Winter Games 2017 runs from 25th August to 10th September 2017 in Wanaka, Queenstown and Naseby. This is an awesome event to watch with athletes from all over the world competing. 

"Free to watch, this is your chance to see elite athletes compete for glory in one of the world’s top winter sports events. Don't miss our on-mountain music festival with live bands & DJs. 

Winter Olympic, Paralympic and X Games stars are heading to Queenstown, Wanaka and Naseby once again for the first major championships of the season. Fields will be stacked with top athletes desperate to grab early qualification points for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Korea.

Audi quattro Winter Games NZ are one of the world’s top winter sports competitions and the only one in the southern hemisphere. They're also New Zealand’s largest recurring sports event.

Free to watch, this is your chance to see the world’s best compete for glory in freeskiing, snowboarding, alpine ski racing, cross-country skiing and curling. Then enjoy our on-mountain WGNZ music festival featuring some of NZ’s top live bands and DJs.

Join us for a uniquely Kiwi experience that athletes, coaches, judges and spectators all rave about. The relaxed atmosphere, friendly people, sporting action and music festival – it’s going to be the biggest party on southern snow...

...and everything on-mountain is free to watch!

Make the most of your Kiwi winter and join us at the Audi quattro Winter Games NZ 2017. For more info and a full schedule visit wintergamesnz.kiwi."

If you need accommodation during this event, we have a number of available holiday homes. Go to releasenz.com and have a look at our accommodation suitable for couples, families or groups of up to 12 people. Please contact us if you require anymore information.

A New Zealand Vacation

Posted by Release Wanaka on May 16, 2017

Would you love to visit New Zealand?

This small country in the Pacific Ocean with spectacular views, amazing food and wine and endless activities to suit everyone.

Maybe you think it is just too far away?.......it's not.  

Just a 12 hour flight from LA (no visa required if you are visiting from the U.S. for less than 3 months) and you are in Auckland with easy access to the North and South Islands. There are numerous ways of exploring, self drive car/van hire, campervan, domestic flights, bike (if you feel like a challenge), railway, bus/coach or ferries and water taxi's. New Zealand is set up for you the traveler, the holiday maker, the adventure seeker!

Although New Zealand is small and easy to get around, the hardest decision to make will be where to visit. Unless you have unlimited time here you will need to plan your trip to get the most out of your stay. There is literally, so many places, not enough time! There are various ways of doing this either before you arrive or when you are here, but, we genuinely believe that Wanaka is a must see destination and it is only a 1 hour drive from Queenstown International Airport. 

- Photo of Lake Wanaka courtesy of Lake Wanaka Tourism

This lakeside town set in the Southern Alps is a slice of paradise. No matter what time of year you visit you will not be disappointed. The scenery is stunning and the town is buzzing with superb cafes, restaurants and bars. A vacation here can be whatever you want it to be, from an adrenaline filled adventure to a relaxing, spiritual break. Here at Release we can help you to achieve your ideal vacation. Our stunning Vacation Rentals not only cater for your accommodation needs but also provide you with luxurious linens, NZ made toiletries and a fantastic welcome pack containing local wines and treats. Once you are settled into your private abode we can create a bespoke itinerary just for you and your travel companions, check out our Wanaka Fixer service on our website. Release Wanaka can make the most of your time here (at least 3 or 4 days minimum is recommended) and ensure you have lasting memories which, we all know, is what vacations are all about!

Planning a trip to Wanaka?

Posted by Release Wanaka on April 10, 2017

Visiting a new place can be intimidating, especially in Wanaka. You want to make the most of your time here but you don't know where to start.

What activities can we do? Where can we hire bikes? Where are the best places to eat? How can we entertain the kids? What unique things can we do?

Questions which cannot (Shock!! Horror!!), always be answered by a Google search!

This is why Release Wanaka have introduced their "Wanaka Fixer" service. A dedicated team of LOCALS, who have years of experience within the area.  Their extensive local knowledge and endless contacts provide you with all the answers and more. They are like a secret society working underground to find the best places and activities for you to enjoy and the best part is, you don't have to lift a finger.  They will understand your needs, discover the best itinerary for you and your group and process it all, you just need to go out and live it!

From helicopters to go carts and private chefs to mountain top buffets.....if you can think it up our "Wanaka Fixer" can sort it. Contact Release to find out more. Trust me, 'Bespoke Travel' is the way forward!

Wanaka Fixer -"Your Wanaka Fixer uses their unparalleled local knowledge, experience and connections to facilitate and enrich your travel experiences.

Our specialist Wanaka Fixers have an unparalleled local knowledge and offer a unique and diverse range of services. We specialise in creating bespoke, customised itineraries and tailor-made programs that allows you to explore Wanaka just the way you want to.

We are your eyes and ears on the ground before you arrive, your trusted local agent, your airport pick-up or hire car, your concierge, your fishing guide, your ski instructor, your private chef, and your local knowledge. We know where everything is and how to get it.

Whether you're travelling as a family on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday, a couple on a romantic getaway, or a group of friends or corporate colleagues looking for a back stage pass into one of the world's great adventure playgrounds, tell us what you're after and we will make it happen.

Want to know more? Get in touch and we can start planning your ultimate getaway."- www.releasenz.com 

 

A day in the life of a Release Wanaka Guest

Posted by Release Wanaka on March 24, 2017

So as we say goodbye to summer and the temperatures slowly drop our thoughts turn to winter. Snow, skiing, hot tubs, mulled wine, open fires......so much to look forward to!

Wanaka is the ultimate playground in winter for all you winter sports addicts. It can also be a relaxing retreat to unwind and enjoy the crisp, blue sky days surrounded by snowy peaks. Whatever your winter desires are, Release Wanaka can plan a trip to accommodate your needs.

Feeling active? Here's a typical winters day in the life of a Release Wanaka guest:

Wake up to an amazing sunrise over the lake and snow capped mountains. Have a hearty breakfast as you have a busy day ahead. If needed we can organise a private chef to cook you something up. Get on those winter woolies because you will be heading high up into the Southern Alps to experience powder like never before. A helicopter will drop you and your friends on untouched terrain, a day you will never forget. A photographer can head up with you to capture all those amazing memories and views. Lunch will be served amongst the mountains. Once you are all skied out and those legs need a rest you will be transported back to your luxurious accommodation to relax in the hot tub or warm up in the sauna (check out these properties: The Dacha, Apartment1.1, Kelliher Drive). Then, once warmed up, head into town for a slap up meal in one of many fantastic restaurants in Wanaka, but don't stay out too late as you may want to do it all again tomorrow!!

If you are feeling not so active.....maybe this is more for you:

Wake up to an amazing sunrise over the lake and snow capped mountains (sounds familiar!). Think about what you would like for breakfast while you do a few leisurely laps of the pool or maybe a hot tub to watch that amazing sunrise. Head into Wanaka to have breakfast, we can advise of the best places, just ask! Now it's time to decide how you would like to spend your day. A helicopter trip? A vineyard tour to sample many of the stunning wines from the central otago region? A cruise on Lake Wanaka? or, if you just want to chill, grab a good book, curl up and relax in front of the fire (check out these properties for ultimate relaxation: Stone Street, Sunrise Bay, Infinity Drive.) Can't be bothered getting dressed up to go out for dinner, don't worry, a private chef will come to you and serve you gourmet food in the comfort of your own luxury holiday home. Maybe now it is time to get back in that hot tub!!

Release Wanaka - Sunrise Bay

If you like the sound of being a Release Wanaka Guest, we would love to welcome you to Wanaka. There are so many ways to spend your days in this slice of paradise. Contact us to find out more  [email protected].

Release Wanaka's Top 5 Wanaka Restaurants

Posted by Release Wanaka on March 17, 2017

For all you foodie's out there, there is an abundance of good eateries in and around Wanaka. The team at Release Wanaka have put together a list of their top 5. 

1/ Bistro Gentil - With an amazing location looking over Wanaka Golf Course to the lake, Bistro Gentil has a deserved reputation for outstanding food and impressive service.

"Our menus combine the best of New Zealand produce cooked French style - à la française, with a modern twist. Join us to sample house made spreads and wines rarely offered by the glass. In addition to our carefully selected wine list, we offer twenty four wines by the glass, half glass and tasters through our Enomatic self-dispensing wine machines."

2/ Francesca's Italian Kitchen - As you enter Francesca's, a casual, laid back vibe resonates. A great place to catch up with friends with some very tasty food. Don't forget to order the polenta fries!

"At Francesca’s Italian Kitchen we are passionate about authentic Italian cuisine and hospitality. We only use the freshest produce and the finest quality local and imported ingredients."

3/ Kika - Kika is all about sharing and all about getting to taste everything. Can't decide? Try the "Just Feed Me" menu and let the chef decide for you!

"Tapas-style piccolo dishes, that are fun and seasonal; grande-sized sharing main courses, complimented by an array of contorni side dishes, topped off by home-made gelatos and sorbets. Go for the ‘Just Feed Me’ option and enjoy three courses hand-picked by the chef, which can be matched with local beers or wines."

4/ Relishes - You can't go wrong at relishes, every dish is equally as good as the next. Modern kiwi cuisine, across the road from Lake Wanaka. A local favourite!

"With an abundance of local produce, meats, eggs, and wine grown in the Otago region on our doorstep, there is no need to go further afield for ingredients that will create flavours to delight the palate. Dishes highlight seasonal produce, locally found herbs like horopito, free range eggs, and meats that come from the region, some coming from just down the road."

5/ Federal Diner - Tucked down an alley way on the main street you will find fantastic coffee and a superb all day menu. With their wonderful deli next door offering an array of take away options, you can choose to hide away in the restaurant or take your delicious choice down to the lake front.

"We’re open 7.00a.m. everyday and from Wednesday to Sunday we’ll hang around for some shared plates, hearty meals and a cheeky drink or two. Be sure to make a reservation for dinner; you don't want to miss out! We’re the place for good coffee, good food and a welcome hidey-hole in Wanaka; come and see where the locals are fueling up."

Living the High Life on Hogan

Posted by Release Wanaka on March 01, 2017

Release Wanaka - Hogan Lane sits high on the side of a bank looking towards the lake and mountains. With upside down living this property makes the most of its spectacular views. Hogan Lane has recently been completed, so it is brand spanking new. The bedrooms are generous and the bathrooms are slick, including a huge tiled shower in the en-suite with funky black tapware. Sleeping 8 adults, this would be a great pad for a friends get together!

The open plan living area opens up to a large decked balcony, a perfect location for drinks and nibbles at any time of day as it looks out to the view. At the rear, the doors open to a terraced garden with outdoor seating and BBQ. The guys could cook up a storm out the back while the girls sit on the balcony sipping a nice savvy in the sun or maybe a cocktail as the sun sets (just a suggestion)!!

Location is also key with Hogan Lane. It is walking distance to town and the lake (our 'Wanaka Fixer' can advise you of all the sneaky shortcuts) and if you are a Mountain Biker (or would like to be), 'Sticky Forest' is just around the corner, a fun network of forest trails for all abilities.

Release Wanaka - Hogan Lane would be a fantastic base to explore the Wanaka area with your mates. We still have dates available for April including Easter, so get in quick, contact us now!!

Wanaka's Beer Industry

Posted by Release Wanaka on February 20, 2017

Wanaka's beer industry is tastier than ever. With no fewer that 6 micro breweries in this small town, it is becoming a beer connoisseur's destination. Micro breweries are fast taking over the beer industry and why wouldn't they with flavour and quality at the top of their list. In 2017 these 6 businesses are set to brew 300,000L collectively. From "Jabberwocky" to "Mojo Pin" to "Lunatic Fringe", the choice is huge and the taste is even bigger.

Photo courtesy New Zealand Tourism

Here is a run down of Wanaka's 6 local breweries:

1/ Wanaka Beerworks - "Today Wanaka Beerworks is a micro brewery with a 700L copper brew system which produces approximately 100,000L a year. As passionate brewers we want to create as many specialty brews as possible, yet operating a small brewery dictates a limited amount of space so we've kept the original Wanaka Beerworks beers and added the Jabberwocky range of products with the occasional seasonal beer rearing it's head."

2/ B.Effects - "B.Effects philosophy is derived from the Edward Lorenz's Butterfly Effect, and it is built on highlighting small changes in the brewing process that have large effects on the final product. Series of craft beers with small changes in one variable like the hops, yeast, grain and non- traditional adjunct's display how small changes have a great effect on the beer."

3/ Ground Up - "We make beer for the bold, the audacious and the gutsy. We're brewing on the edge, from the ground up, and we love it. Wanaka, N.Z."

4/ Maverick - "Demand craft beer where ever you go, and don't be afraid to be a pest about it. Learn where good beer comes from. Consider who you are giving your money to. Turn your friends on to the pleasures of craft beer...it matters."

5/ Sidewinder - "Sidewinder is a beer crafted for enjoying once the work is done. Apres work, slide, ski, ride, Sidewinder tastes better once earned. Founded by mates, Dave and Luc in the Southern Alps of New Zealand, their micro brewery in Wanaka is their passion, with each brew heaved full of malt, hops, clear water and happiness."

6/ Rhyme & Reason (Coming Soon)

Wanaka is the ultimate place for a beer tasting adventure. Let Release Wanaka organise your luxury holiday accommodation for you, your family and friends and sit back with a 'Brewski' and watch the ever changing scenery. Our Wanaka Fixer can fill your fridge before you arrive with your choice of local beers or you can head into town to the many establishments who serve these unique craft beers. For more information contact [email protected]

An eventful time of year!

Posted by Release Wanaka on February 01, 2017

Wanaka has something for everyone in the way of events. Over the next few months, before the ski season starts, it is jam packed with Sport, Art, Performance and Entertainment. Check out this list for ideas.

1/ Challenge Wanaka: 17th - 18th February

"Challenge Wanaka features one of the world’s toughest and most honest long distance triathlon courses set against the stunning alpine backdrop of New Zealand’s Southern Alps and the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Area. It is New Zealand’s largest triathlon festival, featuring events for all ages and abilities involving over 2,000 participants, attracting 10,000 spectators and a global audience of millions."

2/ Mountain Bike National Championships: 25th - 26th February

"Cycling New Zealand presents the 2017 Altherm Window Systems Mountain Bike National Championships. This is New Zealand’s premier national mountain bike event, attracting New Zealand’s top Cross Country and Downhill Mountain Bike cyclists. The 2017 event will be hosted by Bike Wanaka - Lake Wanaka's Mountain Bike Club in the beautiful Cardrona Alpine Park."

3/ Motatapu - 4th March

"Each year for one day only the pristine trails of the Motatapu welcomes thousands of all-comers to experience one of New Zealand’s favourite off-road sporting events. Set in the stunning Wanaka to Queenstown high country, you'll race through some of the most stunning high country terrain in New Zealand, with five different events to choose from depending on your appetite for scenery or suffering!"

4/ Wanaka A&P Show: 10th - 11th March

"The Wanaka A&P Show is one of New Zealand’s largest agricultural and pastoral events, attracting more than 35,000 people each year. Run over two days and set on picturesque Showgrounds overlooking Lake Wanaka, the Show includes traditional features such as equestrian and livestock events, home industry displays, wool classing and more than 400 trade stalls from around the country."

5/ Breca Wanaka - 25th March

"Breca Wanaka is New Zealand's first swimrun race around the shores of Lake Wanaka. Set in the heart of the Southern Lakes District against the awesome backdrop of the Mt. Aspiring National Park, this race is not for the faint-hearted. Teams will pit themselves against technical trails and deep glacial waters to stake their claim forever as the intrepid pioneers of the New Zealand swimrun scene."

6/ MT Outdoor Half Marathon - 1st April

"The MT Outdoor Southern Lakes Half Marathon will be held on Saturday 1st April 2017 Start time 9am. The course will be down the Cardrona Valley starting from just below the Cardrona Ski Field entrance (parking will be in adjacent field) finishing on Pembroke Park in the middle of town. This may well be the fastest and most scenic Half Marathon in the country."

7/ Festival of Colour: 4th - 9th April

"New Zealand’s best little arts festival returns to the region from 4 – 10 April 2017 bringing with it some of the country’s best cultural performances. This will be our seventh Festival and once again we will bring an outstanding programme of local, national and international arts to the Southern Lakes region. Get ready to surf the Festival wave for seven days and nights of world class music, dance, theatre, comedy, visual arts and Aspiring Conversations. The Festival brings transformational moments and unforgettable experiences to the whole region."

8/ Wanaka Sun Marathon - 8th April

"The Wanaka Sun Marathon Event is an off road sporting event held in April each year and is a great time to experience the autumn colours that really light up the river and forest trail. The Marathon, Half Marathon, 10km & 5km events all start at the Albert Town Tavern on the outskirts of Wanaka. All are loop courses and are run over well groomed trails that meander alongside the beautifully scenic Cluther River."

9/ Contact Epic - 22nd April

"The Contact Epic is about the challenge of circumnavigating the shores of Lake Hawea by mountain bike. Lake Hawea is located on the edge of Wanaka, right next to the Southern Alps in the South Island of New Zealand. The Epic ride is a 125 km journey of discovery about the land, about your bike and about yourself."

10/ NZ Film Festival: 30th June - 9th July

"The NZ Mountain Film Festival is an NZ made event. It began in 2002 and is now internationally recognised as one of the world’s premier mountain film festival events. It is NZ’s original mountain film festival with it’s own international adventure filmmaking competition and highly regarded NZ-made division. Filmmakers receive cash for various awards and the films featured often go on to do well in other similar festivals like the Banff Mountain Film Festival, Sundance Mountain Film Festival, Kendal Mountain Film Festival and Vancouver Mountain Film Festival."

Contact Release Wanaka if you would like anymore information about these events. We can organise anything for you from accommodation and tickets to pre-show dinners and post event massages!

Release Wanaka's Top 5 Wanaka Activities

Posted by Release Wanaka on January 16, 2017

With an overwhelming number of things to see and do in Wanaka, Release Wanaka has put together their Top 5 Activities to make decision making that little bit easier.

1. Heli - SUP

"Begin your adventure with a spectacular 40 minute helicopter flight, getting you up close and personal with Tititea (Mt Aspiring), and remote glaciers along the way.

Once at our secluded mountain lake, 1000m high above sea level, explore the pristine area, fully guided by a qualified and experienced SUP instructor, before relaxing on the shoreline with a decadent gourmet picnic.

Be spoilt once again with more scenic helicopter flying over the stunning landscape below as you return to Wanaka.

This is the perfect outing for those seeking something truly special – be it an unforgettable day out with a group of friends or a romantic get away with someone special."

2. Heli - Bike

"How about landing at 6500 feet on one of New Zealand's highest mountain bike trails. Enjoy a scenic helicopter flight over looking three giant lakes below with breathtaking aerial views of Mt Cook (NZ's highest mountain) and Mt Aspiring towering through the giant snow capped Southern Alps. This is a New Zealand adventure at it's best!

Oh and did we mention this trip also finishes at the area's oldest historic pub!"

3. Wild Wire

"A Must Do Wanaka Activity. Our via ferrata tours are perfect for anyone who loves waterfalls and beautiful places. Our tours are also suitable for beginners and families. We start in Wanaka and you will climb alongside Twin Falls, one of Wanaka’s most iconic waterfalls on our via ferrata tour. If you can climb a ladder, you can do it!"

4. Oxbow - Jet Sprint

"Learn how it feels to fly on water. Literally. This speed demon is the only custom built 4-seater Jet Sprint boat in New Zealand, and guarantees to make a ‘screamer’ out of everyone it has the pleasure of meeting.

"Accelerating at an incredible 0 to 100km in only 2.5 seconds your expert jet sprint boat driver will negotiate you around Oxbow’s very own Aqua-Track before you’ve had a moment to catch your breath. This ride is guaranteed to get you wet!"

5. Drift Fishing

"Drift fishing is a great way to get a long true, natural drift of your fly and to access areas that would be impossible on foot and of course you can fish both sides of the river with ease! A lot easier than bush bashing or boulder hopping your way up a river!

Depending on time of year or time of day or even different sections of the same river on the same day, we could fish various styles.

Nymphs and indicators is a popular way if the fish are deep, dries and droppers, even stripping a streamers like a large woolly bugger can be very effective or our summer favourite which is to drift large terrestrials such as cicadas or blowfly type patterns.

This is an awesome way to fish. Long drag free drifts, watching your fly gently bounce along in the current and waiting for that large snout to appear!"

There you have it, an insiders guide to activities in Wanaka! For more information about these activities, or any other Wanaka activities you may have come across during your Google searches, contact us here.

Challenge Wanaka 2017

Posted by Release Wanaka on January 10, 2017

The countdown is well and truly on for Challenge Wanaka. On February 18th an inspirational crowd of athletes will take to the streets and surrounds of Wanaka to take part in one of the major Wanaka events of the year. Labelled "the world’s most scenic iron distance triathlon", Challenge Wanaka has grown tenfold since it began in 2007.

"Challenge Wanaka features one of the world’s toughest and most honest long distance triathlon courses set against the stunning alpine backdrop of New Zealand’s Southern Alps and the Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Area. It is New Zealand’s largest triathlon festival, featuring events for all ages and abilities involving over 2,000 participants, attracting 10,000 spectators and a global audience of millions.

Part of the legendary Challenge Family global series of long distance triathlons, renowned the world over for their memorable events, Challenge Wanaka is the race of a lifetime for athletes wanting to compete and holiday in paradise. Watch over 1,500 top professional and amateur athletes from all over the globe compete on the world’s most scenic iron distance course in the 3.8km swim in crystal clear waters, the 180km bike taking in two alpine lakes and the 42.2km run which is 75% off-road along the water’s edge.

The festival includes the Puzzling World Junior Challenge for budding triathletes aged six to fifteen. There’s also the 'Swim the Course' during the week before the two highlight events.

The week culminates with the flagship Challenge Wanaka race on Saturday 18 February 2017 which features both full and half distance races. Thousands of spectators line the route and finish chute cheering on these inspirational contenders as they compete in the most arduous of the triathlon disciplines. The finish line is in the heart of the Lake Wanaka township and, in true ‘Challenge’ style, there’s a fun finish line party with music and fireworks to welcome the athletes home late into the night." www.challenge-wanaka.com

If you are taking part and need accommodation or you would like to come and support and experience an amazing event then check out Release Wanaka's website. We have a selection of luxury holiday homes available, perfect for unwinding after a day of pounding the roads (...not just for the athletes but the supporters too). For more information about availability, please contact us via our website here.

2017 Bucket List

Posted by Release Wanaka on January 02, 2017

Happy New Year... here's to a luxurious 2017!

Is Wanaka, NZ on your bucket list this year? It should be.

Located at an altitude of 300 metres, Wanaka is fast becoming one of the world’s great playgrounds. Visitors can venture into the hills and mountains surrounding Wanaka for skiing, heli-skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking, hiking and climbing. Or just enjoy the views!

There are many world-class attractions, sporting activities and adventure opportunities within easy reach of the Wanaka township. Take a scenic cruise on Lake Wanaka, taste world-renowned local Pinot Noir wines or try your luck fishing the many rivers and streams.

Something else for your bucket list should be to stay at Release Wanaka - The Dacha.

The Dacha is one of New Zealand's finest residences and epitomises the elegance of modern architecture. Absolute luxury with commanding lake and mountain views.

Local Otago schist stonework has been featured throughout the property, soaring ceilings are timber-lined delivering warmth and contrast. The main residence has three superb ensuited bedrooms and two generous bunkrooms that offer guests flexibility, depending on their preferred bedding requirements.

The spacious living and entertaining areas all have jaw-dropping views and flow seamlessly onto the balconies and beautifully landscaped private gardens. The Dacha (translates to 'second home' in Russian) is for those who aspire to experience Wanaka and its inspiring landscapes in a private residence that is itself, a stunning work-of-art.

See Release Wanaka - The Dacha.

Release Wanaka - Forty Seven

Posted by Release Wanaka on December 20, 2016

This property enjoys views of Lake Wanaka and the mountains beyond. Bordering a reserve, the property has the advantage of a huge extended garden perfect for the kids to play on and providing that extra bit of privacy.

Forty Seven has recently been fitted out in modern luxurious furnishings. It is a bright and airy home with a fresh feel, just what you need on a summers day. You can relax in the outdoor courtyard, enjoying the landscaped gardens and mountain views with a glass of your favourite wine or create a cocktail in the fully equipped kitchen.

To escape for some time out on your own, head upstairs to the balcony with a coffee and the newspaper.

For the more adventurous, jump on your Mountain Bike at Sticky Forest which is just around the corner. 'Release Wanaka Fixer' can sort you out with bikes amongst other things, or if you fancy a more mellow ride head down to the lake track which will take you around the lake to Wanaka township where you can enjoy cake, ice cream, lunch, coffee, beer, fish and chips (the list goes on) in one of many excellent cafes and restaurants Wanaka has to offer!

Forty Seven still has dates available for this summer, check out the property and calendar on our website @ Release Wanaka - Forty Seven

Win a Wanaka Wedding 2016

Posted by Release Wanaka on December 09, 2016

Imagine winning a wedding of a lifetime?

Well, this couple did and Release Wanaka were honoured to be part of it!

winawanakawedding.com launched the competition in February 2016 for all Australian residents who were planning to marry.

winawanakawedding.com - “Sooooo excited to finally announce what we have been busy working on and why I did a mystery trip to NZ and haven't shared any pics yet...!!! This incredible prize could see you get married in Wanaka, New Zealand, beside an Alpine lake overlooking Mt Aspiring National Park (see location in pic). Aside the Helicopter which will lift you to this isolated and magnificent location you get all your details taken care of by the awesome team below + me as your photographer.

I was pinching myself at the incredible beauty all around me when doing our promo shoot, see the pics here and learn more about the comp at www.bonniejenkins.com.au/win-a-wanaka-helicopter-wedding/ PLEASE SHARE this far and wide as we are so pumped to get this out there. Entries are open to Australian residents.”

Fantail Weddings / Road To Beauty - Makeup, Hair, Beauty / Aspiring Helicopters / Release Wanaka / 1791 Diamonds Ltd / Crimson - Wedding Flowers / Nouba / Anna Campbell / Delicious Catering / Staple+Cloth / Wanaka Selection / George & Edi - Boutique Home Fragrance Company / Gwen Hendry Marriage Celebrant / Bonnie Jenkins Photography / Sharp Hair / Pristine Steaming of Wanaka / Wanaka Party Hire

Image by Bonnie Jenkins Photography

Mia and Ben were the lucky couple to win this wedding trip of a life time. They stayed in the luxurious 'Release Wanaka - Infinity Drive' which sits up on the hill at Peninsula Bay looking out to the lake and mountains.

Everything about Infinity Drive says ‘luxury’, from the decor to the furnishings and art work. No expense has been spared with this superb designer home. The solid masonry home has clean lines and plenty of natural light. An amazing retreat after a day of helicopters, photographs and celebrations!

Congratulations Mia and Ben!

Wanaka Events

Posted by Release Wanaka on December 02, 2016

Heading to Wanaka for your luxury break with Release Wanaka? Then get buying those tickets and entry fees and become part of a musical, sport mad community! Release Wanaka Fixer can help organise your events calendar so you have time to concentrate on your dance moves or training schedule!

Here are a few events that are coming up:

Music Events

Summer and music festivals go together like cheese and wine. Wanaka is no exception when it comes to the summer music festival scene and with New Year approaching there are a number to choose from.

Top Paddock Music Festival - "New Years Eve 2016 will blow your mind with 10 acts from around the globe. Located outdoors in Lake Hawea, an iconic alpine location surrounded by lake and mountains. Genres include: contemporary country, country, rock, pop, blues and roots. We know how hard you work throughout the year - this is your opportunity to play harder."

Wanaka New Year Celebrations - "New Year's Eve for many is a highlight on Wanaka's event calendar. Positioned on the Wanaka Lakefront, the year of 2016 is brought in with a great line-up of live music, entertainment and a spectacular fireworks display lighting up the night sky at midnight.  A great celebration for locals and internationals from around the world. Join the celebrations in the most picturesque surroundings. Free to attend!"

Rhythm and Alps - "The South Island's largest and best dressed music festival is on again December."

Sport Events

For all those athletes among us, there is plenty to keep you busy too.

The Ruby Swim - "From the very competitive 3.8km Big Ruby swim to the 200m Little Gem for the kids - these races are designed to offer a challenging but achievable event. No excuses - if you can swim then you can do The Ruby."

The Big Easy - "But it's not all downhill, with a reasonably hard climb at Sally's Pinch and some quite challenging rutty and rocky downhill bits but the views are more than worth it and the sense of accomplishment at the end will make it all worthwhile."

Sovereign Tri Series - "In its 7th year running, the Wanaka Festival will be part of the 2017 New Year vibes. The off road run and breath-taking views of the mountain ranges will give you the ultimate tri experience."

Far Horizon

Posted by Release Wanaka on November 25, 2016

Planning a family get together? or maybe a friends reunion?

Release Wanaka - Far Horizon offers space, views and all the mod-cons. Set in the exclusive neighbourhood of 'Far Horizon' on an acre site, this property is surrounded by countryside but is still within walking distance of Wanaka town centre and the lake.

Sleeping 8 comfortably in 4 bedrooms, there is plenty of room for that extended family. Throw a DVD on for the kids in the separate living room and relax in the open plan dining/living/kitchen area, with views out over the garden to the mountains beyond. With large sliding doors out to the deck and spa pool, relax and enjoy the sunset or grab a cold one from the fridge and a friend or two and decide who’s going to be batting or fielding for that compulsory game of summer cricket on the huge lawn!

If you think you are a bit of a ‘Gordon Ramsey’ then you will love the fully equipped kitchen with everything you could possibly need to get creative with some local produce. On the other hand, if you really can’t be bothered cooking, lets face it, you are on holiday, then let our ‘Release Wanaka Fixer’ organise a private chef to come in and do the creating for you!

Luxury, views and space at Release Wanaka - Far Horizon.

Release Wanaka - Apartment 1.1

Posted by Release Wanaka on November 18, 2016

Who wouldn’t want to stay somewhere with views like this?

This apartment in the centre of Wanaka oozes luxury. From the sumptuous furnishings to the luxurious linens this holiday apartment ticks all the boxes for a couples getaway. With two large bedrooms each with ensuites boasting spa baths, there is plenty of room for 4 adults to relax in style. And, if you are looking to relax just that little bit more, jump into the private sauna and let those worries disappear!

Apartment 1.1 is located right in the centre of the little slice of paradise we call Wanaka. Forget about jumping in the car to grab a drink and a meal at one of the many first class restaurants Wanaka has to offer. Walk out that front door and you are there, surrounded by cafes, restaurants, shops, ice-cream parlours, hairdressers, beauty salons... the list goes on! And, to top it off, you are a 25m stroll to Lake Wanaka where you can sit and watch the ever changing view or partake in the numerous activities such as Water-Skiing, Stand Up Paddle Boarding or on those hot Central Otago days, a swim to cool off. Release Wanaka can organise any activity you wish to experience, click here to find out more.

So, after a day of drinking coffee, eating gelato and cooling off at the lake, wander back to the apartment, grab a glass of pinot and sit back and watch the sunset from your very own balcony!

Release Wanaka - Apartment 1.1 - sunset over Lake Wanaka.

Bike'Vember

Posted by Release Wanaka on November 11, 2016

Over the course of November, Wanaka has become biking mad (as if they weren’t already)! Bike’Vember was introduced to the town to encourage people of all ages to get on that bike more often!

"The goal is healthier and happier people, quieter roads, stronger community, a nicer town to live in. On top of that, fundraising will contribute to finishing a project that will benefit anybody in our community: a ramp onto the Hawea River swing bridge. During the whole month, lots of events are organised and we encourage anyone to organise group rides or other social events celebrating human powered transport." From 'Double Shot Dawn Riders' to 'Wanaka Kids Club Bike Friday', there is an event for everyone. Check out the Events Calendar here.

BIke’Vember ends with the ‘Grand Finale - Frocks and Tweeds on Bicycles’ on November 30th; "To celebrate, dress up and come for a social ride through town. Decorate your bike, wear a frock or your finest tweed. We meet at the Dinosaur park at 5pm, ride from 5.30 to 6pm. We’ll have extra decorations for you and your bike. At 6.15pm: prize-giving for riders who have filled their 'Bike'vember passports' out (don’t forget to bring your passports!) and spot prizes for the best dressed!"

Wanaka has some of the best Mountain Biking tracks in the area, from an easy cruise along the Lakefront to the more advanced tracks of Deans Bank or the Hikuwai Circuit. If you are looking for a bit of fun check out Sticky Forest. "This fun network of trails makes the best of exotic pine forest in Wanaka township. There are over 20 tracks to choose from; from the technical switchbacks of Stumpy and Yumpts, to the beautiful berms of Venus, to Crankin' Fine's legendary uphill corkscrew, these trails are expertly designed to be enjoyed by beginners and pros alike." - Wanaka NZ

Release Wanaka has luxury holiday accommodation that are a hop, skip and jump to Sticky Forest. If you are keen to ride all day with the option of popping home for a quick snack, check out these properties - Edgewood Place, Infinity Drive, Forty Seven, Clutha Place and Kirimoko. We can also organise a tailor made luxury biking trip for you and your friends... click here to find out more.

Summer Holidays

Posted by Release Wanaka on November 05, 2016

As summer fast approaches the thought of holidays enter our heads. Wanaka is not only a fantastic winter destination but it is pretty good in summer too!

With the crystal clear water of Lake Wanaka at our doorstep and some astounding surroundings there is an abundance of activities for the adventurous and non-adventurous alike.

If you are looking for something to get that adrenaline pumping then maybe free falling from 15,000ft will do the trick or possibly a high speed jet boat down the Clutha River. If on the other hand you would prefer something a little more sedate, then grab that fishing rod and head on down to the river, or, sit back, relax and take in the views that surround this amazing location.

We think the best way to experience Lake Wanaka, is to get on it. Stand Up Paddle Boarding, Kayaking, Sailing or a Luxury Cruise are some of the ways to get out on the water and see the area from a different perspective.

Here at Release Wanaka we have the local knowledge to make that summer holiday unforgettable. With our 'Wanaka Fixer' in tow you can experience the best this area has to offer. Click here to find out more.

Release property featured in Robb Report article

Posted by Release Wanaka on November 05, 2015

The Managers House has been featured in an article entitled 'Five Beautiful New Zealand Vacation Villas'.

"New Zealand is one of the most beautiful countries in the world thanks to its varied and largely unpopulated landscapes, which range from rugged mountains to the scenic coastline. While the country has its fair share of upscale lodges and hotels, a new crop of luxury villas are offering a more intimate way to enjoy the scenery with all the comforts of a five-star hotel."

"California's Marmol Radziner architects (who restored Richard Neutra's famed midcentury-modern Kaufmann House in Palm Springs, Calif.) collaborated with local architects to create The Managers House, a striking luxury vacation rental that merges into a barren hillside along Lake Wanaka. The long, thin footprint - a signature Marmol design element - allows for views of the mountains from every room. The great room incorporates a kitchen, a living room with an open fireplace, and an indoor/outdoor dining room. A wall made of shimmering gray Gibbston Valley schist runs from the living room to the patio and includes an outdoor fireplace and benches. The master suite and two other bedrooms are located in an adjacent wing. From the heated outdoor swimming pool, guests can take in views of rolling farmland and vineyards..." See the article

Foodie Friday - How to do 'luxury' in Lake Wanaka

Posted by Release Wanaka on September 08, 2015

We’ve all dreamed of holidays like the rich and famous. Idyllic days of heli skiing in winter, boating in summer, private wine tours, chartered flights into the glorious wilderness of Mt Aspiring National Park or Fiordland or Milford Sound – yes, I’m quite sure we can all see ourselves there wearing our Prada sunglasses and Karen Walker Halifax coat. But what if I told you it’s actually possible? What if you could have it in the most beautiful place in the world?

Well it is totally doable in the Lake Wanaka region!

Release Wanaka have a stunning portfolio of properties available and if you pull a few friends together – you too can live it up lush from $230.00 per night!

One such gorgeous property is The Managers House located on the Hawkesbury Wine Estate. The design of the house is exquisite – every detail attended to with architectural attentiveness – from the in ground lap pool to the cosy TV loft to the hidden pantry and cupboard space of deceptive volume. Utterly impeccable, but it’s the special touches, the value-add inclusions which makes The Managers House stand out.

The house is situated on a vineyard that produces what might be the most divine Pinot Noir I have tasted yet. I am partial to a good Pinot, heavy with berry fruits with a velvety finish, and Akitu answers every wine prerequisite on my list. Opening the bottle was like unleashing the renaissance.

And like all the Release properties, The Managers House comes with your own private chef if required. Oh, yes, absolutely required!

Leungo Lippe comes with a broad and impressive epicurean vintage. From Marco Pierre White in London to Botswana Butchery in Wanaka, Leungo is the man behind BoaBoa Food Company private catering and his three course Saturday night meal was so scrumptious, we may as well have been in a 5 star restaurant – minus the other guests!  Cauliflower soup with prawns, beef fillet with Asian greens and a crème brulee topped with fresh berries silenced the table. No one was talking – everyone was eating!

Perfect for families or a couple of couples, The Managers House is a stunning example of luscious living – and the views are absolutely amazing!

Article reposted from lakewanaka.co.nz

Live like a gazillionaire in Wanaka from $210 a night

Posted by Release Wanaka on August 05, 2015

Some days my job sucks. Today is not one of them.

I am writing this from my villa on the outskirts of Wanaka in New Zealand's South Island. Not that you'd call this a villa, it's more an estate, a wonderland, a bubble in which uber rich people retreat.

They call it Horseshoe Bend Estate. 'They' are Release Wanaka, a villa management company that specialises in all inclusive homes, villas, retreats, estates, bubbles, call it what you will.

My alter ego, Mary Millionaire, is in her element. She's the one that drinks French, drives German, smokes Cuban and wears Italian and puts it all on someone else's tab that eventually ends up with me.

I don't have the heart to tell her that Horseshoe Bend is ours for only three nights for fear she will throw a tantrum and pack up the Bromley artwork under her arm from the Main House before leaving. I just can't afford to cover that kind of dummy spit.

Not that you could blame her. The wonderland we find ourselves in features a Main House, a Guest House and a Pool House. Three houses that together sleep twelve and just beg a bucks party, girls weekend, yoga retreat, family reunion, big birthday or wedding.

There's a resort style swimming pool lined with palm trees and flamingos, a sunken hot tub and a state of the art steam room. But wait there is always more. An outside fire pit alongside a petanque sand pit and a stainless steel beer pit you can fill with ice and your favourite cold ones or get 'the staff' to do it for you.

Fancy perfecting your golf swing? Try the tee.

Got kids? Throw them on the kids trampoline and playground.

Love tennis? A private coach will come and play with you day or night under the lights.

Yes, there's still more. A lake they call a pond complete with fountain, sustainable vegetable garden, an edible forest and an outside entertaining area with pizza oven and open fire worthy of a Justin Hemmes gourmet pub.

The ever present mountains act as an amphitheatre on all sides with the Hawea River nearby and you'll find Wanaka a five minute drive down Albert Town Road. Unless you have a helicopter, then you can use the retreat's heli pad on the main lawn. As you do.

Mary loves the quirky elements of style and design. The heated bathroom floors, the giant pots that act as outside lamps, the pink flamingoes, the exposed stone, the blackened timber, the wood piles, the sheep that run to the gate, the lounges to sink into and the high tech lighting, security and media systems. And the art, she loves the art. Beautiful splashes of renowned artist colours that brighten the neutral tones.

Of course we fought over who loved Leungo Lippe, our private chef, more. Lippe worked under Marco Pierre White in London and spent time at Criterion and L'escargot in London. He also worked at Red Sage in Washington and Pegasus Bay in New Zealand before opening Botswana Butchery in Wanaka and Queenstown.

He is now the name behind BoaBoa Food Company private catering and served up activated lentil soup with prawns as our entree before sticky ginger rice with twice cooked slow roasted pork belly and sautéed bok choy. This was followed by creme brûlée and a thousand compliments (from us to him).

Don't tell Mary but Horseshoe Bend Estate is actually affordable. The main house sleeps 6 and can be rented for NZ$1250 a night which when split amongst three couples is cheaper than most hotels in peak season. You could take over the whole complex from NZ$2500 for 12 people too.

Mary would prefer to keep it to herself though, she's like that.

Article courtesy of Snows Best, published July 14, 2015

Wanaka's Food Revolution

Posted by Release Wanaka on August 27, 2013

There's a culinary revolution happening in Wanaka. Whether it's French, Italian, fusion, tapas, fast or slow food you're after, this movement seems to have found its stride. We did our due diligence and recently visited a few of the new eateries on the block, again.

BoaBoa Food Company

BoaBoa is the latest creation of Leungo Lippe, the guy we have to thank for award winning eatery, Botswana Butchery. Leungo's burger combinations, whether meat, veggies or fish are so original and delicious that I now find myself eating there at least once a week. If burgers aren't your thing, fear not, wraps, fish and chips, fried chicken, smoothies, fresh juices and seasonal salads are among the other goodies you'll find on the menu.

BoaBoa is open 7 days a week from 10am-10pm. 137 Ardmore Street / 03 443 1234

Francesca's Italian Kitchen

The younger, albeit bigger, sister to the iconic Francesca’s mobile wood fired pizza trailer is Francesca's Italian Kitchen. FIK is one of the newest eateries to be gracing our bellies and our wallets, with no main priced over $25. Between the handmade gnocchi, truffle infused potato skins, fine Italian wines and Peroni on tap, you're sure to leave with a full belly and a satisfied smile.

Francesca’s is open 7 days a week from 12pm-3pm for lunch and 5pm-late for dinner. Bookings are essential for dinner. 93 Ardmore Street / 03 443 5599

Urban Grind

If you happen to find yourself at Urban Grind on a Monday morning, you'll likely run in to a few of the Release Wanaka folks. It's our treat to ourselves at the start of the week. We nestle into a sunny spot in the courtyard or, on cold days, by the roaring fire and drink coffee until we're buzzing. To refuel, we order either the Spanish or Turkish Baked Eggs and then we're set up for a great rest of the week. UG is also well known in town for their delectable hot chocolate.

Urban Grind is open 7 days a week, 8.30am-midnight. 47 Helwick Street / 03 443 5152

Bistro Gentil

The views of Lake Wanaka from Bistro Gentil are nearly as good as the food, and the view is breathtaking. I thought it impossible to top the starter of Quiche du Bistro, which features caramelized onion and leek, a wild watercress emulsion and goat's cheese cream. Then I had my main of Agneau Deux Façons, a slow cooked Cardrona lamb rump and braised lamb shoulder – tout à fait délicieux! (absolutely delicious!) With your appetite satiated, take a glass of Gallic wine to the lawn and give Pétanque (French bowls) a try.

Bistro Gentil is open Wednesday to Sunday from 11am-late. 76a Golf Course Road / 03 443 2299

Yoga Studio Opens its Doors in Wanaka

Posted by Release Wanaka on August 11, 2013

The newest member of Wanaka’s budding business community received quite a welcoming on opening night. Hot Fusion Yoga opened its doors this weekend and I could barely find a spot to unroll my mat.

Nicci Huston, who most recently taught Bikram, Ashtanga, Yin & Hatha yoga at Studio Sangha & Bikram Yoga Queenstown with Peggy Preston, has let loose her passion and vision on Wanaka. Lucky us!

Coming from the (western) mecca of yoga, Los Angeles, I must admit that I found great comfort at the sight of people strolling down our quaint, beautiful streets adorned in Lululemon garb and colourful yoga mats clutched at their sides.

The buzz inside the deliciously warm studio was evidence enough that Wanaka is ready for what Hot Fusion Yoga is offering: a place to practice, to come together, to create community, to breathe and to leave feeling relaxed, recharged and basking in the afterglow of a damn good yoga class.

To learn more about Hot Fusion Yoga, visit their website or find them on their Facebook page.

WOMENZone

Posted by Release Wanaka on April 17, 2013

WOMENZone, created by the newest member of Release Wanaka’s team, Prairie Pritchett, is dedicated solely to developing and offering packages that are created by women, for women.

The first foray of WOMENZone comes with an exciting partnership with Jo Guest of the international organisation, Mission WOW.

The course is aimed at proficient skiers who want to develop their off-piste skill base and confidence and, ultimately, to introduce them to the wonders of backcountry touring. The first two days are spent honing off-piste skills under the tuition of outstanding local female instructors. On days 3 and 4, the women take what they’ve learned and venture into the backcountry with two world-renowned female Himalayan guides to learn backcountry travel and safety skills.

Luxurious evenings are spent at a more leisurely pace, indulging with in-house restorative yoga classes and massage treatments. Gourmet dining experiences featuring menus specially designed to refuel and nourish active bodies, combined with private wine tasting from local award-winning wineries round off the day.

With the guides, instructors and special guests we have lined up there will be no shortage of inspiration, conversation and entertainment.

New Developments

Posted by Release Wanaka on December 12, 2012

We have had a few developments at Release recently. After successfully selling our flagship property ‘Release: Private Retreat’, the new ‘Release Wanaka’ was born and we have been very busy expanding our operations to include a hand-picked selection of the finest accommodation and experience options available in Wanaka.

We are currently designing new and exciting skill development packages for those of you that are after personal challenge. Combine our local knowledge and carefully designed itineraries to give you the ultimate Wanaka experience, an adventure holiday that broadens your horizons and develops your skills. So whether you are a beginner looking to try a new hobby, an intermediate or expert wanting to step-up your game, or a travel enthusiast looking for a unique Wanaka experience, Release Wanaka has something for everyone.

Mother Nature provides perfect start to winter in Lake Wanaka

Posted by Release Wanaka on June 28, 2012

Lake Wanaka, recently named amongst the top 25 ski resort towns in the world by National Geographic Magazine, is poised to live up to its reputation. Mother Nature has provided a perfect start to the 2012 winter season, delivering over 50 centimetres of fresh powder to the region this week.

"The timing couldn’t have been better for those travelling to Wanaka for the school holidays," said James Helmore, general manager of Lake Wanaka Tourism. "All four ski areas will be open by Friday (29 June) and the new snow will allow the mountains to put plenty of terrain on offer."

Seen as one of the world’s premier adventure towns, Lake Wanaka gets the most snow in New Zealand, with over 4 metres (160in) in an average season.

Its four mountain resorts combine to offer a wide variety of skiing, snowboarding and cross country terrain. Home to many of New Zealand’s elite snow sports athletes; Wanaka offers everything from perfectly groomed beginner slopes to powdery steep slopes that promise to get the adrenaline pumping. Those looking for time in the air can take advantage of world-class park and pipe facilities and, on any given day, will likely be skiing or riding alongside some of the world’s best. Wanaka is also home to New Zealand’s only cross country ski area, Snow Farm which provides a truly unique experience for those looking to improve their fitness while enjoying the peace and quiet of the winter outdoors.

Visitors to Lake Wanaka can also take advantage of the areas new OnePassNZ, which provides unlimited freedom to ski and ride at eight of the South Islands favourite mountain resorts, including all four Wanaka resorts (Cardrona, Treble Cone, Snow Park and Snow Farm).

"What makes this pass unique is that it allows visitors freedom to ski any of the eight mountains as they choose," says Nigel Kerr, Treble Cone marketing manager. "Beyond that, the pass can also be used to rent gear, take lessons, eat in local restaurants and experience an array of other activities like skydiving, jet boating, spas, vineyards and more."

"It’s magical when the peaks surrounding Wanaka are covered in white," said Helmore. "The town is buzzing and we’ve once again become a winter wonderland."