Combine intimate charm with luxurious touches
Hidden away among the native New Zealand bush, close to the seaside town of Whitianga, the lodge commands views out across Cooks Beach onto the Mercury Bay. It’s the sort of sublime beauty that has made the Coromandel Peninsula so attractive, drawing day trippers the two and a half hours’ drive from Auckland. However, linger a little longer for the next-door Shakespeare Scenic Reserve and spend some serious time on its expansive bays of white sand. It’s also possible to drive round to the western side of the peninsula – perhaps stopping for its central mountain trails – for a wilder New Zealand, full of dramatic stony coves.
Host to just four suites, one of 970 Lonely Bay’s best features is its sense of intimacy. And, while they all have their own character, each offers a king size bed, fine linens and an outdoor terraces with either bush views or estuary panoramas. Inside, considered design touches tread the line between contemporary and traditional with skylights adding to oversize windows. A particular highlight is the two bedroom Estuary Terrace whose wraparound deck offers superlative views.
Choosing intimacy over celebrity, meals are taken in the dining room or – in good weather – on the patio with the select few other guests. Start the day with a continental breakfast with fresh fruit and homemade yoghurt standing next to the cooked options among the highlights. From here, you’ll enjoy flexible dining with food cooked to order by your gracious hosts; there’s everything from picnic hampers and vintage afternoon teas to indulgent dinner sand even Christmas lunches. Alternatively, make your way to nearby Cooks Beach for sophisticated tapas.
At the lodge, you’ll find plenty of room to relax in the library, fireplace-heated ‘snug area’, solarium and manicured garden, enhanced by feature lighting. There’s also WiFi to stay connected along with a range of activities on offer. Drive out to the coast for boat tours, cove kayak trips and plenty of dive and snorkel sites. Be sure to visit the famed Hot Water Beach to dig your very own hot tub in the sand. Alternatively, visit The Lost Springs to be waited on by attentive staff while you enjoy the heated waters.
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