Rain or shine, it’s stunning. You can’t go wrong with this place. Luke and Kaye have spent a lot of time putting it together with love, care, and complete respect of their environment. You can feel their attention to every detail as soon as you walk through the door. The place is gorgeous, the energy serene, even the dogs are good company! We enjoyed the proximity to Mt Cook, the walks in the area, the delicious food, the majestic beauty of the place, the night skies, and above all the silence and privacy. I spent several hours just watching the colours of the sky and nature at different times of the day…and “stargazing 101” through Luke’s telescope was a wonderful experience too, on a very clear night. Thanks again to both of you for one of the most relaxing stays we’ve ever had.
Total comfort in a postcard-perfect setting. Kudos to owners Luke and Kaye for designing this marvelous lodge, which is located on a grassy lawn in the wilderness, perched above the incredibly-blue waters of Lake Pukaki. Mt Cook appears in the middle of the expansive view, at the far end of the lake, and can be seen even while lying in bed. The rooms are large and very comfortable, and there’s a nice fireplace in the living room. Everything from tennis rackets, exercise room, sauna, and hot tub are available for use. And don’t forget the charming boutique wine cellar (stocked with quality local wines) and adjacent observatory (with 6-inch refracting telescope). The lodge is in the Dark Sky Reserve, meaning one can see more stars and galaxies than from almost anywhere else on earth. And if that’s not enough – the lodge has an amazing chef (and we’re not easy to please) who brings a superb dinner to you every evening.
Our stay at the Retreat was memorable and the highlight of our 5-week trip to Australia, New Zealand and Japan. The views from our villa were breathtaking of the surrounding mountains and on the walks in the grounds there were beautiful vistas of Lake Pukaki and Mt Cook. The Retreat has everything, luxurious accommodation, beautifully designed and furnished interiors and your private hot tub for gazing at the stars. Kaye, Luke and all their staff were a delight, nothing was too much trouble. You can dine in the luxury of your own accommodation or enjoy dinner hosted and entertained with other guests in a baronial dining room. A choice of home grown food was available for breakfast and dinner – from the garden, with meat and fish sourced locally and cooked exquisitely by their chef. A hidden treat was the observatory Luke has built in the grounds with the opportunity to gaze at the the night sky totally unpolluted by electric light.