Solitaire Lodge is located on a private peninsula on the shores of Lake Tarawera, about 20 minutes drive from Rotorua, the geothermal wonderland of New Zealand.
There is a vast history in the region, with particular significance being the 1886 eruption of Mount Tarawera destroying the famous Pink and White Terraces that were a tourist attraction in that era.
Today, the tranquillity of the lakeside location is prominent and upon arrival at the main ornate wrought iron gates at Solitaire Lodge you know you have reached a little slice of heaven.
Lakeside Luxury Escape
Solitaire Lodge is a 5-star property with exceptional standards that define membership with Lodges of NZ and Small Luxury Hotels (SLH). The 10 luxury accommodation Suites are testament to a secluded luxury lodge featured in Condé Nast Traveller, and we agree that the lakeside setting is the Lodge’s biggest asset with floor-to-ceiling panoramic windows allowing guests to appreciate the views.
There are 4 categories of Suites – Executive, Tarawera, Villa and Solitaire – each with their own luxury twist. Black Label enjoyed the Executive Suite which we found to be fresh and bright, which is instantly appealing as soon as you enter with a big, soft luxurious King bed taking pride of place in the centre of the room and a well-appointed ensuite bathroom. The tariff is all-inclusive with the complimentary mini-bar well stocked and other lovely touches such as fresh fruit, nuts and home baked cookies.
The hero of the Suite was the magnificent views, and a balcony which is ideal for relaxing with a drink in hand, cheese platter or a good book. One of our favourite aspects of the Executive Suite was a deep set freestanding bath set into a sunny private nook on the balcony – an indulgent experience at its best!
A lovely feature of the Lodge facilities is the fact they draw from the local region to enhance their offering to the luxury accommodation sector. For example, being located in Rotorua, naturally the Lodge Spa utilises the bounty from the earth with a range of massage and spa treatments that harness the benefits of New Zealand native plant extracts.
Sip & Savour: World Class Gastronomy
Pre-dinner drinks and canapés were served in the main Lodge sitting room in front of the open fireplace. The room layout and décor lends to a relaxed ambiance with comfy armchairs and sofas allowing guests to socialise as much (or as little) as they like.
Tania Stoyanof, Black Label’s Founder, had already experienced a delicious lunch of chicken Caesar salad and pea and mint ravioli so she held high expectations for dinner service.
Dinner was sensational with contemporary New Zealand cuisine matched with the nation’s finest wines. We understand the Lodge uses fresh herbs and vegetables from its own garden which is important to many of our sustainability-conscious clients who follow a ‘pasture-to-plate’ ethos, as well as indigenous ingredients such as piko piko.
The menu featured five-courses with dishes such as cured Aoraki (Mt Cook) salmon and Duck Leg Confit with kumara croquettes, baby beets, carrots and a soy and ginger jus paired with 2012 Craggy Range Gimblett Gravels Syrah.
Breakfast featured fresh fruit, pastries and conserves or cooked options. Black Label feels Solitaire Lodge’s quality of food was a huge highlight of our stay.
How to get to Solitaire Lodge
Rotorua is a major tourism hub with great transport accessibility – from Auckland, the Lodge is approximately 3-4 hours (self-drive) and 5-6 hours from Wellington. Getting to the Lodge by car is very pleasant; you follow a narrow winding road running beside Lake Tarawera, passing the Buried Village and numerous lakeside homes.
Rotorua is also serviced by an International Airport, and Black Label recommends private helicopter transfers to allow maximum time to relax and enjoy Rotorua’s unique landscape from above – mudpools, volcanic craters, redwood forests and glistening lakes. We can book your helicopter transfers to connect to other airports, cities and luxury lodges with landings and take-offs at the Lodge possible as they have direct helicopter access on the property between 9am-5pm with advance notice.
Activities & Sightseeing
Rotorua is a fantastic destination to begin or conclude your luxury New Zealand travel itinerary with lots of things to see and do. Solitaire Lodge itself has a private beach for lake swimming, a private jetty with kayaks and motorised dinghies for guest use, as well as a powerboat for lake excursions to the private bays or nearby natural hot mineral pools for a soothing soak.
Black Label can arrange trout fishing (guided or non-guided excursions), golf days, hiking, cycling, Maori culture tours or heli excursions to White Island or Mount Tarawera.
Contact Tania today to book your luxury lakeside getaway in New Zealand at Solitaire Lodge.