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queenstown favourites

April 18, 2017 |Comments

Queenstown sits on the shore of the South Island’s crystal clear Lake Wakatipu, set against the dramatic Southern Alps, and is one of New Zealand’s premier holiday destinations. It is a fabulous base to explore the region’s historic mining towns and vineyards, and for all you adventure seekers, a great place to go bungee jumping and skydiving (that I haven’t found the courage to do).
And since everyone was asking, I’ve rounded off my favourite spots around Queenstown, including my stay at The Spire Hotel. If you like this expansive view of Lake Wakatipu (below) as much as I do, you’ll be happy to know it is literally a few steps away from the hotel.

 

Quite frankly, my place of stay at The Spire Hotel was so luxurious yet cosy that I struggled to leave my room every morning. It comes as no surprise then, that the hotel offers award winning luxury Queenstown accommodation where genuine hospitality, serenity and style uniquely combine. With just 10 suites and a characterful cocktail bar, it’s the destination of choice for those with an eye for detail and an appreciation of stellar service. To top it off, the hotel is conveniently located within walking distance of Queenstown’s vibrant cultural scene, including shops, cafes, nightlife and four season lake and mountain resort activities.

Most of all, we had great views of the church spire that gives the hotel its name, while king-size beds, luxe linens, stone-clad fireplaces, design classics and large private balconies feature in all suites. And the service is as inviting and welcoming as the room upon arrival: already lit fireplace, free bottle of champagne and chocolates, warm rug to snuggle up with a book, and there’s even a bath so big it soaks up all my aches. Do note though, the hotel might take a bit of finding as it is up a pedestrian lane, but valet parking is included so drop it off at the nearby loading zone and let reception know (they will grab your luggages and park the car for you promptly).

If you want to explore thrill-seeking tours or a family day trip, The Spire Hotel will even plan it for you. In fact the general manager, James, tried hard to push for a helicopter ride during our stay except the weather was almost unforgiving, but an organised lunch at The Grille by Eichardt’s made up for it. Serving sincerely memorable experiences mere footsteps from The Spire Hotel and the shores of Lake Wakatipu, this outstanding dining hub warmly welcomes both locals and visitors alike, where home-grown, free-range, and locally sourced produce is at the forefront of an authentic dining experience in Queenstown’s premier lakefront restaurant.

Pictured above: Seasonal bluff oysters, homemade parpadelle with special-of-the-day prawns and Eichardt’s wagyu cheeseburger. 

 

The lookout from Bennett’s Bluff (above) is one to catch at sunrise, as we did, but bring lots of warm layers as it can get quite chilly at six in the morning. How to: less than half hour drive from The Spire Hotel.

The highest highway in New Zealand, the Crown Range Road connects Wanaka and Queenstown. As above, the view from Crown Range summit lookout is one not to be missed. These were taken during sunset and we were lucky enough to catch a dreamy stream of light in a passing moment. How to: less than half hour drive from The Spire Hotel.

 

We rode up Skyline Queenstown Gondola, the steepest cable car lift in the Southern Hemisphere, to the top of Bob’s Peak – a must-do in Queenstown. Marvel at the incredible view (above) from 450 metres above Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu. How to: less than ten minutes walk from The Spire Hotel.
Lastly, Coronet Peak (below) may be well received during winter months when snow activities are available, but the view during autumn isn’t much to complain about too. How to: less than half hour drive from The Spire Hotel.

 

 

red hill quarry

November 8, 2016 |Comments

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The demand for this post has been unbelievable, but first of all let me just say: please enter at your own risk and thread extremely carefully. Rangers frequently patrol the region so we can assume it’s unsafe for the public, and being in the area may result in a fine. Fellow Perth explorers have been kind enough to share the secret spot with me so if you do venture here, I trust that you will take very, very good care of the location. Lastly, if you know where to look, you’ll come to realise that the locals have already openly shared the exact map coordinates over the past few months, so me sharing my experience in a blog post won’t make much of a difference.

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Wearing – Lack of Color montana wide brim fedora hat in ivory – shop similar hat in silver haze and Rag & Bone wool and leather wide brim fedora / Fluffy shaggy wool-blend coat – shop similar Pepe Jeans osier shaggy faux fur coat and LPA faux fur coat 30 

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Map out coordinates -31.822064, 116.055090 and this is what you should see on your map – the coordinates given indicate the dropped pin along William Street, while the other star points to the Red Hill Quarry. You’ll have to park along or at the end of this street, and then follow the path upwards. The uphill trail is rather rocky, but nothing too serious – and a return trip will take approximately 1-2 hours. If it gets confusing, refer to your phone’s satellite map all the way and you should be able to find it. There’s also another quarry nearby (I wrote about it here) that guarantees a shorter trip, but is not as scenic. Anyway, have fun exploring and please thread cautiously!

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aqua blue

October 17, 2016 |Comments

Over the weekend, my family and I took to the road exploring some of Perth’s hidden sweet spots. This is a stunning mineral quarry we found that was not too far off from the instafamous Red Hill Quarry (more on that in my next posts), and the water was truly that aqua blue. It wasn’t the easiest to get to though, since there were many boulders we had to overcome, but the view was more or less worth it and I love how my top coincidentally complements the scene. Trekking back was a tad more tricky and I’m not the best at balancing on steep, large rocks so thankfully I had some help. I wouldn’t recommend going alone but if you’re cat-like with nine lives, why not. The drive is half an hour from Perth City, so what you’ll want to do is map out coordinates -31.830581, 116.099332 and park at this spot where there are huge tyres blocking a clear pathway. Once you cross over or squeeze past these tyres, walk straight for ten minutes and you’ll come to an open area overlooking some trees and large rocks. Keep moving in the same direction for a few more minutes and you’ll be able to spot the aqua blue quarry. From there, it’s up to you however you want to manoeuvre your way down to this charming site.

 

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Please just remember to tread carefully and not damage or litter on location so others can appreciate the place. I’ll be combing some other local spots this week so if you’re curious, I’ll be on Instagram!

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