New Zealand is getting more popular with American tourists lately, thanks to favorable exchange rates and world class vineyards. Like most of New Zealand’s wine regions, the Wairarapa has many vineyard and lodging choices for travelers. Martinborough is one of New Zealand’s best wine regions and is an utterly charming former sheep center. For the best four star lodging, it’s hard to beat Peppers Parehua in Martinborough with its vineyard location.
A good choice of lodging packages
Once you arrive at Peppers Parehua and from the minute you enter the reception, every need is addressed before you step into your luxurious cottage. Each of the four styles of cottages has their own enticing design but all include fireplaces so you can sip your wine in front of the fire on cool nights. In the summer, each cottage features either a private deck or your own hot tub! If you need more room than the cottages provide, there is a Woodland Villa featuring a private outdoor hot tub, two bedrooms, fully equipped gourmet kitchen, and more. The prices are reasonable. For example, an early April rate for a cottage with full breakfast runs from 169 NZD/110 USD or for the Woodland Villa 419 NZD/ 273 USD.
Be well nourished
With an onsite restaurant (The Pavilion), you will be well fed in the morning with their complimentary full gourmet breakfast. On some mornings if there aren’t enough guests to necessitate a buffet, they provide a breakfast menu for you to order from with several delicious choices. Also included in your breakfast package is a tea station where guests can choose from several high quality teas to brew in individual pots. If you don’t want to leave the comfort of your room, they will deliver a breakfast basket of local goodies to your door each morning. For dinner, the onsite restaurant serves dinner nightly from 6 pm until late at night. Peppers Parehua also has an onsite bar and lounge next to the restaurant for enjoying local wines or perhaps something stronger.
Other highlights include a tennis court, swimming pool, private lakes with jetty, spa boutique, and an outdoor bar perfect for after dinner drinks under the Southern Hemisphere stars. The reception staff can help you arrange vineyard tours by bike or auto, horseback riding, or tramping on the Tora Coastal Walk, one of the best hiking opportunities in the region. If you like a game of croquet, they have a set and a nice lawn to play it on with or without wine if desired.
What about the wine?
Most visitors come for the acclaimed wines of this small but important wine region and Peppers Parehua puts you right in easy reach of more than fifteen vineyards. Several vineyards are within a twenty minute walk, making this a great location for wine lovers. Muirlea Rise Vineyard is only about a five minute walk away and features wine tasting most days from 11 am to 5 pm all year long. Peppers Parehua will rent retro bicycles on-site for touring the nearby vineyards, and many guests make a full day event of wine touring by bicycle. From the moment you start pedaling, you are almost constantly in view of vineyards on quiet country roads making this a special day trip.
World class Pinot Noir
Be sure to visit Ata Rangi where winemaker Clive Patton has made it into James Suckling’s top 100 wines of the world list, coming in at an impressive number five making it the top Pinot Noir in the world on this list! The good news is Ata Rangi is only a ten minute bike ride from Peppers Parehua. Poppies Vineyard is just a few minutes beyond Ata Rangi and should be on your list to sample this female winemaker’s excellent wines and her husband Shayne’s magic in the kitchen. Shane’s delicious vineyard platter is well known throughout the region and complements Poppies wines very well.
Hard to say goodbye
After a few days staying at Peppers Parehua, the only downside is that at some point it is time to go home and leave this peaceful luxury behind. You will have local bottles of wine and dozens of photos to take back home to remind just how special your visit has been. If you are lucky, you might even be able to swing another trip in the not-too-distant future. After visiting a place this great who wouldn’t want to come back?