Superlatives cascade from this vacation of ultimate luxury. Private islands, private yachts, cooking lessons from celebrity chefs, exclusive journeys by helicopter and private jet; and that’s just the start of the opulent indulgence. This prestigious vacation bursts with exacting wonder, New Zealand’s breathtaking natural spectacle unveiled in aristocratic elegance and inimitable style. Raise your expectations and prepare to be amazed.
Prestigious Beauty on Your Own Private Island
New Zealand’s northern islands dazzle beneath the sun, waves gently lapping against hidden beaches, and sapphire waters dancing into sheltered bays. The faraway waters of Aotearoa are mostly uninhabited, the islands providing a haven for rare wildlife and marine delights. Cavalli Island sits within a protected marine and wildlife sanctuary, home to a secretive private hideaway that redefines stylish island living. You’ll be the only guests; both on the island and in the sanctuary. The enchanting Cavalli Island Retreat and Spa is your base for three days, concealed from the rest of the world and emanating superlatives. A private chef designs a menu to your taste, personal butler and maid attend to every need, and a spa therapist removes any travel aches.
Such exclusive elegance is preceded by an exclusive journey, a private jet whisking you away from the airport and cruising into the far north of New Zealand. Ascend above the volcanic leftovers, soaking up lush blue and rolling green before continuing the journey by luxury car and amphibious craft. Settle in and listen. Bird song flickers through the treetops, waves gently loll onto shore, and there’s nothing to break the serenity. This prestigious setting provides the opulent introduction to New Zealand’s wonder.
Exploring Your Own Private Marine Sanctuary
Your private sanctuary bursts with color and life, the hills filled with native wildlife and a marine world awaiting your eyes. Today is free for you to explore and all the options are included. Perhaps a jet ski or amphibious boat journey, touring past isolated bays and beaches without footprints. Discover a kayak, inflatable lounger, or dinghy; each of them ideal for hanging out the fishing rod. Go snorkeling and admire the untamed aquatics, the sanctuary’s commitment to exclusivity ensuring a world unchanged for millennia. A dive bell with breathing apparatus delves deeper, the macro and the jumbo coming to say hello in the blue. Or take an eight wheel Argo inland, every acre of your private haven ready to be explored.
But perhaps today is for indulging in soothing bliss, the Pacific’s best renowned spa therapists creating a unique menu of traditional Maori treatments. Or maybe today is for lounging around in paradise, feasting on the chef’s creations and popping champagne corks. All recreational activities are included so today follows your dream itinerary. After all, it’s your private island.
Exclusive Yacht Cruising Through the Islands
A whole archipelago awaits as you board the luxuriant Mission Hills, a graceful 72 foot motor yacht that effortlessly travels along the calm waters. An experienced local skipper ensures unparalleled cruising, a pristine myriad of routes providing endless opportunities to indulge. Concealed bays, lost beaches, ancient forests, uninhabited islands; the luscious landscape befits such a regal craft. You’ve got three luxury en suite bedrooms to choose from, indoor and outdoor dining areas, barbecue, indoor and outdoor dining areas, packed entertainment system, kayaks, water skis, snorkeling gear, and an award winning chef tending to your discerning needs. With the sun piercing the horizon, and the water shimmering from blue to green, you find a personal place in paradise to drop anchor. You’ve probably not seen another person all day.
Luxurious Chic and Style in the Forest
Wave goodbye to your private island and board your private jet, the pilot whisking you onwards to the next exclusive retreat. Ocean waters fade into the distance, replaced by evocative virgin forest and a canopy of native flora. You’re transported into another world and time, nature enveloping your journey with sparkling waterfalls and a green valley of wonder. You’re just outside Rotorua, the heartbeat of Maori culture an omnipresent narrative throughout your stay at the Treetops Lodge and Estate. The ancient tradition of Manaakitanga reigns true here, Maori hosts accepting their responsibility to ensure that visitors always get the best.
Ornately carved Rimu doors, wooden beams depicting Maori folklore, lavish rooms filled with local artistic decadence; Treetops Lodge is exclusively made in New Zealand, providing a rich tapestry of luxurious fittings to compliment the jaw-dropping scenery. Each villa is carefully positioned, a stroll or golf buggy ride away from the lodge and imbued with tranquility. Choose from the sumptuous serenity of the virgin forest and a villa framed within nature. Or opt for endless views over lakes and wildlife. Each option comes with fireplace filled lounge, opulent living areas, pre-dinner drinks, and a fabulous four course dinner to delight the palate.
Standing on the Edge of a Live Volcanic Crater
New Zealand’s North Island is all volcano, the earth rolling with the millennia old deposits of cooled lava and ash. Geothermal activity rumbles beneath the surface and volcanoes continue to mark the landscape. Today you fly by helicopter to White Island and explore an active volcano’s crater. The pilot swoops low, dolphins visible in the ocean below and the iconicity of volcanic peaks stretching across this historic island. Stand on the edge, savoring the inimitability of the country’s most active volcano, gazing down into the inner reaches of this geological wonder. Stop for lunch amongst the rugged charm and then walk on to Mount Tarawera, another dramatic scar on this fault line of fire. After the excitement comes the calm, another night of equanimity at Treetops and another delectable four course dinner.
Deep Immersion in Maori Culture and Cuisine
When the first European explorers reached New Zealand, a war party of Maori warriors canoed out to meet them. It was spears and handmade weapons against cannons and guns. But the European ships turned around in fear. There’s something unforgettably powerful about the Maori culture; its ancient traditions living on through the centuries and refusing to be diluted by foreign influence. Today you spend a morning with a Maori guide, heading into the forest and harvesting the rich abundance of food and medicine. On this intimate tour you start to explore the misunderstood subtleties of Maori culture, your guide full of answers and evocative explanations. Completing the tour is a Maori style lunch, thick servings of meat and forest delights cooked in the traditional style. The afternoon is free to indulge in the lodge and it’s prodigious exclusivity, with a cozy dinner for two being served in the Lodge Library later in the evening.
Indulgent Vineyards and Helicoptering Across New Zealand’s Scenic Wilderness
Every aerial of New Zealand bursts with vibrancy and nuance, the landscape framed by a patchwork of expansive forests, remote national parks, charming vineyards, and rugged mountain peaks. This morning you travel by helicopter, crossing the wilderness that Peter Jackson filmed as Middle Earth, and touching down in renowned wine region of Hawkes Bay. A sublime mix of the elusive and the romantic fill your afternoon, the Terroir restaurant bringing a passionate meal of local produce and sommelier selected wines. Roasted chicken sizzles above a roaring wood fire, grilled figs come straight from the tree, and a chic collection of the vineyard’s finest accompany this award-winning luxury lunch.
Return to the helicopter and keep shaking your head at the aesthetics, forest and beach guiding the journey to Wharekauhau Country Estate, a 5000 acre farm offering magnificent ocean seclusion. Stand and admire the panorama. The Rimutaka Ranges peer out to the west, the thunderous surf of Palliser Bay stands to the east; surrounding your enchanting cottage above the ocean is a smorgasbord of forest, beach, sheep, river and lakes. Deep sofas, heated marble floors, homemade cookies, gourmet dinners…this is rural New Zealand bliss at its most absolute.
An Inimitable Food Day with Celebrity New Zealand Chef, Al Brown
Today’s gastronomic journey is guided by celebrity chef,Al Brown; cookbook author, TV presenter, world-famous restaurant owner, and now your personal guide to New Zealand’s finest treats. Al meets you at Wharekauhau as you explore the intricate delights of local cooking. The class starts at the source, a helicopter ride dropping you on a remote section of the Wairarapa Coast where Al’s snorkeling for paua, or native abalone, demonstrating how to shuck this highly prized exotic shellfish. Fly onwards to Greytown for morning tea and contemporary chocolate tasting, then wind into the premium Martinborough vineyards.
Two lavish purveyors of sensual rapture fill the next two hours, the vineyards’ narratives revealed over in-depth tasting sessions and a detailed look at the region’s internationally acclaimed pinot noir. Al adds more intoxicating smells to the atmosphere in the second vineyard, offering a hands-on cooking demonstration on how to create his signature paua dish. Sit down and enjoy the delicate nuances of flavor with your celebrity guide, sharing a glass of wine with Al and the local winemaker. A delightful lunch is brought to your table, each individual dish perfectly complimenting this day of unique culinary wonder. You return to Wharekauhau by 4pm, a signed copy of Al’s new book accompanying you in the helicopter.
Private Yacht Cruising and Stunning Aerial Journeys Across Kahurangi
Today is all about two national parks, each unblemished and awaiting your stylish exploration. Golden beaches and deserted inlets unfurl across Abel Tasman National Park, untamed pieces of paradise inaccessible by land. You arrive by private yacht, a 50 foot cruiser gently traversing the sapphire waters and anchoring in hidden utopia. Swim and sea kayak along the unadulterated blue, relax on concealed beaches, or spend the whole morning sailing through this visual nirvana. After dropping you at the harbor your private helicopter awaits your return, whisking you off after lunch and cruising low through the country’s second largest national park.
Kahurangi is raw and rugged, the mountain peaks dominating the northwestern reaches of the South Island. Jagged peaks settle above blankets of greenery, the helicopter soaring along the ridge line and then swooping above elegant lakes and thick forest canopies. Touch down in high alpine wonderment, the helicopter dropping you at Boulder and Mount Benson for unadulterated 360º panoramas of this unique part of the world. Moving from private helicopter to private jet you continue to fly south, coasting over ice-tinged peaks and descending into the pure escapism of Queenstown.
You might recognize the vistas around Queenstown; they’ve appeared in hundreds of different movies and commercials. Yet they’re far more authentic from up close. Elegantly perched above Lake Wakatipu, Eichardt’s Private Hotel offers a historical slant to your vacation of unique accommodation. Its gracious strokes and flawless symmetry are the hallmark of New Zealand designer Virginia Fisher, supplemented by the soothing crackle of an open log fire and the untamed opulence of the suites. This is base for the final three nights of your vacation. Catapulting you directly into Queenstown’s chic brilliance is an evening at the Wai Waterfront Restaurant and some unforgettable seafood.
A Unique Journey Into World Famous Milford Sound
The fjords dance and dazzle across the southern reaches of New Zealand, each expanse of water framed by dramatic ridges of triangular peaks and coatings of snow. Milford Sound is the most famous, the narrow valley rising vertically for over 3000 feet, and the fresh glacial melt mixing with salty ocean water. But it’s just one of many sounds and fjords you’ll see today, a breathtaking helicopter ride unveiling Fjordland National Park in all its primitive natural glory.
It’s a journey of contrasts, the white wonderland juxtaposed with warm West Coast beaches and lush sites to uncork the champagne and take a picnic. Just like every aerial voyage on this vacation, there’s a wonderfully unhurried pace today. Take your time, soak up nature’s marvels and then return to Queenstown and an elegant evening of dining at the Saffron Restaurant in Arrowtown. With the aesthetic delights of Fjordland fresh in the memory, a vintage bottle of red is the idyllic accompaniment to a dinner of the freshest South Island ingredients.
A Boutique Vineyard Tour Through Central Otago
After a tranquil morning at leisure, probably lingering over breakfast in the hotel’s lavish parlor, you spend the day combining spectacular scenery with boutique vineyard heaven. Wind along deserted mountain roads, passing numerous sights from Peter Jackson’s Middle Earth and stopping to taste the enchanting creations at four to five different wineries. Panoramas accompany the subtle whites and a mesmeric platter lunch goes with rich reds, before historic Old Cromwell Town adds more doses of charm to the menu. Like always, expect a leisurely pace and tailoring the journey to your own tastes and preferences.
Completing your insatiable itinerary of gastronomic treats, tonight’s evening meal is at Gantleys, one of New Zealand’s oldest and most celebrated restaurants. The exterior screams history, an 1863 building surrounded by Queenstown’s majestic mountain backdrop. Then the interior comes alive with flickering smells and cozy ambience, dinner for two served in the intimate and exclusive wine library. A carefully blended degustation menu takes your senses on a delicate journey, the food and wine pairings are tantalizing yet powerful.
A Final Private Jet Ride Before Your International Departure
After an unhurried morning your private jet takes off one final time, whisking you across the South Island to Christchurch and your international departure. Keep savoring the views as the pilot swoops low over this nation of superlatives, before meeting your scheduled international connection and returning home with a lifetime of memories.
Each facet of this remarkable luxury journey is fully customizable to your individual preferences.
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- Soak up the serenity of your own private island and explore the abundant life of your own private marine sanctuary
- Take elegant yacht journeys through marine national parks and secluded archipelagos, hundreds of idyllic bays and untamed beaches awaiting your footprints
- Enjoy exclusive aerial journeys throughout, private jets and helicopters taking you across New Zealand and revealing a landscape that emanates superlatives
- Spend a day with celebrity chef, Al Brown, learning how to cook his signature delights and toasting to the country’s finest vineyards
- Land in the middle of the wilderness, your helicopter touching down on breathtaking mountain peaks, active volcanic craters, and stunning glacial seclusion
- Trek up an active volcanic crater and then follow the fault line to explore New Zealand’s hypnotic topography
- Journey to hidden vineyards and elegant gourmet destinations, each stop reserved for the most discerning and demanding of palettes
- Settle into some of the planet’s finest luxury accommodations; a cottage perched on an ocean cliff, a villa nestled in virgin forest, and a hotel screaming of grandeur and history
New Zealand’s thick canopy of wilderness is tailor made for the private getaway. This itinerary carefully handcrafts the finest New Zealand experiences, serving up the ultimate in luxury and personalized bliss. Each transfer is by private jet or helicopter, every meal imbues gastronomic brilliance, while all the accommodations ensure absolute seclusion and tranquility. Private yacht journeys through marine national parks, exploring live volcanoes, indulging in boutique vineyards, aerial journeys into untamed wilderness; it’s a vacation of endlessly diverse wonder, with every facet fully customizable to your exacting preferences and tastes.
Start your New Zealand luxury tours on your own private island, exploring the rich green hills of Cavalli and enjoying exclusive use of a marine sanctuary with abundant delights. The Pacific’s finest spa therapists soothe the body and a private chef serves up delectable feasts. Then a huge private yacht takes you through the archipelago, a myriad of hidden coves and secretive beaches awaiting your exploration. From island wonderment you fly south, indulging in untamed forests and trekking to the rim of an active volcano. A private Maori cultural experience offers another unforgettable highlight, with elegant hilltop villas complimenting the delightful impressions of aesthetic euphoria and absolute tranquility.
Beach, forest, snow-capped mountains, riverine trails, rolling farmland; every aerial journey soars above a patchwork of juxtaposed geography, your unhurried immersion in wilderness provided by private helicopter. On day seven you head into renowned wine territory, sublime feasts accompanied by ocean views and ever-dramatic panoramas. Unveiling the subtleties of local cuisine, celebrity chef Al Brown guides day eight, taking you snorkeling for native abalone then into the kitchen to create his signature dishes. Two of the nation’s finest vineyards provide the backdrop, before two national parks are effortlessly explored on day nine. Take a yacht through the marine tranquility of Abel Tasman. Then take the helicopter to the rugged high alpine peaks of Kahurangi.
Completing your unique vacation is the pure escapism of Queenstown. Helicopter over world-famous Milford Sound, soaring above the Fjordland peaks and then touching down in this natural marvel. Like always, it’s unlikely you’ll see anyone other than your pilot or host. Each evening in Queenstown is imbued with the intoxicating smells of one of New Zealand’s finest restaurants, while day 11 brings a handful of sensual vineyards to gratify the palette. The unparalleled lavishness of Eichardt’s Private Hotel is the final chapter in an exclusive collection of accommodations, a fitting finale to this ultimate journey of luxury.
$8,395 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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