New phase for eco lodge

By Colin Taylor

On an enviable, secluded site with magnificent views, Bay of Islands Lodge has room for expansion.
On an enviable, secluded site with magnificent views, Bay of Islands Lodge has room for expansion.

Opportunities to expand or diversify await the buyers of a thriving Northland eco-tourist lodge.

A boutique, purpose-built eco-lodge on State Highway 11, at Port Opua, in the Bay of Islands, has been put up for sale by Bayleys through tender closing May 24. It is being marketed by Louise Rendell and Chester Rendell of Bayleys Kerikeri.

Louise Rendell says the Bay of Islands Lodge has run as an eco-friendly business since it was built in 2004 and its owners have remained committed to sustainable eco-tourism.

The lodge, which holds a Qualmark five-star rating, sits on a land area of 9616sq m and is comprised of a two-level cedar-clad lodge, plus a newly built two-bedroom owners' or manager's apartment.

The property is just 1km from the Opua ferry terminal, the departure point for ferries to the tourist magnet of Russell, and is a seven-minute drive to Paihia town centre.

As well as plantation pine for the building's frame, the lodge contains eco-friendly features such as: a gas hot-water-on-demand system for all guest bathrooms; recycling of all waste, including the composting of organic matter; energy-saving devices such as eco-lightbulbs, reverse cycle air-conditioning and electrical appliances; water saving devices such as half-flush cisterns and flow restrictors; and the use of biodegradable cleaning agents and natural New Zealand-made toiletries.

Louise Rendell says the lodge has all the benefits of privacy and seclusion in a native bush reserve, but is just a short drive from Paihia and Waitangi.

"This is one of the most profitable lodges of its size in the region. Unlike many of the bed-and-breakfast operations in the area, the Bay of Islands Lodge was conceived first and foremost as a business, rather than a lifestyle choice. The owners have achieved considerable success over the past seven years of operation, but have decided now is the time to hand the business over to the new owners to take it to the next level."

Rendell says there is plenty of opportunity to expand.

"The current owners operate the lodge during the very busy summer season and enjoy a quieter lifestyle in the winter," she says. "This creates the opportunity for the new owners to increase the business in the off season, like opening it up for small corporate retreats."

The upper floor comprises an expansive open-plan lounge, kitchen and dining areas, floor-to-ceiling windows and large decks with views of the native bush.

The kitchen has been refurbished to a commercial standard, with a walk-in chiller and butler's pantry. The lodge also features two central wood-burners.

On the lower floor, four guest suites sleep eight people, there's an infinity plunge pool and deck. Each guest suite has a king-size bed, en suite bathroom, flat-screen television and DVD player, tea and coffee facilities, and a private balcony. Room rates range from $450 to $595 a couple a night. In addition to a breakfast in the room rate, visitors can also opt for a three-to-four-course dinner of NZ cuisine with accompanying wine, for an additional $95 per person.

The owners' accommodation features an open-plan kitchen, lounge, dining room and en suite on the upper floor, with another bedroom, en suite and walk-in wardrobe on the lower level.

- NZ Herald

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