Ski season is upon us. And whether you love the snow or not, a warm bar is always a lovely place to retreat to at the end of the day. Here are three bars to check out in Queenstown.
The new ice bar
Perhaps serving the visitors who are not so keen on getting out on to the snow, Queenstown has a new ice bar to try – named, wait for it, Queenstown Ice Bar. Opened this February and located in the village just below the entrance to the gondola, step inside, don one of their luxe winter coats, and then descend into a Scandinavian-inspired icy cavern (the temperature averages –7 to –14), with cocktail bar and 25 tonnes of hand-carved ice sculptures. Kids are welcome too. queenstownicebar.com
History behind a blue door
Historic Arrowtown is full of picture-perfect buildings. The Blue Door, with its low exposed beam ceilings and grey slate walls, is a delight to step inside and pass a quiet (or very loud) evening. Here, they host regular gigs such as the regular apres-ski Sunday lounge events, and the always-sold-out Tiny Room Concerts – check out their Facebook page for more info. Grab a seat by the fire, order a warming Otago pinot noir and a pizza fresh from the oven, and settle in. facebook.com/TheBlueDoorBar
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New Zealand's only floating bar
You want views? Perky's boat bar, on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, offers a stunning outlook across Queenstown's beautiful surroundings – the lake, the peaks, the sky – Perky's has it all in full panorama. Perky's is moored at the jetty, she's been in Queenstown for about eight years, having been based in Rotorua as a cruising boat (Ngaroto) before that. There are seats inside, but at Perky's you're best to wrap up warm and grab a seat on the top deck. The menu offers plenty of local wines, and some from further afield, plus there's a $22 meal deal that offers a drink, burger and fries from the local Devil Burger, which will deliver your meal fresh to the boat. Or if you thought ahead, you're welcome to BYO a takeaway of your choice. perkys.co.nz