Sitting waterside on Kawau Island, the house is owned by the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron. There's a flagpole out the front on which guests can raise the RNZYS colours each morning.

Getting there: We caught a water taxi — well, a Frenchman with a boat — from Leigh on Friday night. Heading home on the Sunday afternoon, we booked the ferry service. Both cost about the same for four adults and four kids. The jetty is right in front of the house.

What's in the neighbourhood: The Kawau Boating Club is a one-minute walk away. One minute the other way is a former copper-smelting site, the ruins of which are signposted as being too dangerous for a good rummage. So, yes, I had a good rummage.


Room with a view? You'll struggle to find better. This is Kiwi coastal paradise. Wake up, open the curtains and you're looking straight up the glorious Bon Accord Harbour. There are a few houses dotted around the water's edge. Yachts on the water; Bliss in the air.

How big: Lidgard House can sleep up to eight people in three rooms. One room has a queen-size bed, another has two singles and the third is the kids' crash pad, with four singles packed in. The place was refitted 18 months ago, so it all feels very new and lovely.

Food and drink: There's a pretty comprehensive menu of pub grub to be had at the boating club around the corner (but beware: the kitchen is closed over winter months. Check their hours here: kawauboatingclub.nz). The house has a fine kitchen with all the mod cons. There's a barbecue outside for the warmer months. Bring your own food — no shops.

Entertainment: Settling in for a cosy Saturday night drink, we were interrupted by a banging on the front door at around 9.30pm. "Come quickly!" An old, salty seadog implored. "There are two men in the water who need help!"

What happened next bore an uncanny similarity to a scene from Baywatch. I put down my glass of malbec and whipped off my warm cardy. My mate Sam checked his pockets for electronic devices. We both sprinted the length of the jetty, as our no doubt impressed partners looked on. There, in the water, we found two more old, salty seadogs clinging to the side of the wharf.

As the lyrics to the Baywatch theme tune no doubt played out in the heads of our partners, Sam and I fished the seadogs out of the water.

Some people stand in the darkness
Afraid to step into the light
Some people need to help somebody
When the edge of surrender's in sight.

The seadogs' dinghy had flipped on them as they were about to paddle out to their yacht, and their waterlogged wet weather gear had made it hard to clamber back on to the jetty.


They were clinging on for dear life.

So, we rescued them. It was no big deal. No, seriously, no big deal at all. Not at all. Well, not much ...

David Hasselhoff from Baywatch.
David Hasselhoff from Baywatch.

Fellow guests:

We took the seadogs inside, loaned them dry clothes while theirs were washed and dried and made them a cuppa tea. They were good blokes.

Price: You can be here with eight of your nearest and dearest for $350 per night for members of the RNZYS. There's a minimum stay of two nights. The rate is $450 per night for non-members. However rates are subject to change, so always check first. The house and garden (there's a massive lawn stretching along the beach) can also be hired for corporate functions and weddings.

Final word:
I'll be there,
I'll be ready,
Never you fear,
Now don't you fear,
I'll be there,
Forever and always, I'm always here!

Lidgard House is in Smelting House Bay on Kawau Island. Phone: (09) 360-6800.