It’s tee time in New Zealand as the Antipodean destination basks in the summer sunshine.
God’s Own Country offers thousands acres of lush landscape, which is increasingly being converted into swinging hotspots, as courses continue to pop up across both the North and South Islands.
Over seven million rounds of golf are played annually in New Zealand and there are now 393 golf courses in total – second only behind Scotland as the highest number of courses per capita.
One new opening to shout about is the addition of new club villas at the Kinloch Club. Set in over 600 acres on the shores of Lake Taupo, The Kinloch Club is expanding with The Kinloch Club Villas complementing a spectacular, on-site 18-hole Jack Nicklaus-designed Signature Golf Course on North Island.
Developed by the much-awarded Treetops Lodge and Estate, The Kinloch Club Villas feature a selection of 26 one-bedroom apartments and luxurious two or three-bedroom villas in an exclusive, landscaped setting on the shores of the heart-shaped Lake Taupo.
The designs of the lodges themselves come courtesy of Andrew Patterson, while Virginia Fisher was charged with interior aesthetics – the Kiwi designer opted for expansive spaces, huge log fireplaces, panoramic windows and bathrooms decked in marble.
Complementing the golf course is a spa with infinity pool, a gym and tennis courts, but the lodges are also expected to serve the area throughout the winter months when winter skiing takes place in Tongariro Park.
It’s no newbie, but Royal Wellington Golf Club recently completed a seven million dollar renovation thanks to a redesign by course designers Greg Turner and Scott Macpherson of Macpherson Golf Designs.
The overhaul included a fully reworked 18-hole course plus nine new holes, which is helping to elevate Wellington as one of New Zealand's foremost golfing destinations. The Royal Wellington Golf Club, is nestled beside the Hutt River in the North Island and was previously the host of The New Zealand Open seven years in a row.
Another course receiving some TLC is Queenstown’s award-winning Millbrook Resort (above). An additional 66 hectares of land was recently purchased alongside the five-star resort, with the purpose of significantly expanding the property and its golf course.
The current 27-hole layout will emerge from the redevelopment with a full two-course layout. Millbrook Resort also hosts a range of celebrated events, including the Tour de Wakatipu, the Queenstown Marathon and serves as a co-host of The BMW New Zealand Golf Open.
If that’s not enough to satiate your appetite, the event’s fellow co-host, The Hills in Queenstown (below), is offering its top suites for a US $3,766 five-day package during the March tournemant, including meals from the Michelin-trained in-house chef, unlimited drinks, helicopter transfers from Queenstown airport, unlimited golf play at The Hills golf course and your own golf cart to boot - when you’re not driving the Lodge’s own Range Rover Sport.