New lodge of­fers unique ac­co­mo­da­tion

Matamata Chronicle - - Your Local News - MIKE BAIN

Pos­si­bly the jewel in the crown is Waipa district’s lat­est ac­com­mo­da­tion fa­cil­ity.

Re­cently opened Lakeview Lodge at the head of Lake Kara­piro of­fers a unique self-con­tained ac­com­mo­da­tion in a pri­vate ru­ral and lake set­ting.

De­signed as an ideal place for cor­po­rate, fam­ily, sport­ing or spe­cial oc­ca­sions, it’s also a place just to get away and en­joy some coun­try liv­ing.

The lodge is 15 min­utes from Cam­bridge. Ti­rau and Hob­biton are ide­ally placed nearby.

The lodge is owned by dairy farm­ers Joanne and Jonathan Leigh, who pur­chased the prop­erty then called Lake Farm in July 2015.

Six months later the Leighs left their own home in Ti­rau and set up camp on their new prop­erty, liv­ing in tents, while they worked on con­vert­ing the large farm­house into two ac­com­mo­da­tion lodges.

Hav­ing com­pleted the project, they have now re­turned to ‘‘nor­mal liv­ing’’ but have ap­pointed Rae Guard who will man­age the lux­ury fa­cil­ity.

Guard, with 20 years ex­pe­ri­ence in travel and tourism, is a good fit for the lodge.

‘‘We had some prac­tice guests in first, to en­sure when we had our first ‘real’ guests we had ev­ery­thing sorted,’’ she said.

She said the lodge had spec­tac­u­lar views of the lake from al­most ev­ery room. It’s coun­try set­ting was just the place to un­wind, re­lax or launch a few day trips.

The Hunt­ing­ton lodge sleeps up to 12 peo­ple with its two bed­rooms and bunkroom.

The other is a Hamp­tons-styled lodge with four king-sized rooms and a twin room which can sleep up to 10 guests.

Both lodges come with three bath­rooms, fully equipped kitchens, laun­dry, din­ing and lounge ar­eas as well as decks with bar­be­cue.

Ide­ally set up for big­ger groups, Guard said there was noth­ing a guest would want for, where ev­ery­thing was sup­plied.

‘‘When our guests are here the place is theirs to en­joy and we want peo­ple to feel that way.’’

Guard de­scribed it as ‘‘coun­try hospi­tal­ity, we want it to be real’’, but stopped at the idea of rustling up a batch of scones for guests.

‘‘Apart from scones, there’s noth­ing else we can’t do.’’

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