Sure, you can experience Lake Wakatipu by jet boat. Or you can book into this classic stay in Queenstown and drink in all its glory.

“That’s Cecil Peak,” says Callum Farnell, who has the enviable title of director of hospitality at Rosewood Matakauri. He points to a colossus that looks like it’s been painted into its surroundings. “We have a cocktail called Sipping on Cecil. We send the helicopters up to get ice from the glacier for it.”

Rosewood Matakauri, Queenstown

He’s not entirely joking. After guests have finished heli-skiing, they cap off the experience with a pick-me-up and the freshest ice you can imagine. Nothing is too much trouble at this ultraluxe retreat, which is just one of the many joys in staying here.

Named after a young warrior in Māori legend, Matakauri has 15 suites on almost five lush hectares by the jewel that is Lake Wakatipu, less than 10 minutes from Queenstown.

There’s plenty of adventure to be had, if that’s your thing. In winter, the lodge can organise a private ski concierge, who’ll do a fitting before guiding you up the mountain. And the thrills of Queenstown (Jet boats! Bungy jumping!) are down the road.

But there are also enticing inside sports. Settle into the lodge’s clubby-chic atmosphere, glass of pinot in hand, and feast on those views. Or simply feast. Head chef Jonathan Rogers plates up dishes to celebrate the Central Otago region, such as Mt Nicholas Station venison with juniper jus.

“Fun fact,” says Lochy, one of the waiters. “The lake is the same temperature all year round, between about 7°C and 12°C. I don’t recommend going for a swim when there’s ice on the top.”

Nor us. But can we please have it in our cocktail instead?

Matakauri Lodge main building

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SEE ALSO: These New Zealand Lodges Take Luxury to the Next Level

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