Pepper's Clearwater Resort in Christchurch New Zealand is sizzling hot stuff.
They tick all the dream boxes: the best restaurant food in the country; sexy boathouse villas overlooking the lakes; the biggest luxury beds ever and a bath that gives you the impression you are floating on the lake.
What makes this luxury destination better than most is its special service. Tina and Sarah at the clubhouse reception are charmingly helpful; Ann, Buli and Jo in the restaurant are effusive, yet professional.
As the perfect place to relax and unwind, Clearwater offers something for everyone. The 18-hole championship golf course is home to the New Zealand PGA. Fly-fishing, tennis, sports field, cycling or strolling the extensive walking trails are just some of the refreshing activities it offers. The boathouse villa suites are the perfect place to ignite a romance. (Get a lakeside suite).
A night’s stay here for drinks, dinner, bed and breakfast in winter is under $nz400 and last minute deals go for much less. But Clearwater Resort has an environmental peaceful ambience that is unmatched in these parts of the world. And it’s less than 10 minutes drive from Christchurch international airport which is the southern gateway to New Zealand, the famed snow capped landscapes and eco-tourist gems.
The latest Lonely Planet travel guide tells about this part of the world as an easy-going provincial charm with the emerging energy and verve of a metropolis and undoubtedly one of New Zealand’s most liveable cities. Christchurch receives 5,905,211 airport passengers and 84,092 aircraft a year.
The retreat is just minutes away from the centre of Christchurch, known as the ‘Garden City’, which offers a range of attractions including the historic Arts Centre, art galleries, cafes, shops, beaches and plenty of adventures.
This makes Clearwater Resort all the more desirable. In our boathouse villa, the upstairs bedrooms are cosy and sizzling with romance with spacious living room downstairs. Both levels open out to decks gazing out to the shimmering lake. The golf course is in mint condition as one expects for such a top course.
Clearwater is the home of the Zealand PGA golf tournament each year. It is heaven in summer and wraps you up snugly even when you walk outside on an icy winter's day. It was a bristling 7 Celsius when I hit some driving range golf balls toward Brighton Beach with my left-handed seven iron. Despite the icy cold weather, the exercise was satisfying.
The award-winning Lakes restaurant is sunk low almost to the eye level of the national PGA championship 18th green. The cuisine here is rated one of the best in New Zealand as the head chef Ben changes the menu each fortnight. The soft shell crab and groper on a bed of spinach is magnificent, washed down with a glass of the very best reisling, Main Divide.
Overall, Clearwater has brilliant cuisine, superb service, genuinely happy staff, snug, cosy, sexy boathouse villas, big beds – a lot of fun! Simply gazing out to the ripples on the lake is cathartic, especially from inside the bath.