Need to know
Fourteen, including 16 single-suite Guest Cottages and one Owner Cottage Three Bedroom.
11am, flexible subject to availability for no extra cost. Check-in, 2pm.
Double rooms from $889.36 (NZ$1,310), excluding tax at 15 per cent.
Rates include breakfast, pre-dinner drinks and canapés, and a four-course dinner (without wine). Meals are not included at Wharepapa Cottage.
At the hotel
CD, DVD and book library, free WiFi in the main lodge, gym, spa, tennis-court, games room, gardens. In rooms: flatscreen satellite TV, iPod dock, minibar, free bottled water.
Our favourite rooms
Set a little way from the lodge with views out over sheep-dotted pastures and sea, the 13 Guest Cottages are all similar (give or take minor size and layout tweaks), although we were partial to numbers 6 and 8. All sport sitting areas (inside and out on verandas), gas fireplaces, walk-in wardrobes and ensuite bathrooms with marble floors and double spa baths. If you like squashy sofas and huge four-poster beds, you’ll be in heaven. If you’re in a posse, opt for the three-bedroom Owner Cottage, a kilometre away, which includes a horizon pool and the choice of your own chef.
There's a 24-metre indoor heated swimming pool if you can't face the pounding ocean surf. Find it in the recreation centre, alongside a gym, all-weather tennis court and spa treatment room.
Take time to chill out in the Wharekauhau Day Spa, where treatments include hot stone massage, mud and honey body wraps, Indian head massage, facials and therapies specially for men. The spa uses Manuka honey-based Skindeep products and AromaSense essential oils.
A swimsuit for dips in the spa pool; Orla Kiely Wellies for rambling; a dash of Ralph Lauren for nailing the country casual look.
Borrow a guest pushbike to explore the hotel’s rugged 3,200-acre grounds, which include gorgeous forests, rivers, rolling pasture and striking coastline.
The hotel can supply free baby cots and extra beds for older children for NZ$325, plus tax, a night. Babysitting with staff can be arranged for NZ$30 an hour (plus NZ$10 for each extra child) and the restaurant offers a kid-friendly menu.
All guest cottages can interconnect so families and friends travelling together can link up if they wish.
Children will love the lodge's working farm, featuring sheep and cattle, with thousands of new baby lambs born in spring and sheep-shearing to watch in autumn.
Children are allowed in the hotel restaurant at any time that suits their parents. There's a kids menu, and high chairs and packed lunches can be provided. Staff are also happy to heat up baby food or milk.
Available with hotel staff, for NZ$25 an hour, with at least five hours' notice.
No need to pack
Infant cots, high chairs and basic toiletries for children are all available but need to be booked in advance.
Wharekauhau uses water from a natural spring; grows its own Romney lamb, Angus beef, vegetables, honey, fruit and herbs; sources local wine and produce; and maximises natural light in rooms with skylights and East-West-facing windows, as well as recycling.