Friday, 12 March 2010


There you stand, in the heart of one of New Zealand’s most cherished cities, Christchurch. With its perfectly crafted historic cathedral and university buildings, you are surrounded by architecture that tells the tale and draws you deeply into the heart of this remarkable nation’s foundations. Strolling about the many attractions you might find yourself in the prestigious Hagley park and ask: ‘Isn’t it a shame to be just an observer of such history and elegance, when what one really wants is to experience the history from the inside.’ Turning from the beautiful Hagley park into the private garden of the five star, Weston House, you find your chance has arrived. 

As a category One NZ Historic Places Trust building, Weston House is Christchurch’s most significant historic homestead. Former guest Douglas Rouse describes the moment: “As soon as we saw the property from the outside we were really impressed ... but when the door opened Wow! The interior is exquisitely furnished ... the hosts: Len and Stephanie, charming. We felt at home immediately.” And so your experience begins. If your timing is right you will have arrived for an early evening aperitif ‘Wine o’clock’, or 6pm for the uninitiated. Here Len’s pride in service begins to reveal itself. He has made no small effort to have searched for only the very best of New Zealand’s fine wines, which he enjoys sharing generously with his guests – be prepared to enjoy yourself. Feeling all aglow with your warm welcome you may then delight in exploring this magnificent Georgian Mansion. There is an exacting attention to detail in the whole property, which serves to take you in time to an era of elegance and civility, and for your own private accommodation Weston House offers the choice of two luxury suites – each tastefully redecorated in keeping with the Georgian style and appointed with its own modern bathrooms. 

As will be obvious by now, your hosts’ aim is to meet your needs and exceed your expectations. The accolades reflect they have achieved this and more. Shona Stilwell (journalist and travel writer) said: “ ... an outstanding stay – thank you! Thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated the meticulous attention to details and all the wonderful additional touches.” And Tomomi Shimamura (travel writer, Air New Zealand) said: “I cannot forget the wonderful breakfast of warm apricot crumble and egges benedict ... Stephanie is a great chef and knows everything about restaurants in CHC. Also the conversation with Len and Stephanie with fine NZ wine was so enjoyable. Thank you so much for everything that you did to make my stay there so special.”  Beyond the doors of Weston House is a short, level stroll to central city restaurants, cafes, galleries and attractions, and only 15 minutes’ drive from the airport. On top of all the activities and experience Christchurch has to offer, the ski-fields and scenery of the Southern Alps, whale-watching in Kaikoura, and a plethora of vineyards are all easy day trips by car. Enjoy a night for a romantic treat; or stay a week or more to truly unwind and experience all Canterbury has to offer. Many guests return again and again.

How would you sum this all up? The Weston House offers stunning food and wine, relaxed luxury, vibrant conversation and truly personal service – all wrapped in history, grace and charm. With endorsements from Frommers, Fodors and Greenwood Guide among others, Weston House has been rated “among the best in New Zealand”. Visit them here to find out more:

Visit: The New Zealand Week here