Thursday, July 14, 2022

Five great NEW reasons to visit Queenstown

Jet Boating, Glenorchy, Queenstown

Queenstown has made it into TIME's World's Greatest Places – top 50 destinations to visit in 2022.

To celebrate we've come up with 5 great NEW reasons why your clients should make Queenstown New Zealand their next dream holiday destination.

#1 NEW QUEENSTOWN STAYS: 839 rooms and counting

It takes a bit of keeping up with, but Destination Queenstown is listing 839 new rooms over 10 accommodations opened since late 2019.

5*plus The Carlin Hotel, Queenstown – opened 24 March 2022
With 5-star plus luxury, seven levels of suites (including a three-level 7-bedroom penthouse with a private lift), and a direct line to private jets and luxury cars, The Carlin(opens in new window) brings a discreet new style to Queenstown. Perched just above downtown Queenstown, this boutique hotel offers exceptional views, supreme privacy and luxurious comfort, within 5 minutes’ walk from town.

Top that off with Oro Restaurant(opens in new window), in the hands of two chefs with Michelin star experience, and it’s already making its golden mark in New Zealand hospitality. 

4.5* Holiday Inn Express
Overlooking Lake Whakatipu and close to downtown, Holiday Inn Express(opens in new window) and Suites Queenstown is a smart new stay – think cool alpine chalet style and savvy sustainable features. First of this new brand in New Zealand, the 227-room 4.5-star hotel offers varied hotel room types and suites to cater for all types of travellers. It has a great all-day restaurant and is close to downtown entertainment and easy access to ski fields.

For a full inventory of what's new, check out Destination Queenstown's Accommodation Pipeline(opens in new window) – a handy list of hotels and other accommodations just opened or in the pipeline. 


Altitude Tours(opens in new window) has launched a world-first Heli-Gin tour, an epic day out that drops in on some spectacular gin spots. Along with world-class pinot noir, Central Otago is now producing pure smooth gins, so cue Altitude Tours and a winning combo pairing impeccable gin and hospitality with scenic helicopter flights. The guided 6-hour experience includes a scenic flight with a celebratory toast at a secluded alpine location, distillery tours and tastings in private rooms. There’s also a by road option in luxury vehicles. 

Meanwhile, Alpine Wine Tours(opens in new window) has the perfect Central Otago outing for foodies with the 4-hour Progressive Winery Lunch Tour – a long lunch on an exceptional culinary journey to three of Queenstown’s most iconic winery restaurants. 


Oxbow Adventure Co(opens in new window) – Queenstown's new kid on the block is all about speed and thrills. Opened in late 2020, this multi-million-dollar adventure playground offers one-of-a-kind, next-level adrenaline adventures on land and water. Much faster than traditional jetboating, jet-sprint boats accelerate from 0 to 100kph in a jaw-dropping 2.5 seconds while dodging the hazards on a tricky high-speed water course. The custom-built 4-seater boats are a world-first boating experience.

For those who prefer to keep their feet on dry land, 4-wheel-drive, 4-wheel-steer, all-terrain off-roaders will literally go anywhere, negotiating heart-stopping ups and downs on an unbelievable off-road course – unique and not for the fainthearted. 

Skyline Guided Walks(opens in new window) have two new hikes on Ben Lomond’s iconic granite peak. Discover the region’s history, geography, fauna and flora with expert local guides. Walkers can choose the Ben Lomond Saddle Hike (4 hours) revealing awe-inspiring views of Mount Aspiring National Park or conquer the peak on the Ben Lomond Summit Hike (5-6 hours). Both hikes include an all-inclusive packed lunch. This is a small group, seasonal experience (Oct–April). 


Nomad Safaris (opens in new window)is committed to leaving no trace in their new whisper quiet Tesla X ESUVs. Travel off-the-beaten-track into the high-country heart to explore local legends, history and geography in unrivalled comfort. With impressive air suspension to deliver an ultra-smooth ride, here’s the ideal emission-free guilt-free excursion into the incredible Southern Lakes landscapes.

Air Milford(opens in new window) and Real Journeys have created a new scenic flight experience that includes landing at Walter Peak Station, a farm tour and return voyage across Lake Whakatipu on the iconic TSS Earnslaw. The scenic flight departs Queenstown, flying over historic Arrowtown, Coronet Peak, and downtown Queenstown CBD and along the northern edge of the lake to Glenorchy, Paradise, Mt Earnslaw (2830m) and the Earnslaw Glacier. The 2.5-hour experience includes a 20-minute flight. 


BLACK(opens in new window) curators of exceptional bespoke tour experiences have dreamed up an exclusive new farm experience. This thrilling guided journey by luxury 4WD also includes the option of heli transfers in and out. Expect river crossings, off roading, and lunch with the farmer. Combos could include private paddle boarding, kayaking, walks, cycling and jet boating for full adventure days. 

TIME: World's Greatest Places(opens in new window)