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Graeme B
Nelson, New Zealand

Reinventing the Sacred

5.0 of 5 bubblesReviewed 22 May 2020
The occasion was our Wedding Anniversary, a final gift to my wife of fifty four years.
Everything others say is true. But there is more. Bruno, the two Monikas and Tomas have invested their lives in Westhaven Retreat and, in the process, they have made a Holy Place, a thin place, where it is entirely appropriate to remove your shoes at the door.
If, like me, you still need to reach out to the Other and are wearied by the inane chatter of our contemporary world, you could do no better than to seek out the healing touch of Westhaven Retreat. Whatever it costs.
Date of stay: May 2020
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          Reviews (64)
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          4 - 9 of 64 reviews
          Reviewed 23 February 2020 via mobile

          We stayed there for only 2 night. We were very sorry to leave. It was simply perfect!!!! at all Monica 1 and 2 made us feel at home Every detail was carefully planned. The food great .The surroundings were amazing . We had the chance to walk around and every corner had something amazing to show. Next time we will stay there longer.

          Date of stay: February 2020
          Trip type: Travelled as a couple
          Thank 291angelesb
          This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
          Reviewed 7 January 2020

          Westhaven Lodge is a unique place. The small hotel (7 or 8 guest rooms) sits atop an elevated peninsula between the Pacific Ocean and Whanganui Inlet, a tidal basin, with expansive, spectacular views of the inlet. The lodge has large, well-appointed guest rooms with luxurious bathrooms, and huge heated indoor pool. While there is no gym, the property features a half dozen hiking trails which will leave your leg muscles more sore than any stairmaster or treadmill. The property itself stretches over the entire peninsula, so guests can hike to both ocean beaches and the inlet. In addition to hiking, activities include surf fishing in the inlet, kayaking and, apparently for some parts of the year, hunting for wild pigs.

          Monica and her family run the hotel, live onsite and make you feel like a treasured guest. The service is great and the food is spectacular. Meals can be made to order; my wife had her own custom meals prepared to her liking. We spent 2 weeks in NZ and all of our best meals were at Westhaven.

          The plus and minus of the lodge is its isolated setting. The nearest commercial airport (Nelson) is ~3 hours away, with the last hour of the drive on a narrow, winding gravel road (4WD vehicles recommended). The nearest town of any size is at least an hour away. If you want to get away from it all, this is the place for you. If you want to go out to restaurants and bars, you are better off elsewhere. We were traveling with 3 teenage boys who loved the lodge for the 3 full days we spent there, but who would have been bored if we stayed a week.

          Room tip: Some rooms have huge bathroom with a large jacuzzi, while other rooms have a private lanai
          Date of stay: December 2019
            • Location
            • Rooms
            • Service
          Thank U3005ETkevink
          This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
          Monika V, Manager at Westhaven Luxury Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 11 January 2020

          Thank you Kevin, for taking the time to make a review. It was a pleasure having you stay with your family. Wishing you a healthy and happy Year of 2020 Cheers Monika

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          This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
          Reviewed 19 April 2019

          I booked 3 nights at Westhaven late 2018 as a surprise for my wife on our honeymoon. I was a little worried that it might not be as amazing as the photos on their website made it look, but as soon as we arrived all of those thoughts disappeared. Every single detail of the resort itself is stunning, even more so when you learn that the entire place was built and hand crafted by the family that runs it! On top of this, the scenery is absolutely outstanding, even when overcast or rainy. The food and service was also stunning and made for an incredibly enjoyable and romantic experience! We loved our time at the lodge and would love to go again one day!

          Date of stay: October 2018
          • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
            • Location
            • Rooms
            • Service
          1  Thank PearceBnL
          This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
          Reviewed 14 March 2019

          Everything in this glorious place deserves a 5 stars rating. the location, the views, the hosts, the food, the options in the area and the rooms. we stayed two nights in one of the two suites. my only regret is that we did not stay longer. we loved the hikes from the lodge. we loved the food. we loved the owners and the story of how they found and built the place.
          Thanks for having us in your wonderful place. Noa & Nir

          Date of stay: February 2019
          • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
            • Sleep Quality
            • Rooms
            • Service
          2  Thank nir n
          This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
          Monika V, Manager at Westhaven Luxury Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 7 April 2019

          Thank you so much for taking the time to make a review. We really enjoyed being your host.
          Kind Regards Monika & Westhaven family

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          This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
          Reviewed 11 January 2019

          The wonderful journey began when Bruno picked us up at the Nelson airport in his Tesla Model X SUV, drove us an hour up the coast to Kaiteriteri where we transferred to a ship for a cruise along the coast calling into picturesque beaches and coves, finally to be met again by Bruno to drive the remaining 2 hours to the Lodge. The time spent with Bruno was a treasure as we learned all about Bruno and his family's dream to create a spectacular lodge which would be equal to the spectacular setting that surrounds it. It was built over a 9 year span by the loving hands of Bruno and his wife Monica, their daughter Monica, and son-in-law Tomas. The lodge itself has all the amenities one would expect in a luxury property, plus the family brings in up-and-coming chefs from around the world for the season to treat the guests to one fabulous meal after another. Kudos to Rosie in the kitchen! The views of the spectacular surroundings are everywhere throughout the lodge. And just outside the lodge are well-marked hiking trails, for the occasional hiker to seasoned veterans. And every outdoor activity imaginable is available for the asking. We met lots of friendly guests from all over the world, and shared gourmet meals with them at a large dining table. And there is a wide selection of great New Zealand wines available at the lodge. We began as strangers, but left 4 days later with new friends in Bruno, Monica, daughter Monica, Tomas, and their 2 sons. Great experience which we hope to repeat!

          Room tip: They are all great.
          Date of stay: December 2018
          • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
            • Location
            • Sleep Quality
            • Service
          1  Thank mjgkng
          This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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