The Best Boutique Hotels in Queenstown, New Zealand

Matakauri Lodge’s setting is magical, with views of Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables
Matakauri Lodge’s setting is magical, with views of Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables | Courtesy of Matakauri Lodge / Expedia
Laura Hampson

Although dubbed the “adventure capital of the world”, there is a more refined, luxurious side to Queenstown. Summer sees adrenaline-junkies flock here to waterski on Lake Wakatipu and ski the Remarkables mountain range in winter. However, the city’s best-kept secret is its laid-back approach to luxury, best experienced by staying in one of these exquisite boutique hotels in Queenstown.

1. QT Queenstown

Hotel

A hotel room lounge area with private balcony looks out over a lake from the QT Queenstown.
Courtesy of QT Queenstown / Expedia

Creative types will love QT Queenstown’s arty aesthetic, from its suspended matte black fireplace in the foyer to its Scandi-style furnishings. Expect sheepskin throws, hanging lamps and art-clad walls in the rooms. The real star of this hotel in Queenstown, however, is the view of Lake Wakatipu and snow-capped Remarkables through its large windows. Hotel pools are hard to come by in Queenstown, so the outdoor heated option here should be savoured.

2. Matakauri Lodge

Eco-Lodge

A deck with tabled and chairs arranged for dining looks out over a lake and mountains at Matakauri Lodge.
Courtesy of Matakauri Lodge / Expedia

With panoramas of the “big three” – the Remarkables, Cecil Peak and Walter Peak – Matakauri Lodge will place you in the very heart of this mountainous region. The rooms at this Queenstown luxury lodge make the most of the views, while the light, airy design is courtesy of interior designer Virginia Fisher. After you arrive, make a beeline to the spa to book a Te Mana Greenstone facial to unwind.

3. Kamana Lakehouse

Boutique Hotel

A sunken hot tun on a private deck overlooks a lake and mountains at the Kamana Lakehouse.
Courtesy of Kamana Lakehouse / Expedia

It’s hard to find a better place to enjoy Queenstown’s views than from one of Kamana Lakehouse’s hot tubs, overlooking the lake and towering mountains. If you’d rather soak in private, opt for the Lakeview Luxe room, with its outdoor bathtub for two under the stars. Downstairs, Nest Kitchen & Bar serves Mediterranean sharing-style dishes paired with the best Central Otago wines.

4. Hulbert House

Boutique Hotel, Lodge

A deck with tables and chairs arranged on it overlooks the town towards the lake and mountains beyond.
Courtesy of Hulbert House / Expedia

Sitting pretty in a Victorian villa, Hulbert House dates back to 1888 and is just a short stroll from Queentown’s city centre. There’s an intimate feel at this boutique hotel in Queenstown, with only six rooms across two floors and each individually decorated – think cast-iron radiators, canopied beds and bold patterned wallpaper. The leafy salon bar, with its turquoise wallpaper, is the ideal spot to relax and read a book or take endless pictures for your Instagram feed.

5. Sherwood

Eco Hotel

A contemporary coffee shop with communal tables and benches at the Sherwood Queenstown.
Courtesy of Sherwood / Expedia

The Sherwood has earned its stripes as one of the world’s most sustainable hotels. Its bar operates under a zero-waste policy, while it’s one of the only southern hemisphere hotels running solely on solar power. Also, most of the restaurant’s food comes from the kitchen garden or local area. It helps that the rooms at this hotel in Queenstown are stylish, too, taking inspiration from mid-’80s motor inns and decorated with recycled materials.

6. Heritage Queenstown

Boutique Hotel

The private balcony of this large hotel room at the Heritage Queenstown has stellar views of the lake and mountains of the region.
Courtesy of Heritage Queenstown / Expedia

Think European-style alpine-lodge when it comes to this Queenstown city centre hotel. Heritage Queenstown sits on the edge of a pine forest, just a short walk from the city centre. Most rooms have views of Lake Wakatipu or the surrounding Remarkables. A booking at Mackenzies Restaurant, with its cosy log fire and menu dotted with local lamb and beef, is a must.

7. The Spire Hotel

Boutique Hotel

An Eames armchair and footstool are arranged in front of a fireplace in a large, mountain-view room at the The Spire Hotel.
Courtesy of The Spire Hotel / Expedia

For those looking to be in the thick of it, book a room at the Spire Hotel on the pedestrianised Church Lane. There are endless bars and eateries outside the hotel’s door. Most rooms offer views over the lake or neighbouring church spire (hence the name) and feature vibrant hues and rich textures. Stone fireplaces, Kiwi art and expansive balconies are some of the amenities you can expect.

8. Hotel St Moritz

Hotel

Seating arranged around a stone-built fireplace in the communal area at the Hotel St Moritz.
Courtesy of Hotel St Moritz / Expedia

The first thing you’ll notice about Hotel St Moritz is its minimalist design of high ceilings adorned with chalet-style wooden beams, staircases made from stone and a few artworks referencing autumn in the region. Rooms at this Queenstown hotel feature feather mattress overlays and walk-in showers. Rub shoulders with local residents in Lombardi, the hotel restaurant that serves up delicious wood-fired pizzas.

9. Azur Lodge

Boutique Hotel, Bed and Breakfast, Hotel, Lodge, Luxury

A large hotel suite with wood-panelled ceilings and panoramic lake and mountain views at Azur Lodge near Queenstown
Courtesy of Azur Lodge / Expedia
You can’t get more scenic than the luxurious Azur Lodge. Propped up on a serene hilltop location, this contemporary boutique hotel offers spectacular views alongside its fabulous room service. Stay in one of nine private villas, each of which includes a king-size or twin beds with the finest linen, along with a lounge, dining area and private sun deck. Those who need a special pick-me-up during their stay can enjoy an in-villa massage, too.

10. The Rees Hotel

Hotel

A log-burning fireplace and contemporary lounge area in a luxurious suite at The Rees Hotel.
Courtesy of The Rees Hotel / Expedia
This five-star hotel in Queenstown sits next to Lake Wakatipu, making it an ideal place to soak up the city’s alluring alpine vistas. Along with a collection of 60 rooms, 90 luxury apartments and five residences, the Rees Hotel also has a fine-dining restaurant, lounge bar, wine cellar and private library. A special shuttle service will even take you downtown and back if you don’t feel like walking.

11. The Dairy Private Hotel

Hotel

The ceiling of this sumptuous guest suite at the Dairy Private Luxury Hotel in Queenstown is covered in floral-print wallpaper.
Courtesy of The Dairy Private Hotel / Expedia
The Dairy Private Hotel is best described as a luxurious bed and breakfast and is one of the best hotels in Queenstown. Its prime location, right in the centre of the city, is one of the reasons why it’s a hit among passing tourists. Other standout features include 13 private suites, an outdoor jacuzzi and a cosy library to curl up with a book. Don’t miss the complimentary drinks served each evening from 5pm to 6pm.

12. Eichardt’s Private Hotel

Hotel

The lounge and dining area of a suite at Eichardts Private Hotel is completed buy its stone-built fireplace.
Courtesy of Eichardt’s Private Hotel / Expedia
This historic hotel epitomises all things luxury. Indeed, the penthouse at Eichardt’s Private Hotel might be the priciest in the whole of New Zealand. However, don’t let that scare you away, as there are plenty of other, more accessible options, including cosy suites with lake or mountain views. Downstairs, the Grille combines New York glamour with a French brasserie, serving locally sourced sirloin steaks alongside its legendary seafood chowder.

13. Queenstown Park Boutique Hotel

Hotel

A contemporary suite with large dining area, full kitchen, lounge area and fireplace at the Queenstown Park Boutique Hotel
Courtesy of Queenstown Park Boutique Hotel / Expedia
The Queenstown Park Boutique Hotel occupies a peaceful location within a private parkland setting, just a five-minute walk from the town centre. Check into your luxury guest room – we recommend the Remarkables Junior Suite with its roaring fireplace and mountain vistas. Before heading out for dinner, enjoy complimentary drinks and canapés. Breakfast is a real highlight. Choose from a small menu including eggs benedict topped with streaky bacon, or cinnamon porridge drizzled with local honey.

Looking for a more budget-friendly hotel in Queenstown? Check out our pick of the best hotels in Queenstown for every traveller, bookable with Culture Trip.

Thalita Alves contributed additional reporting to this article.

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