Accessible only by helicopter, Minaret Station treats guests to an exclusive and authentic experience framed by the rugged beauty of this secluded mountain landscape. Guests will enjoy a level of comfort and style in one of just four luxuriously appointed chalets never before available in New Zealand’s wilderness.
Minaret Station is New Zealand’s premium alpine experience providing guests the opportunity of exploring the wilderness of New Zealand’s South Island through many unique products including heli-adventures, hiking, fishing, mountain biking, hunting and heli-skiing.
Minaret Station is owned and operated by four brothers each with an affinity for the outdoors. They head a friendly and experienced team, passionate about delivering memorable experiences time and time again. It is a uniquely integrated business dating back to the early 1960’s, when their father, Sir Tim Wallis ('Hurricane Tim'), first began introducing international guests to New Zealand’s pristine wilderness. It has come a long way since the early beginnings but it remains a humble operation with a commitment to quality and service. More often than not, guests return year after year to partake in the seasonal offerings at Minaret.
As well as being location to the Minaret Station Alpine Lodge, Minaret Station is also a working high country farm, home to some 10,000 deer, 7,000 sheep and 1,000 cattle raised for supply to premium export and domestic markets. Nestled on the western shores of Lake Wanaka and accessible only by boat or by helicopter, the 50,000 acre property acts as the heart and staging point of the business.
Helicopters have always been in the blood for the Wallis family. The company first began using helicopters in 1963 when they pioneered their use for backcountry access and heli-skiing. Since then Alpine Helicopters has grown to incorporate a modern fleet with highly trained pilots.
The individual chalets are separately positioned amongst native alpine grasses and herb fields, each harnessing unique vistas of the valley and surrounds. Guests are afforded the privacy, warmth and comfort of tasteful high country design, with each chalet featuring sheepskin carpets, a king-sized bed, an en-suite bathroom and a hot tub on adjoining private deck, where they can relax and recline beneath the stars. Central to the Alpine Lodge is the Mountain Kitchen. Linked to the chalets by a series of raised wooden boardwalks, the Mountain Kitchen features two separate living areas, wood-burning fires, a well stocked library and cellar and first class dining facilities.
Minaret Station specializes in backcountry fly-fishing experiences targeting primarily rainbow and brown trout with both species often sharing the same stretch of water. Chinook salmon provide an exciting challenge during their short season.
Minaret Station privately owns a 50,000-acre parcel of wilderness providing guests with exclusive access to prime fishing rivers in the Southern Alps. In addition to this, Minaret Station holds independent concessions to fish on conservation lands covering some four million acres including National Parks and world heritage areas.
Oxygen and nutrient rich glacier fed alpine streams and rivers produce fish that are in strong condition ensuring that setting the hook is only half the challenge. Gin-clear water allows early spotting of fish. This clarity however means that while anglers can see the fish, the fish can also see the angler. Spot and stalk is the method of choice and by far the most exciting. Anglers often use dry fly, streamer and nymph techniques on the same stretch of water.
Minaret Station Heli-Adventures allow guests to experience the otherwise inaccessible breathtaking wilderness of the Southern Alps.The options are endless. From scenic flights to heli-biking, Minaret Station’s wide range of Heli-Adventures means there is something for everyone. Explore the wilderness of the South Island with the friendly and experienced Minaret Station team.
Minaret Station offers guided Heli-Hiking experiences to suit all ages and abilities.
Helicopter transport ensures exclusive access to otherwise inaccessible locations with each trip being tailored to suit the individual or group. Guests can choose to get up close to rushing waterfalls and craggy mountain ridges or simply meander through gently undulating valley floors, soaking up the natural wildlife.
Say goodbye to the uphill grind, and instead take a helicopter to the mountain top to begin an exhilarating descent. Following a gear fitting session and an introduction to the techniques of mountain biking, guests will be flown to one of several remote trails in the Southern Alps. Terrain can be tailored for beginner, intermediate or advanced riders. All equipment and safety instruction is provided.
As one of New Zealand's long established guided hunting businesses, Minaret Station offers a premium guided hunting experience.
The Southern Alps are host to an expansive game population. With a temperate climate and in the absence of any natural predators, hunting provides excitement and trophy opportunities while also providing an important and essential conservation benefit.
A hand-picked team of professional and highly experienced guides possesses comprehensive local knowledge allowing guests to safely access remote areas of wilderness.
2019 Rates: NZ $2,450 per person per night
Season: November to April
Fish Species: Rainbow trout, brown trout
Experiences: Hiking, mountain biking, hunting, touring
Lodge Capacity: 8