UNO’s creative director, Emma, takes her beau away for a romantic weekend at Old Coach Oasis Glamping, where she finds a little slice of paradise.
WORDS + IMAGES EMMA STADDON
I love camping, but waking up covered in red mozzie bites, with bits of wet grass stuck to your face, doesn’t sit well with my vision of a romantic getaway. Old Coach Oasis is a glamping spot just out of Pongakawa: you get the adventure of a camping experience with a huge helping of luxury, an outdoor bath and magnificent views. Just the ticket.
It took us less than half an hour to drive from The Mount, and we were warmly welcomed by owners Graeme and Tracey Reid. We were given a tour and shown all the tips and tricks to getting the most out of our stay. We were itching to boil water in our outdoor kitchen, run the bath under the stars, and light the outdoor brazier. Every detail has been carefully considered: like the wind shelter which has been designed to block out cool winds but not the panoramic views. It felt very rustic and inviting.
We immediately settled into ‘island time’ and kicked back with a glass of wine. There were goats ambling over the hillside, slowly munching through the bright green grass, birds flew down to settle in trees for the night, and we watched the sun crumple down under the horizon near Motiti Island. Then the focus of light switched from the warmly lit hills, to the orange circle around the fire pit at our feet.
To get us started, we’d been set up with fresh whole milk, feijoas from the orchard and Tracey’s kombucha which I’d love to get the recipe for! Other than that we brought our own food for meals and our favourite snacks. The kitchen has a great gas oven or you can cook outside on the BBQ, and be at one with nature whilst sucking down a cold bevvy. Food somehow always tastes better cooked outdoors and it made dinner of steak and veggies eaten on china feel like a gourmet feast.
The hardest thing about our stay was leaving! Up early for freshly brewed coffee in fine porcelain cups watching a dusky orange sunrise. We left the crisp linen, the fluffy fresh towels and high pressured shower wishing we had another night’s stay.
When to stay: Ideal for warmer months. Open Late September until end of May.
What to take: Food for meals and snacks. But all the cooking facilities, towels and bed linen are supplied.
Who it would it suit: Ideal for couples, friends or a small family with children aged over eight.
Why it’s great: Easy to get to for weekend getaways, all you need to do is turn up. It’s beautiful and sheltered. Enjoy the best of the outdoors with the comforts of home.
Cost: Glamping tent from $220 per night.
Gypsy caravan to accommodate friends/family for $150 per night (can only be booked with the tent ie: friends of the people staying in the tent).