Being amid these mountains that surround us here in Wānaka can be a transformational experience. Every now and then, we need a reminder of why we choose to live and work here. So we reconnect with nature. Get into the wilderness. And there’s a particularly special place that’s dear to the Wilson & Dorset family that brings that feeling of reconnection in a heartbeat. It’s Minaret Station.
At the head of Lake Wānaka in the Southern Alps, Minaret Station is a special place to W&D. Heading there with all our staff in December 2021 was a far cry from your average office Christmas party. But there were plenty of reasons we wanted to share it with our crew, and now, with you.
It’s about family
Minaret Station is a family-run operation, established by our lifelong friends the Wallis family. The connection between the Wilson and Wallis clan goes way back and this history is really important to us. Taking after our parents, the Wilson and Wallis children have been on many adventures together. The close relationship between the families even had a role to play in Amanda and Ben getting together! (When a Wallis chopper delivered some crayfish to a New Year’s Eve party Ben was hosting on a West Coast beach years ago, Amanda thought this guy is a keeper.) The connection and friendship continues. When setting up the accommodation at the lodge, the four Wallis brothers sought Wilson & Dorset products for their styling and decor. For ultra special occasions within the W&D family, Minaret Station Alpine Lodge is our ultimate destination.
A sense of place
It’s the air up there, the whisper of alpine grasses, the primordial native bush, themany moods of the mountains, the river wending its way lakeward. The Lodge and four chalets have a light footprint on the landscape, complementing the pristine environment while allowing guests to embrace the serenity of this hidden, high alpine valley. This is where our Minaret colourway gets its name, at 3,000 ft in the heart of Te Wai Pounamu: the greenstone island.
Connecting with nature, and each other
Our special W&D day at Minaret was about embracing the New Zealand backcountry environment that is so much part of our story, with a heli hike to a secret alpine hut. We skimmed the tops in an Alpine Helicopters chopper, then hiked from the snowline to our afternoon hideaway for a barbeque picnic lunch.
Kinship and affinity
The Minaret experience is distinctive in so many ways. The warmth and hospitality, alongside a passion for wilderness encounters in New Zealand’s South Island. We’re grateful to the Wallis family for orchestrating our chance to stretch our legs, crack open the bubbly and enjoy good food and camaraderie in the alpine high country.
The magic of Minaret Station creates moments to remember.