This year, the Huka Lodge Events programme promises guests immersive and enriching experiences with a line-up of fascinating talent from the worlds of Maori culture, wellness and wellbeing, fine cuisine and wine, art, and fly-fishing. Huka Lodge also introduces a new concept series of ‘fireside’ speakers who share their interests and passions in an intimate and informal setting. (All events are complimentary, within the cost of the normal rates – with the exception of the Wellness and Opera presentations.)
Opera Recital Dinner, 29 April 2017 kick-starts the year’s programme under popular MC Jonathan Alver, who has once again curated a recital by the talented, young performing artists of the New Zealand Opera School. The exquisite accompanying five-course degustation dinner created by Huka Lodge Executive Chef, Paul Froggatt, will be paired with magnificent wines presented by Edward Donaldson of Pegasus Bay.
Mother’s Day, 13 May 2017 will be see a demonstration presented by George Havlik of Bohemein Fresh Chocolates to showcase his skill and passion for the fine art of chocolate-making. Chocolate martinis will be served during pre-dinner drinks to complete the experience!
The Big Red Dinner, 29 July 2017 has become an annual institution for wine lovers and this year will be hosted by Mary Jeanne Hutchinson, the much-admired Director of Craggy Range, the legendary winery created by the Peabody family, of which she is a member. Paired with a stunning dinner created by Guest Chef, Scott Pickett of ESP – Estelle by Scott Pickett, from Melbourne and Chef of the Year in 2015 – this promises to be a sell-out event.
The Louis Roederer Champagne Dinner, 26 August 2017 will see French-born BenLonghurst, their New Zealand ambassador, introduce guests at this exclusive and intimate dinner to these gorgeous champagnes, course-by-exquisite-course. Enhancing the stellar line up will be a series of dishes created by Guest Chef, Clayton Wells, from Automata, Sydney, whose highly original style of cuisine has already created a lot of attention.
The Huka Lodge Wellness Retreat, 16 and 17 September 2017 brings like-minded guests to the peace and sanctuary of Huka Lodge, with its 17 acres of lovingly tended riverside gardens and palpable connection to nature providing the perfect setting for a retreat from the stresses and challenges of everyday life.
Bringing together the talents of three remarkable young women – Nikki Ralston (yoga, precision alignment and mindfulness), Lucy Vincent (Founder of Sans (ceuticals) skin and hair products and advocate of innovative, environmentally sustainable beauty) and Megan May (Founder of Little Bird Organics and pioneer of the Clean Food Movement). Each will share the tools, knowledge and empowerment to transform lives in order to bring about increased energy, wellbeing and wellness.
Waiheke Island Winemakers’ Dinner, 14 October 2017 brings together the talented winemakers Duncan McTavish of Man O’ War and Chloe Somerset of Cable Bay Vineyards, both from the highly regarded wine region where the unique terroir has nurtured some of New Zealand’s best artisan producers. These special wines will be skillfully matched to a five-course degustation dinner from Executive Chef, Paul Froggatt.
Fireside speakers series throughout the year – This new concept will enable guests to interact with a range of experts in the most intimate, yet informal of settings, and includes:
- Te Ori Paki on 16 May 2017, who will share stories of his unique upbringing steeped in the rich history and ancestry of his Maori heritage in the Ngati Tuwharetoa (Taupo) tribe and the Tuhoe Tribe (Te Urewera).
- Jasper Blaisse on 10 June 2017, will lead a tutored gin tasting experience in the Wine Cellar, discussing the look, taste, fragrance and complexity of New Zealand’s finest boutique gins.
- Simon Jolly on 8 July 2017, will talk about the art of fly-fishing, past and present, including Alan Pye and Huka Lodge’s heritage and place in the world of fly-fishing. Many guests will know Simon’s family business, Chris Jolly Outdoors, as the local leaders in fishing and adventure experiences.
- Dick Frizzell on 12 August 2017, will entertain guests with his humorous take on ‘high art’ through his many experiences as one of the country’s much-loved artists and entertaining raconteurs.
- Paul Froggatt on 30 September 2017, will present a cooking demonstration for a dish that can be prepared in your own home. As the Lodge’s charming, funny and talented Executive Chef, this is a treat for anyone interested in cooking, regardless of experience.