Off-grid luxury: inside New Zealand’s Falcon Brae Villa

Falcon Brae Villa
Falcon Brae Villa

This remote, beautifully designed villa provides a peaceful respite for those seeking to enjoy a private New Zealand holiday.

The exclusive-use Falcon Brae Villa in the Nelson region of New Zealand provides off-grid luxury accommodation for those looking to unwind and discover abundant natural beauty along the north of the South Island.

The private villa was opened to the public in 2019 before the pandemic closed New Zealand’s borders to international visitors. With tourism now increasing, the villa is available for those seeking a secluded base with plenty of space for larger groups.

Surrounding attractions include the Kahurangi National Park, a sprawling picture of green mountains and native bush, as well as the Motueka River running through the valley below. The famous Abel Tasman National Park, with its picturesque beaches and hiking trails, is also nearby.

Spread over 720 square metres of living space, the property has three suites and a family bunk room to accommodate up to nine guests. Amenities include a media room, spacious kitchen, four dining areas, and a separate games den with gym equipment, a pool table, table tennis, darts, and a retro video game arcade table.

The outdoor entertainment deck offers views of the mountains and river, with a swimming pool, heated spa pool, fire pit, and barbeque area.

Design notes

The award-winning villa is owned by musicians and recording artists and has been designed with acoustics in mind. A five-metre ceiling, stone fireplace, and sunken bar greet guests in the Great Room, which is decorated with a grand piano and guitars available for guest use.

Intricate masonry work makes use of local stone, while most of the joinery, cabinetry, furniture, carpets, and furnishings were sourced and made in New Zealand. A collection of artworks and sculptures showcases the work of local artists.

The villa was named the Nelson/Marlborough regional award winner for hospitality by the New Zealand Institute of Architects and was awarded a Landscapes of Distinction Gold Medal from the Registered Master Landscapers.

Authentic experiences

Directly from the property, guests can explore the 18 kilometres of hiking trails, river walks, and an on-site Manuka plantation—with honey samples to taste. Other activities include archery, golf-chipping, birdwatching, private cooking classes, and spa experiences. With clear night skies, guests can experience New Zealand’s renowned reputation for star-gazing from this remote location.

For those wanting to go further afield, the region offers more than 20 wineries, craft studios and galleries, a national cycle trail, helicopter flights, guided wilderness hikes, horse riding, fly fishing and water sports like kayaking and white-water rafting.


Private executive chef Michael McMeeken prepares garden-to-table cuisine with daily changing seasonal menus curated to guests’ tastes. Produce is harvested from the on-site organic gardens and beehives, with foraged ingredients sourced from the surrounding landscape. A curated selection of wine is also available on the beverage menu.

Breakfast and pre-dinner drinks with canapés and a four-course dinner are included with each stay. Optional gourmet picnics can be arranged for day excursions.

Low-season suite rates at Falcon Brae Villa begin at NZ$2,990 per night; exclusive-use rates begin at NZ$6,500 per night.

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