I used the town of Te Anau as a base from which I could plan trips to nearby Milford Sound, arguably one of the most beautiful places on the planet. The options at Te Anau are fairly limited, but I was more than happy with Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas for a couple of nights.
Located at the lakefront of Lake Te Anau, the hotel enjoys an almost a constant breeze, and of course, breathtaking views of the lake. It is also only a 10-minute walk to the town centre, where you’ll find shops and restaurants at your convenience.
The hotel has a huge driveway and many carpark lots to accommodate guests who self-drive.
The hotel interiors seem to have undergone some renovation not too long ago, and there was a deliberate attempt to spruce up the place a little.
The lobby lounge was a great place to enjoy views of Lake Te Anau over a couple of drinks.
I decided to go for a villa rather than a hotel room for my stay. As the hotel grounds are quite expansive, I had to drive around the property to my villa, with ample parking just outside.
The villa was just like a little house, with a living room that came with a leather sofa and a coffee table.
The television also came with sufficient entertainment options on cable. Notice that the villas sit on the ground floor, so I had to draw the blinds for some privacy during my stay.
The bedroom was fairly simple, unlike the more posh interiors of larger international chain hotels. But overall the bed was comfortable, and the air conditioning more than sufficient in the early summer weather.
I had no complaints with the bathroom, which was always kept clean by housekeeping during my stay. The shower area was actually very large, which I feel is always an important design consideration for any bathroom.
You’d be happy to know that the main Te Anau Glowworm Caves office is just across the street from the hotel. Ferries depart on a regular schedule everyday, but do check for the hours of operation on major holidays.
A visit to Milford Sound is also a must, and I really enjoyed a day out kayaking in perfect weather. Most companies do include pick ups from Te Anau for day trips to Milford Sound, but do remember to book early during the peak travel periods.
Overall, Distinction Te Anau Hotel & Villas is a great place to stay should you decide to base yourself at Te Anau for day trips around the vicinity. While the facilities may not be on par with most other international chains, it really shouldn’t matter if you’re spending most of your time out exploring everything that the area has to offer.