Local Escapes

12 Of The Best Hotels In Queenstown

By Annabel Herbison

A view over the lake and snow-capped mountains at QT Queenstown, one of the best hotels around.

Deciding where to stay when you’re on holiday isn’t a decision to be taken lightly. Where will you rest your weary head after a big day living it up in beautiful Tāhuna Queenstown? From luxurious, lakefront hotels with million-dollar views to party-friendly spots right in the centre of town, Queenstown has it all.

Whether you’re heading to the adventure capital for a ski getaway or to dance the night away with your pals, Urban List has done the research and found the very best accommodation in town. 

The Carlin Boutique Hotel

43 Hallenstein Street, Queenstown

A view of the presidential suite at The Carlin, one of the very best hotels in Queenstown.Image credit: The Carlin | Supplied 

The one-of-a-kind, boutique luxury hotel The Carlin is one for the bucket list. Perched up on Hallenstein Street in the centre of Queenstown, its elevated location provides nothing less than an elevated accommodation experience.

With design cues and features similar to those of five and six-star hotels across Europe, step inside this masterpiece for an escape in true grandeur (including cocktails on arrival #sold). Privacy is paramount at this ‘beyond five-star’ hotel, with private butlers, chefs, massages and entrances available—oh and a private jet if you need one.

The one to four-bedroom suites range from 88 to 500 square metres and if you want something extra-luxe the penthouse is the largest in Australasia—with seven bedrooms and three levels connected by a private lift. We could go on, but we suspect we've said enough. 

QT Queenstown

30 Brunswick Street, Queenstown

A king bedroom suite looks out across Lake Wakatipu. Image credit: QT Queenstown | Supplied

If you're looking for a hotel with one of the best views in town, look no further than QT Queenstown which is the pinnacle of Queenstown cool. Sitting pretty in nature’s playground, this lush lakeside resort emulates a nostalgic alpine and après-ski ambience.

Live your best life while taking in the views of Lake Wakatipu with a glass of bubbly or carefully crafted cocktail at the in-house Reds Bar with views to die for. After a blissful night's sleep pop down to the buzzy on-site Bazaar Marketplace—breakfast here is nothing short of spectacular. Extra points for direct access to the lakefront by walking through sister hotel Rydges.

The Sherwood

554 Frankton Road, Queenstown 

The exterior of The Sherwood with the mountains in the background under a pink sky.The Sherwood | Booking .com

For a relaxed and completely unique place to unwind, settle into The Sherwood. Set on three acres of alpine hillside overlooking Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables mountain range, the hotel is slightly removed from the hustle and bustle of downtown Queenstown (but still only a short nip down the road).

The Sherwood has a laid-back "summer camp" feel to it—but with better views, amenities, and of course gourmet food. The sustainably led, in-house restaurant grows the majority of its produce in its organic kitchen garden and the rest comes from local growers and producers—meaning you won’t have to travel far to dine in one of the best places for breakfast, lunch and dinner in Queenstown. 

Eichardt’s Private Hotel

2 Marine Parade, Queenstown

The lovely looking deck of the penthouse suite at Eichardt's private hotel.Image credit: Eichardt’s Private Hotel | Facebook

We’re partial to the luxurious Eichardt’s Private Hotel, which is conveniently situated in the heart of Queenstown right on Lake Wakatipu's doorstep. This Queenstown icon is home to gorgeous suites, apartments, residences, and a penthouse, which has 24-hour butler service, a private chef and its own elevator to the hotel’s restaurant, which also happens to be one of the best in Queenstown. 

Holiday Inn Express

Cnr Stanley & Sydney Street, Queenstown

A bedroom at the new Holiday Inn Express.Image credit: Holiday Inn Express | Supplied

One of the newest hotels in Queenstown, the Holiday Inn Express is just what its name suggests—a holiday! When you step inside the beautifully welcoming foyer holiday mode is instantly switched on, and so is your out-of-office *I’m chilling at the Holiday Inn*.

Chingy aside, this four-star gem in the heart of Queenstown has a range of uber-comfortable rooms fit for any traveller—whether you’re skiing, mountain biking or chilling.

It’s also the perfect spot if you’ve got little ones in tow, with a playroom and TVs with Chromecast—meaning you can pop on Disney+ and enjoy your Central Otago wine in peace... And located just a skip, hop and a jump from the heart of town you couldn’t be in a more prime position for your stay. 

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Kamana Lakehouse

139 Fernhill Road, Fern Hill, Queenstown

The expansive deck at Kamana Lakehouse in Queenstown.Image credit: Kamana Lakehouse | Supplied

The high altitude and freshly renovated Kamana Lakehouse is the perfect setting to immerse yourself in everything Queenstown has to offer. The boutique retreat is an ultra-luxe lakehouse and an inspiring place with iconic views to match.

Book a night in the lake house itself or one of the upmarket motel rooms at the rear and make sure to treat yourself to dinner at the in-house restaurant, Nest.

mi-pad Queenstown

4 Henry Street, Queenstown

The enviable rooftop at mi-pad Queenstown.Image credit: mi-pad | booking .com

Get on board with the small hotel trend and book a stay at mi-pad in the heart of Queenstown. This smart, sustainable hotel has everything you need and nothing you don’t. Your mobile phone acts as a digital concierge.

All you have to do is download the app, mia to check in, access your room and speedily change the lighting and temperature. Everything is consciously designed and carefully considered with perfectly compact rooms and spectacular views.

Heartland Hotel

27 Stanley Street, Queenstown

A bedroom in the eaves at the Heartland Hotel in Queenstown.Image credit: Heartland Hotel | Booking .com

The Swiss-style Heartland Hotel, with its classic A-line chalets (synonymous with ski towns and pretty magical when dusted in snow), and stunning vistas across Lake Wakatipu, is the perfect place to get away and relax.

It’s close enough to town to feel included in the hustle and bustle (if you choose), but it’s also far enough away to feel cosy and completely relaxed as you sit tucked up in the hillside. Christen your stay with a tipple and a bite to eat at the on-site restaurant, Hillside Brasserie and enjoy your beautiful surroundings.

Hilton Queenstown Resort & Spa

Kawarau Village, 79 Peninsula Road, Kelvin Heights, Queenstown

A lovely pool at the Hilton Queenstown resort and spa, definitely one of the best hotels in Queenstown.Image credit: Hilton Queenstown Resort & Spa | Booking .com

If you’re after a little peace and tranquillity the Hilton Queenstown Resort & Spa is an ideal spot for your stay in Queenstown. With an award-winning spa, heated indoor pool, fabulous restaurant and sleek and contemporary rooms, you’ll instantly want to extend your leave.

Location is a top selling point for this slice of paradise—boasting the best of both worlds with a 15-minute drive or short (and ever-so-scenic) water taxi to town in one direction and for the ski-bunnies among us, a 16km drive to The Remarkables in the other #bliss. 

The Rees Hotel & Luxury Apartments

377 Frankton Road, Queenstown

A cosy looking fireplace at the Rees Hotel in Queenstown.Image credit: The Rees Hotel | Booking .com

If you're looking for five-star luxury, check out The Rees Hotel, which is conveniently situated right next to Lake Wakatipu. It's the ideal place to soak up all of Queenstown's alpine vistas.

Consisting of 60 rooms and 90 luxury apartments, The Rees also has its own fine-dining restaurant, wine cellar and private library. There's also a shuttle service that will transport you downtown and back, so you don't even have to worry about parking.  

Heritage Queenstown

91 Fernhill Road, Fernhill, Queenstown

The heritage hotel with snow capped mountains behind.Image credit: Heritage Hotel | Booking .com

Perched on a hilltop in Fernhill, the Heritage Hotel boasts some of the most impressive views of the towering Remarkables mountain range.

This charming hotel, crafted from centuries-old schist stone and cedar, screams alpine-chic and the relaxed Queenstown vibe can be felt throughout—from the friendly service to the comfortable rooms with views of either the surrounding forest, towering mountains or Lake Wakatipu. Just a short 3-minute scenic drive or a 15-minute walk around the lake to the heart of town, location is just one of the many perks of staying at the Heritage. 

Millennium Hotel Queenstown

32 Frankton Road, Queenstown

The exterior of the Millennium hotel in queenstown.Image credit: Millennium Hotel Queenstown | Booking .com

This four-star hotel gets five stars for its location. Just minutes from the heart of the action, you’ve got the adrenaline capital of the world at your fingertips when you stay at the Millennium Hotel Queenstown.

With 220 warm and relaxing guest rooms that offer scenic views of Queenstown and its magnificent mountains, a formal restaurant with a roaring fireplace (cue the ambience) and a hot tub and sauna to ease the aches and pains from a day shredding the slopes, hiking the hills or biking the wineries—you’ll have everything you need, plus plenty more.

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Main image credit: QT Queenstown | Field Notes – Rachel Claire

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