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Two guest suites on winery estate


Contemporary luxury is often defined by suites that have a resort-style simplicity – this is frequently embodied by a minimalist design, tiled floors and fully integrated bathrooms.

The guest house at Elephant Hill Lodge within the Elephant Hill Estate & Winery echoes the architectural style of the rest of the lodge, designed by architect John Blair. It features similar pre-patinated copper walls and external aluminium louvres, and the same minimalist detailing on the interior.

"The guest wing was separated from the house for two key reasons – to provide easy access from the driveway to the main house, and to allow a degree of privacy," says Blair. "But there is visual continuity inside as well as out – all the joinery is interrelated, for example. It has the same quality and materiality."

Each of the two guest suites incorporates a large, square-edged bay window and matching designer furniture pieces, including custom red plywood armchairs and mobile tables and beds designed by Wolf Schaefer.

Although the layouts differ, each bathroom is lined with similar dark limestone and each room features a sculptural white vanity unit with minimal detailing and concealed drawers.


One suite has two doors to the bathroom, including an extra-wide sliding glass door that helps to integrate the two spaces. Designed as a wet room, this bathroom has a mirrored wall and a freestanding cube-like vanity.

The second bathroom has a cantilevered, mitred vanity that appears to float above the floor. A full-height opaque-glass window allows light to filter back into the bedroom.

The minimalist design extends to negative detailing along the top of the walls, which creates a slot to hide air conditioning vents.

First published date: 19 July 2012

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Credit List

Architect John Blair, Blair & Co (Arrowtown)
Interior designers Reydan Weiss, John Blair and Wolf Schaefer
Furniture designer Wolf Schaefer
Builder Linnell Building
Cladding Tecu pre-patinated copper supplied and installed by Metal Design Solutions
Paints and varnishes Resene
Tapware and shower fittings Dornbracht
Toilets and bidets Philippe Starck
Wall and floor tiles Bleu de Tirrannie limestone from Design Source