Grand Chateau Hotel
I must admit that I have only ever stayed one night in the Grand Chateau Hotel in New Zealand, and that was only because the place that I was meant to stay in had been buried by a volcanic eruption. But then, stranger things can happen...
The Grand Chateau Hotel is situated on the lower slopes of Mount Ruapehu, the highest mountain in the North Island of New Zealand. Mount Ruapehu also happens to be an active volcano that is not afraid to blow its top every so often, but you should not let this stop you from enjoying the luxury on offer at the Chateau.
Built in 1929, the Chateau offers 106 rooms which range from $195/night (bed and breakfast) to over $1000. But you certainly get your money worth with the exceptional views (especially when the night sky is filled with bits of molten lava), and the close proximity to excellent skiing and the Tongariro Crossing - otherwise known as the best day walk in the country.
There is also an excellent restaurant and bar on site, as well as a gym, heated pool, tennis court, and even a cinema. Oh, and also the highest golf course in New Zealand... just try not to lose your ball in the crater! [more ]