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“As excellent as ever”
Review of Owen River Lodge

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Owen River Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 6 February 2014

Having visited with friends at the start of the season, we returned yet again. Owen River Lodge is still the perfect luxury fly fishing holiday destination. The fabulous guides with their keen eyes seem able to give everyone the opportunity most days to fish to several sighted fish. Despite angler errors (on my part anyway) we were able to land some great browns, take some lovely pictures and thoroughly enjoy ourselves. The food, staff, service and accommodation were as good as ever. Felix has made some small improvements based on guest comments and he and the staff ensure they do what they can to deliver a memorable experience. We will be back!

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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Thank HappyBee2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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115 - 121 of 248 reviews

Reviewed 1 February 2014

Perfect for fly fishing, biking and relaxing in beautiful surroundings. Felix and staff run a seamless operation. We had lots of excellent dining around New Zealand but the lodge's offerings were the best. kudos to both chef's. Lots to do for non-fishing guests including walks with Keelie the resident yellow lab and soaking in the hot tub overlooking the Owen River. Our fly fishing members of the family loved their guide, Peter. This place is not to be missed.

Room Tip: All cottages are very private, simple but elegant
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  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
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Thank D Lynn R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2014

My family and I toured New Zealand’s North Island as well as the South Island for several weeks over the Christmas holidays experiencing many highlights. After my family returned back to the States, leaving me with some quality fishing time, I stopped in at the Owen River Lodge which turned out to be icing on my vacation cake. Felix, the consummate host, and his superb chef Ryan, provided a Kiwi experience with flourish and panache. The ORL experience was extremely comfortable with unwavering attention to detail making the grounds, cottage, lodge, and food impeccable
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Being on my own, Felix’s engaging personality, and his interaction with the guests created a very amiable and welcoming experience. Felix paired me with a guide whose personality and skill matched perfectly with the experience I was seeking. Since I only fish with split cane rods, both my guide and Felix were accommodating without judgment.

I originally embarked on a “trip of a live time”. However, something’s are just too good to experience only once………

Until next time, Cheers to Felix, his staff, and the ORL.

Gary Y.
Colorado

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled solo
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Thank Gary Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 January 2014

My wife and I just spent 7 days at Owen River Lodge with 3 days guided fishing and 4 tacking the region's rivers on our own - albeit with some tips from owner Felix. On the guided days we hooked 18 brown trout and landed 11 including a purple patch on the Owen a River itself when we hooked 8 and landed 6 - which according to Felix and our outstanding guide, Paul, was an incredible result for that river. The fish included personal bests of 7.25lb and 6.75lb for my wife and self, respectively. We are pretty much flyfishing tragics and have now stayed at many of New Zealand's top flyfishing lodges and we visit NZ every six months or so to fish. Firstly, I'd like to respond to the negative comment below which blames Felix for the weather - every flyfisherman knows that when you fish NZ chances are it will rain at some stage or blow or snow. That's part of it. We once fished out of a North Island lodge with a guide for 3 days - it rained the entire time. We still went out, we hooked seven fish and caught four. And had a ball. The moaner below isn't a true flyfisher person, so discard those comments. This is flyfishing at its finest, casting to wild, wily, brown trout in incredible surroundings. It is one of the ultimate flyfishing challenges in the world. On top of that Felix is a gem and couldn't be more helpful; the staff are all fantastic, chef Ryan's food is outstanding, and our guide Paul did what no other guide has managed to do so far - helped cure me, or at least massively improve, several bad casting traits. And has eyes a hawk would be proud of. Flyfishing has a wonderful community, of which we are proud to be a tiny part, and Owen River Lodge stands as a top class lodge servicing not only the community but travellers who just want to lay back and enjoy one of the most beautiful parts of the world.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Mike G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 December 2013

My husband and I have just spent four days at the exquisitely located Owen River Lodge and it has been one of the highlights of our trip to NZ - fantastic views from the beautifully appointed rooms, gourmet food served in an intimate and friendly environment and amazing fishing in some of the most beautiful spots on the planet. What's not to like? There was nothing better than a day fishing with Steve, one of the incredible guides that Felix (the Lodge owner) uses and returning to the cosy bar to swap stories ('you should have seen the one that got away') with fellow guests then a refreshing shower before sitting down to a truly fantastic dinner prepared by Ryan or Jo.
You will note that the Lodge has rave reviews bar one - and if you read the review that rates this place as 'poor' then you will see that this is not a reflection of the Lodge itself but of the weather resulting in poor fishing conditions. Bit unfair methinks! If you go ski-ing and you get no snow, it's unfortunate but you can hardly expect the hotel to cough up a refund and the same goes here. Felix works hard to make an amazing place for his guests and he certainly does not deserve a 'poor' rating - pretty poor attitude of the reviewer if you ask me.....

Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank foxxylizzy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 December 2013

First a confession: I’m a long-time friend of Felix, the owner of ORL. Hopefully that doesn’t disqualify me from offering my two cents worth on his operation & more particularly the surrounding fishery, but you be the judge.
Anyway, I’ve stayed at ORL as a guest about a dozen times now. I love the lodge – it’s look, feel and especially the location. The food is of a class I only encounter once or twice a year if I’m lucky so I can’t offer any authoritative comparisons except to say that if meals get any better than this, I want to know!

But the main reason I keep coming back to ORL (and no offence to Felix and his beautifully-run establishment)is the fishing. I’ve never had a bad trip there – wet certainly, dry occasionally, yet the fishing has always varied between good and great. There are precious few places where you can walk out the door every morning with the near certainty that you will at least cast to a sighted trout over 4 pounds. Sometimes there might be dozens; sometimes, when conditions really conspire, just a couple. That is the lottery of premium wild trout fisheries the world over. The deal is, the weather effectively makes the fishery in the first place, so you have to wear it when it gets a bit difficult. You simply can’t have one without the other. I guide (not in NZ) )& write about flyfishing for a living and flyfish all over the world and I can safely say that a good chunk of my life’s fishing highlights happened while staying at ORL. Fantastic location, fishery and lodge Felix; can’t wait to get back!

  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled solo
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1  Thank Philip W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 December 2013 via mobile

We spent seven days at Owen River Lodge and it was incredible. A beautiful setting, fabulous host, great guides and a real sense of bonhomie that adds something extra special to the trip. After a day's fishing we kicked back in the spa and enjoyed the beauty surrounding us. For foodies, the meals from chef Ryan are absolutely amazing! We had a wonderful stay - and Felix was only too happy to let us in on some of the secrets of the area - rivers and attraction-wise. I think all fishermen know that the weather is a changeable feast - indeed, in NZ, it's one of the reasons the fishing is world- class. There are no guarantees, but fishermen and women such as ourselves can come away with personal best fish - a real highlight. Thank you for a wonderful week.

Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
3  Thank Georgina S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Owen River Lodge

Address: 173 Owen Valley East Road, Murchison 7077, New Zealand
Region: New Zealand > South Island > Nelson-Tasman Region > Murchison
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 6 Speciality Lodging in Murchison
Price Range: £372 - £592 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Owen River Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Owen River Lodge is New Zealand's finest 5 star rated fly fishing lodge. Luxurious, warm and inviting ambiance. Stylish, understated accommodation located right on the Owen River in the South Island of New Zealand. Come and enjoy the stunning food, superb service and outstanding fishing. ... more   less 

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