1. Te Waonui Forest Retreat
For foodies looking for high-quality dining “close to home”, so to speak, then check out the five-star Te Waonui Forest Retreat. The five-course degustation menu in their Canopy Restaurant is just one of the features that set the hotel apart from the rest. Additionally, meals can be enjoyed in a private forest gazebo – perfect for celebrating a special occasion. As for the rooms, enjoy peaceful nights’ sleep with woollen underlays and plush down bedding, walk-in showers (in most rooms), and a private balcony stretching out into the native forest. Either king or twin rooms are available sleeping up to a maximum of three. What’s more, a day spa is also available on-site. See more recommendations like this in our 5 Best Luxury Accommodation in Franz Josef.
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2. Aspen Court Motel
A modern five-star motel is nestled in native forest, Aspen Court Motel is a fantastic option for foodies wanting to make their own meals. The motel offers high-quality units and studios with kitchenettes (hob, microwave, toaster and kettle), as well as some ensuites having a spa bath. Each room has all the necessities most travellers need plus free WiFi, free milk on arrival, and a continental breakfast is available. What’s more, the motel has a super central location. We also include this accommodation in our 5 Best Romantic Accommodation in Franz Josef.
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3. Rainforest Retreat
Self-contained accommodation with kitchens, communal kitchens and an on-site bar and restaurant, Rainforest Retreat really has it all! Choose your style of accommodation, from powered campervan sites to flashpacker hostel accommodation to units, motel rooms and huts nestled in the native rainforest. The restaurant, Monsoon Restaurant & Bar, offers a range of gourmet crowd-pleasers, like pizzas, burger, pasta, curry and hearty roast pork. What’s more, the accommodation isn’t too far from town to try out other restaurants. See more recommendations like this in 10 Best Budget Accommodation in Franz Josef.
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4. Franz Josef Oasis
A high-end boutique hotel just a few minutes north of the Franz Josef township, Franz Josef Oasis is well worth considering. All of the 20 well-appointed rooms are on the ground floor soaking up the views of the mountains, forest, farmland and garden of the hotel. Rooms feature special extras like your own fireplace, spa baths and extra-long beds. But let’s talk more about the food. Breakfast is an event here where the restaurant hosts a generous buffet breakfast of bottomless espresso coffee, fresh fruit, local cheese, ham and free-range eggs. An a la carte menu is also available on an evening serving New Zealand favourites like New Zealand lamb, Marlborough king salmon and South Island rib eye steak.
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5. Glenfern Villas
Located 3km north of the Franz Josef township, Glenfern Villas is a peaceful venue suited to those with their own transport and an appetite for making their own meals. The apartment-style one and two-bedroom villas are ideal for couples, groups and families. They have oodles of space, two levels including a full kitchen and a private deck outside to soak in the mountain views. Extra features include free WiFi, bike hire and a children’s playground. See more recommendations like this in our 10 Best Family Accommodation in Franz Josef.
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6. Glow Worm Accommodation
For foodies travelling on a tight budget, check out this backpacker hostel with a communal kitchen, free vegetable soup in the evenings and free breakfast. After a day on the glaciers, there are many ways to warm back up with a free communal spa pool, log fire in the lounge and a cosy TV room with free popcorn. As for rooms, choose from dorm rooms, private double and twin rooms with either shared facilities or ensuites and a family room. See more hostels in the area in our 5 Best Backpacker Hostels in Franz Josef.
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7. Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier
Scenic Hotel Franz Josef Glacier is a four-star hotel with an enticing setting of mountain views, rainforest and manicures gardens. The hotel offers three styles of rooms with flexible bed layouts four solo travellers to families of four. The Standard Room is your entry-level option, while the Superior Rooms and Superior Suites are more roomy with a stylish design or a separate lounge area. The hotel also has, of course, an on-site restaurant serving hearty South Island specialities, as well as a relaxing bar with a roaring fire and a balcony.
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8. JAG Escape Franz Alpine Retreat
Far enough away from town to escape the hustle and bustle but close enough for convenience, Franz Josef Alpine Retreat is a peaceful place to stay. The motel just 4km outside of town is best if you have your own transport, but also if you want the flexibility of self-catering. Choose from one and two-bedroom chalets and “BnB Lodgings” with kitchen facilities and a choice of garden or mountain view. The chalets are the best option for more budget-conscious travellers, while the BnB Lodging has breakfast included. Note that the One-Bedroom Units have more “breakfast-making” facilities.
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9. Bella Vista Motel Franz Josef Glacier
By the time you’ve reached Franz Josef (and you’ve stayed in a few motels), you probably recognise the Bella Vista brand. Bella Vista Franz Josef offers a similar motel set-up than the rest: well-appointed, modern furnishings and super practical. While the Queen Kitchenette Studio, Twin Studio and Mountain View King Studio is a great choice for couples or a family of three wanting to make simple meals, the One Bedroom Family Unit has a full kitchen as well as luxurious extras like a spa bath.
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10. Glacier View Motel
Glacier View Motel offers a tranquil retreat 2km away from the busy town centre. The Tartare River running alongside the motel grounds adds to the peaceful ambience while choosing a room type from the excessive list might feel like not such a relaxing experience. Nevertheless, find reassurance in the fact that all units cover more than just the basics with a shower ensuite, a TV, heating, undercover parking, and – to foodies’ delight – plunger coffee and kitchen facilities.
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