The Black Swan Hotel

The Black Swan is the new kid on the block in Rotorua, and it has already carved out a very nice niche for itself. The 5-star boutique hotel describes itself as “serene, stylish, sexy, and just a little bit posh”, and that pretty much hits the nail on the head.

Darren Whitehead and Brent Webster, the couple behind the property, have a clear understanding of what they are trying to achieve, and their unique vision combines classic sophistication with an element of edgy, contemporary design. The black and white decor is stark and stylish, yet reminiscent of an English-style manor.

Named after the black swans swimming on Lake Rotorua out the front, the hotel’s location is just one of the highlights. The grounds include an acre of beautiful, established gardens, sweeping lawns, a heated swimming pool, sauna, fitness centre, croquet lawn and petanque court, secret grotto, sandy beach, private jetty, heli-pad and eight guest rooms.

There are plenty of secluded spaces within the property, and its location offers sweeping views of the lake and a real sense of privacy. The eight luxury rooms all have floor to ceiling windows with fantastic views of the lake or gardens.

All the rooms have king beds, individual fireplaces, complimentary WiFi, espresso machines, monsoon rain showers, solid stone soaker baths, and bathrooms with under-floor heating. There are also two rooms suitable for families, which will sleep four guests comfortably.

The true mark of a boutique B&B is in the service and hospitality it offers. And on this point, the Black Swan does not disappoint. The property manager is welcoming and no request is too much trouble. There are numerous dining options, and the hotel is known for its contemporary Pacific fusion food.

Breakfast is served in the upstairs dining room, which has superb views out across the lake, and a candlelit dinner is offered each night, starting with canapés and New Zealand wines, followed by a delicious four course dinner. You can dine overlooking the lake or fireside, or in privacy in the conservatory, grotto, or gardens.

Although it feels like you’re in a secluded oasis, the Black Swan is only a five minute drive to the centre of Rotorua, offering easy access to the region’s many recreational activities, including lake cruises, fishing trips and float plane scenic flights from the private jetty, or a helicopter sightseeing trip from the onsite heli-pad.