Exclusive Zen-inspired retreat now open

19:36, Jan 12 2014
Aro Ha Wellness Centre
WELL, WELL, WELL: Damian Chaparro, Acting Prime Minister Bill English and Chris Madison at the Aro Ha Wellness Centre.

The first guests check into the exclusive $30 million Aro Ha Wellness Retreat near Glenorchy this weekend.

Spa and treatment packages start at $4550 per person for a five-day programme.

Business partners Damian Chaparro and Chris Madison spent three years creating the facility, which is almost entirely self-sustaining and built as a model of environmentally friendly development.

"We believed we could create a place where people could enjoy a full retreat programme in a spectacular environment. Today, that place is reality. It is sitting gently on the land, is open and receiving guests," Mr Chaparro said.

About 140 people attended the opening, including Acting Prime Minister and Clutha-Southland MP Bill English and Queenstown Lakes District Mayor Vanessa van Uden.

Mr English welcomed Aro Ha and the significant investment into the New Zealand tourism industry.

"This is gracious, sustainable foreign investment into New Zealand. The partners behind Aro Ha have already brought huge benefits to the Queenstown region, and those benefits will continue to flow."

Aro Ha is a Zen-inspired centre and offers a mix of yoga, meditation and therapeutic massage, rigorous exercise such as sub-alpine hiking and detoxing cuisine.

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