Camping with a difference on offer

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Otiake couple Amber and Patrick Tyrrell’s 40ha property has plenty of space, which they are keen to share with people from far and wide. They are establishing Valley Views Glamping, which will offer luxury camping to those who want a camping experience offering a bit more than a small tent and a sleeping bag. Mrs Tyrrell said a chance conversation her husband had with a stranger got them thinking about what the couple, who farm beef cattle, could do on their Domett Rd property. “Patrick met a lady on a plane who has one of these Lotus Belle tents, and she was saying how they can withstand very high wind and how fantastic they were. Patrick came up with the idea of setting up a glamping site.” Mrs Tyrrell manages Domett Lodge at Otiake and believed that also influenced the couple’s decision. “I’ve really enjoyed the connection with people coming in and staying at the hut. It seemed like a natural progression to do something with our property that handles accommodation. “We thought we would go for it. We had talked about it for a long time, so we thought we’d do it and take advantage of the Alps 2 Ocean and the lack of accommodation.” Valley Views Glamping will operate over spring and summer, and will feature six sites, each with a 5m-wide Lotus Belle tent. Inside each tent will be a king or super king bed that can split into two singles, as well as two chairs and two side tables. Each tent is set up on a macrocarpa platform, which extends out 2m in front of each tent to create a deck. The northwest side of each platform is to be planted with tussock and flaxes to help shelter the tents from wind. A lodge, which Mrs Tyrrell said would be “off the grid”, is also being built near the sites and will include shower and toilet facilities, a kitchen and dining area and a patio. It is hoped the business will be running by mid-January and the lodge completed in March. Prior to the lodge being completed, portable showers and toilets will be hired for guests to use. Mr Tyrrell, who has worked in the tourism industry for the last 15 years designing high-end travel packages, believed the site offered something a little different. “One of the things I know is a place a lot of people are looking for is a go-to place they’ve not frequented that much, and people like to feel peace and tranquillity, and getting back to nature and spending time in it,” he said. Mrs Tyrrell said the feedback she had received on the idea so far had been overwhelmingly positive.
“I was really blown away by the interest from locals. Initially, I thought we would just get tourists and so on interested, but there’s interest from local Kiwis. They like the idea of something different. “I have a feeling we’re going to be very busy.”