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   Mairenui Rural Retreat   

Mairenui Rural Retreat

Ruahine Road
Mangaweka, Rangitikei
New Zealand  5456
Architectural Type: Historic/70's
Established In:  1984
Renovated In:  1995
Phone:  +64 (0)6-382-5564
Fax:  +64 (0)6-382-5885
Contact:  David, Sue & Matt SWEET
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Single Occupant Rate Is: $35 - $85
Double Occupant Rate Is: $70 - $120
Additional Occupant Rate Is: $35 - $85
Twin Occupant Rate Is: $70 - $120
Accepted Payments: Cash, Personal Cheques, MasterCard, Money Orders, Visa, Travellers Cheques
Deposit Amount Requested: $50
Minimum Stay Is: 1 night
Check In Time Is: 4 PM - negotiable
Check Out Time Is: 11 AM - negotiable
Cancellation Policy: Bookings cancelled within 48 hours of reserved date will incur costs equivalent to the accommodation booked.

Mairenui Rural Retreat is a three house farmstay complex nestled in the scenic hill country of the Rangitikei District, in the Central North Island of New Zealand.

We offer three levels of farmstay accommodation - The Retreat, The Villa, and The Homestead (see below for details).

We also provide facilities for small conferences. Luxury in-house, and self-contained accommodation for up to 22 people.

Mairenui is a working farm with our houses set in four acres of parkland, in the scenic hill country of the Rangitikei District.

Two self-contained houses for single party bookings. Tennis, petanque, croquet facilities. Great for small conferences, business retreats and romantic weekends. Meals are available at The Homestead, which has an in-house liquor license.


We are located 10 kilometers from State Highway One, on a scenic through road to Palmerston North.

The turn-off from SH1 to Ruahine Road is approximately 50 meters north of the village of Mangaweka, the village being recognizable by a "Cookie Time" DC3 airplane café parked beside the road.

After Ruahine Road crosses the Rangitikei River, do not turn to the left, but continue along the 5 kilometers of unsealed road.

A further 5 kilometers of sealed road and a large uphill section will bring you to the gates of Mairenui.

This is the simplest and most direct approach, especially after a long day behind the wheel.

The alternative is to come from the Palmerston North direction, and pass through Feilding, Cheltenham, Kimbolton and Rangiwahia, a distance of 84 kilometres.

The road is a well-maintained, occasionally winding scenic through route.


Mairenui Homestead offers luxury in-house accommodation for up to four people. One double room, with antique iron bedstead (with the addition of wooden slats and a very firm mattress!), electric blanket and sheepskin underlay; small sitting area with sofa (able to be made into an extra bed), tea, coffee percolator, and a wide selection of books and magazines; and a large slate-floored ensuite bathroom with sunken, tiled bath/shower, toiletries, and hairdryer.

One twin room with handmade beds crafted from native totara timber milled on the farm; slat bases, firm mattresses, electric blankets, and feather duvets and pillows (blankets and other pillows available); two easy chairs, tea, coffee plunger, a further selection of books and magazines; and an ensuite shower/toilet, tiled in Italian marble.

Both rooms have electric heating, heated towel rails, bathrobes, and individual verandahs with tables and chairs - great for relaxing after a hard day's sightseeing, garden visiting or adventure. Two or three course meals are available, with a pre-dinner drink and wine with dinner included in the price. Mairenui is liquor licensed, enabling guests to choose additional bottles from our cellar of mainly New Zealand wines. A breakfast of your choice is provided, at a time which suits you, the guest! As a rule, room service breakfast is not available.

The Retreat:

The Retreat is an architect-designed, 3½ storey timber dwelling, set in a 700 year old stand of native trees. We chose a John Comeskey design from the 1970's, and it was constructed by us, utilizing timber milled on the farm.

The structure is open plan, leading from the semi-circular living room, complete with music stack, television and free-standing fireplace, up to the main dining, kitchen and utility area. The kitchen is paved with red bricks and is complete with electric oven, microwave and for the nostalgic, a wood-burning stove as well.

The bath/shower room and toilet are also brick floored, and instead of windows, have wooden shutters opening to the native bush. The windows however, are in the ceiling, with the whole roof being totally glassed!

Up the circular, brick-encased staircase are the two main bedrooms, one with a queen-sized bed from which you can gaze over the surrounding countryside through a two-storey high arched window ... or open the French doors and enjoy the bird life from the private balcony. In the season, the huge native wood pigeons (kereru) gorge themselves on the berries of the nearby miro tree!

The other bedroom is smaller, with a double bed, and two small arched windows built into the rough-timbered sloping walls. A third bedroom is up a vertical ladder, with two single beds and a window above the stair tower. An extra bed is available on the wide window seat in the dining area, at the base of the high arched window.

Much of the wooden furniture was built by the resident German cabinetmaker, from native timbers. The grounds are private, with roses, rhododendrons and camellias, and a homemade barbecue and table. The Homestead, where one can have all meals if desired, is only a short walk away, over a small bridge and past the ponds and croquet lawn. Altogether a romantic retreat for honeymooners, special weekenders, or for two or three couples wanting to "get away from it all".

Breakfasts, lunches and evening meals are available at an extra cost from The Homestead

The Villa:

A turn of the century homestead, The Villa was restored by David and Matt in 1995. It boasts five bedrooms, and can sleep up to 10 people.

We at Mairenui have tried to keep the Villa as close to the original as practicable - that means there is no TV or Music Stack, rather a wind-up gramophone, small pool table, two open fires and a wood stove, and lots of books and magazines. However, to make life easier for our guests, we have provided an electric stove, refrigerator, kettle, microwave, toaster, etc, and some electric blankets and heaters! Verandahs on two sides of the house provide plenty of room for relaxing on the comfortable seats in the sun. Large lawns, a home built barbecue, and a view down the valley, and up to the Ruahine Ranges - what more could one ask for?!!

Breakfasts, lunches and evening meals are available at an extra cost from The Homestead.


Mairenui offers a wide variety of on-site activities, such as tennis, croquet, petanque, bush walks, river swimming and fishing.

There is an all-weather concrete tennis court with racquets and balls supplied. The petanque (boules) court is full-size and equipped with genuine stainless steel boules, and the croquet lawn is edged with rhododendrons and camellias, and backed by a stand of native trees.

We have a fully-restored 1953 Landrover, in which David offers tours of the farm, or just a ride down to the river to swim in our private pools. With one of the few privately owned stretches of river, catch and release brown trout fishing is available solely for guests.

However, if you're in the market for a relaxing, stress-free break, there's no better place. The only sounds are the native birdlife and the gentle whisper of the breeze.

Apart from everything the farm itself offers, there is a wide range of activities and adventure available locally in the Rangitikei District.


  • 10 kilometers off State Highway 1, halfway up the first hill, gateway on left

The Details

Mairenui Rural Retreat
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Web Page:  Yes


Languages Spoken:  English, French, German


Types of Breakfasts:  Full, continental

Special Meals Available:  Yes


Room Types:  Rooms, Luxury Rooms, Self Contained


Private Bathrooms:  Yes

Handicap Accessible:  No

Smoking:  Yes - outside only

Consumption of Alcohol:  Yes

Children:  Yes

Pets:  Yes - contact for restrictions


Amenities/Features:  BBQ, Kitchen, TV, Phone, Fireplace, Sundeck, Garden


Nearby Activities:  Hiking, Golfing, Horseback Riding, Fishing, Whitewater Kayaking, Whitewater Rafting, Downhill Skiing, Bird Watching, Sky Diving, Shopping, Sight Seeing, Historical Places


Suitable For:  Pleasure, Relaxation, Business, Family, Groups, Anniversaries, Honeymoons, Romance, Gay/Lesbians


Near To:  Rivers, Mountains, Forests, Countryside, Nature & Parks, Canyons, Waterfalls


Sunsets:  Yes
Sunrises:  Yes
Wildlife:  Yes
Open:  All Year


Additional Comments:  Activities also in district include bungy jumping, jet sprint, farm walks, arts & crafts.

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