Love the idea of camping but can’t bear to be without your creature comforts?
Maybe glamping is for you. With its emphasis on comfort, service, clean amenities and a touch of luxury, glamping (glamorous camping) has become the holiday de rigueur for legions of travellers who want a little adventure but not too much of the rough stuff. Beautifully appointed yurts, huts, treehouses or flash tents are now available to glampers in amazing destinations including New Zealand.
Liz Henderson and Sonia Minnaar launched their Kapiti-based glamping business Canopy Camping Escapes in 2012. They came up with the idea after searching for some local wilderness camping options that were both accessible and comfortable and finding nothing to fit the bill.
“We saw a gap, and we also saw an opportunity for landowners and farmers around the country to fill that gap,” says Liz. “We knew there were plenty of busy, discerning people out there, who would love the idea of escaping the modern world, while still enjoying an element of luxury.”
Canopy Camping partners with private landowners around the country in a range of diverse locations. So far the company has nine campsites in places like Kapiti Island, rural Rangitikei, Hokitika and Banks Peninsula.
Liz and Sonia did all the styling for their first campsite at Kawakawa Station in southern Wairarapa. “Our inspiration was a vintage, rustic, Kiwi bach. We wanted to create that lovely nostalgic feeling you get when you walk into a family holiday house, but with a touch of luxury as well.”
For the rest of their campsites the pair have encouraged the owners to create a look that reflects their own unique setting. “The team at Kapiti Island were keen to tap into their Maori heritage, and used touches like weaving, and the black, red and white colour scheme typical of Maori decoration. The campsite at Ridge Top Farm in the Manawatu has really embraced the farmhouse theme with floral, gingham fabrics, and country style furniture.”
Canopy Camping sells its luxury tents to campers looking for a more comfortable outdoor experience and they are often used as an alternative to a kitset cabin, particularly for landowners wanting to offer tourist accommodation on their properties. The tents have 24 square metres of internal floor area along with a large deck frontage and woodburning stoves can be fitted for winter glamping if required. At Chattan Farm (pictured) the tent frames were made from timber milled on the property.
Words by: Carol Bucknell
Photography by: Cameron Zegers