Winter Get Away!

19 May 2015

As the temperatures dip and the days get longer, we bring you some of the best options from our members to beat the winter blues and escape from it all, from Auckland City to Queenstown.

Raglan retreat

Embed1_solscape raglan

Solscape is an accommodation and venue centre with a long history of modelling sustainable practices. An ever-growing work in progress with an innovative and ecclectic mix of offerings, Solscape has been inspiring visitors and hosting groups of all shapes and sizes since 2002.

Set in a stunning location overlooking the Tasman Sea and just a few minutes drive from Raglan’s town centre, Solscape is an ideal destination for business groups to come together for team building and strategising. It can’t help but inspire those who are creating, building upon or renewing their organisations’ environmental goals and commitments.

Solscape provides unique but functional and comfortable meeting and accommodation facilities. The ‘Tui Room’, with spectacular sea views, hosts numerous small to medium sized business groups, and overnight accommodation includes an array of self-contained baches, hand-made ‘Earth Domes’ and recycled New Zealand train cabooses that utilise shared facilities.

Memorable catering experiences are delivered by Solscape’s onsite organic café ‘The Conscious Kitchen’, with much of the fresh produce grown in the rambling  permaculture gardens.

Rally the troops for a business retreat this winter and save.

Special deal for SBN members:
20% discount on bookings for the Tui Room venue.
20% discount on all accommodation bookings.

Offer valid from 1st May to 31st August 2015 (discount is based on standard rates and may not be used in conunction with other discounts).
For group bookings, email
For accommodation reservations, book online at and use code: SBN2015 upon checking out.

Explore Auckland’s Gulf

Embed Explore Auckland

Jump on a ferry and check out some of Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf Islands with Explore Group, a New Zealand owned operation striving to be a progressive and sustainable leader in the tourism industry.

Explore Group offers unique experiences in amazing places including:

  • Explore Waiheke, an Auckland harbour ferry service operating 12 plus times a day to Waiheke Island from downtown Auckland on stylish black and yellow power cats.
  • Explore Motutapu – As part of the new Auckland Harbour ferry service Explore is also servicing Motutapu Island daily through the summer and every weekend year round to explore this unique island.
  • Explore also offers trips around the Bay of Islands including to the newly reopened facility at Otehei Bay, Urupukapuka Island between December and April.

Explore Group has been awarded the Enviro Gold award from Qualmark for its sustainable measures and is involved in conservation projects like Project Island Song, a community initiative returning native birds to offshore islands in the Bay of Islands.

Explore Group says it provides the perfect winter getaway since its unique experiences take you to amazing places to get away from the hustle and bustle of life and see New Zealand’s stunning landscape

Special deal for SBN members:
20% off Explore Group Tours & Cruises

Explore Group is offering  SBN members a 20% discount on all tours and cruises. Sail an America’s Cup yacht, take a tour to Cape Reinga or get over to Waiheke.

Book now

Terms and conditions:
Direct online bookings only using the promo code EXPLORESBN

  • Maximum of 10 people per booking
  • Bookings are essential and subject to availability
  • Offer is not available in conjunction with any other offers
  • Discount does not apply to Harbour Dinner Cruise or Explore Group MyWaiheke Frequent, Casual or 30 passes
  • Offer available for travel up to and including 31st July 2015

Auckland Executive Education Wellbeing Retreat

AUT Exec retreat

Why not make the most of Queen’s Birthday weekend and sign up to the AUT Executive Education Wellbeing Retreat on the 29th and 30th May 2015 at Zen Garden in Whitford?

To address workplace wellbeing, AUT Executive Education, in conjunction with AUT’s Human Potential Centre, has developed a 2-day professional Wellbeing programme enabling business leaders, managers and employees to reflect on and improve their sense of self and wellbeing. Wellbeing in the workplace is increasingly regarded as key to better employee engagement, health and resilience and leads to sustainable organisation performance.

The programme allows participants to pause and reflect on their values, life purpose and wellbeing at work. The focus is on developing ideas of wellbeing, mindfulness and personal development and includes ways to incorporate these into the workplace.

The programme offers academic and practitioner-led activities and a flexible agenda that includes sharing best practice knowledge on how others have achieved a sense of wellbeing in their professional lives.

AUT is a member with sustainability at its very core, offering courses in sustainability, providing food waste collections and worm farms on campus, planting a herb garden, accrediting cafés with Conscious Consumers, implementing energy efficiency measures, establishing a staff focused Wellbeing Week in 2014 and supporting Fairtrade products for staff and students.

Special deal for SBN members:
SBN Members are eligible for a 20% discount. Use the special code SBN-May-2015 when registering.

For more information on the Wellbeing Retreat and to register, click here.

Queenstown Get Away
Snowy adventure with Ziptrek Ecotours

Winter in Queenstown is about getting out and smelling the mountain air. This is the perfect tree run when your legs need a break.

Ziptrek Ecotours is an interactive, guided experience and is the original No.1 zip line tour in New Zealand.  It’s great for the young and the young at heart. Flying foxes are a great adventure starter that will blow your hair back and blow your mind.

A sustainable adventure should be fun, so welcome to the world of tree houses and flying foxes (zip lines). As you zip through the forest you will have the perfect framed view of spectacular Queenstown lakes and mountains.

Ziptrek offers two tours. The Moa 4-line tour is the perfect adventure starter including a big scenic view of Queenstown in a compact two hour guided journey. For those with a penchant for more excitement there is the Kea 6-line tour which includes the steepest tree to tree zip line in the world and some spectacular native beech forest in a three hour journey. It runs all the way from the top and back to the bottom of the Skyline Gondola.

Ziptrek Ecotours’s sustainability measures include removable tree architecture, carbon sequestering, locally sourced and chemical-free timber, solar panels running the whole system and a scientific systems thinking interpretation message to talk about with your guides. Think fun and considered message all in one.

Special deal for SBN members:
10% off Ziptrek Ecotours’ retail rates for any Sustainable Business Network member.
Valid for direct bookings only – phone, email or web (
You must use the promo code: “SBN10” for this offer, which expires on 30th September 2016.

Hotel St Moritz

Embed_St Moritz Hotel Queenstown

Hotel St Moritz is the epitome of a boutique alpine hotel, located centrally to Queenstown and boasting panoramic views over Lake Wakatipu to the mountains beyond.  It’s an idyllic, upscale getaway and an opportunity to enjoy a spell of skiing or snowboarding.

It is one of more than 80 boutique hotels around the world dedicated to inspired travel and a sense of discovery.  Hotel St Moritz is a one of a kind, the only MGallery hotel in New Zealand.

Hotel St Moritz has just completed a comprehensive replacement of all bathrooms and will be introducing cruelty-free Molton Brown luxury bathroom amenities this coming winter.

The hotel is fully engaged with  Accor’s Planet 21 Sustainable Development Programme and actively promotes this in the hotel.

One of the most interesting activities the hotel undertakes is making its own cheeses from waste breakfast buffet milk – the chef makes feta, ricotta and bocconcini.  In turn, these are used on gourmet wood-fired pizzas, canapés, and other delicious treats.

Hotel St Moritz is also involved at a local level with the Trees for Survival programme, enlisting the assistance of local primary school children who grow and nurture native seedlings that are then replanted locally on the Wakatipu Trail network.

Hotel St Moritz has just launched a winter sale – ‘Stay More and Save’ – the longer you stay, the more you’ll save this winter. Find out more.

Special deal for SBN members:
Parent company Accor has announced that SBN members will be privy to its exclusive online sales offering heavily discounted rates to its hotels. We’ll let you know when the sales are coming up through our newsletters.

Wellington City Escape:

Head down to the windy city and make the most of our creative capital and its foody culture.

  • Miramar’s La Boca Loca has a great selection of local, Fairtrade Mexican food and organic Tequila (you can read more about its city-to-taco garden here).
  • Ti Kouka Café is just a short stroll from City Gallery Wellington. The team are passionate about local and organic food and cater to all food allergies and eating styles. Book ahead for lunch here as it is extremely popular.
  • The House of Dumplings provides handmade delicious dumplings using local, free-range and MSG-free ingredients.

Novotel Wellington

Building Day in Wellington
The 4.5 Star Novotel Wellington is located in the heart of the CBD, close to iconic must-visit attractions including the new Gallipoli Exhibition at Te Papa created by Oscar-winning Weta Workshop and the Sir Peter Jackson-inspired Great War commemoration, the cable car, botanical gardens and the waterfront – all within walking distance.

Guests  enjoy harbour views of the city in luxury rooms designed with splashes of colour and comfort. Direct access to Lambton Quay will see you in the centre of Wellington’s shopping district and the heart to the culinary experience, which makes for a wonderful winter escape to relax.

The Novotel is very proud of its Planet 21 commitment, with 21 commitments in favour of sustainable development, including letting customers know about its work  and encouraging them to play a role. It is also accredited under the Environmental Management System ISO 14001.

Some of those measures include:

  • Ensuring all used guest supplies, such as shampoo and bath gels, are sent to the local shelters and community groups;
  • Allowing staff and local community groups to purchase unwanted goods at heavily discounted pricing;
    Introducing LED lighting and water restrictions on all the taps and showers in the guest’s rooms;
  • Moving compendiums and information onto the TVs to reduce paper;
  • Installing motion sensors to control lighting and new sensor taps in public bathrooms and Recycling all kitchen food waste through Wellington City Council’s composting scheme.

Special deal for SBN members:
Parent company Accor has announced that SBN members will be privy to its exclusive online sales offering heavily discounted rates to its hotels. We’ll let you know when the sales are coming up through our newsletters.