Concierge.com's insider take:
Northland's Bay of Islands, where sapphire-blue coves are filled with whales and cavorting dolphins, could turn almost anyone into a New Age idealist. Once the summer tourists thin out, the hills and beaches around the seaside village of Russell seem almost suspiciously perfect—like the private Shangri-La of some billionaire guru. In keeping with the utopian vibe is Eagles Nest, with its five superluxury, private villas high on a bluff overlooking the sea. Here, you can have your Philippe Starck–designed kitchen fixtures and still feel at one with the universe. All the villas—the smallest sleeps two, and the largest accommodates eight—are designed with the most expensive simplicity. Glass walls, expansive decks, and private infinity pools let guests gorge on the views; inside, the gleaming chrome-and-marble bathrooms have glass-cube showers and heated tile floors. Guests can arrange for a chef to cook in their kitchen, a guide to lead them on a private mountain-bike tour, or a massage therapist to provide shiatsu or an Indian scalp massage. Those feeling a little too blissed out can always pop a bottle of bubbly and sprawl in front of the plasma-screen TV.
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