A stunning country estate towards the bottom of New Zealand’s north island, where scenes from Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy was filmed, is on the market for US$5.2 million.
Located in South Wairarapa, Fernside comprises 12 acres of vibrant, lush gardens, with a stately 1924 Georgian-style mansion the centrepiece of the property.
Listed with PQ Property Intelligence and Forbes Global Properties, the home is described as “arguably one of the finest heritage country estates in New Zealand, with one of the best private gardens in the country”.
“Fernside is a generous and luxurious white-weatherboard, slate-roofed, Neo-Georgian style house with an L-shaped plan designed to be an elegant retreat for a wealthy family.
“Many of the original features still remain, such as the servant bells.”
In 1999, the lake area, with its mature trees, was used in several scenes in the filming of the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Set down a 1.8km driveway, the stately home has been restored to its former grandeur, with the main house comprising three generous reception rooms and eight bedrooms in about 900sq m of living space.
A grand entrance hallway welcomes you into the home and branches off to a spacious drawing room with an attached sunroom, an elegant formal dining room and a plush lounge or library room.
Other spaces on the ground floor include a chef’s kitchen and pantry, a scullery, wine cellar, laundry, boiler room, utility room and a powder room.
Upstairs is the bedroom wing, with the elegant master suite offering space for a retreat, as well as an ensuite and walk-in robe.
The second bedroom suite has an original bathroom and dressing room, while bedrooms three, four and five each have a bathroom.
A staff wing also includes three bedrooms, a bathroom, a box room and linen and storage cupboards.
According to the property’s listing, the gardens are of national significance and have been restored to the original Arts and Crafts style, with garden rooms.
The landscape includes a chess garden, a tennis court garden, a scented walk, woodland, daffodil paddock, a bluebell glade and an orchard brimming with a wide variety of fruit and nuts.
“A common theme running through the gardens are the naturalised hellebores, bluebells, giant Himalayan lilies, as well as rhododendrons, maples, magnolias and dogwoods,” the listing says.
“The woodland areas contain mature oaks, cedars, elms, ash, liquidambars, poplars, eucalypts, beech, linden, chestnut, weeping willow. Many of the trees are well over 100 years old.”
The original coach house and stable for the estate has been converted into guest or staff accommodation.