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Wairakei, one of the most beautiful retreats in New Zealand, is owned by regular client and good friend of Connoisseur Golf, Gary Lane. He terms the resort as a 'Labour of Love'. The course is set within a 180 hectare 'Sanctuary' of natural rolling countryside with an abundance of flora and fauna. A specially designed 5km fence was built around the property to safe guard the 30,000 native and exotic trees, pheasants, guinea fowl and fallow deer that have been released into habitat around the fairways. Originally, Wairakei was New Zealand’s first internationally recognised golf course, designed by Peter Thomson and Commander John Harris (whose family helped build Wentworth and Sunningdale). The course is classically designed and the conditioning always first class. It's a much more gentle test than the nearby Kinloch, but one must definitely play both courses to appreciate the other.