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Even if you haven’t heard of the Onsen Hot Pools, you would have unknowingly seen them. Everyone with Instagram has seen a jaw-dropping photo of the mountainous relax parlour in all of its glory.
You know the ones. Usually involving a model-ish bikini-clad girl, a chiselled bloke with a tattoo sleeve, or a doting couple in a loving embrace. The air is crisp, candles are setting the mood and the lighting is just right. They’re soaking in a steamy cedar-lined hot pool and gazing out over the stunning Shotover River with a pose that says both “I’m an extremely deep thinker” and “I haven’t a care in the world”.
The photos are of course, totally impromptu, and whether you’re a fan of the whole thing or not, they instantly make you want to be there doing exactly that.
Jokes aside, the Onsen Hot Pools is something that needs to be experienced when visiting Queenstown, and not just for the photo. Like most of Queenstown’s exquisite surroundings, the views from the private pools over Arthurs Point and Shotover River canyon will take your breath away.
According to the owners, the cliffside tubs are “hot and steamy on snowy days, warm and sheltered on rainy days, cool and shady on sunny days, and simply magical in the evenings”. And we’d have to agree. Nothing matters when you’re wallowing in the naturally caught 37.8-39.8C water. The contrast of the toasty water and brisk air brings your attention to that single moment, and the overwhelming beauty of the view is somehow calming.
For those looking to really unwind, Onsen Hot Pools also offers massages, facials, fancy herbal teas and delicious raw pressed refreshments.
Where: 160 Arthurs Point Rd, Arthurs Point (only a short 13 minute drive from QT Queenstown)
You might want to soak in the tub every day, but you might not want to venture up to Onsen Hot Pools on repeat. If you’re staying at QT Queenstown, you won’t have to worry. Each room comes with a standalone bathtub, premium MALIN+GOETZ amenities, and plush slippers and robes. There’s no reason why every day can’t be a tub-soaking day.
words by niall roeder
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