Luxury Events 2015

Get ready to take a trip to New Zealand, where art and expression blossoms as much as the flowers do. Also known as wine country, there is never a time during the year where at least some sort of event or festival is offering you a chance to taste beer, wine, or spirits. There are many other festivals for art, theatre, and live performance, as well new experiences that you just have to try at least once. Let us help you discover something new in New Zealand, and book a flight with a private jet today.

June 2015

Matariki Festival

(June 20th – July 19th, 2015; Auckland)

The History of the Matariki deals with the little known star constellation, the Matariki. On the Māori calendar, it brought in the New Year, and if the skies were clear enough for the light of the stars to penetrate, it was a good omen. In Auckland, New Zealand, the new Year is celebrated with a month-long festival made up of a variety of events. The majority of the events are performances by bands, musicians, and theater. However, there are also workshops if you’d like to try your hand at making a traditional Māori earth oven, and the Manu Aute Kite Day that celebrates the tradition of kite flying.

The 14th Annual New Zealand Tango Festival

(June 23rd – July 1st, 2015; Wellington)

This eight day festival is a great chance to learn how-to, and watch, tango. International masters come to this event to teach you how to move to the beat with intensive courses. On the Friday and Saturday of the event, there will be live performances, and Friday through Sunday, workshops followed by evening dances to show off what you’ve learned. It’s a great chance to go out with some friends and try something new. There will also be several events going on throughout the dates of the festival.

July 2015

NZ Mountain Film Festival

(July 3rd – 11th, 2015; Wanaka, Cromwell, and Queenstown)

The NZ Mountain Film Festival is a collection of events, and not just film presentations. Yes, much of it surrounds an adventure film competition, but there are also workshops and book readings, art exhibitions, and other small events. There will be plenty of chances to socialize with others who seek adventure, in reality or fiction, as well. The festival takes place in Wanaka from the 3rd to the 7th, in Cromwell on June 8th, and in Queenstown from the 9th to the 11th.

Illume – Winter Festival of Lights

(July 4th – 9th, 2015; Coromandel Town)

This free event coming to Coromandel Town, New Zealand is family-friendly and will surely light up your night. There are many events going on during this festival of lights, including a light parade, glow-in-the-dark face painting, fireworks, live entertainment, and much more. The festival lasts for nearly a week, but the main events take place over the weekend. There will be plenty of restaurants serving food and alcohol, but being a family-friendly event, public intoxication is off-limits, so drink responsibly.


(July 4th – 18th, 2015; Christchurch)

Visiting New Zealand with the kids? You’re in luck, because the NZ KidsFest is packed with events for children of all ages; according to the website, from infantile ages to 13+. There are fun ways to learn and discover new things, arts and crafts, sports and games, and theater for young performers. The festival lasts for two weeks, so there is plenty of time to catch one of the many events going on for the little ones.

New Zealand International Film Festival (NZIFF)

(July 16th – August 2nd 2015; Auckland and other various locations)

Every year, the NZIFF collects many features to build its film program. The program jumps from one city to the next, featuring mainly in Auckland, Wellington, Dunedin, and Christchurch. There are other cities with programs that get added as the year goes on. This festival has been going on for over 40 years, and features many films from what is called “The Cannes List”, having 10 titles directly from Cannes.

Winter Art Deco

(July 17th – 19th, 2015; Napier)

This year in Napier, the Art Deco rolls back time to the 20s and 30s for the 2015 theme. Festival has plenty of events lined up to make it a fun weekend for all who attend. The first night, Friday, a Grand Anniversary Ball is thrown to start things off. The days that follow are filled with brunches, luncheons, a parade, after parties, and more. Be sure to dress to impress for the parties and dinners this weekend.

CRC Speedshow

(July 18th – 19th, 2015; Auckland)

The CRC Speedshow is possibly the biggest and most diverse automotive event in all of New Zealand this year. Although it takes place over a single weekend, there are many events going on during the show. You can see all kinds of cars, from the classics to custom hot rods. If you want to give your own car some style, you can enter it into airbrush alley to get a custom paint job by the best airbrush artists around. There will also be seminars, prize contests, merchandise, and more.

A Mid-Winter's Ale Festival

(July 25th, 2015; Rollestown)

Over in New Zealand, the seasons are a little different compared to the West. Winter is during the American Summer, and there are many festive celebrations that take place. This year, the Rolleston Community Centre is hosting the Mid-Winter’s Ale Festival. For a single day, you can get-together for live music, food, entertainment, and plenty of beer from select breweries. The beers are being provided by Golden Eagle, The Beer Library, Gladfield Inside, Valkyrie Brewing Co., and more from all over the world.

The Food Show

(July 30th – August 2nd, 2015; Auckland)

For a few days in Auckland, the ASB Showgrounds are hit up with fancy cuisine, cooking performances, and so much more. It’s impossible to cover everything going on at this event, with over 10 halls dedicated to different concepts throughout each day. If cuisine and wine doesn’t suit your palette, you can always try out “The Healthy Hub,” just one of the many things going on this year.

August 2015

Restaurant Month

(All of August)

In August, foodies rejoice in New Zealand, able to taste some of the special menus designed just for this month by a variety of restaurants, as well as the culinary events that take the spotlight. Celebrity chefs will be making an appearance to serve up a tasty dish, and some of the New Zealand favorites are returning – Street Eats and Wine AKL especially. The variety of restaurants gives you a chance to try something new, whether it be french, Brazilian, Italian, or simply seafood, you can find it this month.

Bay of Islands Jazz and Blues Festival

(August 7th – 9th, 2015; Bay of Islands – Paihia, Haruru Falls, and Russell)

For three days in the Bay Islands of New Zealand, top acts from NZ and Australia will be bringing their sound to the air waves. Enjoy the tunes of smooth jazz and sultry blues for three days straight, or just a day; however you can’t beat the weekend price of only $50. There will be eight venues in different parts of the Islands, such as Paihia, Haruru Falls, and Russell.


(August 14th – 15th, 2015; Wellington)

Come to Westpac Stadium and share your love of beer with other beer lovers from all over the world. The major breweries are local, or from Australia, but there will also be a few select international brewers making the trip over. This isn’t just a chance to drink and sample beer, however, as there are also informative seminars on craft beers, and equipment and classes on homebrewing available. This is your chance to fine tune your own brew, or just get a taste for the a ton craft beers one location.

Wellington On a Plate, in conjunction with Wellington Lux

(August 14th – 30th; August 21st – 30th)

During the last two weeks of August, foodies and eateries get together to create a culinary program to satisfy the mass of appetites brought to the table. The festival is packed with over 100 events taking place all across Wellington, not to mention a burger battle combined with the best beer Garage Project. In terms of dining, over 100 eateries in Wellingon participate in DINE Wellington to offer lunch and dinner menus specially designed for the festival. In conjunction with this festival, Wellington Lux starts during the second week of the festival, creating a day full of fun for everyone.

11th Annual Wine, Beer, and Food Expo

(August 20th, 2015; Lake Taupo)

It’s time to celebrate the 11th year of the Wine, Beer, and Food Expo. With over 100 wines to taste, it’s a great chance to find your new favorite for a party or special gathering. Restaurants will be offering samples and showing off packages for catering events and corporate meetings, giving you a chance to also find the perfect combination of food and spirits. Over 10 wineries have already been confirmed to set up at the expo, as well as five breweries so far.

Storylines Festival of New Zealand Children's Writers and Illustrators

(August 22th – 30th, 2015; Various Cities)

This event is a great way to spend time with the kids when traveling to New Zealand. The Storylines Festival is grounds for finding the new generation of writers and illustrators for children’s books, with a chance to hear new hits as storytellers share their stories with an audience. There will also be several family days set up in several cities in New Zealand: Dunedin, Wellington, Christchurch, Northland, South Auckland, and Auckland.

New Zealand Fashion Week (NZFW)

(August 24th – 30th, 2015; Auckland)

NZFW is back for it’s 15th Anniversary, and there’s no sign of stopping. Aimed at enabling local designers with the chance to promote their style and brand to a national and an international audience, NZFW has become known as the backbone of the New Zealand Fashion Industry. It has quickly become the country’s most glamorous event, and is the center for huge success stories for some of the new upcoming designers. It’s around this time the country’s key trade influencers come out of the wood work, turning this into a make-it-or-break-it opportunity.

Christchurch Arts Festival, in conjunction with Word Christchurch

(August 27th – September 20th, 2015; August 30th and September 7th, 2015)

For a little over a month, Christchurch, New Zealand explodes with all kinds and mediums of art. Classical music, dance, theater, visual arts, comedy, you can find it all at one of the many venues occupied for the festival. There will also be several discussions of ideas by some of the top writers of the Word Christchurch festival. This year, the two are working together to offer audiences a chance to join in on conversations with some of the philosophers or writers highlighting the Word Christchurch festival. In addition, partnered with KidFest, children can attend classes on story writing and comic book creation.

September 2015

CHB The Festival

(September 3rd – 6th, 2015; Hawke’s Bay, Napier)

In Hawke’s Bay, Napier, an annual celebration for art, music, and food is held. It’s a great way to spend the day with the family, or friends, or both, and see all the festival has to offer. With over 100 exhibitors setting up stalls, you can find a tasty treat, a creative craft, or admire some of the beautiful art on display. In addition, the Electra Art Gallery will be featuring the Centralines Art Extravaganza.

Festival for the Future

(September 4th – 6th, 2015; Auckland)

The Festival for the Future is all about creating a new future, and the hope that youth may bring. The focus is placed on 400 young artists, musicians, activists, entrepreneurs, scientists, and emerging students who come together to share ideas and hear from inspiring speakers. The festival gives the youth a chance to connect big names across the nation that have already begun to make changes that will make the world a better place. Aside from conversing with guest speakers, there will be plenty of workshops and many events that will give people a chance to create.

Short and Sweet Festival

(Various Dates; Auckland and Wellington)

The Short and Sweet Festival is like one large “One Act” play in New Zealand. On various dates, audience members will be dazzled by ten 10-minute short pieces of theatre, music, dance, or cabaret, making up over 30 plays, 40 dance pieces, and 10 short musicals. What’s even more fascinating is that the directors, playwrights, choreographers, composers, and performers, adding up to over 500 people, are all volunteers. Here are the dates for each performance below:


  • Short and Sweet Theatre
    September 8th – 20th, 2015
  • Short and Sweet Song
    September 29th – October 4th, 2015
  • Short and Sweet Cabaret
    September 24th – 27th, 2015
  • Short and Sweet Dance
    September 1st – 6th, 2015


  • Short and Sweet Theatre
    November 3rd – 8th, 2015
Hastings Blossom Parade

(September 12th, 2015)

Celebrating the arrival of Spring, the Hastings Blossom Parade takes place in Hawke’s Bay, Napier, New Zealand. Every year, the people of Hawke’s Bay design creative floats that attract a large crowd. Plus, each year has a different theme and a prize pool of cash – this year adds up to $5000 in winnings. The theme is “Great Things Grow Here.” If you’re not in the parade, or just visiting, you can always sponsor an entry and show your support.

Auckland on Water Boat Show

(September 24th – 27th, 2015)

For over a decade, Auckland has been featuring what has been known as the Auckland International Boat Show. It attracts boating enthusiasts with a variety of interests, from sailing to fishing, and water sports to pleasure cruising. A large harbor acts as a giant floating showroom where boats and yachts of all shapes and sizes can be seen. There will be plenty of opportunities to speak with experts and learn about an array of marine products and services, equipment – really all things “on water.” There will also be free seminars offering more opportunities to get the best advice for your next boating adventure.

Port Chalmers Seafood Festival

(September 26th, 2015; Port Chalmers, Dunedin)

The Port Chalmers Seafood Festival is packed with tons of things to do and enjoy for everyone. There will be plenty of delicious food, most likely seafood based, alone with fine wine and beer from local breweries. Entertainment is taken care of with live music performances and children’s entertainment for the little ones. If you’re interested in seeing how chefs prepare fish, there will be celebrity chefs putting on demos, and if you like to fish for sport, a fishing completion will also be held. This festival is already blowing the rest out of the water.

Kaweru Woodfest

(September 25th – 27th, 2015; Kaweraru)

Are you an enthusiast about wood and wooden art? Then you may want to stop by the Kaweru Woodfest if you’re in Rotorua, New Zealand late September. Only 58km out, Kaweru is the spot for all things wood. There will be wood crafting competitions, chainsaw carving, and wood chopping performances; even activities children have been known to get involved in (registered beforehand). There will also be plenty of attractions and food vendors, along with a craft market to keep you busy throughout the day.

Christchurch Vegetarian Expo

(September 27th, 2015)

If you need to munch on some veggies this year whilst in New Zealand, you may want to plan to visit during September. The Vegetarian Expo takes place in Christchurch, New Zealand, the homeland for Vegetarians with over 10,000 vegetarians making up the population. Just like any other foodie expo, there will be vegan food, chefs preparing veggie dishes, and seminars on learning about the vegetarian lifestyle. Plus, there will also be entertainment going on, and vegetarian or not, everyone is welcome to come and enjoy the expo.

October 2015

New Zealand Independent Book Festival

(October 3rd – 4th, 2015l; Auckland)

Now is the time to meet some of NZ’s best-selling authors, and most passionate writers. It’s also a great time to find hidden gems, as most of these authors are independently published, and most book stores are hesitant to stock non-traditionally published books. Moreover, if you’re a writer, this is your chance to learn about publishing at one of the many free seminars, and to meet authors who have published their own books.

New Zealand Improv Festival

(October 6th – 10th, 2015; Wellington)

Improvised theatre has been a long and upcoming style of performing arts, testing one’s ability to take an idea and run with it on stage. The country’s top improv companies come together for the New Zealand Improv Festival to test their ability to be spontaneous in front of a crowd. Some of the performance groups have even been known to go onto successful national and international tours after their debut at the Improv Festival at New Zealand. Moreover, you can learn from some of the best in improv by joining a workshop to develop your own improv acting skills.

Nelson Arts Festival

(October 14th – 26th, 2015; Nelson)

The Nelson Arts Festival has been known to always bring it when October rolls around, and this year plans are already underway. A line-up of musicians, performers, literature, dance, and more is being finalized to bring nearly two weeks of entertainment. There will also be a masked parade and a carnivale taking place during the arts festival, which is a great chance to go out with the family and bond over the fun and the laughs.

Tauranga Arts Festival

(October 22nd – November 1st, 2015)

The Tauranga Arts Festival is always bringing something new each year to entertain the public. Known for its theatre, music, dance, visual arts, writers, and circus, over 80 events take place across this 10 day event. However, this year, the spotlight may have already been stolen by the luminarium Exxopolis. This is basically a giant inflatable structure, a maze of sorts, that takes over 1000 square meters, and is made up of tunnels and domes with kaleidoscope designs and lighting.

Bay Salsa

(October 23rd – 25th, 2015; Tauranga)

This Labor Day weekend, New Zealand’s top Latin dance teachers and performers are coming together to take part in the 9th Annual Bay Salsa Festival. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced dancer, you will want to come to Tauranga and enjoy the party. There will be several parties, workshops, and performances going on during the festival, along with competitions and events.

Queenstown JazzFest

(October 23rd – 26th, 2015; Queenstown)

Ready for four days of music over Labor Day Weekend? In Queenstown, their Jazz Festival has become a tradition of over 35 years in the making, and every year the line-up of musicians is just as stunning as the last. Local, national, and international artists sign up and showcase their talents, all in over 40 different events and concerts. From the cool blues to funky R&B, there is a variety of musicians, not just jazz artists, and with the concerts being free, it’s hard not to check out this JazzFest.

Bay of Islands Food and Wine Festival

(October 24th, 2015; Bay of Islands – Paihia)

For the 6th year in a row, the Bay of Islands will be holding its popular food and wine festival this year. It’s a night of food, wine, and entertainment brought to the public by the locals of the Bay of Islands. This is a family-friendly event, as there will be entertainment for children provided, as well as a kids area so parents can get away for a bit and try a little bit of the more grown-up stuff, like drinks from award-winning vineyards. There will also be kiwi competitions being held, such as oyster shucking and kina sucking.

November 2015

Taste of Auckland

(November 5th – 8th, 2015)

The Taste of Auckland festival is pretty literal in their name. Belonging to a Taste Festivals organization that travels over 20 locations, from London to Dubai, the team knows how to find good food, and what food a location is known for. Like Chicago pizza, you can’t visit Auckland without a signature dish. The hottest Auckland restaurants will be picked to provide meals for this festival, chefs will be putting on cooking demonstrations, all the while you can take part in wine and whiskey tastings.

New Zealand Cup and Show Week

(November 7th, 2015; Christchurch)

In between horse races and fashion shows, one wonders if there is any way to talk about all you’ve seen and done, and that’s exactly what this week is about. Cup and Show week is all about getting together and socializing after racing and/or shows are done for the day. There’s still plenty to do, whether it’s grabbing a bite to eat or tasting a bit of wine – just go out and meet people. The city is booming with entertainment and things to do – the day isn’t over yet.

The Dunedin Craft Beer and Food Festival

(November 7th, 2015)

The Dunedin Craft Beer and Food Festival has been very popular in recent years. Usually held in the Eastern Spring, the festival has been pushed back into November with the hopes of a little warmer weather this year. If it’s your first time, many festival-goers return each year, and are pretty friendly – ask someone if they have a recommendation for which brewery to stop by. There will also be plenty of food and live entertainment available throughout the festival.

Rotorua Festival of Gardens

(November 13th – 15th, 2015)

Looking to slow down a bit while visiting NZ? Going to the Rotorua Festival of Gardens might be the place you’re looking for. It’s literally a chance to stop and smell the roses. The Festival has several gardens that you can venture over a three-day span, with plants, food, and even artwork made available throughout the grounds. However, this event is held every two years, so be sure to stop by this year if you’re in the area.

LitCrawl – Words on the Street

(November 14th, 2015; Wellington)

Last year, the turn out for the LitCrawl was fantastic. Hoping to bring as many people together over literature again, it will be returning this November with another great program lineup. You will find new sorts of story telling at the LitCrawl, and you might learn something new to help your own storytelling. If you like to write, read, or are looking for a new experience, then you may wish to join the next LitCrawl.

Auckland Garden DesignFest

(November 14th – 15th, 2015)

For a look at some of the more luxurious designs people put into their garden, paying a visit to the Auckland Garden DesignFest is a good idea. Landscape designers have made their clients’ dreams come true with these garden designs. Like a home makeover, there are many properties that have been transformed into something worth showing off during this festival. There’s also a chance to help a cause, as several charities for children will be benefited from the funds raised from DesignFest.

Toast Martinborough

(November 15th, 2015)

Also known as the “New Zealand Premier Wine, Food, and Music Festival,” Toast Martinborough is all about having a great day in a wine village atmosphere. It’s been said to be a “must-do” whilst in New Zealand, and sadly it’s a single-day event. If you miss it, you miss all the savoury dishes, world-class wines, and live musical entertainment featured during the festival. The program taking shape already looks promising this year, and it might just keep getting better.

Dunedin Celtic Music and Craft Beer Festival

(November 21st 2015)

What better way to celebrate the Celtic than with an entire festival dedicated to them? With music by hot stars like the Red Hot Chilli Pipers? This annual event is all about the gathering of the Celtic clans, and enjoyment of everyone involved. The festival is outdoors, no matter the weather, and many refreshments will be available to keep the party going. After all, “Craft Beer” is in the festival’s name.

Coca-Cola Christmas in the Park

(November 28th, 2015; Christchurch / December 12th, 2015; Auckland)

Running for over 20 years, Coca-Cola Christmas in the Park returns for its 22nd year in Auckland and Christchurch. The dates are separated for the two locations, but the joy will be the same. The event has been coined “The Happiest Night of the Year,” and Coca-Cola does it justice with the entertainment they bring to the festival. Singers, dancers, and musicians known all around the country appear on stage, ready to ignite the magic of Christmas. Plus, the Youthline charity will be benefiting from this event.

Grey Lynn Park Festival

(November 28th, 2015; Auckland)

For a unique festival experience, you may want to pay Auckland, New Zealand a visit in late November. The Grey Lynn Park Festival is like no other, and has been going on for 30 years to the date. It’s somewhat an unknown gem, as there is not much advertising done, if any – its popularity has grown via word of mouth, which is really saying something. It’s also family friendly, as there is entertainment for all ages, face painting, and plenty of food to chow down. All-in-all, it’s an ethereal, family-friendly woodstock or renaissance fair of the modern day.

9th New Zealand Ukulele Festival

(November 28th, 2015; Auckland)

Said to be the best free music festival in NZ, it’s definitely the most authentic. The Ukulele is an under-appreciated, yet wildly enjoyable instrument to listen to, and New Zealand has made a festival out of its music. The festival has non-stop entertainment – musicians from all over play throughout the day. Even better, the festival is a registered charity, dedicated to using music to enrich the lives of children.

December 2015

Wine and Food Festival

(December 2015; Christchurch)

Coming back for another year, the parties don’t stop with the festive seasons. Over 40 wineries come together at the Wine and Food Festival in Christchurch, presented by Canterbury More FM. Matched up with dishes prepared by the top local chefs, your taste buds will have their own holiday with every bite. There will also be live entertainment for your enjoyment, or if you’d like to get interactive, cooking classes will be hosted during the festival.

New Year's Eve Festival 2015

(December 28th,2015 – January 2nd, 2016; Auckland)

Want to go away and get lost in a whole new world as you enter a new year? That’s the whole point behind the NYE ॐ. At the Twisted Wonderland, everyone gets ready to go camping for 5 days on a 400 hectare of farm land with tracks for hiking and a lake to swim in. It is one of the most luxurious campgrounds around, and all five days will be packed with activities and entertainment to keep you busy, still with plenty of free time to do what you wish. On New Year’s Eve, the big party starts at midday, with an Alice in Wonderland themed production.

Highlife NYE

(December 31st, 2015; Auckland)

Highlife NYE returns to Auckland for yet another incredible party to start the New year. You can expect to be delighted by amazing music talent, DJ’s, live performances, dancers, gourmet food, and premium drinks. It all goes down with a fireworks show to start off 2016.