The Rotoiti Lodge is situated within Nelson Lakes National Park and is within easy walking distance to the village of St Arnaud. St Arnaud village is about 1¼ hours’ drive from either Nelson or Blenheim. The Lodge is sited on a gentle rise, is surrounded by native bush and has superb views of Lake Rotoiti and the surrounding mountains.
The idea to build a Lodge at Rotoiti was first suggested in 1964 by Police Sergeant Noel Oxnam. His enthusiasm and drive for the project led to significant contributions being made to the building of the Lodge by the regional community, the secondary schools and Rotary Clubs of Nelson and Marlborough and the Nelson Lakes National Park Board. The Lodge was officially opened on the 24th of February 1968.
In 2000, administration of the Rotoiti Lodge was transferred from the Department of Conservation to the Rotoiti Lodge Outdoor Education Trust. The Trust run outdoor education programmes for trust school groups during school terms. The trust schools, which are comprised of high schools from the Nelson and Marlborough provinces, provided support and funding at the time the Lodge was constructed. This gives them a preferential booking entitlement to the Lodge during the school terms (approximately 37 weeks per year).
There are two full-time resident instructors and a director of the Lodge. The instructors run the school programmes and the director handles bookings, administration, organises maintenance and has overall responsibility for the management of the Lodge.
The Lodge is available to other groups when not in use by schools. It is very popular over the summer break and during winter when the local ski field is operating. Some of the groups that use the Lodge include sport, craft, family and religious groups. The Lodge is a great venue for conferences, reunions, retreats, staff training, and weddings