Tag Archives: Observer (The)

Talent with Depth

Talent with Depth

Observer wine critic, Tim Atkin, looks beyond the ubiquitous NZ Sauvignon Blanc, recommending instead our Pinot Gris, Riesling, Syrah, and – above all – Pinot Noir. “NZ may produce only 0.79 per cent of the world’s vino,…

The High Life

The High Life

The opening in March of NZ’s first and only luxury alpine retreat – the Whare Kea Chalet – rates a mention in both the Guardian and  Observer. Guests reach the chalet via a “dazzling” 15…

Track Star

Track Star

The Observer‘s “20 journeys of a lifetime” includes NZ’s legendary Milford Track. “Traversing the heart of South Island’s wild fjord country, the Milford Track is often described as the finest walk in the world. Famed for spectacular…

Off the Beaten Track

Off the Beaten Track

NZ is one of 30 “hot spots for switched on travellers” recommended by Lonely Planet for 2004. To avoid the inevitable horde of Rings fans, LP suggests taking the Pacific Coast Highway down the Coromandel Peninsula, stopping…

Judith Mayhew Jonas: Alpha female

Judith Mayhew Jonas: Alpha female

14 December 2003 – Dame Judith Mayhew Jonas – former financial advisor to the Mayor of London, current Provost of Kings College, Cambridge, and chairman of the Royal Opera House – was one of nine “alpha females”…

Top Christmas Tipple

Top Christmas Tipple

Villa Maria’s 2002 Private Bin Riesling is one of the Observer‘s top 36 wines for Christmas drinking. “Villa Maria is better known for its in-your-face Sauvignon Blancs than its other New Zealand whites, but this screwcapped Riesling…

More Glowing PJ Praise

More Glowing PJ Praise

Sydney Morning Herald awestruck by the premiere, wonders how PJ managed to pull off “the trilogy of a lifetime” Operatic high praise from The New Yorker who credits the trilogy with reviving “the…

Praise the Lord

Praise the Lord

Peter Jackson: “‘He’s as cool as an elf, he has the heart of a hobbit, and he’s as mad as a wizard.’ That’s the awestruck opinion of Lord Of The Rings star…

Out-standing

Out-standing

Ex-pat bar proprietor, Kim Lucas, shares her views on “pride and prejudice” in an Observer feature on Britain’s 20 most outstanding homosexuals. Lucas opened London’s first official lesbian hangout – the Candy Bar…

Sideline Action

Sideline Action

With all eyes on Australasia for the Rugby World Cup, an Observer travel feature looks at new attractions on offer in the region. Included is the West Coast’s Wave Watchers Retreat (“a romantic bolthole with great…

Let’s Talk About Sex

Let’s Talk About Sex

“Jane Campion has made an incredibly sexy movie, and she knows it.” Further cinematic exploration along the edge of the erotic, In the Cut debuted at September’s Toronto Film Festival, stirring up as much…

Great Expectations

Great Expectations

The All Blacks go into this year’s Rugby World Cup ranked second after England, yet the British press largely favours them to win. According to the Observer, “the ABs are certainties for the final stages. If…

An angel at his table

An angel at his table

Actress Kerry Fox interviewed in the Observer ‘favourite eateries’ column and muses on fellow Kiwi, ex-flatmate and celebrity chef, Peter Gordon’s Tapa Room – as well as  his influence on her own culinary habits….

Leading Lights and Walk-overs

Leading Lights and Walk-overs

NZ wines rate highly in Tim Atkin’s list of ‘summer corkers’ at their peak of drinkability. 2002 Villa Maria Private Bin Sauvignon Blanc: “I’ve never tasted a better vintage of this intense, guava, gooseberry and mango-like South…

Whistle-stop NZ

Whistle-stop NZ

Lonely Planet experts offer Brits-in-need a two week itinerary of NZ. Reader response: “A two week(!) trip to NZ? We’re UK bird-watchers who have just spent three months there. It’s far too short a time…”

Pavlova Paradise?

Pavlova Paradise?

Observer offers a how-to guide to buying property in NZ in its assessment of the global property market’s latest hot spot. According to their sources, “screen gods and goddesses are buying up idyllic island…

The Quiet Life

The Quiet Life

Observer recommends Paua Cottage in Russell to Britons seeking a seaside escape. “Wake up in wondrous solitude to the sun rising from the Pacific Ocean at Paua Cottage … At the foot of a cliff sits…

Island for Hire

Island for Hire

Observer‘s guide to rock-star living suggests hiring your own island getaway. Featured is Forsyth Island, Marlborough Sounds. “This is a great one for the active – the 2,100 acre island has 35 kilometres of pathways for…

Edge intelligence: Donaldson delivers

Edge intelligence: Donaldson delivers

Observer reviews The Recruit, the latest Hollywood offering from one of NZ cinema’s pioners, LA-based Roger Donaldson. “Slick and highly enjoyable … scenes of induction and seduction have an almost documentary feel and the…

Celebrity chef

Celebrity chef

Kiwi chef Alex Mackay is one of the bright sparks leading Britain’s ongoing gastronomic revolution. After working in England and Italy, Mackay now runs an acclaimed cooking school at Le Baou d’Infer in Provence…

On the move

On the move

Teenage singer Hayley Westenra – “the next Charlotte Church” – is making her move on the UK market. The 15-year-old has based herself in Kensington, London, and is currently recording an album for Decca…

Scuba-duper

Scuba-duper

NZ waters crop up three times in the Observer‘s list of the world’s best scuba spots. Hauraki Reef and Kaikoura Canyon are recommended for mammal enthusiasts, while a night-dive at Rikoriko Cave (Poor Knights Islands) comes with…

Rolling With It

Rolling With It

The best supporting location features in the Observer‘s list of 20 dream holidays for the 21st century. “Hobbit fever has made NZ one of the hottest destinations of the new century, and there is still one…

New Jump City

New Jump City

AJ Hackett Bungy is soon to open the world’s first harbour bridge jump site. The latest addition to the Hackett franchise will be located on Auckland’s harbour bridge – already a tourist hot-spot thanks to the…

Taylor electrifies critics

Taylor electrifies critics

NZ writer Chad Taylor impresses international critics with his new noir novel, Electric. Pulp: “Dark, intense, fast-paced, and perceptive, both noir literary thriller and pulp crime fiction Cool, surreal and sexy – make…

Canterbrian Miss October

Canterbrian Miss October

NZ takes out the October slot of  Lonely Planet‘s year planner for 2003. “Take one of the world’s great train journeys, the Tranzalpine, across the southern alps the varied scenery takes in the Canterbury Plains,…

Karen’s Kiwi Christmas

Karen’s Kiwi Christmas

Observer “unwraps Christmas in NZ” from the comfort of Karen Walker’s Waitakere Ranges home. “It’s a guaranteed white Christmas … the manuka trees are frosted with delicate white blooms so that the hillside appears…

Pinetree Chews the Fat

Pinetree Chews the Fat

“If you want a snapshot of the way rugby used to be, there is no more impressive monument to the past than Colin Meads, a man as straight as he was hard.” The Observer talks rugby,…

These Boots Are Made for Walking … On

These Boots Are Made for Walking … On

Dame Judith Mayhew will not seek re-election to her position as head of the City of London Corporation, claiming she is “doing too much.” She’s not joking either – see above for BBC profile. Described as “one of…

Surf’s Up in Cornwall

Surf’s Up in Cornwall

Waikato University’s resident surf expert – Dr Kerry Black – is helping create waves in Cornwall, where a £6 million proposal for constructing an artificial reef is currently under negotiation. Black and his team of marine…

Booker Prize: end of an era?

Booker Prize: end of an era?

Observer critics liken this year’s Man Booker Prize win to that of NZ’s Keri Hulme on “that unforgettable night in the mid-80s.” Yann Martel’s The Life of Pi won thanks to “a virtuoso display…

“Feast feats”

“Feast feats”

London restaurant Pied a Terre, where Kiwi chef Shane Osborn reigns as “creative genius,” praised in the Observer: “You may wonder how it is possible for a Michelin-starred restaurant to serve a three-course lunch…

The Future is All Black

The Future is All Black

Tours to the Northern Hemisphere winter by the The All Blacks, Wallabies and Springboks saw some interesting pre-World Cup square offs with NZ, France and England (!) jostling for  favouritism at the whistle. The match…

Re-re-colonisation

Re-re-colonisation

“Fleeing grey skies and commuting blues.” NZ raised the skills requirements for British migrants this month in response to record numbers seeking permanent residence. “Better lifestyles, cheaper homes and warmer weather” are the top…

Karen Walker: Back Yard High Casual

Karen Walker: Back Yard High Casual

6 page Observer spread: Walker uses her distance to advantage, preferring the hilltops of Auckland to the glamour and pace of Europe. “Karen Walker’s lived-in fabrics and homely knits evoke her idyllic New Zealand…

Greatest Games’ Moments

Greatest Games’ Moments

An Observer run-down of the 10 greatest Commonwealth Games’ moments gives two spots to NZ achievers. No. 4: one of the finest middle distance races run, the 1974 1,500m race between John Walker and Tanzania’s Filbert Bavi…

Best Haul

Best Haul

Ironically for Lynn, NZ was once again voted “Best Long Haul Country” over Australia, Cuba, Japan, Thailand et al by Guardian and Observer readers – they must have got off the bus and visited at…

Bus-class High Flyer

Bus-class High Flyer

Kiwi Ray Webster is Chief Executive of pioneering no-frills airline Easy Jet. Touching down in the market in a big way Webster works by the mantra that, “Airlines are about people, not about airplanes and airports.”…

Life and Loves …

Life and Loves …

NZEdged author Fay Weldon traverses a contradictory, but never dull life, in her autobiography Auto de Fay and finds her muse in the edge: “Always! Yes, always! I wanted to see more, it was…

Munster Monster of ABs makes Top-10 Sporting Shocks

Munster Monster of ABs makes Top-10 Sporting Shocks

Irish club side Munster’s shut-out 12-0 defeat of the 1978 All Blacks proclaimed by Observer Sport Monthly as the tenth greatest shock in sport’s history. Munster playwright James Breen (Alone It Stands – about the events surrounding…

Edge power play

Edge power play

“Are Tim Bevan (43) and Eric Fellner (41) the most powerful London-based film producers in history? As Working Title (of which they are co-chairmen) is responsible for Bridget Jones’s Diary, Billy…

Tiger Tamer

Tiger Tamer

13-year-old New Zealander, Jae An, becomes the youngest ever male to play a professional golf tournament, and then the youngest golfer ever to make the cut, when he lines up alongside Tiger Woods at the New…

Stella food in New York

Stella food in New York

Stella, a dark, candlelit bistro garnering acclaim in New York, is owned by Anna Weinberg and Paul Masters, a husband-and-wife team from New Zealand. “It has a comforting niceness about it,” writes food critic…

No 2, one year on

No 2, one year on

Picked by Observer critics as an Edinburgh Best of Festival 2 and winner of a prestigious Fringe First, Toa Fraser’s No. 2 continues to thrive and garner praise despite a bit of reality-biting about…

Intimacy and anguish

Intimacy and anguish

New Zealand actress Kerry Fox’s award-winning work in Intimacy continues to generate curiosity, awe and pursed lips: Getting Intimate in the Sunday Times; Truely, madly, explicitly in The Observer and Hanif…

Tohu Sauvignon

Tohu Sauvignon

“The only wine in New Zealand (as far as I know) that’s made entirely by Maori. If you’ve grown tired of Kiwi Sauvignon Blanc, this gooseberry and passion fruit white, with its fresh acidity and real…

Seven Worlds will Collide

Seven Worlds will Collide

“It’s like stumbling into your own birthday party – you don’t know where to look first. Centre stage is Neil Finn, hair greying but still a hint of that haphazard Crowded House quiff, a…

A Long Way to Deliver a Letter

A Long Way to Deliver a Letter

Jules Brown from The Observer takes a scenic trip up the stunning Whanganui river on some rather usual transport – a mail bus.

Sweet Sugar

Sweet Sugar

Peter Gordon is the man who launched a thousand experiments with seaweed, noodles and kangaroo. His latest book, “Cook at Home with Peter Gordon”, applies the same eclectic principles, offering something for cooks of…

So Far – So Good

So Far – So Good

The discerning readers of the Guardian and Observer have voted New Zealand as their favourite long-haul travel destination. “It is the Caribbean and the English countryside, Antarctica and California, Sydney and Gleneagles all rolled into one….

“Brain Drain Clouds NZ’s Future” – Refuse the Hype and Get to the Edge

“Brain Drain Clouds NZ’s Future” – Refuse the Hype and Get to the Edge

More centric thinking, this time from London’s Observer, “New Zealander’s are leaving their country in droves, placing a strain on the economy and painting a grim picture for the future.” Our opinion: New Zealand Edgers of the…

Nicola Barker, Winner of the World’s Most Lavish Award for Fiction, Gets Lyrical About Dunedin

Nicola Barker, Winner of the World’s Most Lavish Award for Fiction, Gets Lyrical About Dunedin

Spreading her wings in wide open spaces, Nicola Barker in the Observer immerses heartily herself in Dunedin nature and culture and comes up smiling. “This is a happy, happy place. The Albatross shows us its fluffy…