Barb and Dave Milina

Barb and Dave Milina, owners of Albany based Warblers Retreat have won the two key categories of the 2021 Bed & Breakfast awards. The retreat is just 30 minutes from Auckland’s CBD and offers guests a wealth of eco friendly experiences.

It’s a Couples Retreat. Perfect for those needing to escape for a while. Feel like you need some pamper time, or some time out in nature to rejuvenate your body and to replenish your mind and soul?

An eco luxury stay at Warblers Retreat may be just what you need to get back to normal and there’s no need to travel far. Warblers Retreat is located on Auckland’s North Shore, yet it feels as though it’s a whole world away.

Completely surrounded by forest, the romantic Cottage and contemporary Studio are private, and self-catering giving flexibility to cook for yourself, or to order takeaway meals from just down the road. With self check in and cleanliness a priority, guests can feel safe in a secluded nature haven.

The Vision Insurance Bed & Breakfast Awards Programme celebrates excellence in hospitality in the bed and breakfast and hosted accommodation sector.  

Incoming President, Donna Brooke, said “I continue to be amazed at the quality of care and hospitality bed and breakfasts owners share with guests to their homes.

“This last year has been tough for all bed and breakfast operators, most of whom work with international guests. However, these operators have taken a good long look at their businesses, honed their craft, and despite all odds, have continued to provide exceptional high quality experiences.“

The Vision Insurance Overall Supreme Bed & Breakfast of the Year is chosen from the winners of three categories – Exceptional Bed & Breakfast of the Year, Rising Star Bed & Breakfast of the Year and Essence of Bed & Breakfast of the Year.

In awarding Warblers Retreat Overall Supreme Bed & Breakfast of the Year, the judges commented: “When an industry has been so affected by a worldwide pandemic it is extraordinary to see businesses that have really turned themselves around to find a solution that works. Not only have our Vision Insurance Business Excellence Award Finalists done this but they have also created an incredible foundation to set themselves apart from the rest.

“The beautiful Warblers Retreat has guests raving about their stays. Their sound and innovative business practices will stand them in such great stead going forward. With operators like Warblers Retreat, the hosted accommodation industry is in great hands. “

The Vision Insurance Bed & Breakfast Association Award Programme is made up of three Awards – Supreme B&B Business of the Year, Rising Star Bed & Breakfast of the Year (open to those who have been operating two years or less) and Essence of Bed & Breakfast of the year.

2021 Rising Star Bed & Breakfast of the Year was awarded to Samantha Winn, Quail Lodge, Papakura. Donna said “To take on a property and get it to an award-winning level in less than two years deserves recognition. Quail Lodge is an immaculate property in both presentation and hosting.“

2021 Essence of Bed & Breakfast of the Year was awarded to Sharon and John Corbett, Accent House, Mapua. “It is wonderful to see a past award winner crossing the stage again!! Sharon and John have continued to build and develop all areas of their business and go above and beyond hosting their guests in their home but also showcase their region and New Zealand and couple this with very sound business practices,” said Donna.

The Vision Insurance Excellence Awards programme is judged by Tourism Industry Aotearoa Chief Executive Chris Roberts and the Bed & Breakfast Association’s President and Vice President. They were awarded at a Gala Dinner in Wellington.

Highly Commended Award winners included:

  • Exceptional B&B of the Year, Highly Commended – Omaka Lodge, Taumaranui
  • Exceptional B&B of the Year, Highly Commended – Waihi Beach Paradise Resort, Waihi

The Bed & Breakfast Association New Zealand represents and promotes home-hosted bed and breakfasts throughout the country – including homestays, farmstays, boutique, heritage and luxury accommodation.

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