We were recommended Purangi Garden by a sailor in Paihia and it exceeded our expectations. We stayed in Sunflower Chalet which overloooks the little private beach, so we were able to watch the tides ebb and flow and the waters change from green to blue. The chalet was well designed, spotless and very comfortable. We had all our meals out on the verandah, including barbecues.
This is great if you are looking for peace and quiet, with a focus on back to nature. It was absolutely private as we had to drive along a 5km gravel track to get it. We were serenaded by birdsong in the gardens and surrounded by Pohutakawa trees and rolling hills.
The owner, Susan, supplied us with fresh flowers, home-baked bread, newly-laid eggs, fresh coffee and cereal. She gave us oranges, lemons and grapefruit from her orchards and we were able to harvest various kinds of lettuce and herbs from her garden plot, to make some interesting salads. She was extremely helpful and hospitable in making sure we had what we needed.
We had the use of their kayaks and a dinghy to potter around the Purangi River estuary. We intended to do all sorts of things when we got there, such as go for long walks (too hot) and visit some popular spots such as Hahei Beach, Cathedral Cove and Hot Water Beach (too many people) so we stayed put in this little idyll. Our kayaking skills improved, from being complete novices to being able to travel quite a long way along the Purangi estuary, surprising pied shag, oystercatchers and diving gannets as we glide by. One day we took the dinghy over the river to beautiful Cook's Beach to get some provisions.
Amazingly we even had free wi-fi here, quite unusual in New Zealand, although it was very slow and keeps dropping. We would have no hesitation in recommending this accommodation.