$15 million of developments for Cardrona this winter

Developments for the 2017 winter season at Cardrona have totalled over $15million, with continued investment in the resort’s facilities and infrastructure. The investment includes a new high speed cabin lift, Base facility development, and improvements in terrain, carparking and snowmaking.

The biggest development for Winter 2017 is the new McDougall’s Express Chondola. The Doppelmayr “combined” lift of eight-person gondola cabins and six-seater chairs will replace the old McDougall’s Quad Chair. It is the first cabin-style lift on any ski area in New Zealand.

The McDougall’s Chondola will increase the lift’s capacity by 150%, with an hourly uplift of 2,550 skiers, snowboarders and sightseers.

With the goal of leaving the Mt Cardrona landscape and topsoil in better condition than when construction began, one of the project targets is to have no more than one skip bin full of waste. The lift construction project is being reviewed within the Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia’s rating scheme,

“We are so excited that this new lift will get people of all abilities to the top of the mountain and that we’re leaving our maunga better than before the project,” says Cardrona’s General Manager, Bridget Legnavsky.

“We’re all about fun, but it has to be sustainable – that’s something we’re working towards and really proud of.”

Building on Cardrona’s excellent children’s facilities, is an over $1 million building expansion and redesign of Cardrona’s Ski Kindy. The Kids’ Snow Sports School will be moving into the same building, Snow Sports HQ, giving parents one central location for all their children’s on-mountain education and care. With this development, Snow Sports HQ is now ski-in/ski-out on all three levels.

Also new for Winter 2017 is a new slope-side café and bar in the Base area – The Lounge. It will serve freshly-made food with local ingredients daily, and boasts a range of craft beers and the full Real Journeys, intensively-scrutinised and hand-selected wine list.

This year, Cardrona is adding more spaces to the Valley View carpark so even more pass holders can access the mountain from the resort’s lowest lift. This allows guests to cut ten minutes off the drive, get a coffee at the new Little Meg Café, then ride Valley View Quad to access the mountain.

The resort also continues to invest in snowmaking facilities, with improved water collection systems for the 2017 winter. The improved facilities increase snow reliability, which has meant the resort’s season can be extended by another week, with scheduled closing on October 15.

“With $15 million of developments and a season stacked with events like the Audi quattro Winter Games NZ and the Jossi Wells Invitational, it’s set to be a really exciting season at Cardrona,” says Legnavsky.


  1. that’s all great, but NZ’s skiings biggest opposition is now the U.S.

    It’s now so cheap to ski in Colorado. A good spacious 4 star ski in, ski out hotel room in January or February 2018 from $148 U.S.(about $195 AU) a night, with 2 queen beds & ensuite or roughly $10 more a night, for a studio with kitchen that can sleep 6 & lift tickets for a family up to 5 people(an adult & up to 4 kids) from $22.50 U.S.(less than $30 AU) that’s total not each, means as long as you can get there, reasonable cheaply, it’s a much better option.

    With most airlines struggling to fill aircraft at any price, a repeat of the $699 AU from OZ east coast to U.S. west coast return fares, is not far away. Even today there are fares to LAX return for $838 AU.

    No you won’t get a $699 return fare to USA mainland if you want to go end of December or early January, but suggest you might very soon, if go from mid January onwards or possibly late November. Many school in OZ finish in late November.

    Combined with increased prices in places like Queenstown, Australians must be looking at USA, instead of NZ. The difference is, you might have a week in NZ, but not many people go to USA for under 2 weeks.

    Have already heard from some regular Queenstown skiers, that now, instead of a week in Queenstown in southern hemisphere winter & 2 weeks in USA or Canada, they’ll now go for 3 weeks in USA & not go to NZ & save money, in terms of total spend.

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