New Zealand-born interior designer Virginia Fisher drew the public's attention with her very first project, Huka Lodge, Taupo, New Zealand. When he purchased the property in 1984, owner Alex van Heeren commissioned Virginia Fisher to create an interior to complement and enhance this extraordinarily beautiful location.
Fisher rose magnificently to the task. Drawing on the property’s heritage, she created an interior and ambience considered unrivalled to this day. Building on and adding additional layers to the Lodge continues, with attention to detail and awareness of guest experience being the driving force.
Other projects with Alex van Heeren, have included the significant heritage wine estate Grande Provence, Franschhoek, South Africa. Founded by French Huguenots in 1694, the Estate – along with its rich and colourful historic past – provided yet another superb project. Once again Virginia Fisher’s great eye for exactly what a property needs to offer its guests came into play. Her innate understanding and vision for the estate’s visual design, both in terms of texture and ambiance, were brought to bear and the end result is truly magnificent.
In late 2008, Fisher completed the exclusive Alan Pye Cottage, for Huka Lodge and this is also considered to be a triumph. A contemporary version of an Arts and Crafts cottage within a magnificent location, with superb colour palette and a fabulously eclectic and wonderful interior. Named after the charming Irishman who founded Huka Lodge in 1924, the Alan Pye Cottage provides a fitting tribute to the original owner’s generous spirit of hospitality and his style.
The latest project, having opened in June 2011, is the Pacific retreat Dolphin Island, Fiji. Here, Fisher has created a haven of relaxation and comfort while celebrating Pacific style in her own unique way. While strongly referencing Polynesian pattern and lifestyle, Fisher brings together a fabulous look for Dolphin Island that will be enjoyed by guests for years to come.
Virginia Fisher’s collaboration with Alex van Heeren has resulted in some of the fi nest retreats in the world, which has seen the emergence of a group of sister properties known as The Huka Retreats.