the beautiful villa
Statuary blends into the seemingly natural backgrounds
It was just past prime blooming season but was hard to tell
Anneke has spent 18 years constructing the garden from pasture
Anneke says this is John
Morning sunshine floods through stained-glass windows in Anneke and John Van der Maat's lovely country home, which has scenic views of the lake and Mt. Tarawera. Colored friezes run at ceiling height around every room; as befits two former professional rose growers, the design emphasizes flowers. Throughout the house are mementos of the hosts' travels—a Buddha figure here, a prayer wheel there, blue-eyed dolls from Europe. An antique chandelier is suspended over the
table in the five-sided breakfast room, where the morning meal includes homemade bread plus a surprise hot dish that changes from day to day. One room is self-contained, with a separate entrance and a small kitchenette.