As we head towards the end of the year with the lure of a well-deserved break and unplugging from our electronic devices and pesky deadlines somewhere far away, what better way to inspire you than Sam Stuchbury and Hilary Ngan Kee’s enchanting new book Hideaways, in store from early November.

It’s a stunning showcase of tucked-away escape spots all over New Zealand that the creative, urban couple sourced and stayed at while researching the book — and they’re all available to the public.

They include a range of places from mountain huts, beachside baches, river cribs, luxury tents, a vintage caravan, shearers’ cottages, hunting shacks and fishing huts.

The result is a beautiful and thoughtful homage to a simpler way of life that, ironically, previous generations enjoyed but is one that we may have lost sight of in recent decades.

As Hilary says, the holiday escapes they found tucked away around the country is just a tiny sample of the many unique, quirky, eccentric, far-flung, romantic and adventurous retreats that await us; and, what’s more, you probably won’t have to drive far to find a delightful little place just off the beaten track.   

Each has its own authentic story to tell, as do some of the owners. Hilary spoke to them about why they choose the life they live and why they so love their hideaway; their small piece of paradise. Each chapter is an intimate portrait of place and Sam’s breathtaking photographs seem to somehow capture the stillness, the constant crashing waves, the way the fly-door creaks; the surroundings, the decoration themes, the colour schemes; as well as begin to unlock each place’s private history.


"The hideaways in this book only scrape the surface of the great many places where New Zealanders go to escape. That’s the thing about hideaways — they’re meant to be far from sight, only discovered in their own time. I hope that between the pages of this book you find inspiration for your own adventures, and that it makes you want to go out and discover some hideaways of your own." Hilary Ngan Kee




 Sam Stuchbury is the founder and director of creative agency Motion Sickness. He started the business, now an industry-leading studio, while at Otago University, where he studied design and marketing. He has a passion for film, photography, adventure and the outdoors. Sam lives in Newmarket, Auckland, with his partner and co-author Hilary.

Hilary Ngan Kee is a co-owner of Motion Sickness. She is half Scottish and half New Zealand Chinese, and grew up in Palmerston North. She and Sam met while studying in Dunedin. Hilary loves getting out of the city for peace and quiet, her ideal weekend away involving a good book, a glass of red wine and a hot bath.