Skyline is an activity company in New Zealand that has 2 branches, Rotorua and Queenstown. They offer gondola and luge rides. Stratosfare Restaurant and Bar is run by Skyline in Queenstown.
Anywhere that offers cable car and luge rides have to located high up. Luges are gravity powered go-carts that start at the top of a hill and go down.
The Stratosfare Restaurant and Bar is located at the top of a mountain in the town center of Queenstown. To get to the top, visitors must take the cable car up to the top. Access is via the middle of Queenstown, a small yet busy town by the water, with lots of activities on offer and restaurants to dine at. On weekends, there are local markets on the grass by the water. Other times, enjoy a picnic or some time on the grass.
Visitors to the Stratosfare restaurant can enjoy some luge rides or the cable car ride, a bike ride or even bungee jumping.
They offer a lunch and a dinner session, with 2 sittings in the dinner session to allow time in between to reset the tables and replenish the food. Lunch lasts an hour 45 minutes from noon to 1:45pm. Dinner lasts longer, starting at 5:30pm until 7:30pm for the early session, and 8pm onwards for the late session.
We booked their buffet dinner package and went for the late sitting. After spending the day paragliding and having lunch at Walter’s Peak, we got here early in the afternoon by car We were advised to get here early as sometimes there is a long line to the cable car. We got there at 5pm. This gave us plenty of time to explore the area after going up on the cable car, take a few photos and a few luge rides.
Address: Brecon Street, Queenstown, New Zealand (no street number, it is at the end of the street and the cable car can be seen a long way away going up the side of the mountain.)
The restaurant is located at the top of a mountain and as previously mentioned, is accessed by cable car. If getting here by car, there are plenty of cheap parking around the area that is within walking distance. I was actually surprised by how cheap the parking was, only $1-3 max, per hour, some areas with caps of very reasonable amounts, and free on public holidays!
We pre-booked for the dinner, so we walked up to the bottom terminal, checked in and took a cable car up. I can’t give any tips or opinions on fear of heights because I love looking down from a height, and the ride wasn’t scary for me (although it was for others in my car when it shook).
Due to the location of the restaurant, there is no mobile reception, but there is free wifi. There are shops and access to outside to see the luge rides or the surrounding scenery.
The lifts that take you to the top of the mountain to go-cart down: (following 2 photos are not by me (the author).
One can view bungee jumping from the waiting area.
Closer to the dining time, check-in will open. You will get a portable pager to let you know when it is time to enter.
Each group gets a staff member to show them in to the dining area and briefly around, where each type of food is.
Because of the location, a window seat is probably best, as it has the best views. However, the seats are tiered so everyone gets a view. You can reserve a window seat when you book but if you get there early like we did (we got there so early, we were first in line when the 2nd dinner session started, hence the photos with no people in it), you can pick a window seat.
Tiered dining area
I have to say, they did a really good job resetting the venue, it looks totally clean and tidy, as if we were the first people to eat of the day.
We took the late setting which meant we were able to see both the day time views and the night/sunset views.
The buffet was delicious and there was a very big variety. There was sushi, Asian soups and noodles/croutons (help yourself), hot meats, cold meats, smoked chicken which I really liked, lots of seafood, New Zealand cheese, and of course, desserts! Cakes, jellies, nuts, lava cake, dried fruits, candied fruits, fresh fruit salad and single serve ice cream with real vanilla in it. I absolutely loved it!
Soup station with noodles and croutons
Sushi, prawn cocktail and and seafood
The following photos are not by me (the author) but taken at the same table by my sister. Window seat
Staff was very nice and efficient, not only in the restaurant, but outside too. As there was no cell reception, we asked if we could use their landline phone for an emergency call, and after checking with management, they let us make the call, provided it was a short one, (which it was).
What I was a little surprised at was that at almost every place we visited, even a small salmon farm/shop, there was Chinese staff who spoke Mandarin, and this place was no exception.
At $82 per adult and $40 NZD per child, with the cable car ride included, I say this was a much better value activity compared to the BBQ Lunch at Walter’s Peak, for the way we experienced it. Parking cost less than $10.
I loved the experience here, and would gladly do it again. I highly recommend this if you enjoy good food holidays.
Gift shop is available, and there is a Kiwi sanctuary at the bottom cable car terminal.
Visit their official website here.
Read my TripAdvisor Review here.
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