Our Story


Anna and Ian Sizer, along with their three children, call Takou River, home. Falling in love with New Zealand after years commuting between London, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and the far reaches of the globe, the couple searched every corner of New Zealand for six years, finally finding the perfect location to fulfil their dream in 2003.

Committed environmentalists, the irony does not escape that Anna, an environmental engineer, shares her eco-dream with husband Ian, a drilling engineer. During the build, Ian worked for one of the big oil companies in Papua New Guinea, flying home after each four-week stint. Anna gained a degree in environmental biology and ecology and traveled extensively before working as an environmental adviser in the oil industry. The couple met in Algeria in 1996, crammed into the back of a Land Cruiser for three weeks while surveying the central Sahara Desert. Anna jokes it was always going to end up a love or hate relationship. Romance won out.

A labour of love, the five acres of subtropical garden, once so overgrown the couple couldn’t see the river, are now an organic Eden of hibiscus, ponds and native bush. Touches of indulgence and whimsy in the claw foot baths, alongside eco-friendly bath products make Magic Cottages at Takou River a truly unique, romantic escape.