When Garry and Barbara designed the No Road Inn one of the first considerations was always going to be to keep enviromental impact to a minimum, not just during the building process, when only the building footprint was cleared of vegetation, but for past the life of the lodge to provide sustainability for future generations to enjoy.
Extensive use of recycled materials was utilised in the construction including old Australian hardwood power and telegraph poles for the upper story deck poles, the x-arms off the poles were dressed, tongue and grooved, and crafted into our front door with the surrounding jambs made from undressed hardwood railway sleepers.
The flooring in the second story dining and kitchen areas is 100 year old native Totara recycled from a sheep shearing shed in Te Horo, near Otaki in the North Island, glued down and re-furbished. The Totara flooring then had to be oiled, rather than varnished or polyurethaned as the lanolin off the sheep wool soaking into the timber pevents surface coatings from adhereing. This oiling brought the fantastic depth of colors out in the planks and is easy to reapply. This flooring will be around for another 100 years to come.
The insulation of the No Road Inn didnt stop at the roof and external walls, all the internal walls are insulated as well, even the ensuites, wardrobes and the laundry, so only the rooms occupied by guests at the time get heated without losing the warmth to unused rooms. An added benefit of this is sound proofing between rooms. With all this insulation it only requires a short time for a guest room to become warm and cosy.
Double glazing was installed, 6 solar panels fixed to the roof , a log burner in the lounge, and radiator heaters, (heated by the solar fed hot water cylinder) throughout the rest of the lodge provide warmth where and when its required. The only concession is for electric blankets as some guests like a cool room at night but a snuggly warm bed.
The solar panels provide all the hot water needs in the summer months with gas backup for the cloudy days. Cooking is all done with gas except for an outdoor wood fired oven that comes into its own for those summer gatherings.
The antique clawfoot baths were saved from old homesteads and from farm watering troughs and refurbished to as new.
The No Road Inn has two seperate lighting systems installed to take advantage of the expected increase in quality LED lighting becoming more readily available. In the meantime we use energy saving 240 volt bulbs, saving up to 80% on electricity. Waste water is treated through an aeriated system on site with a greywater system under development to irrigate the property in summer months.
Glass bottles are crushed and tumbled for use on pathways and gardens. A worm farm and composting facility take care of almost all food and pulp waste. The Kuni Kuni pig (Mr Jock Wiggins) at the Miners Camp also happily recycles a large amount of food scraps.
A freshwater spring provides an all year supply of pure water which is piped to our tanks before being pumped to the lodge. These pumps ensure high pressured showers and irrigation systems.
Over one thousand native shrubs and trees have been planted around and near the lodge and Giant Rimu trees estimated at 1500 years old left untouched in our own reserve. The 2nd stage of the No Road Inn will be to build induvidual chalets under these trees with little vegetation clearance required.
Also under progress is a Micro Hydro system to generate our own electricity supply, due for completion in 2112.