Luxury chapel lift gay wedding ban

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Gay marriage will now be allowed anywhere in Stoneridge Estate. Photo / Thinkstock

A luxury Queenstown chapel can now be used by gay couples to wed after a same-sex ban was lifted.

Boutique lodge Stoneridge Estate previously allowed same-sex couples to marry in the gardens and the lodge - but not the chapel.

Owner Wayne Gore said the policy was due to his 80-year-old mother Da'Vella Gore. She holds a lifetime lease over the chapel that was built 13 years ago.

"We have never not supported same-sex weddings at the property," Gore told the Herald.

"However, my mother of 80 years old, has held the historic Christian understanding of marriage as the loving, faithful union of a man and a woman.

"She believes her wedding chapel has been a gift from God and remains true to her convictions in terms of her Christian faith."

Gore said his mother had reconsidered her position and accepted that their wedding business can not be separated due to her personal beliefs.

Stoneridge Estate has hosted nearly 100 same-sex wedding ceremonies and receptions.

It was only after media contacted the lodge on Friday that they decided to remove the ban, Gore said.

Stoneridge is known to attract high flying guests with former All Black Ali Williams and his partner Casey Green exchanging nuptials there in 2011. Richie and Gemma McCaw's honeymoon was there earlier this year.

Same-sex marriage has been legal in New Zealand since 2013, while civil unions were legalised in 2005.

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