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The secret to our success

Our founder Sir George Fistonich believes that the secret to Villa Maria’s success does not lie in chasing awards, but focusing on making superior quality wine that consumers can readily enjoy.

Get this right and the awards naturally follow.

Our story began in 1961 when George Fistonich started with just an acre of vines in Auckland.

Since then Villa Maria has become an icon of the New Zealand wine industry.

We're known for making bold, pioneering moves, like switching to 100% screwcap, and embedding sustainable practices in every aspect of company- from vine to wine and beyond.


New Zealand's most awarded winery

We're New Zealand's Most Awarded Winery

Great producers

One of the World’s 50 Great Wine Producers by Wine Spectator Magazine (USA - 2004)

Most admired

One of the World's 50 Most Admired Brands - Drinks International Magazine (UK - 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015)

Wine Company of the Year

New Zealand Wine Company of the Year - Winestate (AUS - 2019)

Most Trusted Wine Brand

Most Trusted Brand for New Zealand Wine - Reader's Digest (NZ - 2020, 2018 & 2016)

Producer of the Year

New Zealand Wine Producer of the Year - International Wine & Spirit Competition (UK - 2009, 2007, 2006 & 2004)


George Fistonich, knighted by the New Zealand government for services to the wine industry (NZ - 2008)

Top 50 Figures

George Fistonich shortlisted as one of 50 prominent figures in the wine industry by Wine International Magazine (UK - 2005)

Entrepreneur of the Year

George Fistonich named Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year (NZ - 2005)

Discover our approach to sustainability


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Awatere Valley