About Us

Abut Marahau Water Taxis

The Alborns

Pete and Sandra - Marahau Water TaxisPete and Sandra

Both products of South Island coal mining families, Pete and Sandra married in the late 60s. After living and owning businesses in the Wairarapa and Hawkes Bay, they moved to the Abel Tasman and bought the lease on the Marahau Beach Camp in 1997. Pete is a keen amateur historian, boat and tractor-watcher, and the undisputed world champion of Freecell since 1998. He speaks South Island Mumble fluently and is working diligently on his English. Sandra is an awesome (read fanatical) book-keeper, and when not frightening the tourists at the Abel Tasman Centre she enjoys travelling, baking, rugby, and spending time with her 5 grandchildren


Also a native speaker of South Island Mumble; incomprehensible to New Zealanders and non-New Zealanders alike. Was a handy rugby player in his day but was never hugely into training. Like his mother and father he is not blessed with huge amounts of patience. This is best typified by his patented 'shock and awe' fishing technique whereby you move the boat every 90 seconds whether the fish are biting or not. Gavin is General Manager.


Brendan has spent 17 years overseas, much of that time in China where he works in “nerdy engineering”. He speaks Chinese fluently. He has three children, and married his wife Johnna in 2001 at Cyathea Cove in the Abel Tasman National Park. He has a vast array of musical instruments upon which he likes to record obscure and only marginally listenable music of interest only to himself and perhaps 2 other people. Brendan is responsible for Sales and Marketing.

Zoe - Marahau Water TaxisZoe

Born and bred in the UK, Zoe is the only one of the bunch who speaks the Queen's English. She met Gavin in Australia and was lured to NZ with promises of a tour of his homeland. The tour lasted 2.5 days before Zoe was duly thrust into slavery in the family business. Unable to devise an escape plan Zoe and Gavin were married on Adele Island in 2002. When she is not caring for her two small children, chocolate Labrador, 16 chickens or errant husband, Zoe runs Hooked On Marahau.

 The  History

In 1997 Peter and Sandra Alborn were looking for a change. After selling up in Waipukurau one of the business they looked at was buying the lease on the Marahau Beach Camp at the beginning of Abel Tasman. According to Sandra, Peter looked around the camping ground and then noticed and old water taxi out the back. Having always liked boats, that concluded the due diligence process and clinched the deal! The business grew quickly over the next few years and they started to outgrow the tiny camp shop and the one water taxi capacity. Around the same time their son, Gavin, and his partner Zoe arrived in NZ after a stint in Australia and started working in the business.

History of Marahau Water Taxis

In 2001 the Alborns purchased an old house next to the existing leasehold property and developed that into a sunlit and well-proportioned shop, booking office and sensational waterfront restaurant/cafe. Backed up with friendly and personal service and exceptional daily organization of water taxi and other parts of the enterprise, the business continued its exponential growth. Additional boats were progressively added until Marahau Water Taxi had grown to 4 additional pieces of land to load and store them.


While Marahau Water Taxis continue to be operated under its own unique brand and identity, with the recent acquisition of the AquaTaxi business, the Alborns now have a total of 14 water taxis and well over half of the Abel Tasman National Park water taxi capacity. With complete focus on their own performance and in creating a great experience for their customers, they are hoping results will take care of themselves. They are keen to show everybody the little spot they believe is the best place in the known galaxy!