Because it is early in the season it may be a matter of stopping off to ski where the best snow is. Assuming that you are here to see the scenery, you should be going by many of the mountains the ski areas are on, cause if you don't you will be missing the best parts of NZ.
Does your future wife ski?
Treble Cone is my home mountain, has the most varied terrain and most vertical of all the commerical areas. And it has snow making so there will be at least one run open. If your 'wife' does not ski, it also has the best scenery, great food and coffee, generally an all round nice place to sit for the day looking out over the lake. And if she is lucky the keas (snow parrots) will have realised the ski season has started and will be hanging around looking for humans to amuse them, or cars to trash.
I generally don't bother going skiing before mid July unless there has been an exceptional early dump. Suggest you rent skis, the ski areas and shops in town have 'exec' rentals. Our weather patterns have been up the pole lately, in 2007 we got our best snow falls during October after the ski areas had closed. So who knows what will happen this season, I had one my best powder ever one year on July 17th.
The club ski areas are an option, and would be a unique experience but you need to know how they differ. My favourite club area is Craigieburn. The pros are that there are not many people, you can stay on the mountain, the staff will probably introduce themselves to you and you have access to a back country experience. I really love the clubs, but you need to be aware of the 'cons' - no snow groomers, only rope tows, intimidating roads, no rental, and you need to be fitter than you need to be for a commercial area. For some like Broken River (20 mins) and Temple Basin (1 hour), you have to hike up to the lifts, there is a good lift but you expend energy you could be using skiing. Riding 3 rope tows for a vertical of 1,000 ft is tiring then there is no crisy groomer tog get down. If you have not skied for a few months, you may not find it a nice experience. And if your wife goes, unless she skis, she cannot access some of the day lodges (Craigieburn, Broken River).
For info on club areas ww.chillout.co.nz
If you are both experienced back country skiers, then the club areas are for you. Stay away from club areas if you are on the snowboards, the rope ows are very dfficult unless you have left foot forward. I have seen many snow boarders exhausting themselves just trying to ride the first rope tow.
So I suggest to make the most of your 3 allowed days and stick to a commerical area that is going to give you a lot of vertical for your day.
Treble Cone is in Wanaka, South Islandwww.treblecone.co.nzwww.lakewanaka.co.nz
It does require a 35 minute drive from town to get to the mountain each day but it is a drive along what I think is the most beautiful valley in NZ. And if you ski around to the 'Viewpoint' at the top of the 6 seater chair, you can see right along it. Driving to the mountain is part of the ski experience in NZ.
To inspire you on what you can see in the south Island of NZ, check out the photos on my partners web site