Novotel, New Zealand
THE HOTEL: Conveniently right next to Auckland Airport’s international terminal and 30 minutes from the city centre, the hotel is the only one in the airport itself and an ideal base for travellers flying in or out of New Zealand. It has 263 rooms and suites, many with great (but silent) views of the modern airport. The hotel is in the process of achieving EarthCheck accreditation in ten key performance areas.
THE ROOM:From the clean, elegant design of the spacious lobby – including a living wall of native plants adjacent to the bar – the lift took me to a ninth floor Executive Room. The views of the airport were spectacular through the picture windows. A colourful headboard showing toi toi, a native New Zealand grass, adorned the king bed and the room also had a small day couch with side table and a well-lit work desk plus every conceivable accompanying socket. Amenities included LCD TV, safe, ‘refreshment centre’ with minibar and tea/ coffee-making equipment plus a compact but nicely styled bathroom separated from the bedroom by an opaque screen.
THE BUSINESS: High-speed broadband internet is chargeable and there was also an iMac corner in the lobby offering 30 minutes complimentary access per day. The hotel has a dedicated meetings and events centre spanning two floors within which are contained 12 meeting rooms. The Pataka Room can accommodate up to 315 people theatre-style.
THE FACILITIES:The hotel has a fitness centre and, just off the lobby, The Square restaurant and bar are open 24 hours for hotel guests and offer regional cuisine and an extensive range of New Zealand beverages. The numerous shops and food/ drink outlets of the airport’s international terminal are just a very short stroll away.
THE VERDICT:Airport hotel stays are not normally a discretionary choice but the Novotel Auckland Airport is a nice enough hotel to be one. It ticks all the boxes for an excellent pre- or post-flight haven as well as for meetings and events.
THE DETAILS: Auckland International Airport, Ray Emery Drive, 2022 Auckland, New Zealand. Room rates start from NZ$183 (around £95) per night. Tel: +64 9/2577200; see: www.novotel.com.
Reviewed by Alan Orbell (2013)