In-room espresso machines, tea kettles and free WiFi
What To Know
Large glass expanses means it can be a bit cold in autumn and winter
Buzzy locals scene in the restaurant and bar
A few areas of the hotel, including the lobby, are low-lit
Parking on site
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A French-inflected window into the watery world of Auckland with marina access and a playful restaurant
In contrast to its gleaming glass and steel exterior, the decor is darkly masculine with black flooring, striped tiger woods and underlit onyx walls in the Lava restaurant and Sabrage restaurant, graced by softer touches like velvet French provincial chairs. New Zealand Maori, Australian Aboriginal and Asian art adorn the walls in public spaces. Large glass expanses overlooking the marina bring light into the guest rooms and walkways leading from the dining areas, offering ideal spaces for newspaper reading over a croissant.
Bed and Bath
Spacious rooms keep the focus on the spectacular setting with floor-to-ceiling windows and private balconies. Décor is simple, in blocks of blacks, reds, chocolate and white. Bathrooms feel spa-like with a glassed-in shower, a deep bathtub and citrus-scented Lanvin toiletries (select rooms use Hermes).
Auckland’s fashion crowd loves the Sofitel, using boat slips as runways during Fashion Week and dining at the buzzy Lava restaurant on playful, molecular fare (think ostrich carpaccio and chili sorbet). Generous breakfasts here mix Continental, Mediterranean, American and Full-English along with a self-serving juicer and pastries flown in from France. Sabrage is the only New Zealand spot where bartenders saber the tops off bottles of champagne a la Napoleon. The snacker-friendly sidewalk café is adjacent to the hotel’s own private boat slip in the marina. The spa offers seven treatment rooms with French Plantogen and local Pounamu Maori-inspired products made from volcanic mud and Manuka honey.
In the Area
Water, water everywhere. A short walk takes you to the city’s best nightlife and restaurants in the marina or historic downtown. A gastronomic highlight is chic Ostro, in the Seafarer’s Complex, a converted dockside warehouse with Auckland’s freshest seafood, lamb and other fare. Learn more about the city’s relationship with the sea by visiting the Voyager Maritime Museum, with displays ranging from Maori village life to yachts which have won boating races the world over. Explore and choose the sea’s bounty on your own or with cooking lessons at the Auckland Fish Market. For the truly daring, head to Sky Tower, to dangle on its walkway or simply enjoy the 55 story view from Peter Gordan’s Sugar Club revolving restaurant.