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Welcome to a world of travel, entertainment and culture, curated from a global collective of writers, photojournalists and artists. Each article of our award-winning magazine is sure to inspire, no matter which of our destinations you call home.
            Back to Open Skies

Travel to Auckland


Auckland - Hotels, Restaurants, Bars and Galleries

1 July 2014

New Zealand’s largest city is a hive of activity offering astonishing natural scenery. Thanks to its Pacific positioning, the city is host to a diverse populace and waves of spice-laden restaurants, which send plumes of delicious scents wafting into the streets. It’s got global pedigree, but Auckland is also the place to discover New Zealand’s own heritage: from art museums that showcase Maori treasures to bars that serve exceptional locally made wines, you’ll quickly fall in love with the Kiwi lifestyle.


Hotel DeBrett
Swanky Hotel DeBrett is the city’s go-to boutique hotel. An eye for design makes for colourful, Kiwi kitsch rooms, while its trendy Housebar serves some of Auckland’s best pours. After hours, guests can relax in the 24-hour Drawing Room.

Grand Hotel After a room with a view? The SKYCITY Grand Hotel, adjacent to Auckland’s tallest structure, the Sky Tower, offers first-class vistas of the sprawling city and its glittering harbour. Save time for a dip in the heated pool before heading out to explore.

Hilton Auckland Hotel
Given that it occupies a wharf that reaches 300 metres into the harbour, water is the theme at the Hilton Auckland Hotel. Rooms share the aquamarine look, while the pool, suspended four storeys up, has an underwater viewing window.

Mollies Hotel
In the heart of plugged-in Ponsonby, Mollies Hotel is a boutique retreat that excels in romantic touches. Suites are fitted out with tasteful antiques, and many have private balconies; the courtyard gardens and terrace bar follow the outdoor theme.


The Sugar Club
On floor 53 of the Sky Tower, The Sugar Club’s art deco stylings and fusion menu are good enough to distract guests from the views. Helmed by celebrity chef Peter Gordon, the global menu offers juniper-cured venison alongside coconut laksa.

Once a home for vagrant sailors and now a burgeoning culinary hub, the Britomart precinct’s Seafarers Building houses sleek Ostro. Overseen by Michelin-starred Josh Emett, the restaurant offers smart brasserie fare to be enjoyed inside or on the terrace.

One of the finest in New Zealand’s crop of accomplished chefs, Sid Sahrawat has earned stunning reviews for inventive Sidart. An ever-evolving tasting menu of local ingredients treated with molecular flair is a testing ground for his wide-ranging imagination.

The Grove
The Grove is undoubtedly one of the key pioneers in modern New Zealand cuisine. Decorated chef Ben Bayly helms this Auckland fine dining destination. Expect elegant plates like roasted partridge with sweetbreads and fig alongside a 250-bottle wine list.


Taking a cue from Auckland’s international scene, beguiling Xuxu serves cocktails and snacks inflected with Vietnamese flavours. Sneak into this intimate den and opt for a Not So Old Fashioned, which blends dark rum with palm syrup and grapefruit.

The Britomart Country Club
The Britomart Country Club, New Zealand’s largest garden bar, lives up to its name with an on-site putting green, pétanque court and plenty of room for lounging. The relaxed daytime vibe transforms into a DJ-led party after dark.

The Roxy
Home to an elegant theatre 100 years ago, these days The Roxy is best known for its open-air bar. One of the biggest and best in the city, its rooftop scene is further enhanced by smart drinks and international DJs.

1885 Britomart
With a main bar, martini bar, open-air veranda, basement cocktail bar and live music venue, 1885 Britomart is effectively a complex of different nightlife destinations. Night owls can pick and choose, or sample them all in one evening.


The Auckland Art Gallery
Home to a staggering 15,000 works, the Auckland Art Gallery is officially the biggest in New Zealand. Spanning the 11th century to the present day, the collection also includes major works from Maori and Pacific Island artists.

The Auckland Museum
In a heritage building within the pretty Auckland Domain gardens, The Auckland Museum explores the country’s dynamic past and present. Two thousand Maori artefacts, including a carved canoe, are a highlight, while the natural sciences collection examines New Zealand’s unique ecology.

Gow Langsford Gallery
A leading voice in Auckland’s contemporary art scene, the Gow Langsford Gallery showcases both New Zealand and international artists. While painting and sculpture are a particular focus, the gallery also displays crafts, photography, and more.

Two Rooms Gallery
Located within a converted warehouse, Two Rooms Gallery is more expansive than its name suggests. A centre for avant-garde contemporary art, the space shows local and global artists in its minimalistic Long Room and Project Room.