If you want the best views in Auckland’s city, you need to stay at the Hilton.
Being frequent travellers, we stay at the Hilton for the membership rewards. We’ve had a mix of experiences at Hilton owned hotels and resorts – ranging from the luxurious (Bora Bora), the business functional (Sydney), to the threadbare and a little scary (New Orleans).
So how does the Hilton in Auckland rate?
In short: pleasant and accommodating staff, spectacular views, comfortable and spacious rooms.
We stay in the King Deluxe Bow Suite. The room is enormous, and comfortably fits a business desk, LCD TV, well-stocked kitchenette, the king sized bed, the couch and a breakfast/coffee table.
The king sized bed with its mountains of soft pillows is ridiculously comfortable. Just what we need for a couple of nights after our wedding and another 12 hours of transit to get to our “real” start to the honeymoon.
The bathroom is also spacious, with twin vanities. Naturally, this appeals to me a little more than North Nomad. The toiletries in the deluxe suite are more plentiful than you get in a normal suite: there are razors, hair combs, mini toothbrushes and toothpastes, and loofahs, as well as the stock standard Hilton body lotion, shampoo and conditioner and soap. The only extra thing we would have liked was a spa/hot-tub.
Location and Views
The King Deluxe Bow Suite promised harbour views and a sunset view from the balcony. We were not disappointed. Our balcony ran down both sides of the suite, giving 180 degree views of the sparkling Auckland harbour. It gives Sydney harbour a run for its money, with the clear, blue water and beaches visible off in the distance.
The Hilton is right on the Viaduct. It’s central to Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland Harbor Bridge, Auckland Sky Tower and City, Auckland War Memorial Museum, Waiheke Islandand other tourist venues.
Staff and ambience
The Auckland staff are so genuinely lovely and helpful, you’d think you were in an American hotel.
(To explain this to our Northern Hemisphere readers: in Australia and New Zealand, the minimum wage is enough to live on. Hospitality staff don’t require tips to survive, and occasionally that can translate into sub-par service, even in the big hotels.)
Without prompting, they offer useful tips, directions, dining and attraction suggestions. When they talk to you as you come in and out of the hotel, they genuinely seem interested in what you’ve gotten up to that day. Sydney Hilton is polished and efficient, but Auckland Hilton is warm and endearing.
Meals and drinks
The only downside of the Hilton is that the branding is so consistent, that there’s little variation in the menus from country to country. They always have vegetarian options, but they’re heavy on the cheese and pasta and not the most vegan friendly. Our carnivorous North Nomad can always find something tasty and satisfying, but there’s little choice for me when ordering room service.
North Nomad orders a club sandwich with chips and a green side salad. I can’t bear the thought of pasta or cheese, so I order a leafy side salad (which is enormous), side steamed veggies, and hot chips (I love my chips). These taste fine, but they’re hard to mess up. North Nomad’s sandwich is also enormous and he reports that it’s quite tasty. I may have stolen a few of his chips.
Would we stay here again?
Definitely. The service was impeccable, the views were spectacular, and the room was comfortable. Next time though, we’d try some local NZ cuisine instead of ordering room service.
Location & contact details: PRINCES WHARF 147 QUAY STREET, AUCKLAND, 1010, NEW ZEALAND
EL: 64-9-978-2000 FAX: 64-9-978-2001
Check In & Check Out: 3pm and Midday/Noon.
Cost: King Deluxe Bow Suite NZ$730 per night. We stayed in the King Deluxe Bow Suite, but King Guest Rooms are available at NZ$280 per night.
You can connect with South Nomad, Jessica over at Google.