Auckland, a city where lush landscapes and sparkling waters meet urban sophistication, is a multi-cultural oasis of arts, culture, food, and music. Auckland’s pleasant climate and eclectic vibe attract visitors to its fabulous hotels year after year. From gorgeous boutiques to award-winning architectural masterpieces, here is my pick for the best cool and unique hotels in Auckland, New Zealand…
These are the top 3 cool and unique hotels in Auckland
Spying over the sparkling harbour, immersed in dramatic style notes inspired by nature, the bold design behind this Nic Graham masterpiece celebrates beauty like no other.
In the guestrooms, senses are delighted through a vivid combination of smooth, clean textures and a rustic feel, drenched in dark tones and an ambient mood.
At QT, the waterfront beckons, and hidden treasures await guests from the minute they arrive. Far from ordinary, this hotel has a beating heart, and dances to its own tune.
Esther restaurant, the magnificent onsite eatery, serves lavish dinners, whilst the rooftop bar offers a peak drinking experience against a bold backdrop of the stunning city and harbour.
Hip upscale hotel
A rooftop restaurant
Stunning city views
The walls are not soundproof
Bar closes early
M Social Auckland
At M Social, the bright, naturally lit entrance evokes style and functionality, which spreads through the creative and cool interiors through Scandi-inspired furniture, elaborate feature lighting, and old-fashioned ship bells converted into lamps.
The soft furnishings of the glass-walled restaurant come in a riot of citrus, raspberry and aqua, and the spacious guestrooms come with a strong emphasis on technology. Each room has wall-to-wall windows, fantastic harbor views, and a gorgeous décor characterized by pale woods, black letterings of local quirky facts, and the accents of citrus-colored pillows.
The hotel’s restaurant is both adventurous and delectable, with palate-awakening kingfish and coconut ceviche and many other excellent dishes.
No minibars in rooms
Bar closes before midnight
A bit noisy on weekends
This boutique, 5-star hotel features mid-century furnishings and kiwiana artwork, exuding a funky and quirky vibe with much thought and detail throughout the property.
The guestrooms at Ohtel Auckland ooze charm and character, and utilize smart-tech, with one button touch screens to connect to your own hosts. A personalized stay is offered at this stunning hotel, topped with state-of-the-art amenities which include an outdoor swimming pool, spa, sauna, and gym.
Every piece of furniture is collected by a well-known curator of art pieces, creating a unique environment of exclusive décor and vibrant colours. The book collection found in the communal areas has been put together over the years, and makes for an interesting browse during downtime.
Boutique hotel with kiwiana artwork
An outdoor swimming pool
Books available for reading
Daily continental breakfast
Glass bathroom walls
Bit noisy aircon
Voco Auckland City Centre, an IHG Hotel
At Voco Hotel, the premium essentials are fused with unexpected, quirky delights, set within the beating heart of Auckland in the bustling centre.
The world-famous playful Kiwi charm is offered in abundance here, through attentive hosts, to spacious, cosy rooms and suites. The hallmark of voco styling comes in the form of eco-conscious rain showers in marble bathrooms, intuitive lighting, and user-friendly media hubs for devices.
To delight the taste buds, guests can dig into an artisan-fired pizza, replete with a freshly brewed coffee. The glamorous rooftop Bar Albert, NZ’s highest rooftop bar, boasts sumptuous art deco décor and a sophisticated cocktail menu.
Sleek modern interior
An onsite fitness center
Rooftop Bar Albert
Limited car parking
A bit slow elevators
Weak shower pressure
Upon entrance to the lobby, guests at SO/ Auckland take a step away from the harbour’s natural light, into a dark-toned room brought to life with red velvet armchairs, ombre-tasselled poufs, an impressive floor-to-ceiling Marcel Wanders chandelier, and upturned couches.
The lifts are regularly spritzed with the hotel’s signature perfume. This avant-garde hotel is designed in collaboration with renowned NZ fashion house WORLD, and is conveniently situated with views across Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour.
The rooms are themed around Auckland’s volcanic history, bold and original. This manifests itself in the form of black and gold carpets, black stone vanity and golden basins in the bathrooms, and beautifully sand-washed grey-tiled showers.
Unique upscale interior
A vibrant fitness center
Views of Auckland skyline
Street rooms are noisy
Slow room service
No onsite parking
The Convent Hotel
Originally opened as a community for nuns, these historical doors have been eloquently reopened as a uniquely crafted boutique hotel. Drenched in history and the source of unforgettable memories, the Convent is a place where guests can feel like a local.
Whilst the exterior is in keeping with its original architecture, the eclectic guestrooms are layered with playful design touches and modern amenities, as well as a snack bar and luxury linen for optimum relaxation.
The building boasts ornate ceilings, stucco arches, and vast steel windows. This one-of-a-kind hotel is located in an urban setting, yet away from the chaos of the city.
In-room snack bar
1 km from Eden Park Stadium
Can get noisy at times
Small sized rooms
Grand Millennium Auckland
Fantastically located in the city centre close to Queen Street and Viaduct Harbour, the heart of cosmopolitan Auckland frames the Grand Millennium.
The hotel offers a superior experience through great attention to detail, which spreads into the 452 stylish rooms and suites. Smart design is combined with chic décor and floor to ceiling windows, and high-end amenities to guarantee a comforting stay.
Guests can take advantage of superb facilities, from a heated indoor pool to a delicious Teppanyaki restaurant, as well as an electric vehicle charger. The modern function rooms can host a variety of events, from 4-person meetings to cocktail receptions for 1000 guests.
Smart chic decor
An indoor pool
An electric vehicle charger
The Sebel Auckland Viaduct Harbour
An ideal haven to explore Auckland’s gems, the Sebel is located at the water’s edge overlooking the grand yachts moored in the Viaduct Harbour, adjacent to Auckland’s central business district.
Guests at The Sebel Auckland Viaduct Harbour can browse the eclectic boutiques and trendy shops of Queen Street within minutes. Extensive marina and city views feature in the stylish apartments and suites, allowing guests to unwind on their balconies with a stunning backdrop.
The commodious guestrooms relish the independence of contemporary apartment living, with 4-star hotel conveniences, topped with a personalized service.
The thoughtfully appointed comforts include laundry facilities, fully equipped kitchens with well-stocked refrigerators and mini-bars, and high-speed internet.
Marina and city views
Adjacent to Auckland’s CBD
No free Wi-Fi
Few rooms are noisy
The Great Ponsonby Arthotel
The citrus walls and bespoke colour schemes of this converted residential villa greets guests to a charming, eclectic experience. With an ornate front porch embellished by bougainvillea, super-high ceilings, and chic Pacific artwork, the feeling is of a true boutique hostel.
The simple tiled bathrooms in the guestrooms at The Great Ponsonby Arthotel are relics of the 1980’s, most of which boast a bathtub. The Great Ponsonby Arthotel is the very antithesis of a chain hotel experience, and a cheery breakfast is served each morning on the sun porch.
Guests can borrow from a wide array of films, and the in-room information brochures offer informative guides to the Ponsonby area, with detailed ideas of activities to suit every kind of traveler.
Chic vibrant accommodations
Room near entryway can be noisy
No in-room refrigerators
Airedale Boutique Suites
Following an extensive refurbishment, the heritage façade has been beautifully restored to embrace the history of this iconic Auckland building, yet creating something new, unique, and authentic in the process.
The flair of art deco architecture is combined with modern style and comfort, and the attentive hotel team is always on hand to ensure a premium experience is offered. Eco-conscious options are implemented throughout the property.
Large hotel rooms are offered, which boast Smart TVs, air-conditioning and heating, mini-bars, and complimentary WiFi. Located a short distance from the Aotea Centre and the Viaduct Harbour, Airedale Boutique Suites puts the best of Auckland Central at your fingertips.
Stylish interior designs
On-site laundry facility
10 min walk from Sky Tower
Weak shower pressure
Rooms next to the road are noisy
No onsite parking
Perfect for both short and long stays, a relaxed and comfortable experience is offered in the apartment-style hotel rooms at Quest Takapuna.
This brand-new hotel features 51 rooms which include studios with kitchenettes, and One- and Two-bedroom apartments ideal for families.
A selection of restaurants and cafes are offered within minutes of the hotel, serving outstanding food, from casual bistro and cosy pubs to internationally renowned silver service experiences.
The smooth lighting in the guestrooms compliments the light tones and vibrant colour schemes, to exude an air of luxury. Each room is equipped with a flat-screen TV, a desk, and a seating area.
Chic and modern interior
Family-friendly well-equipped apartments
Variety of food options
Parking can be limited
Windows can’t be opened
Offering newly refurbished one-, two- and three-bedroom suites as well as superior rooms, CityLife Auckland offers the best of the best in regards to comfort, space, and facilities.
This magnificent, chic hotel boasts an indoor saltwater lap pool and gymnasium, topped with a fantastic staff presence to ensure your stay is as memorable as it is restful.
Admirably positioned in the hub of Auckland’s business, retail and entertainment district, this sophisticated environment places guests in the heart of the action and allows guests to blend work with pleasure. City Life Auckland is the perfect spot for the discerning traveler.
Chic modern rooms
Indoor saltwater lap pool
Small balcony space
No in-room microwaves
No on-site restaurant
Imagine Beach Road
The fresh, urban design of Imagine Beach Road takes cues from the surrounding twin harbors, embellished with eclectic, city-inspired finishes.
As Auckland Central’s newest hotel, trendy studio accommodations are on offer, featuring custom-made Imagine Deep Sleep mattresses, crisp white linens, and high-end amenities.
Marble-tiled showers and finely sanded soft-woods at Imagine Beach Road give the guestrooms an opulent charm, which is reciprocated by a quirky, tropically inspired wallpaper design.
This modern hotel covers all of your accommodation needs, with access to an offsite Lifestyle & Fitness Club. Through the front doors, guests can directly access Auckland’s central business district. Complimentary tea and coffee feature in all rooms.
Creative urban design
Access to an offsite fitness club
Near city attractions
No on-site parking
No on-site breakfast
Following a large renovation, Franklin 38 is a new city fringe accommodation, and is one of the first choices of luxury boutique accommodation in the world’s happiest city, brimming with sophisticated character and contemporary architecture.
Four gloriously opulent suites feature in this sunny two-story villa, with a seamless blend of heritage and modernity. Wraparound wooden verandas with sky tower views, vogueish bathrooms, and a fantastic guest lounge welcome guests all year round.
The hotel boasts monochrome hues with trendy artwork, and freshly baked croissants are served for breakfast. The hosts are attentive to guests’ needs yet mindful of privacy.
Upscale modern interior
Variety of breakfast options
A relaxing garden and lounge area
Busy street location
No on-site gym
The Shakespeare Hotel
Standing proud as part of Auckland’s profound history, the Shakespeare is a true hospitality icon, serving kiwis and tourists since 1898 with an original English pub experience.
One of the standout features of this hotel is NZ’s oldest microbrewery, offering a range of the best craft beers in town. Guests can enjoy the tap beers in the comfort of their own home, with the excellent takeaway service.
The hotel’s restaurant boasts a beautiful balcony, alongside a menu packed full of the English classics, as well as some extra signature dishes put together by award-winning chefs. The Shakespeare has a foodie sonnet exclusive for guests!
Stunning boutique interior
Best craft beers
English classical restaurant
Next to city center shops
No Air Con
Can be noisy on weekends
Waitakere Resort & Spa
Waitakere Resort & Spa boasts an unrivalled eco-forest setting, with stunning views over the lush native bush, and the sparkling waters of Waitemata harbour.
Ideally located, guests can enjoy everything from jogging in the serenity of nature, to bushwalking, and helicopter sightseeing. This four-star masterpiece beckons an atmosphere of romance and relaxation, perfect for a quick mid-week escape.
Rooms are decorated with vintage furnishings and fabrics, smooth light woods, and feature floor-to-ceiling windows with breathtaking views.
The hotel’s onsite restaurant offers a sumptuous menu, created by an award-winning chef, allowing guests to indulge in premium NZ cuisine, matched with outstanding local wines.
Vintage comfy rooms
Award-winning chef restaurant
Jogging and bushwalking
Lush green views
Surviving two fires before being re-named after Debrett’s Guide to Etiquette in 1959, a recent stylish refurb has created a refreshing appearance.
The stained-glass lobby topped with dark wood and bespoke striped carpets are a theme which radiates throughout the buildings.
The patterns were inspired by a knitting enthusiast who uses vivid colours of wool to create homely fixtures. The 25 uniquely designed rooms boast eclectic furniture and sumptuous beds with mattress toppers. The loft suites are an excellent choice.
If you land in room 2.3, you will find a spiral staircase leading to a plush mezzanine bedroom and en-suite. The striking, lofty glass-roofed atrium houses DeBrett’s Kitchen, the hotel’s relaxed restaurant, which features quirky chandeliers and a large fireplace.
Cool and funky interior
Selection of wines and cocktails
Rooms near the bar are noisy
The Hotel Britomart
Designer Emily Priest enlisted local artisans to create nature-inspired elements for The Hotel Britomart, which include cracked blackened earth walls, bluestone boulders crafted by stonemasons, and rich woven fabrics.
An exterior of hand-made bricks to an interior of beautifully timber-lined rooms offers a unique hotel ambiance, moments away from the best of downtown waterfront Auckland.
Located at the centre of a dynamic nine-block precinct of plant-lined streets, your exploration starts here. The 99 rooms are gorgeously designed, and the Landing Suites are the last word in next-level escapism.
The hotel’s restaurant, Kingi (named in honor of the kingfish), serves sustainably caught ocean-to-table fare. The hotel’s libraries unravel layers of history, art, and design, and are a series of one-of-a-kind spaces for select private functions.
Contemporary designed rooms
Kingi serves ocean-to-table food
Historical hotel libraries
Daily continental breakfast
Limited room service menu
Parking is a bit pricey
Flat Bush Holiday Accommodation
Here we have a completely unique accommodation facility, which is a combination of Air BnB, motel, and hotel, giving you the best of them all at competitive prices.
The simple functional style at Flat Bush Holiday Accommodation which permeates the modern room décor truly makes this a home-from-home. With 26 different room combinations to choose from and 4 complete residences to book for group functions, worldwide travelers return here year after year.
In-room amenities include a TV with Netflix & YouTube, computer desks, and a walk-in wardrobe for an enormous amount of storage.
Located in Flat Bush suburb, the surrounding area includes the 94-hectare ‘Barry Curtis Park’, which features NZ’s first cable-stayed bridge.
Cute funky interiors
Modern in-room amenities
Daily continental breakfast
The nearest airport is 9km away
Busy street location
No on-site parking
Mt Albert Motor Lodge
An excellent choice for rest and rejuvenation, this family-friendly environment is conveniently located in close proximity to great restaurants and attractions, making it easy to enjoy the very best of Auckland Central.
The relaxing rooms at Mt Albert Motor Lodge offer a refrigerator and a kitchenette, and the hotel’s palm-tree-encircled pool provides a pleasant respite from a busy day of exploring.
All units are decked out with modern amenities, which include a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, and state-of-the-art toiletries.
The exterior is extraordinarily tranquil, paying homage to nature through a carefully curated selection of luscious plants by the entrance. This lodge is a peaceful reprieve for a family of explorers.
Cute green environment
Free private parking
An on-site pool
Rooms are not soundproof
Best Hotels in Auckland Ranked
We have made a detailed comparison of the Top 20 Cool and Unique Hotels in Auckland in the following table on the basis of different attributes for your ease.
|Hotel Name||Location||Price Range (per night)||Fitness Facilities||Distance to Attractions (km)||Nearby Restaurants|
|QT Auckland||Viaduct Harbour Avenue||$176-$402||Yes||0.4||4|
|M Social Auckland||Quay Street||$159-$518||Yes||0.3||5|
|Ohtel Auckland||Market Place||$206-$312||Yes||0.3||5|
|Voco Auckland City Centre||Albert Street||$176-$515||Yes||0.2||7|
|SO/ Auckland||Gore Street||$194-$524||Yes||0.4||6|
|The Convent Hotel||Great North Road||$123-$215||No||1.9||3|
|Grand Millennium Auckland||Cnr Vincent St||$111-$335||Yes||0.2||4|
|The Sebel Auckland Viaduct Harbour||Custom Street West||$164-$265||No||0.2||6|
|The Great Ponsonby Arthotel||Ponsonby Terrace||$105-$253||No||1.8||3|
|Airedale Boutique Suites||Queen Street||$136-$238||Yes||0.3||7|
|Quest Takapuna||Shakespeare Road||$152-$189||No||5.5||3|
|CityLife Auckland||Queen Street||$135-$462||Yes||0.3||6|
|Imagine Beach Road||Beach Road||$100-$111||No||0.8||4|
|Franklin 38||Franklin Road||$331-$427||No||1.1||4|
|The Shakespeare Hotel||Albert Street||$68-$76||No||0.2||8|
|Waitakere Resort & Spa||Scenic Drive||$134-$284||Yes||6.1||0|
|Hotel DeBrett||High Street||$206-$328||Yes||0.3||5|
|The Hotel Britomart||Galway Street||$212-$1284||Yes||0.4||4|
|Flat Bush Holiday Accommodation||Cloghfin Place||$60-$377||No||3.2||0|
|Mt Albert Motor Lodge||Carrington Road||$88-$111||Yes||4.8||3|
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Becky Moore – Owner, writer and photographer
My first true adventure began as a six month voyage around South East Asia as a fresh faced backpacker and ever since I’ve lived a semi nomadic existence, clocking up visits to over 40 countries. I’m a lover of US Road Trips, deserted beaches bathed in warm glow of a sunset, Cuban mojitos, travel destinations far away from the tourist crowds and all things Scandinavian – from cloudberry liquors to Nordic noirs. When not wandering the world and running Global Grasshopper, you’ll find me walking my ex Athens street dog in leafy South West London, strolling around the Brighton Lanes on random day trips, hunting for photogenic landscapes or daydreaming about my favourite places; Havana, Copenhagen, Italy, Borneo, Finland, Greece, Berlin, Laos, California and the surreal and beautiful landscapes of a wintry Iceland.
I’ve been quoted in Forbes, National Geographic, The Times, Yahoo Travel, Huffington Post, Business Insider, Thrillist, British Airways Magazine, Entrepreneur, express.co.uk, Wanderlust, Telegraph Travel, Daily Mail and metro.co.uk. Find me on Linkedin or Facebook.