The newly opened Avani Metropolis Residences in Auckland’s CBD marks a significant debut for the hotel and resort brand in this part of the world. Along with an even newer Australian property on the Gold Coast, the reputable Avani name has officially stepped onto the Trans-Tasman scene, looking to bolster Minor Hotels’ steadily growing portfolio with a quality apartment-style accommodation offering that has launched alongside a fairly unique concept that blends locally curated knowledge with social media.
It appears Auckland was a great choice for the debut as well, taking over a historic 40-storey luxury tower in the heart of the city with a grand sense of style and space, offering one and two bedroom self-contained apartments with the clear intention of encouraging their guests to make the most of their stay in the city of sails. Auckland’s densely packed options of quality restaurants, bars, cafes and adventure activities lay in the shadow of this enormous building, which boasts prime position just a 10-15 minute walk from the harbour, where the essential ferry to Waiheke awaits.
Auckland’s vibrant waterfront precinct and entertainment staples like Vector Arena and Sky Tower aren’t the only thing this hotel has going for it. A one bedroom apartment, officially titled a deluxe harbour-facing suite, is beautifully appointed with an immense sense of space and modern design. It owes a lot to the view though, which can be taken in front a balcony right by the bed, offering a great scope of the city’s seemingly endless harbour colouring in the portrait of a sprawling urban centre. The building’s height is a definite bonus here, towering above neighbouring buildings for a mostly uninterrupted review.
As for the sound; the balcony doors are very effective at keeping all the noise out from below but don’t enter a weekend thinking you’re going to leave them open while you sleep. It’s tempting to bathe in that cool Auckland breeze while tucked into some silky premium linen, but weekends are loud in the CBD and not even the height can protect you from all the hustle and bustle if you leave the doors open.
The bed itself is soft and supportive, large enough to squeeze in three or four people with the white crisp linens looking gorgeous as the balcony door brings in copious amounts of sunlight. It faces a comprehensive cabinet unit while everything else is saved for the spacious lounge area. The television is oddly low although it’s at eye-level for those stretching across the comfortable lounge.
Self-contained living is the focus here, and efficient amenities are all included as part of a small but relatively generous kitchenette, including a washing machine and dryer despite being uncomfortably close to the room’s entrance. The bathroom door is opposite, opening up into a nicely sized marble bathroom with a large bathtub sitting at one end and a shower at the other.
Much of this modernity is directly juxtaposed with the old-fashioned lobby which is surprisingly bare despite it, and the walk to the elevators, offering a great deal of space. There’s a tucked away lounge area by a stacked bookshelf just before the elevators, but otherwise there’s not much although the architecture is grand and imperial with elegant marble walls and archways.
Guests are also able to access an air-conditioned gym and 22-metre heated indoor pool, both mirroring the room’s slick, ultra-modern aesthetic which should go far in satisfying the more active-minded of us in a city that can get as blisteringly hot as Auckland. Guests can also head directly across the road to the huge Albert Park and go for a light jog or visit the on-site Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmak, which is bound to be one of the suggestions when guests interact with the hotel’s “Keys to the City”.
Keys to the City is a fairly straight-forward but thoughtful concept to encourages guests to tap into local knowledge via a virtual concierge that’s always (as long as your phone has battery that is) on call. You simply scan a QR code on a pamphlet on your room keycard with the Facebook Messenger app (must have a smart phone of course) and it opens up a direct line to a chat bot that has been loaded with that ever-elusive “local knowledge” that hotels are increasingly becoming interested in. With Google flooded with questionable information, it’s a good idea to have this on handy so you can get suggestions in real-time. For more information on our experience with Keys to the City click HERE.
AVANI Metropolis Auckland Residences
Address: 40 Kitchener Street Auckland Central, 1010, New Zealand
Contact: +64 9377 1000
The writer stayed two nights as a guest of AVANI Metropolis Residences.