Wing your way to Naumi Hotel in Auckland; this un-airport hotel is 15 kilometres (as the crow flies) to central Auckland, but we’d happily roost here if it was in the middle of North Island. It’s modern and art filled, with an open-plan lobby and sultry bar dotted with velvet armchairs, where you can relax with a post-flight tipple before settling into your sleek room. Restaurant Paksa serves Asian-fusion dinners, poolside treats and decadent breakfasts so good you’ll want to wake up twice, just for the lark.
Get this when you book through us:
A glass of house wine or beer for two, and 1pm late check-out
11am for most, but Smith members can stay until 1pm; earliest check-in is 2pm.
Double rooms from £100.24 (NZ$205), including tax at 15 per cent.
Rates usually include round-trip airport transfers and buffet breakfast (Full English breakfast is NZ$34 and American-style breakfast is NZ$32).
This creative stay showcases art by Australian-based Belynda Henry – original landscapes in the lobby and colourful rugs in the rooms – and tui song-inspired brushed ink works by Judi Bagust.
At the hotel
Free WiFi throughout, 24-hour fitness centre. In rooms: Smart TV with Netflix, Vittoria Espresso coffee machine, T2 tea, a minibar with free (non-alcoholic) drinks and snacks, free bottled water and Superfood Soak bath products. Suites also have a bar, Dyson hair dryer, GHD hair straighteners and Nintendo game console.
Our favourite rooms
Go dotty for the Yayoi Kusama-inspired polka dotted room – aptly named Dottie – or get migrate towards a Habitat room for the abundant natural light, wooden headboard that resembles the cascading feather and Judi Bagust prints.
The family-friendly outdoor pool is heated and open daily from 6am to 10pm (it’s lit by amethyst-coloured lights at night). Order Ostrich burgers, sourdough grilled-cheese sandwiches, ice creams and more to your poolside lounger.
Bring your smartest specs and a black beret to play the part of overnight art critic.
Although the lobby area is wheelchair accessible, none of the guest rooms are specially adapted.
There are child-friendly menus, highchairs and activity packs at the restaurant; breakfast is free for under-12s.
The hotel uses energy-saving LED lights, Ecolab cleaning products, plastic-free straws and environmentally friendly bath products. The restaurant uses sustainable, locally sourced ingredients and everything possible is recycled.
Sit where you can suss out the Judi Bagust original between courses. A second round helps.
Don your gallery-worthy plumage for dinners in the perfectly moody restaurant.
Gold starburst chandeliers hang over dark wood tables at Paksa Bar and Restaurant, where chef Miguel Adriano and sous chef Muni Nadan Gounder dream up Asian-fusion dishes using fresh, seasonal fare. For dinner, start with the ginger prawns before a main course of locally reared lamb rump or monkfish ratatouille. Early birds can wake up to plates piled high with French toast, avocado- and bacon-topped corn fritters and cooked-to-order omelettes. Bento boxes are a lunchtime favourite, and nachos, sandwiches and pizzas can be ordered to your poolside lounger.
Across the open lobby from the main restaurant, the colourful bar has attention-grabbing lights and richly hued velvet armchairs. There’s a selection of Kiwi wine, of course, and the cocktail list includes Brazilian caipirinhas, Gekkeikan Nigori sake and signature Naumitinis.
You’ll breakfast any time you like 6am to 10pm, enjoy leisurely lunches from noon to 2pm and sit down to dinner between 6pm and 10.30pm. The bar’s open daily from 6am to 10pm.
Order from Paksa’s menu straight to your door at any hour of the day or night.
Naumi Hotel Auckland Airport is in the Mangere suburb near Villa Maria Wine Estate, just south of central Auckland.
Auckland International Airport is 15 minutes away by car; the hotel operates free group transfers during the week from 7am to 11pm. You’ll need to book your spot on the shuttle in advance, or call our Smith24 Team and have them arrange your flights and transfers.
Onehunga Train Station is 20 minutes away by car; from there you can hop on a commuter train to central Auckland.
Auckland’s CBD is half-an-hour’s drive away; there’s free onsite parking at the hotel.
Worth getting out of bed for
If you’re in for a short stay, take a dip in the pool and admire the hotel’s art collection before a decadent dinner of locavore fare. Have a sunny day to spend as you please? Wing your way around the local jogging and cycling tracks or Watercare’s Coastal Walkway, visit the Outdoor Sculpture Gallery or hike up a volcanic cone for a bird’s eye view of Manukau Harbour. Knock on the cellar door of Villa Maria Wine Estatefor tastings and vineyard tours, or spend an afternoon at Butterfly Creek, where you can say ‘G’Day’ to the pair of resident Aussie crocs.
Eagle-eyed thrill-seekers can spy volcanoes, the coastline and all of Auckland from downtown Auckland’s Sky Tower; daredevils can walk the edge of the Sky Tower’s pergola or wire base-jump from it (all safely harnessed and strapped) if they so choose.
Follow the scent of freshly baked goodies and local 3 Beans Coffee to café Pollen in Auckland’s central business district; tuck into brunches of slow scrambled eggs with Turkish pide, perhaps, or a chorizo and goat’s cheese frittata. Remember to peruse the pastry case for breakfast dessert. Share plates of tea-smoked duck and silverbeet dumplings during leisurely lunches at Odettes, a mod greenhouse-inspired eatery in central Auckland’s City Works Depot; it’s also worth a stop in the evening, when you can sip on gin cocktails or sample local wines among twinkling strands of fairy lights. Industrial chic Amano is serious about its (delicious) locally sourced ingredients: pasta is made in house with flour from the on-site mill and free-range eggs from Whangarei, fish is seasonal and sustainably sourced, and a nose-to-tail policy applies for the Hawke’s Bay Wagyu, chicken and free-range pork. The menu’s ever changing, but past favourites have included Hawke’s Bay chicken mezzaluna and burrata with pear and radicchio; wood-fired pizzas, perfectly plated pastas and house-churned gelato are always on offer. Get gussied up for dinner at The Grove, which serves modern New Zealand food with a French twist. Your four- or seven-course tasting menu will be tailored to you – yes, even you vegans. All personalised menus include a selection of snacks on arrival, rustic farmhouse-style breads and petit fours.
Three guesses for the spirit of choice at Vodka Room on Rose Road. This decadent after sunset spot has a terrace for alfresco tipples, a dining area with a semi-open kitchen, a cosy inner courtyard and karaoke rooms; it also hosts stand-up nights, dance lessons and riotous rounds of drag-queen bingo. Settle in for a good time with your pick of cocktails shaken up with rare-import vodka – we like the blackberry- and lime-infused Black Bear. Mother Russia, may I?
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this boutique hotel in Auckland and unpacked their bottle of locally grown chardonnay, a full account of their city break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Naumi Hotel Auckland Airport in New Zealand…
A golden wall gleams behind the front desk – its texture takes a cue from the feathers of New Zealand’s tui bird. Give a little whistle to the 20 colourful canaries as they twitter about in their enormous bird cage home in the lobby, then check out your room, where cheeky instruction signs await (‘turn me on’ says the TV remote). Pour yourself a cosy mug of T2 tea to soothe your ruffled feathers and sink into the multi-layered bed, or explore the hotel’s specially commissioned art collection on your way to the sultry bar for a signature Naumi martini or bottle of local merlot. If you’d rather shake off your flight with a bit of fresh air, take to the neighbouring walking trails and coastal pathways, or claim one of the over-sized fruit-shaped floats that make the pool look like a giant vat of the bar’s sangría. Wind down the day with a leisurely Asian-inspired dinner in the hotel’s restaurant, Paksa (‘wing of a bird’) – you’ll be happy as a lark you did.