Wellington city spreads out widely around the bay, so you have to check carefully where you want to stay before you book a hotel in Wellington. The Intercontinental solves that problem by being right in the middle. It’s not too far from parliament, Cuba street, Lambton Quay, Courtney place. It’s only a short stroll to Te Papa national museum and Oriental bay.
We were ‘upgraded’ to a suite, which is really a mini junior suite at best. The sitting area was in a weird little corner, and can barely fit the sofa. The bathroom was surprisingly big with a spa bath included. All in all, the room was a fairly standard business hotel room, and I think the pictures will explain it all.
The club lounge on the otherhand was outstanding. There is a panoramic view towards Wellington harbour with lots of comfy seating that take in the vista. There is a cool floating fireplace in the center, which would be lovely in a cold Wellington winter. This is not one of the biggest club lounges, but they’ve definitely focused on quality.
The service was professional and efficient. The club lounge staff were trying their best to be super friendly, although there is a fine line between genuine smiles and forced grins, but kudos for trying. The concierges at the front desk was a bit useless when it came to most things. I asked about watersport activities on the harbour, and all they can recommend me was the ferry. I had to google the kayaking, paddleboarding and boat hires myself.
It’s a smallish hotel with a small front bar and not much else. The pool is really really old, and the changing rooms are especially decrepit. Needs a major facelift.
We had multiple meals at the club lounge, and there were great!!! There are 2 dedicated chefs at the open club lounge kitchen. The afternoon tea was actually served on a cake stand. The evening canapes and drinks included oysters and a wine flight.
Value for Money
Obviously this depends on how much you paid. I think I managed to find a decent rate at NZ$340 for a club room. But most days this room appear to run over $500. This is easily the most expensive hotel in Wellington, but it’s not necessarily the best.
There is nothing really wrong with this place. The rooms, service, and location are all great, the club lounge is one of the nicest I've been to. The problem is the lack of charm, and the lack of value. Now that Sofitel has arrived in Wellington, the Intercontinental really need to step up it's game to the next level.
- Waterfront central location
- Top class club lounge
- Staid rooms
- Ageing despite recent renovations
- Expensive for what you get