Since Cadbury Chocolate vacated in 1969, this heritage-listed building in the centre of Wellington has housed everything (and everyone) from refined restaurants to the Royal NZ Naval Volunteer Reserve. These days, it’s home to a boutique hotel in step with Te Aro’s community of specialty coffee spots, fine diners and indie fashion stores.

Across three levels, there are 18 stylish rooms that seamlessly weave contemporary touches with the building’s original turn-of-the-century features. Choose between queen, king and super-king rooms, decked out with unique artwork and rugs.

No matter where you end up, you’ll find a smart TV, bluetooth radio, wi-fi and a minibar brimming with complimentary drinks and snacks by local brands – best enjoyed in the comfort of the plush robes provided. Wander out on the landings to fetch coffee by Supreme and handcrafted teas by Libertine.

Quality drinking and dining options abound, but it’s hard to go past the hotel’s downstairs wine bar, The Puffin. The focus here is on minimal-intervention wines, which you can sip alongside cheese, charcuterie and small plates either side of a jaunt into town. Cap it off with a well-made cocktail for a proper goodnight.

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Updated: May 1st, 2022

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