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Lush accommodation in central Wellington

QT Wellington recently reopened its iconic Hippopotamus restaurant, just in case you needed another reason to go and stay at the luxury boutique hotel in the heart of the capital.

The hotel itself has a bit of an iconic history – QT’s first New Zealand hotel in the brand family was famously moved from where Te Papa Museum now sits and renovated with a $12 million dollar makeover.

It’s clear from the moment you step foot inside that no expense was spared.

The lobby lushly decorated and drips taste – from the elegant furniture to the quirky art, you wouldn’t mind standing in a check-in line as there’s always something interesting to capture your attention.

The lobby is also equipped with a fully-stocked bar, for those travel-weary guests who need a bit of relaxing before retiring to their rooms.

The lifts up to the rooms were one of my favourite, and most interesting, parts of the hotel. Painted jet black and lightly illuminated, the lift quite literally feels like some sort of transportation device from the future.

And the hallways leading to the rooms follow a similar theme to the lobby – decorated tastefully and complemented with low lighting, it’s simple and enjoyable to find your room.

We stayed in one of the QT Harbourview King rooms, and the balcony was a treat all of it’s own.

Facing the busy waterfront, we were treated to the hustle and bustle of Wellington central, but when it all became a bit too much, wandering back inside and shutting the doors also shut the outside off completely – minimal sound leaked from the streets to the room.

The room felt very flash and came equipped with a mini bar and mini gift shop, as well as tea and coffee making facilities. There’s plenty of wardrobe space, and extra convenient touches such as an iron and ironing board, umbrellas and more.

You can tell a lot about a hotel from the bathroom, in my opinion, and QT Wellington delivered. With a spacious, double sink bathroom equipped with bathtub and rain shower, the bathroom is a place of relaxation. Take a soak in the bath (if your room has one) and enjoy the hotel’s own ‘Alice’ brand of toiletries before wrapping yourself in one of the luxurious black bath robes.

The beds are well-sized and comfortable – not too hard, not too soft – and the room’s television has a good assortment of free-to-air channels.

When you’ve decided to wander from your room to get food, Hippopotamus is a must.

Located on the third floor, the hotel’s restaurant isn’t your typical hotel eatery. Lavishly decorated and bursting with colour, Hippopotamus is a visual feast for the eyes.

We stayed for the high tea – a real treat. You are offered to choose from a selection of teas and cocktails, before being presented with a three-tiered tray of goodies, with a range of sweet and savoury treats to suit any palette. We had the iced tea cocktail and rose tea, both of which were delicious and had me wanting to ask for the secret.

The finger food was fabulous and left us both feeling very full and content, despite the bite-sized snacks.

QT Wellington is ideally placed for the urban explorer, with Te Papa just across the road and a plethora of shops and eateries within walking distance. If you’re fortunate enough to stay on a Sunday, you’ll find it awfully convenient to walk across the road to the harbourside market, which offers treats from all over the world.

If you’re planning a trip to Wellington and you haven’t yet booked accommodation, QT Hotel should be on the list. The stay is an experience in itself that will leave you wanting more.

The writer was treated to a complementary high tea for two by QT Wellington.

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