If you’re looking for luxury, like you’ve taken an unexpected trip to Europe somewhere down the South end of the Terrace, look no further than the gorgeous Sofitel Wellington, the height of sophistication in the heart of the Capital city.
Surrounded by lush flora, and across the street from the Wellington botanical gardens, the Sofitel Wellington is a must-do for all Wellingtonians. One of the most elegant international hotels in Wellington, Sofitel takes the cake as my new favourite place to recommend a stay to my acquaintances and colleagues. Whether you’re travelling or not, the experience is one not to be missed.
The Sofitel is a modern hotel with nods to classical features from its Parisian provenance. It has French quirks everywhere, from the little cakes which greeted us on arrival to the pleasant ‘Bonjour’ with which staff greet you. An abundance of natural light bathes you as you walk through the front entrance, flanked by two white marble lions; lilies, almost as as tall and broad as flags, lean over to whisper to one other while you check in. Soft music wafts over the air. A light scent sets your senses alight. To the west is the Jardin Grill. From the moment you arrive, the Sofitel Wellington takes you away.
The lobby interior decor mixes textures and metals, hard and soft: plush velvet contemporary furniture sits easily besides deep bronze sculptures and shiny overhead gold lighting, looking like bubbles in a champagne glass. Yet they play parts equally, never cluttering or allowing the space feel overwhelmed. The large hyper-real photographs of flowers are reminiscent of the Dutch Northern Renaissance painters, giving a feeling of heritage with a up-to-date-twist. This striking contrast is in part what makes the Sofitel Wellington so inviting and seductive for travellers and those who live in the capital, but are looking for a spontaneous romantic elopement for the weekend.
With 127 stunning rooms ranging from Classic to Luxury, plus a Prestige Suite and an Opera Suite you’ll find it impossible to be disappointed by your room. We stayed in a Luxury room, and were gob-smacked by how lovely it was. A tempting feature of the room has to be the incredible, Sumptuous MyBed™ - cloud-like and vast, it is heaven to fall into after a long day. The bathroom includes French amenities including Lanvin soap, shampoo and conditioner and shower gel. You’ll also find complimentary Wi-Fi and the height of aural satisfaction - a Bose speakers sound system. The shower has an overhead fitting which means that the water can cascade down on you like rain-fall. There’s plenty of space and the softest bathrobes for when you’re ready to kick off your heels and let it all go.
We started our evening by a shower, and then heading down the lobby bar, The Green Room, a cute fire-side bar with Thunderbird 60’s vibes in the best sense. An important reminder to all in-town folk: hotel bars are fair game when it comes to having a taste of hotel life. You can pop into the Green Room anytime. Matt and I ordered a gin and tonic, Aperol Spritz and cold cuts. The Aperol Spritz was done just the way I like - without ice and soda, just Prosecco and Aperol. We were very impressed by the generosity of our platter, which was heaving with prosciutto, crackers and vine tomatoes. While we didn’t dine on this occasion at the Jardin Grill for dinner, Matt did order a hamburger with room service and declared it to be one of the best he had ever eaten. I went to my first Supper Club with our Forum in Island Bay, and loved returning to a bit of a treat at the end of the night as I took off my makeup in the huge mirror and then fell into the soft, pillowing mattress before falling asleep.
The next morning, we had breakfast at Jardin Grill. The interior is beautiful, with huge floral prints on the wall, hague blue seaters and a dominant Copper kitchen. At the back, a huge cabinet has cured meats hanging, once again giving the space a unique, Italian butcher’s vibe. Feeling that we needed our strength, Matt and I both ordered eggs, spinach and avocado. Seeing the chef’s preparing our meal made it even more exciting.
The whole time the staff were amazing and friendly, with a lovely gentle tone that made us feel like nothing was too much, without ever feeling patronising. We really appreciated their help and service. We needed it on this busy weekend!
The Sofitel Wellington is a perfect hideaway for a couples weekend, honeymoon or magical girls getaway. Enjoy the French joie de vivre and indulge in pure pleasure with those you adore.
This hotel experience was kindly gifted by the Accor Hotel Group.