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After two weeks on a fishing trip to Australia, a Central Otago man returned to find himself marched directly into quarantine in an Auckland hotel.

Now he's speaking out on the "surreal" experience, what it is really like behind closed doors and how he is keeping himself going.

Adam Royter is staying at the Ramada hotel in Manukau after arriving four days ago from Melbourne, shortly after the New Zealand Government enacted its tough new border laws which demand that new arrivals spend 14 days in quarantine.

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Adam Royter, who is in quarantine at the Ramada Hotel, Manukau, Auckland. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Adam Royter, who is in quarantine at the Ramada Hotel, Manukau, Auckland. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Royter described his new digs as "different" and "a bit prison-like" but says he is staying upbeat by posting on social media and counts himself lucky that he is still healthy.

Like other quarantined guests at the hotel, Royter spends nearly every minute of his day inside his room and is under the watchful eye of police.

"You're not really allowed to leave your room," he told the Herald. "There's a police presence 24/7 so you can't obviously just run off"

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Royter said that smokers could stand directly outside the hotel but were watched closely by police.

"We speak to them (police) every day, they do a round of the rooms and I think it's just to make sure that you're still here in case you jumped through a window or a ventilation duct.

"There seems to be one in the lobby the whole time and one circulating through the building. There's always two, sometimes four," he said.

Adam Royter is in quarantine at the Ramada Hotel, Manukau, Auckland. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Adam Royter is in quarantine at the Ramada Hotel, Manukau, Auckland. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Royter said his friends were able to bring the shopping to the door of his room, though he never saw them, the door remaining closed.

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Royter had no complaints about the food he was being served however, saying that he got a choice of his main meal every day and the food was up to scratch.

"It's edible," he said. "It's not the end of the world".

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Royter was keeping his spirits up by posting humorous snippets of his daily life to social media.

"Social media has been a good outlet for me," he said. "If I can make people smile and laugh and be happy at this point in time, that's what brings me hope".

Royter, an Australian who has lived in New Zealand for seven years, had been on a two-week fishing trip to Melbourne with friends before the coronavirus crisis shut down world travel.

A timeline of Covid-19 as the number of confirmed cases increases in New Zealand and around the world.

"In two weeks the world just went ballistic. It went crazy," he said.

Royter was full of praise for Air NZ and their "beautiful brilliance and wisdom" for the way his flight home was handled, saying it was "beautifully orchestrated" and "they've got to be the best airline in the world".

"Everything about the whole travel back was amazing, outstanding".

"It was actually quite scary getting through the plane scenario because we got off the plane 10 at a time, single file, 2m apart and we walked up by customs and police officers. It sort of felt like war in 1940."

"It felt surreal."

Uniformed staff in the foyer at Ramada hotel and apartments in Manukau, South Auckland. Photo / Supplied
Uniformed staff in the foyer at Ramada hotel and apartments in Manukau, South Auckland. Photo / Supplied

He was shocked to learn that the quarantined arrivals weren't the only ones staying at the Ramada, unaware that the building has residents living in serviced apartments on the upper floors.

He said they had to take a medical test in a room off the lobby every day, and travelled one at a time in lifts down to the ground floor.

The Herald has contacted the Ministry of Health for comment.

Covid19.govt.nz: The Government's official Covid-19 advisory website