Melissa Nightingale visits the Naumi Studio Hotel on Wellington's bustling Cuba St.
Location: Nestled into the heart of Wellington, the hotel is moments away from countless restaurants, cafes, bars and shops. From your hotel doors, you're less than 15 minutes walk from the waterfront, and a block from the main arterial route that will take you to the airport or back up north.
Style: This is one of the things Naumi does very well. Rather than going for the usual neutral and tidy tones many hotels favour, Naumi is bursting with rich and vibrant colours, floral patterns, and attention-grabbing decorations. The lift walls are coated in silver glitter. The Hindu owners of the hotel instructed their decorator to use as little white as possible, as the Hindu culture associates the colour white with funerals and mourning.
The executive suite I stayed in is even more elaborate, with busy jungle-themed wallpaper, eggplant-purple bathroom walls, a cosy couch in deep magenta, and further splashes of colour around the room.
First impressions: The colour and flower theme is what really grabs you as soon as you walk into the lobby. It lets you know you're staying somewhere fun and different, and it's particularly appropriate for a hotel based on the eccentric Cuba St.
My first impression of my suite is that it is so different from other hotels I'm used to. I've never stayed anywhere that had so much going on. The wallpaper could be overwhelming for some, but for me it's a unique touch that adds to the character of the room.
Perfect for: Anyone who wants to experience central Wellington. Everything in the CBD is within walking distance of your hotel, and thankfully the city centre is flat and walkable, compared to the suburbs. Naumi is good for someone who doesn't take themselves too seriously and wants to stay somewhere with a little extra spice.
Price: Rates range from $119 at the lowest, up to $699 for the executive suite. The rates include free cancellation.
Rooms: There are six different room types, with the executive suite at the top end. All rooms feature free high-speed Wi-Fi , smart TVs with Netflix, blackout curtains and bedside USB/plug sockets.
Bathroom: The bathroom in my suite is particularly spacious, and features a separate bench or desk area to sit at while putting on makeup or drying your hair. There's a roomy shower with rainfall head, and the soaps and shampoos are in reusable bottles attached to the wall, as the hotel is moving away from single-use plastic.
Food and drink: As soon as you walk into the hotel you're greeted with the sight of the Lola Rouge Bar, surrounded by stylish seating. Just a few steps away is the hotel restaurant, which is due to open soon.
We were given a sample tasting of the Indian-fusion menu, served in a tapas style with specially crafted cocktails to match. The meal included mini naans, lamb loin with tossed soba noodles, and duck spring rolls.
Facilities: There's the Lola Rouge bar and restaurant (or at least, there will be soon), as well as a secure parking garage and a sunny parlour to enjoy a quiet drink and conversation with friends.
Contact: The hotel is at 213 Cuba St, though the main entrance is around the corner on Dunlop Terrace where there is less traffic, and access to the parking garage. Call (04) 385 2156 or 0800 888 5999, or book online at naumihotels.com/studiowellington/.