Christchurch's newest hotel is boasting the best views of the Southern Alps.

The 4.5 star Novotel Christchurch Airport has opened two years behind schedule due to construction problems.

Warren and Mahoney's Principal Architect Bill Gregory said the new hotel offers a warm welcome and excellent hospitality, which reflected the Novotel experience.

"The building design features two-storey shear walls and steel braced columns, creating a rich combination of inviting public spaces," said Gregory.


100 guests have spent the first night in the 200 room hotel as part of a charity fundraiser.
The Southern Alps is a running theme in the $80 million building - the best view of the iconic landscape is from the bar.

While there are still a few finishing touches being made to the hotel, any noise from construction is long finished and insulation means that jet planes glide past soundlessly.

It is hope that the restaurant's panoramic windows will make it a plane-spotter's dream dining venue. Serving craft beer from the South Island with views of the Southern Alps, there are few views loftier in Christchurch.

Starter prices on rooms range from $200 to $500 a night.