Shandelle Battersby checks into the Holiday Inn at Auckland Airport.
Location: Five minutes from Auckland Airport, just off George Bolt Memorial Drive. I was arriving late into Auckland after a work trip and flying out again early the next morning, so rather than going home, I opted to stay nearby.
Check-in experience: This surprisingly large hotel is a busy place, but the staff were efficient and friendly, and my bags arrived in my room before I did. A couple of days before I stayed I received a handy email confirming my reservation with lots of useful information and web links. Great touch.
Getting to and from the airport: Is easy thanks to the Yellow Bus that services several hotels in the area. It leaves every 30 minutes between 4am-2am daily, and costs $6 each way for adults, children under 12 travel free. There are ticket machines in the lobby or at the airport's bus stops.
What's in the neighbourhood? Thanks to the email I can report that, other than the airport, you're near Butterfly Creek, Treasure Island, Rainbow's End and Villa Maria Winery.
Room: A deluxe king, with Sky TV, a couple of lounge chairs and a little balcony overlooking some of the property's 4ha of lush sub-tropical gardens.
Exercise: There's a large outdoor pool and a well-stocked 24-hour gym.
The bed: A comfy king-sized mattress topper, with soft and firm pillow options.
Bathroom: Standard, with a shower over the bath.
Toiletries: Holiday Inn's own brand.
Free wifi? Yes, if you're an IHG Rewards member (easy and free to sign-up at reception). Also free also in public areas.
Noise: I've noticed, and appreciate, the reminder signs on the way to rooms at Holiday Inns that warn you're entering a "Quiet Zone" where people are sleeping. The only thing I could hear was the pleasant trickle of the fountain in the garden outside my room.
Price: The hotel's "Park, Stay & Go" package starts from $107 (price depends on availability), and includes accommodation, on-site carparking for up to 21 nights, and free return Yellow Bus transfers.
Food: As well as 24-hour room room service, there's an onsite bar, Halo, and Vapor Restaurant, which serves contemporary New Zealand cuisine. This is where you'll also find the extensive buffet breakfast the next morning from 5am. Children eat free. You can eat/drink by the pool or in the gardens if you choose.
Would I return? This is a great option if you're coming in and out of Auckland again quickly, or live outside of the city, because it takes all the stress out of the airport run. It's convenient and easy, and the Park, Stay and Go package is a great deal.