LGBT travelers seeking gay accommodation in Auckland will find no shortage of options. There’s a wide selection of wonderful gay hotels in Auckland, New Zealand that offer the perfect base for a memorable Kiwi getaway. Quite a few of them are either in or close to the gay Auckland hotspots of Karangahape Road (K Road) and the Ponsonby district, where you’ll find many of the most popular gay bars in Auckland.
New Zealand cities are open-minded in general, and Auckland’s no exception. It’s the host of the extremely popular Auckland Pride Festival. Held annually, it’s the largest event of its kind in New Zealand. But when it comes to everyday life, the LGBT community’s needs and issues of importance are addressed by the Rainbow Communities Advisory Panel. Called the Te Rōpū Kaitohutohu Take Hapori Iwi Takatāpui, this panel operates under the auspices of the Auckland City Council.
When it comes to sightseeing and having a gay old time, Auckland offers a wealth of choices in New Zealand. You can watch daily Maori cultural performances at the Auckland Museum, shop ’til you drop in Queen and High Streets, and experience the thrill of a lifetime from an Auckland 13,000-ft Tandem Skydive. Whatever your jam, there’s a gay-friendly Auckland hotel you can call your temporary home.
SkyCity Grand Hotel
A host of features, services, and amenities ensure a truly grand stay at SkyCity Grand Hotel. One of the gay-friendly 5-star hotels this gay accommodation in Auckland features spacious and opulent rooms and suites, many with panoramic views of Waitemata Harbor. The superb facilities include the sophisticated East Day Spa, a state-of-the-art gym, and a heated lap pool. The hotel is also home to elegant restaurants including the award-winning Federal Street.
Part of the SkyCity entertainment complex, the hotel is the perfect base for travelers seeking an adrenaline rush. There’s a 24-hour casino where you can dally with Lady Luck no matter the time of day or night. And for a truly unforgettable vacation, make your way to the Sky Tower—which is also within the complex—for a heart-pounding SkyJump. The 11-second freefall from the top of one of the highest buildings in Auckland is an experience that will stay with you for years.
SkyCity Grand Hotel is on Federal Street in the Central Business District (CBD). Close by are Auckland attractions such as the Auckland Art Gallery, the Central City Library, and Aotea Square. Meanwhile, just a 15-minute walk away is K Road, home of some of the top gay bars in Auckland.
Backpacker accommodation needn’t be seedy and third-rate, as Haka Lodge shows. This gay accommodation in Auckland is a 5-star hostel occupying a historic building in central Auckland. Traces of its past can be seen in the red-brick walls and the heavy wood table and benches in the communal kitchen and dining area.
It’s not one of the top gay hotels in Auckland, New Zealand but budget-conscious travelers can expect great value for money here. The upmarket dorm-style rooms with custom-made bunk beds and privacy curtains are popular with backpackers. But if you’d prefer your own space, you can choose any of the private rooms. Each has an en suite bathroom, a hotel-quality mattress, and a flat-screen TV.
Haka Lodge is situated on K Road, practically in the middle of the Auckland gay district. Family Bar and Club, a legendary Auckland gay bar, is just a short walk away. Also within walking distance is Western Park, a large green space with picnic areas, walking trails, and tennis courts.
Grand Millennium Auckland
If you’re looking to splurge and spoil yourself with a luxury hotel stay, then the Grand Millennium might just hit your sweet spot. This LGBT-friendly 5-star hotel boasts a total of 452 rooms and suites equipped with all the modern amenities, yet feel warm and friendly. They’re filled with natural light thanks to floor-to-ceiling windows and have private bathrooms with separate areas for showering and bathing. Luxury toiletries, mini-bars, and in-room entertainment are also standard.
The hotel features a state-of-the-art fitness center and a wonderful heated indoor pool. Dining options include delicious New Zealand and international cuisine at the Grand Millennium Brasserie and authentic Japanese dishes at the Katsura Restaurant. And the Atrium Lounge’s leaf-shaded courtyard balcony is a great place for a cup of coffee in the morning or a pre-dinner cocktail.
The hotel’s excellent location in the city center makes for excellent gay accommodation in Auckland. The Centurian Sauna, a popular Auckland gay sauna, is a mere 2-minute drive away. Also within easy reach are the theatrical productions at the Aotea Centre and the elegant gardens of Albert Park.
Bold and beautiful are the words that might come to mind when you step into Hotel DeBrett. With its bright colors and funky decor, it’s easy to see why it’s one of the more popular gay hotels in Auckland, New Zealand. Striped carpets in vibrant colors are found throughout the property, including the air-conditioned rooms and suites. Modern prints and paintings, chairs in vibrant hues, and well-placed lamps, as well as natural light, make for accommodation that is always cheery and upbeat. Guests can enjoy free continental breakfast, while local beers, wines, and cocktails are always on hand at the Housebar.
This 5-star boutique hotel is located along High Street in the heart of the CBD. K Road’s gay bars are a 7-minute drive or 25-minute walk away. Meanwhile, Ponsonby, the other Auckland gay district, is about 3 km (1.9 miles) to the east. An 11-minute walk to the north will bring you to the New Zealand Maritime Museum. And for a romantic way to end the day, we recommend the nearby Auckland Harbor Sailboat Cruise. This includes a 3-course dinner in a sheltered marina.
VR Auckland City
If you’re looking for peaceful and tranquil gay accommodation in Auckland, VR Auckland City will be more than happy to fill that need. It enjoys a stellar reputation for its serviced apartments, each of which comes with high-speed Wi-Fi, a full kitchen, laundry facilities, and a complimentary breakfast. You can choose from the 110 rooms it has on offer, from studios to 1- and 2-bedroom apartments. Most have floor-to-ceiling windows, providing gorgeous views of the harbor and the city skyline.
VR Auckland City sits along Hobson Street in the CBD, just a short stroll from Queen Street’s fantastic shops. City attractions within walking distance or a short drive away include the Auckland Art Gallery—the largest in New Zealand—and the expansive Auckland Domain. The latter is the city’s oldest park and is home to the Auckland War Memorial Museum and the explosion crater of the extinct Pukekawa volcano. And if you feel like partying, there’s no need to travel far. The Lateshift Gay Men’s Club is just a 4-minute drive away.
Formerly the Waldorf Stadium Apartments Hotel, Nesuto Stadium is another fine example of Auckland gay accommodation. It offers over a hundred beautifully appointed units. The studio apartments, with their open-plan design, feel extremely spacious. Also available are 1 and 2-bedroom apartments, each of which come with separate living areas, bedrooms, and private balconies. Guests can enjoy free high-speed Wi-Fi, 24-hour service at the reception, and weekly housekeeping. There’s also a cozy lounge where you can start the day with a filling continental breakfast.
Nesuto Stadium is located on Beach Road in downtown Auckland. Getting to the gay scenes of K Road and Ponsonby Road isn’t difficult since InterLink Bus Stops are just outside the hotel. The city’s biggest indoor concert venue, the Spark Arena, is a scant 4-minute walk to the east. The grassy lawns, leafy trees, and bubbling fountains of the Mahuhukiterangi Reserve are also just a short stroll away.
Cordis Auckland Hotel
Operated by the Langham Hospitality Group, the sprawling Cordis Auckland Hotel exudes luxury from every angle. This gay hotel in Auckland, New Zealand features 411 elegant rooms and suites features decadent Dream Beds, high-quality linen, and hand-crafted furniture. You’ll find signature toiletries, a rain shower and a tub in the marble bathroom. A smart TV, wired and wireless Internet, mini-bar, and work station are all standard room features.
At the Chuan Spa, you can indulge in relaxing massages and rejuvenate in the saunas and steam rooms. A heated rooftop pool and a fully-equipped fitness center are also available. When it comes to drinking and dining, you can please your palate at the stylish Eight Restaurant and the lovely Lobby Lounge.
Cordis sits on Symonds Street in uptown Auckland, a short distance from the lively gay bars of K Road. And if you walk a couple of minutes south, you’ll reach Basement, a gay adult shop that sells toys, lubes, and fetish paraphernalia. Basement is also home to one of the popular Auckland gay cruise clubs. A dungeon playroom, an adult movie lounge, themed areas, and glory holes are all on offer here.
Rydges Auckland Hotel
Do stunning views of the city or Waitemata Harbour sound appealing? At the gay-friendly Rydges Auckland Hotel, they’re par for the course. The rooms and suites here also feature Dream Beds that all but guarantee a good night’s sleep. A mini-bar, cable TV, high-speed Wi-Fi, an ergonomic work desk, and a spacious bathroom are all standard room features. The on-site Barista on the Corner is the perfect spot for an espresso and pastries. And for traditional Kiwi cuisine made modern, head for the CUT Restaurant & Bar.
Perched on the corner of Kingston and Federal Streets in the CBD, Rydges Auckland is within walking distance of the art galleries, stores, and eateries of the Victoria Park Market. That makes it a popular gay accommodation in Auckland. Auckland Harbor Bridge is also close by, where you can join other thrill-seekers in an amazing 40-meter (131-ft) Bungy Jump Experience. This is the only ocean-touch bungee jump in all of New Zealand.
M Social Auckland Hotel
LGBT travelers from near and far will feel right at home at M Social Auckland. This outstanding luxury hotel, centrally located on Quay Street, is among the warm and welcoming gay accommodation in Auckland. Each of the property’s 190 air-conditioned and soundproof rooms offers splendid views of the Princes Wharf. You can also expect accommodations to come with an en suite bathroom, refrigerator, and satellite TV.
The Beast and Butterflies restaurant offers delicious cuisine to please even the fussiest eaters while the bar is perfect for a relaxing drink. The hotel’s 24-hour fitness center means you can grab a workout no matter the time of day or night. And if you need to take care of some business, you can take advantage of the sophisticated business center’s state-of-the-art audiovisual technology.
The Viaduct Harbor, National Maritime Museum, and Queens Wharf are all within easy walking distance of the hotel. And if you drive roughly 12 minutes down Queen Street, you’ll reach the ebullient Q Theatre, a performing arts venue that regularly features queer performances.
The Shakespeare Hotel
To sleep, perchance to dream. So said Hamlet, and at The Shakespeare Hotel, nights of peaceful slumber are just some of the things to enjoy. This charming Victorian heritage building dates back to 1898 and is a great place to unwind and de-stress. Each of the double, queen and triple rooms has its own bathroom, TV, and mini-fridge. This LGBT-friendly 3-star hotel is also home to the Shakespeare Brewery, the country’s first brewpub. The bar offers a wide selection of local beer, wine, and spirits, and features a gaming room with a billiard table. Meanwhile, you can enjoy juicy steaks and burgers in the restaurant’s rustic ambiance.
Situated in the heart of the CBD, the hotel is just a few minutes away by foot from the designer boutiques and eateries of the Britomart shopping mall. Likewise within easy reach are the Wynyard Quarter’s attractions including the fish market and the Sounds of Sea interactive artworks. It’s also worth mentioning that the gay nightlife of K Road and Ponsonby is less than 15 minutes away by car or bike.
The Great Ponsonby Arthotel
Its superb location makes The Great Ponsonby Arthotel a premium gay accommodation in Auckland. It’s situated in a groovy inner-city suburb just 2 km (1.24 miles) west of the CBD. This neighborhood is so noteworthy that it’s one of the stops in the Auckland Scenic Half-Day City Sightseeing Tour. It’s also an area with a high number of gay residents. In fact, Ponsonby is regarded by many as Auckland’s historical queer quarter owing to the many gays and lesbians who have lived here since the 1970s. In such an environment, LGBT travelers can feel at ease walking the neighborhood’s streets hand in hand.
The hotel is within walking distance of many excellent cafes, restaurants, and eclectic shops. Patches of greenery—such as the Tole Reserve and the Vermont Reserve—are likewise nearby. Auckland’s gay saunas and bars in the K Road area aren’t too far either. They’re just a 5-minute drive to the southeast or a short bus ride away.
The Great Ponsonby Arthotel occupies a heritage villa dating from the 1890s. You won’t find cookie-cutter, vanilla rooms here. Instead, this charming luxury B&B features rooms painted in the warm colors of the Pacific and adorned with traditional art. You can enjoy a delicious breakfast—prepared with fresh and organic ingredients—in the homey dining room or on the cool verandah. And personal touches like the welcome drink and the honesty bar make staying at this gay-friendly hotel a pleasure.
Just So You Know:
- New Zealand was the first Oceania country to legalize same-sex marriage, which it did in 2013.
- According to Passport Magazine, a gay travel publication, the clothing-optional Karekare Beach on Auckland’s west coast is among the world’s best beaches. This dramatic black-sand beach was also featured in the movie The Piano.
- Chris Carter, who grew up in Auckland, was New Zealand’s first openly-gay Member of Parliament (MP). He came out of the closet soon after being elected in 1993.
Get Some Culture in Auckland:
- Auckland Pride Festival – Established in 2013, this lively annual festival usually takes place in Western Park. For 2 weeks, the LGBT community and its allies enjoy a variety of events ranging from drag and burlesque shows to food festivals to the colorful and joyful Pride Parade. The Big Gay Out, a big party with live performances, is a major part of the festival.
- No Homo: Queer Comedy – The Comedy Club at Queen Street becomes a gay Auckland hotspot on the last Friday of the month when it hosts this delightful show.
Best Gay Bars / Clubs in Auckland:
- The Eagle Bar – Set on K Road, this is among the most popular gay bars in Auckland. Come on a Thursday to enjoy karaoke night or enjoy live music on the weekends. The always-friendly barmen serve awesome cocktails at very reasonable prices.
- Family Bar & Club – An iconic Auckland gay bar, also on K Road. It’s where people from all walks of life gather for drinking, dancing, and all-around fun. Theme parties, drag shows, male strippers—there’s never a dull moment here.
- Caluzzi Drag Cabaret – The city’s fabulous queens have been entertaining the city since 1996. Laugh along to comedy shows while enjoying a delicious meal in this legendary Auckland gay bar.
Best Gay Saunas in Auckland:
- Centurian Sauna – This is a well-known Auckland gay sauna boasting clean and extensive facilities and services. Private rooms, a spa pool, a dry sauna, and a steam room are just some of its assets. Free condoms and lubricant, as well as complimentary tea and coffee, are also available.
- The Wingate Club – Set on a 5,000-sq-m property beside the Whau River, this is the largest Auckland gay sauna. The standard bathhouse features include a steam sauna, private rooms, and a cruising area. Also notable are the outdoor swimming pool, open areas for sunbathing, and secluded nooks and crannies for private moments.