Local Escapes

The Best Hotels In Christchurch

By Abby Porter

The opulent drawing room at The Observatory Hotel In Christchurch, one of the best hotels in the city.

As the gateway to the South Island, Ōtautahi Christchurch attracts visitors of all types and it's not hard to see why. Alongside amazing food and drink, the Garden City is blessed with some of the country’s best hotels, and Urban List has put together a list of our faves so you can have a top-tier Christchurch getaway whether you're travelling in luxury or on a budget.

We’ve done the research (and tested the pillows) and can assure you that you’re spoiled for choice no matter if your priority is location, on-site facilities, or even the quality of the minibar. We've got you covered. Without further ado, here are the best hotels in Christchurch. Start packing your bags.

The Observatory Hotel Christchurch

9 Hereford Street, The Arts Centre Te Matatiki Toi Ora, Christchurch 

A light and bright room in the eaves of the glorious Observatory Hotel in Christchurch.Image credit: The Observatory Hotel | Booking .com

If you're looking for one of the best hotels in Christchurch, look no further than the simply gorgeous Observatory Hotel. Opened in 2022 as part of a $290-million quake restoration project, this five-star gem sits right in the centre of the Arts Centre and within easy reach of the best restaurants and bars that Christchurch has to offer.

Housed across three historic stone buildings that once served as the University of Canterbury's physics and biology facilities—including the iconic observatory tower after which it is named—this upscale lodging boasts 33 opulent rooms, along with a breathtaking drawing room and a well-appointed library. 

Chateau On The Park

 189 Deans Avenue, Riccarton, Christchurch

The lovely bar at Chateau On the Park evokes art deco, 20s decor. Definitely one of the best hotels in Christchurch.Image credit: Chateau On The Park | Booking .com

If you're planning a trip to The Garden City, you'll be happy to know that Chateau On The Park, a DoubleTree by Hilton, has reopened its doors. This peaceful, parkside stay is as charming as ever as Chateau On The Park offers resort-level luxury without being far from the action. Bringing excellent hospitality, dreamy greenery (hello, weeping willows and rose gardens), and even an outdoor heated pool, it's no question that this Christchurch classic was sorely missed during its hiatus.

After your morning stroll through Hagley Park and an al fresco brekkie at the lush onsite Garden Court Brasserie, it's all too easy to head into town for a wander—the CBD is only 2.9kms away, and a free shuttle service is included in your stay. Adding an unforgettable touch of neo-Gothic feel to Christchurch's hotel scene, Chateau on the Park is the perfect place to take a leisurely vacay in style.

The George

50 Park Terrace, Christchurch Central

A room at The George Hotel with two rooms.Image credit: The George | Booking .com

If it’s luxury you’re after, The George is sure to impress. The only 5-star boutique hotel in Christchurch, this stay has a one-to-one staff-to-guest ratio, so you’re guaranteed to receive top-tier service. A favourite among business travellers and those who appreciate the finer things in life, The George is elegance at its best. With extensive facilities, tasteful furnishings, and stunning views of Hagley Park, you might not even want to leave your room.

We get it, but, at the very least, you've got to make sure to head downstairs and sample the locally sourced menu at 50 Bistro. Offering a unique chef's table experience, the restaurant provides seasonally inspired, modern New Zealand cuisine, showcasing the best of Canterbury and New Zealand. 

Fable Christchurch

166 Gloucester Street, Christchurch Central

Warm and spacious, a room at Fable Christchurch offers tree-lined city views and a cosy bedImage credit: Fable Christchurch | Booking .com

Sleek, contemporary furnishings align with a winning central location at Fable Christchurch. This chic, modern hotel boasts balconies with gorgeous city views and spacious, comfy rooms with all the amenities you need. A stone’s throw from the vibrant buzz of New Regent Street, this stay is perfect for those looking to experience the charm of Christchurch’s nightlife. Even the casino is only a 10-minute walk away, in case that’s where the night takes you.

Despite the bustling central area, you won’t have to sacrifice a good night’s sleep to stay at Fable—guests love this hotel for its peace and quiet, offering the luxury of a great snooze and a great location. With some of Christchurch’s very best bars and restaurants within easy reach, Fable is the inner-city haven you’ve been searching for.

Drifter Christchurch

96 Lichfield Street, Christchurch

A new wellness space at Drifter Christchurch.Image credit: Drifter Christchurch | Booking .com

Let's face it, if you're looking to stay in one of the best hotels in Christchurch, you're going to need to drop some cash, however, you won't need to break the bank with a stay at Drifter Christchurch—due to open in May 2024.

More than just accommodation, this concept has shared social experiences at its core. With a design-centric aesthetic featuring several room options from superior private suites to premium shared bunk rooms, as well as workspaces, bars, dining areas, wellbeing studios, and a calendar of social and cultural events showcasing local and international artists and musicians, Drifters is the perfect pitstop for free-spirited travellers. 

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Crowne Plaza Christchurch

764 Colombo Street, Christchurch Central

The impressive lobby at the Crowne Plaza shows golden railings amongst lots of space, no wonder it's one of the best hotels in Christchurch.Image credit: Crowne Plaza Christchurch | IHG Hotels

Our pick for the most conveniently located hotel, Crowne Plaza Christchurch is also one of Christchurch’s most beautiful. The city’s tallest hotel, the Crowne Plaza boasts 17 stories and has 200 or so rooms, which are all beautifully decked out in sophisticated navy and mustard hues. The beds at this upscale hotel are ridiculously comfy, making them perfect for either a relaxing staycation or an exciting weekend away.

Every detail here is perfectly executed from the downstairs Cafe 1851, which pays homage to the hotel’s roots, to the welcoming lobby bar with its marble details. Much more than just a hotel, Crowne Plaza Christchurch is also a hangout spot for locals—lucky for you the restaurant, Market Place, is known as one of the city’s best. 

Novotel Christchurch Airport

30 Dury Road, Christchurch Airport, Christchurch

A well appointed room at the Novotel Christchurch Airport looks out onto the runway.Image credit: Novotel Christchurch Airport | Booking .com

Take it from us, this is not your standard airport hotel. Not only is it one of Christchurch's best hotels, but it's one where incredible design takes centre stage. Novotel Christchurch Airport is a minimalist dream; the 4.5-star hotel was envisioned by Warren and Mahoney and features two-story sheer walls, steel-braced columns, luxurious timbers, terracotta cladding, and plenty of marble (your Instagram stories will have never looked better).

There are oodles of public spaces as well, from the lobby cafe which welcomes weary travellers, to its rooftop restaurant and bar that would fit in well in any cosmopolitan city. Better yet, the panoramic views of the Canterbury Plains and the Southern Alps are simply something else. The rooms are sparingly designed with clever features that make good use of space and enable you to watch the planes take off and arrive without any of the ruckus. Score!

Sudima Christchurch City

47 Salisbury Street, Christchurch Central

The exterior of the Sudima Christchurch City shows a sleek building at sunset.Image credit: Sudima Christchurch City | Booking .com

The Sudima is an inner-city delight and close to many of Christchurch’s hot spots. Conveniently nestled in Salisbury Street, its location means you’re within walking distance of the city centre and only a stroll from Victoria Street. There are 86 rooms, all decked out with lush plants and fresh flowers for a nice reminder of home. Stop by The Lane, the on-site restaurant, which celebrates locally sourced and sustainable ingredients with a menu that's largely plant-based but still offers protein options.

Oh, and there are free evening drinks and canapés, á la carte breakfast, a minibar, streamed movies, unlimited Wi-Fi, and access to gym and yoga with every booking. Another draw is the Moss Spa with treatments ranging from manicures to waxing, not to mention relaxing massages and facials. Can you see why we're calling it one of the best hotels in Christchurch?

Carnmore Hotel Christchurch

840-848 Colombo Street, Christchurch Central

Drenched in sun, a room at the Carnmore Hotel features colourful art, a plush bed, and city views, definitely one of the best hotels in Christchurch. Image credit: Carnmore Hotel | Booking .com

The innovative, modern design of the Carnmore Hotel is what really sets it apart. A shimmering masterpiece on the corner of Colombo Street in the heart of Christchurch, this hotel will catch your eye from afar. The interior is just as stunning, greeting you with a sun-soaked lobby and sophisticated decor.

The rooms at Carnmore embody minimalism with a colourful twist—think ultra-crisp sheets, sleek furnishings, floor-to-ceiling windows, and vibrant wall art. Spacious enough for a family (or the luxury of extra room for one), the inviting studio rooms are the perfect place to make yourself at home during your stay. If natural light, lush amenities, and undeniable class are what you’re looking for, you’ll find love at Carnmore. If the glowing reviews are anything to go by, the amazing shower alone makes this one of the best hotels in Christchurch.

Wyndham Garden Christchurch

64 Kilmore Street, Christchurch Central

The exterior of Wyndham Garden Christchurch looks awesome against the night sky. No wonder this is one of the best hotels in Christchurch.Image credit: Wyndham Garden Christchurch | Booking .com

Nothing short of a lovely hotel, Wyndham Garden Christchurch is both a cosy and convenient stay. Boasting some of the comfiest beds in the city, this hotel offers simplicity without compromising on amenities. The compact rooms are expertly designed with an airy feel, prioritising stylish furnishings and pretty views. Though this lovable stay is sure to be enjoyed by everyone, it comes highly recommended by couples, in particular, so keep it in mind for your next romantic weekend away.

Located near the city’s Art Gallery and the Arts Centre, this stay is the ultimate spot if you’re looking to get amongst Christchurch’s unique creative scene. Promising everything you need for a wonderful stay in the city, Wyndham Garden offers an ideal central location without any fuss.

The Mayfair

155 Victoria Street, Christchurch

The brand new lobby at The Mayfair is minimalistic yet luxurious, featuring sparkling lights and an entryway lined with greenery Image credit: The Mayfair | Booking .com

One of the newer kids on the block, The Mayfair is redefining hotel luxury. The style here is polished, modern, and charming, taking a classic boutique stay and adding an exciting splash of innovation. Setting itself apart, all of the spacious rooms at The Mayfair are equally gorgeous and functional whether you’re booking a family weekend away or a solo work trip.

You’ll be impressed by the thoughtful attention to detail at The Mayfair: focusing on great service and the best guest experience possible, this Christchurch hotel promises a memorable stay.

From the cafe to the high tea to the cocktail bar, you can enjoy a day’s worth of skillfully prepared, delicious treats without even leaving the premises. If you are heading out to dinner, check out the hotel’s list of restaurant partners and accompanying chargeback facilities. Does it get any better?

Rydges Latimer Christchurch

30 Latimer Square, Christchurch

Classy and stylish, a room at The Rydges is decked out with luxurious monochromatic decor Image credit: Rydges Christchurch | Booking .com

Overlooking Latimer Square, Rydges Christchurch is right in the heart of the city. Going strong since 2013, this 4.5-star hotel boasts four levels of rooms plus a fifth-floor penthouse apartment with incredible views stretching across the Port Hills to the Southern Alps (go on, treat yourself!). All spaces are flooded with natural light, integrated audiovisual equipment, exceptional menu options and a dedicated team of conference professionals on hand to assist in planning and facilitation.

Located on the ground floor is Bloody Mary's, where New York bistro meets Kiwi hospitality for a true beef lover’s dream. The joint is a premium steakhouse featuring some of the finest ingredients sourced within the region, ensuring you stay well-fed as you relax at one of the best hotels in Christchurch.

Looking for more city getaways? Check out:

Main image credit: The Observatory Hotel Christchurch 

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