My fam­ily week­end es­cape

Ed­i­to­rial di­rec­tor Shelley Fer­gu­son takes her fam­ily for the ul­ti­mate ur­ban es­cape

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Cordis was the per­fect choice, thanks to a re­cent ren­o­va­tion to in­clude fam­ily rooms com­plete with kitchen fa­cil­i­ties and kid-friendly ser­vices.

Check-in was an un­ex­pected high­light, with Cordis mas­cot Cody the Red Panda there to greet us, step lad­ders so the boys could check in them­selves (once they’d fin­ished chas­ing Cody’s tail), and a stun­ning lobby space for me to swoon over.

Then it was time to ex­plore. Be­ing in the city meant we could re­con­nect with what we love about cen­tral Auck­land, and search­ing for per­son­alised places (like my favourite shops) was made easy thanks to the ‘Handy’ Cordis smart­phone pro­vided.

Over the course of the week­end, we took the free Cordis e-bikes to the park and over the pink cy­cle­way. We had a divine New Zealand-in­spired high tea in the ho­tel lobby, vis­ited the art gallery and strolled through the museum and Lantern Fes­ti­val. We took the com­pli­men­tary Cordis shut­tle to Cus­toms Street, where we shopped and bought ice creams be­fore boat-watch­ing at the water­front. We even saw a movie at Imax fol­lowed by a hi­lar­i­ous game of ten pin bowl­ing (the ball was al­most heav­ier than Jett).

But per­haps most im­por­tantly, we com­pletely re­laxed. Steven and I have al­ways loved ho­tels, but we didn’t ex­pect our kids would love the lux­u­ri­ous lit­tle ‘Cordis Kids’ touches as much as they did. After a busy morn­ing, they’d re­lax in the room en­joy­ing the chil­dren’s back­packs pro­vided, filled with stick­ers, a trea­sure hunt map, Jenga and Scrab­ble. After a late-arvo swim in the heated rooftop pool and jacuzzi, they rinsed off in the gi­ant bath and swanned around the luxe bath­room in their adorable Cordis Kids dress­ing gowns and slip­pers. Fol­low­ing a de­li­cious din­ner from the kids’ room ser­vice menu, the boys snug­gled into bed with their free soft toys and watched the lat­est movies, wide-eyed at the gi­ant TV screen. They felt spe­cial and pam­pered, and so did we. I had time for an in­cred­i­ble Chuan Spa ses­sion, and then swapped with Steve who got in a work­out at the well­ness cen­tre. As par­ents, one of the most pow­er­ful parts of the stay was the com­plete lack of parental life ad­min, in­clud­ing clean­ing and cook­ing. Some ho­tels are all about me time, but this was our time, as a fam­ily. Who says you can’t re­lax in the city?

1 Check-in at Cordis Auck­land. 2 In­ner city shop­ping made easy with the ‘Handy’ Cordis smart­phone. 3 Fresh-air fun at My­ers Park. 4 Divine High Tea in the ho­tel lobby. 5 The boys en­joy­ing some down­time in our ho­tel room. 6 A heated swim in the ho­tel...

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