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Holidaying in 2020. The year that the mid winter Fiji escapes splashed all over Instagram were replaced with picturesque hikes up a crisp Mt Cook, exploring new coastlines and visiting the little character towns pocketed around our country.
While it’s exciting to finally be able to ‘vacate’, a holiday can also mean simply taking the time to pause, relax in the quiet company of friends and …. ‘staycate’. The concept of a staycation is not new, but the concept of a foodie staycation is, and it’s offered right here in one of Auckland’s oldest establishments – The Cordis Hotel (previously known as The Langham).
Here’s why you need a Foodie Staycation at The Cordis:
- We have spent the good part of the last 6 months with no restaurants, no take out, no options other than cooking for ourselves. 7 days a week. Although you have probably refined your cooking skills and are now quite the sous chef, you need a break from the kitchen. Breakfast, lunch dinner served up, to you, in bed.
- You have barely seen your mum, your dad or your best friend, and a phone call or a coffee isn’t going to cut it. There’s nothing more soul fulfilling than knowing you have a whole weekend couped up with someone special, endless chats and laughter, staying up all night like a couple of kids on a sleepover.
- It’s an excuse to turn off your phone and go off the dial. There is nothing to do and nowhere to be other than breakfast, which is served between the hours of 6am and 11am and to squeeze in the spa pool before it closes at 9pm.
- You are supporting our hospitality industry that really needs it. Our hotels have hundreds of staff and with international tourism at a halt, they are relying on us to keep their jobs. If you can, please support.
We settled into our room, overlooking the city and the Sky Tower and decided to get a little dressed up for the staycation occasion. We popped the bottle of Méthode Traditionelle which came as part of the Foodie Staycation package and spent hours catching up, looking out over the city as the sun went down. It’s amazing how a hotel can give you that international travel feeling, only 10mins from home.
We had no plans on leaving the hotel. We wanted to soak up every minute so we ordered dinner, slipped into our comfys and looked forward to the guilty pleasure of dinner and a movie in bed.The doorbell rang and the dishes rolled in, entrees, hearty mains and delicate desserts.
We had to go for the good old ‘Saturday Night In’ burger, 5 star hotel style. The Wakanui Beef Burger came with streaky bacon, crisp lettuce, tomato, avocado, with red onion jam, relish and coleslaw, served with the best chunky chips on a sweet brioche bun.
We also went for the Marinated Big Glory Bay Salmon, perfectly cooked, it melted in the mouth! I have to give credit to the dessert chefs as these were absolutely delicious and beautifully presented. The Coconut Milk Panna Cotta was served with a caramelised pineapple, coconut meringue and mango gel. We fought over the Triple Chocolate Brownie, a chocolate ganache, with popcorn and snickers ice cream. The Vanilla Brulee was served with a spicy hit of ginger nut ice cream. Luckily we didn’t need to roll into bed, we were already there.
The following morning we had a quick buffet breakfast. Eight (their restaurant) was under refurbishment, so we went to the pop up set up in their event room, but I am excited to go back as soon as it reopens. In my opinion, the buffet breakfast at Eight is no doubt the best in Auckland. Now it was time to look forward to High Tea.
I travel to Singapore every year and am fascinated by their tea culture. The TWG cafes are dotted all around the city and their 5 star hotels are famous for their grandiose High Tea by Cordis service. The glamour of the concept captivated me as I walked past impeccably dressed groups of women having a ladies lunch, or families coming together on a Sunday afternoon. It is very much part of their culture and something I would absolutely encourage kiwis to embrace. I was thrilled to see the concept be so beautifully offered at The Cordis.
Their high tea is served in the Lobby Lounge, a quaint, elegant space, with a classic european feel. We spent the next few hours slowly enjoying the array of savouries, sandwiches and desserts, sipping through their extensive range of teas. I went straight for the egg sandwich, simple yet divine. It was served with watercress on a light milk roll. They have kept the traditional elements of a High Tea like the ham and cucumber sandwich plus integrated a few bespoke creations influenced by local produce – duck rillettes with plum, anise cured salmon, limoncello gel, fennel and caviar.
No High Tea is complete without warm scones. We had vanilla buttermilk scones with fresh cottage cream and strawberry champagne jam, finishing with a tart of fresh champagne grapes and champagne jelly! Finally, the Opera 2.0 – a magnificent chocolate sponge with coffee cream and homemade hazelnut praline.
So if you have spent the last few months in the kitchen feeding the family, are needing some quality alone time with a friend or family member, or simply want to just tap out for a few days, put your feet up and dine your way through the weekend then the Foodie Staycation at The Cordis is waiting for you.
The Foodie Staycation Package includes:
- Stylish accommodation in a room of your choice (subject to availability)
- Daily Cordis breakfast for two
- Dinner for two from their In Room Dining Menu incl. one starter, one main & one dessert per person
- A bottle of Méthode Traditionelle in your room (one per stay)
- Valet parking for one standard vehicle
- Complimentary Broadband Internet and Wi-Fi
- Complimentary go play card on arrival with access to more than 200 discounted activities New Zealand wide
- Recommended foodie itinerary for those foodies who want to explore more of what the city offers