Location, location, location. It can make or break the sale of a house, and the success of a hotel.
In the case of the Sudima Auckland City, its location is pretty good, for now. But when the
New Zealand International Convention Centre opens, it's location will be perfect. It's directly across the road.
The room I stayed in was on the corner facing west. This provided spectacular views of the Waitakeres and the sunset, despite being in the heart of the CBD.
The hotel has also followed what seems to be a global trend by having the bed in the middle of the room. Behind the headboard was a small working desk, and then a lovely large hot tub.
While I do love a hot tub, its location behind the bed in the corner meant you couldn't see the television, or have conversation with someone sitting on the couch due to the bed's headboard.
Overall, it felt like the room was trying to do too much for the space that it had. As well as the couch and the bed, there was an occasional chair in the corner - I am yet to find out what an occasional chair is being, when it's not being a chair.
Dad jokes aside, the room was designed for 'self-care' with a focus on wellbeing. The biggest hint of this came from the yoga kit and yoga channel on the television. And, of course, the large bath.
While the room is promoted as a 'self-care' room, a key part of someone's well being is water, and there was none to be had. Free bottles of water should be as essential as the key to your room, especially when the only taps available are in the bathroom.
For its star rating and price, I don't think you should have to walk up the road to 7-Eleven to stock up on water.
The not-so-hidden gem of this hotel is its restaurant, East.
Firstly, if you are a vegan, vegetarian or gluten intolerant, then this should instantly become your favourite restaurant. Not only are the meals flexible to accommodate your needs, but the restaurant is a meat free zone to begin with.
Even the wine is organic and vegan.
The restaurant serves its food in the ever-popular shared plate style, but you can be served separate meals if you wish.
The kitchen team includes people from Japan, Hong Kong, China, Thailand, India and Sri Lanka and this comes across in the menu. The dinner was quite easily one of the best I've had this year.
The breakfast offering and level of service did, however, let the kitchen down on this occasion.
Over the past year there have been new hotels popping up all around central Auckland, and the Sudima is wedged between the personality of hotels such as the QT and the more formal offerings from brands such as Cordis.
However, it just needs to pick its path and double down on doing everything it needs to do to become as good as those brands, or develop a point of difference.
It has time to iron things out though, and here's hoping the creases are gone by the time our borders finally open to the world.
Dan Lake had a complimentary night at Sudima Auckland City for this review.