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Tuesday 13 February 2024

Maori culture a design driver for new hotel at Auckland Airport

Flying in or out of Auckland Airport? There's a new hotel for you to sample.

Accor this week opened the doors to Te Arikinui Pullman Auckland Airport Hotel, the first five-star hotel to open at the Auckland Airport precinct and located only 100 metres from the front entrance of the international terminal.

The name 'Te Arikinui' means 'Supreme Ariki' or 'Supreme Paramount Chief' and is an expression of the significance of this location to the iwi of the Tainui waka.

Architecturally designed by Warren and Mahoney, the hotel is shaped by the design concept 'Sea to Sky' and inspired by the journey of adventure and discovery by the people of Tainui waka following their arrival at Manukau Harbour around 1350.

Kiingitanga, celestial voyages, stories of great taniwha, and references to ancient and precious korowai are the inspiration for the cultural design patterns created for Te Arikinui Pullman Auckland Airport Hotel.

The interiors of the 311 guestrooms and Te Kaahu restaurant are designed by the Space Studio team and include cultural design elements carved into the stone and timber panelling, and applied to fabric wall coverings and bed throws.

The restaurant is helmed by chef Nancye Pirini and has views over the runway and Manukau harbour. 
The menu is a modern take on traditional New Zealand cuisine.

Accor Pacific Chief Operating Officer PME, Adrian Williams, said the opening of the hotel was well timed, with global travel making a strong comeback after the last three years.

“It is incredibly exciting to welcome this architectural landmark to our hotel portfolio," he said. "This hotel is a first in its class example of indigenous cultural design.

“We are already seeing strong interest and demand for Te Arikinui Pullman Auckland Airport Hotel, offering guests exceptional premium hospitality experiences alongside a stunning fusion of cultural and superior design.”

Te Arikinui is the third Pullman hotel to open in New Zealand and is joining another eighteen Pullman hotels across Australia and the Pacific. It is jointly owned by Auckland Airport and Tainui Group Holdings.

Public flexible rates start from $419, and available to book now on

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