Asia Pacific

SO/Sofitel brand debuts in New Zealand

SO/ Auckland joins an artistic portfolio of seven individual SO/ hotels worldwide.

AccorHotel’s luxury SO/Sofitel brand will open its first hotel in Auckland next month (November) with renowned Kiwi fashion house, WORLD, as the signature design partner.

Located in the heart of the city and occupying the former Reserve Bank, the hotel enters the market at a time when tourism in New Zealand is booming, according to SO/ Auckland general manager, Stephen Gould.

Gould references the Euromonitor International survey results, which see the country anticipating 3.8 million arrivals by 2025. Auckland, on the other hand, expects to attract global attention and ‘high-calibre’ visitors with events such as the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum and the America’s Cup Challenge in 2021.

Each SO/ hotel is an artistic vision brought to life by celebrated names from the world of fashion and design: In Bangkok, Monsieur Christian Lacroix, and in Singapore, Karl Lagerfeld as the emblem creator.

“We needed a designer with an approach as bold and enterprising as the SO/ brand; energetic, social, bursting with individual character but also inherently a reflection of Auckland. WORLD is a playful mix of sophistication and dynamic style and therefore was an obvious choice,” explains Gould.

“The ground floor of the hotel has been creatively fitted out by Dutch design house, Moooi and is inspired by founder and renowned creative, Marcel Wanders, who is famous for creating multi-layered sensory experiences.

“There is no dull lobby but rather a bar that looks like it might be the meeting spot for celebrities, the fashion elite and rockstars, while the HI SO rooftop offers the best vista of Rangitoto and the city of sails,” he says.

SO/ Auckland’s Harbour Society restaurant on the 15th floor is helmed by French Chef Marc de Passorio, former owner of the Michelin-starred restaurant, L’Esprit de la Violette.

Inspired by its surrounds, the 130-room hotel will also feature a café, Club Signature lounge, SO Spa, SO Fit and indoor heated pool. Booking is now open for stays from 19 November 2018.