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|Sunday to Thursday||08:30 AM to 10:30 PM|
|Friday to Saturday||08:30 AM to 11:30 PM|
Officially opened in 1911, this Italian renaissance revival-style building not only serves as the Council Chamber and city mayoral offices, it has two performance venues, the Great Hall and the Concert Chamber, as well as several function spaces. The wedge-shaped building underwent a NZD32.8 million restoration in 1997 to maintain its heritage features and Edwardian elegance. The Great Hall is regarded as one of the finest concert halls (acoustically) in the world, and has hosted circus acts, formal government dinners, weddings, music awards and rock concerts. It seats 1700 people, while the Concert Chamber caters for up to 400 people.
From Queen Street walk up Vulcan Lane to enter Auckland's "fashion central." The narrow and sometimes cobbled streets and alleyways are home to some of New Zealand's top designer labels including Kate Sylvester, Karen Walker, Zambesi and World. Bring all of your credit cards and check out top international labels such as Versace, in the new and very chic Chancery pedestrian mall. Chanel-suited women trot alongside gray office workers and designer dressed-down students - there's a bustling sidewalk café or restaurant to match all styles. Cross Victoria Street onto Lorne Street, for a more Bohemian flavor, including cool second-hand book stores and New Zealand-made arts and crafts. Turn left at the end of Lorne Street, past the New Gallery and the Auckland Art Gallery. Head back along Kitchener Street to complete a loop of Auckland's finest exhibiting art galleries. It must be time for that coffee back on High Street!
This plush theater with its state-of-the-art technical facilities is part of the Sky City complex, which includes the casino, a hotel, restaurants and Auckland's latest landmark, Sky Tower. The theater seats 700 people and features international and local stage acts ranging from classical theatre to popular music, and with the latest projection system can also screen movies (it is one of the Auckland International Film Festival venues). This makes the theater an ideal conference venue.
Viaduct Harbour was developed as a base for the America's Cup yachting regatta and racing syndicate. The buzzing cafes, bars, pubs and restaurants ply their trade late into the night. The bronze plaques around the boardwalk detail the maritime history of the area. Water taxi tours of the basin are available outside the Loaded Hog Brewery - keep your eye out for luxury super yachts. The Visitor Information Centre is also based here.
Built in 2003, the Britomart Transport Centre (B.T.C.) stands as a major hub for buses and trains in the Auckland area. There are a number of retailers in the Centre, including a florist shop, dairy shop, sushi restaurant, Fumiko Massage, and a Foreign Exchange. Every Sunday the centre holds the City Farmers Market and the facility boasts an events pavilion that holds a number of exciting events each year. Phone or check the website to see whats happening in the weeks to come.
1000 years of maritime history are revealed in creative ways on the harbor's edge. The museum features numerous restored vessels, some afloat in the marina. Daily cruises are offered on the scow, which sets sail when the cannon is fired at noon. Learn the stories of Polynesian voyaging, immigration, navigation and whaling. Meet Salty Sam! Use the interactive exhibits or join the model-makers workshop. There is also a café and store.
The Ferry Building, in Edwardian Baroque style, was first opened in 1912 on land reclaimed from the harbor. Construction is of sandstone and brick with a Coromandel granite base. In recent years it has been elegantly refurbished for retail, (restaurant Harbourside Seafood Bar & Grill and Cin Cin on Quay can be found here) and office use, but still maintains its original function as the terminal for ferries to the North Shore and the Hauraki Gulf islands.
The ferry run to Devonport is a great way to see the bustling waterfront and port of Auckland and take in great views of the city skyline. The destination is Torpedo Wharf on the Devonport foreshore. Devonport is reminiscent of a quaint English seaside village with lots of interesting shops, cafes and restaurants. A walk up North Head is rewarded with stunning panoramic views of the city and outer gulf islands.