Charming on the outside, cozy and elegant on the inside, The Classic Villa is a luxurious 5-star boutique hotel in Christchurch, New Zealand. It’s the best of both worlds: a quiet, peaceful refuge that is centrally located and easy walking distance to the city center and attractions like the Avon River and Botanic Gardens.
An Italian-style villa built in 1899 and recently renovated with the utmost attention to detail, this award-winning, romantic inn on Worcester Street is also directly on the tram line and across from the historic former University of Canterbury, an amazing collection of buildings that is now the Christchurch Arts Centre (more about that in a bit).
Check-in was super easy; the hosts weren’t there when I got in a little late, so they gave me the code to the door and left my room key at the reception desk. I entered a very large common area with a spotless kitchen, two dining tables, and a cozy seating area next to the reception desk.
There are plenty of comfy spots to rest up after a full day of sightseeing. A big lounge is set just off the kitchen area, with chairs and sofa around a fireplace. It’s surrounded by windows looking out onto a pretty outdoor courtyard with tables, chairs, and umbrellas—the perfect place to relax with a glass of wine or cup of tea on sunny days.
Rooms are spread throughout the main house and a newer addition. I stayed in a Deluxe Room in the historic section. This is just off the reception area, along the entrance hall which has gleaming original wood floors, high ceilings, lovely moldings, antique furnishings, and gorgeous stained glass panels surrounding the front door. There’s also a vintage globe bar with a crystal decanter of port and glasses, so you can enjoy a complimentary drink whenever you like.
Opening the door to my room made me feel like I had stepped back in time, as I slid the engraved plate aside to fit the old-fashioned key into the lock and turned the heavy brass doorknob.
My room was beautiful, with high ceilings, burnished wood floors, a wooden armoire and desk, and lovely accents like a stained glass panel in the headboard that matched the ones by the front door. It was spacious and comfortable, historic in feel but with modern conveniences like a row of outlets and a flatscreen television.
The sparkling bathroom also had a historic feel but modern fittings including a walk-in shower, large pedestal sink, posh toiletries, and hair dryer plus luxurious touches like underfloor heating, heated towel racks, and a fan heater.
The queen-sized bed had a lovely white quilt and warm wool throw as well as a sheepskin underlay, electric blanket, and wool-down duvet. Inside the armoire were two bathrobes and slippers, as well as an iron and ironing board. A binder gave me all the info I needed on the hotel and the area.
The room was very quiet, even in the morning. I was close to the kitchen and dining area but couldn’t hear the others having breakfast until I went out into the hall.
And what a breakfast! A huge spread was laid out, including cheeses, meats, fruit, cereals, yogurt, homemade bread, and croissants, plus jam, manuka honey, peanut butter, and Vegemite. The host welcomed me and offered to warm a croissant (yes please!) as I filled my plate.
The coffee was French press and excellent. Other drink options included juices, milk, and hot water for tea. I really enjoyed savoring my coffee as I watched the sun shining through the windows while birds sang outside. Breakfast is complimentary and served each morning from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m.
You can choose from a variety of rooms at The Classic Villa, each equally comfortable and beautifully decorated with luxury linens, pristine ensuite bathrooms with walk-in massage showers, and individual heat and air conditioning controls. All are located on the first floor for easy access.
The Super Deluxe King Suite has a more modern style and features two rooms, carpeted floors, underfloor heating, a double settee, a desk, a microwave, a refrigerator, in-room tea and coffeemaking facilities, two LCD TVs, and lots of natural light from multiple windows.
The Super Deluxe Queen Twin room also has a modern feel and offers carpeted flooring, two queen beds, a desk, and a seating area with sofa and chairs. The Super Deluxe Queen room is in the historic section and features high ceilings, wood floors, a wood-fire-effect heater, and a desk and chairs.
There are also Deluxe, Corporate, and Single rooms. Rates range depending on the room you choose and time of year you visit.
Guests at The Classic Villa enjoy an assortment of great amenities. You can help yourself to complimentary tea, coffee, filtered water, fruit, and cookies at any time. Unlimited free high-speed Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel, and there’s a complimentary computer and printer in the lounge, as well as a large rack filled with city maps and brochures for area attractions. You can get same day laundry service if you like. There are 6 onsite parking spots as well as spaces on the street if you have a car.
It’s easy to walk to practically every top sight in the city from here. Set in the original part of Christchurch, The Classic Villa is near the Avon River, the Christchurch Museum, the Christchurch Art Gallery, the Botanic Gardens, Cathedral Square, Riverside Market, the Terraces, and the Central City shopping area. It’s also very close to multiple excellent restaurants, so you’ll have your pick of great spots for lunch and dinner.
As I mentioned before, the hotel sits directly across from the former University of Canterbury, an amazing complex of elegant stone buildings that was built in the 1800s. The college moved to another area in the 1970s and this was converted to the Arts Centre of Christchurch.
You can wander through the delightful courtyards and buildings, marveling at the ornate architecture and learning about local history in multiple exhibits and galleries. There are also several shops and eateries, including an excellent wine bar and restaurant called Cellar Door that features a variety of flights so you can learn about local wines.
Whether you’re coming to Christchurch on a honeymoon or a holiday, staying at The Classic Villa will elevate your experience and make you feel pampered and posh. Locally owned and operated, it delivers fabulous accommodations along with attentive service, all in a super convenient location. You can book this luxury boutique hotel at www.theclassicvilla.co.nz.
Google Rating: 4.8
This review was written by HoneymoonAlways writer and editor Ashley Ellington Brown.
Ashley has always loved to explore new places and indulges her passion for travel whenever she can. She has been to 12 countries and 32 states so far.
Ashley has worked as a freelance writer for more than 20 years, specializing in the areas of travel, marketing, personal development, and the pursuit of happiness.
Favorite destinations include Sorrento and Capri, Italy; Haarlem, Netherlands; Paris; Sydney and K’gari, Australia; Rotorua and Waiheke Island, New Zealand; the American West; Palm Beach; the Florida Keys; and her hometown of New Orleans. Ashley has a goal of visiting every state plus many more international destinations.