Here are some Wellington Bars you must check out...
Yes, we had to include our own bar; we’re very proud of Portlander. That’s not to say it doesn’t deserve to be on this list - far from it, in fact. Portlander has the largest selection of whiskies in Wellington. In total, 91 whiskies of varying age, origin and taste. Whether you’re a beginner or have been drinking whisky since before you could crawl, the expert Portlander team can help open your eyes or introduce you to something new. It’s not just whisky that makes Portlander great, they have one of the most impressive wine lists you’ve ever pointed to and said “um, that one” because you didn’t pay enough attention in fifth form French class. So, if you’re staying with us at the hotel, we highly recommend you don’t just pass off Portlander as ‘another hotel bar’, it’s well worth staying and joining us for a drink. Cnr Whitmore and Featherston Streets, Wellington
Hidden down Forresters Lane, just off Tory Street, Motel Bar is one of those places you’ve got to know about otherwise you might just walk right past. Rather than an address, their business cards simply say “Find us if you can”. Behind the air of secrecy and mystery, hides one of Wellington’s best bars, specialising in elaborate island-style contemporary cocktails. Frequented by Hollywoods’ elite during the filming of the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films, this is one seriously cool place to visit. Plus, being located close to Wellington’s theatres and movie cinemas, Motel bar is a great choice for a cheeky pre-show cocktail and snack. Level 1/4 Forresters Lane, Te Aro 6011
Between two towering apartment buildings and office blocks, sits a cute, brightly-painted, wooden bungalow. Like a Cuban mirage in a sea of brick and concrete, Havana Bar is an oasis of taste and good times. They make an awesome cocktail, do some sensational tapas and regularly support local and international musicians and DJ’s. Havana bar definitely has one of the coolest vibes of any bar in the city. Tip: If you love the Cuban vibe of Havana bar, chances are you’ll love Fidel’s Cafe too. Located on Upper Cuba Street and owned by the same folks, Fidel’s has a great selection of food for when you partied a bit too hard at Hanava the night before. 32a-34 Wigan St, Te Aro Wellington
Walk past it during the day and we guarantee you wouldn’t bat an eye. Why would you? It’s just a regular Laundromat, right? Wrong. The big green shed with ‘55 minute Dry Cleaning and Pressers’ written on it is in fact one of Wellington newest and most hip bars, or as they like to be known: ‘Juke Joint & Music Cafe’. Inside, where once you could have spaghetti stains removed from clothes is now a warm and casual lounge bar, complete with fireplace and mismatched couches and armchairs. Laundry Bar specialises in soul food (prepared and served from the old-school caravan out the back), succulent music, hot coffee, and cold beer. It’s well worth a visit. 240 Cuba St, Wellington
If sophistication and style is your thing, then Hawthorne Lounge is the place for you. Modelled on a 1920’s gentleman’s club, it’s dark; wood panelled; and reeks of class. When you step through the doors you know you’re in for something special. The bar staff now their trade inside out; order a cocktail from the extensive menu or simply tell the barman what flavours you like and he’ll personalise something just for you. When you’ve got your drink, relax in their big leather couches in front of the roaring fire. Tip: See that glass jar full of marshmallows above the fireplace? Grab one out, stab it onto a skewer and roast it over the open fire. How cool is that! 82 Tory St, Upstairs, Wellington.