Christmas at Prince’s Gate Hotel

I celebrated a Christmas Day with a buffet lunch with my parents at the historic Prince’s Gate Hotel in Rotorua.


The hotel was originally built in Waihi in 1897. In the 1900s the booming gold-mining town of Waihi was the third largest town in New Zealand.

The hotel played a significant part in early New Zealand. It housed extra police officers deployed to the area during the Waihi gold miners’ strike and was used as hospital following an influenza epidemic.

In 1917, it was decided to relocate the building to Rotorua. The hotel was dismantled and transported by horse-drawn wagon to Waihi Railway Station where it was taken by rail to Rotorua.

It was reassembled on the corner of Arawa and Hinemaru Streets directly opposite the gates to the Government Gardens. The Prince’s Gate, also known as the Prince’s Arch and Gateway, was built for the 1901 Royal Visit by the Duke and Duchess of York.

The hotel reopened in 1921 as the Prince’s Gate Hotel.



The lunch was $95 a head and included a carvery / hot station with manuka smoked champagne ham, turkey breast, roast angus beef sirlon, salmon, steamed and roast vegetables.

On the opposite table there was a cauliflower soup, antipasto platter, penne & tuna salad, Caesar salad, and Greek salad.

The dessert station included pavlova, mini cheesecake, brandy snaps, creme burlee tarts, and Christmas pudding with custard.

Breads and tips were served at the table.




Sydney Tower Buffet

Sydney Tower Buffet is a revolving self-serve buffet restaurant offering stunning views of Sydney’s cityscape.


Champagne cocktail at Sydney Tower Buffet

Two friends and I went for lunch on the 31st December to end the year. Lunch is from 11:30 am to 2pm and dinner is from 5pm to 9pm.

Each dining session is 1.5 hours. Not to worry it only takes 70 minutes for the restaurant to complete one rotation, so diners can enjoy 360 views of Sydney’s cityscape.

On a clear day you can even see as far as the Blue Mountains.




The restaurant serves more than 50 international dishes, that includes modern Australian, Chinese, Italian, Japanese and Thai.

A highlight are the speciality native Australian meats. At our seating there was emu and crocodile chipolatas and kangaroo rump.

There are also extensive salad, seafood and dessert bars.


Crocodile and Emu chipolatas

Entry to the restaurant is via the reception and lift access on level 4 of the Westfield Sydney shopping centre.

The Sydney Tower Buffet is located on the tower’s second level. The Sydney Tower stands at 309 metres (1,014 ft) and is the second tallest tower in the southern hemisphere.

Although Auckland’s SKY Tower is taller, Sydney’s main observation deck, Sydney Tower Eye, on level 4, is 50 metres higher than the SKY Tower’s. Note: Sydney Tower Buffet is not affiliated with Sydney Eye Tower. This is a separate attraction. Both businesses offer stunning views.

There is also an à la carte revolving restaurant 360 Bar and Dining located on level 1 of the tower and on level 3 is STUDIO, an event space.