A Very Heidi Xmas 2019

Xmas 2019 will forever be remembered by me as the Xmas of Heidi. It all started on Xmas Eve meeting up with Heidi at the Cordis Hotel. In case you’re wondering this used to be the Langham and before that it was the Sheraton.

Last Xmas Heidi and I decided to go to Fiji for Xmas 2019 for something different to do and get away from it all. Turns out that December is the worst month to go to Fiji because it’s the rainiest month of the year and very humid.

So Fiji turned into Bali after several months of indecisiveness and then sadly I didn’t think I’d have enough money to have an awesome trip coz there really wasn’t enough paydays till Xmas for me. So as a compromise and a way to still do something fab… we decided to stay in a flash 5 star hotel in the city where we could sit by a pool on Xmas day and drink cocktails.

I started my Xmas holidays this year on Monday the 23rd so all I had to do on the 24th was wait for Heidi to finish work and check in to the hotel. I caught a taxi from my place to the hotel and the driver gave me a $10 Xmas discount making it only $20, what a fab start to my luxurious Xmas experience.

While waiting in the very flash lobby there was a Santa wishing everyone a very merry Xmas and a very lovely lady handing out beautiful gingerbread cookies.

Our room was very very nice and the beds were like giant marshmallows- they were so comfortable, and we had a great view of the Sky Tower lit up for Xmas.

Once it got dark enough we went for a big walk along K Road to the pink cycle path because I thought we should do something involving lights on Xmas eve.

Xmas Day

Got woken suddenly this morning by a faint knock on the door announcing our room service breakfast had arrived. Or maybe the poor guy had been out there a while knocking – we will never know.

Checked out of the hotel at 11:00 and went for a walk over Grafton Bridge to fill in time till High Tea at 11:30. It sure was very special and what a fab thing to do on Xmas day – no stress no drama no dishes and we were treated like royalty.

Boxing Day

Today I joined Heidi and a bunch of her friends for their annual Xmas tradition. We caught the ferry to Waiheke Island and had an awesome lunch and much wine in a vineyard restaurant called: Thomas’s Batch.

Awesome views, fun company and a fab day.

27 December

Today we went to Point Chev for a catch up brunch with a mutual friend Dave L. The cafe we planned to meet in was closed!!! So we went to another one nearby called Ambler Cafe. Great food and great service, would happily go back there again.

So… it’s been a very busy few days with lots of fun adventures with Heidi, hence the title of this blog post.

Xmas Holidays 2015 Day Twenty

Thursday 7 January 2016

This morning while out in the courtyard I noticed the marvellous almost dead looking hibiscus plant had all of a sudden come back to life was looking all leafy and had flowered.  For some reason this got me all motivated to get busy and this turned out to be the busiest most productive day of my whole holiday


First stop would be to the amazing hardware store that still sold parts to my toilet.  Luckily they actually stocked the part I needed and it wasn’t very expensive at all, and the dude who served me was very helpful and didn’t treat me like an idiot at all, this calls for a celebration and almost gave me another lease on life!


Across the road from the fantastic hardware store is the old Corbans Vineyard.  It’s now a public park with no wine making happening there anymore, but there are still some cool old buildings and lovely gardens to photograph.

After that with all my new found wealth (not needing a plumber or a whole new toilet) I figured I could splash out and buy a new couch. So I headed back to the North Shore to check out some new couches. Turns out the decent ones are a lot more expensive than I thought, so a new couch would have to wait and I went to the garden centre instead to buy some new plants and a pot big enough to repot the maple a good friend gave me as a birthday present last year.


After all my hard work and shopping I decided I needed a beer and it was such a beautiful evening I could light my fireball and enjoy the garden and Xmas lights.

Xmas Holidays 2015 Day Thirteen

Thursday 31 December 2015

At last it’s the end of the year and a wee bunch of us decided to spend the last day of 2015 in Kumeu, trying lots of different wines and buying all the ones we liked.  Our sober driver picked me up at 9:30 so we could make a very early start and beat the crowds.

We arrived at the first vineyard at 10:00.  Matua Valley Vineyard brought back many happy memories as this is where the whole family flew to by helicopter for my Mum’s 50th birthday dinner, funny I should come back here now that I’m 50! Interestingly the Hunting Lodge where we had dinner no longer exists, they’ve turned the restaurant building into the tasting room. It’s still a really lovely venue.  It’s here that I learnt Pinot Gris wine is quite pleasant first thing in the morning.
Matua Valley Vineyard

Next stop was the Coopers Creek Vineyard.  Even tho it was just after 10:30 I’m fairly certain we woke up the man who ran the tasting sessions.  He had a lot to set up and get organised before he was ready to share his wines and vast knowledge with us. No worries… it’s a lovely place to be relaxing in before soaking up more free wine!
Coopers Creek

I wonder what gets stored in those big shiny silos that are sitting in the sun getting hot!Coopers Creek

Our next stop was supposed to be Nobilos, but it was closed! This used to be one of my favourites, but apparently it has something to do with the council buying the land for much needed housing – boo!!!

Next stop was Soljans Estate Winery, the restaurant there is one of my all time fave places to eat.
Soljans Vineyard

Next stop was supposed to be the Hallertau Brewery but it was closed for renovations (I think).

Next stop was a long drive out to the whop whops where they had NO cellphone coverage!!!!!  But the drive was well worth it as the Westbrook Winery was set amongst some beautiful countryside.  I’m not sure if it was due to the vast number of wines I had already sampled or just that particular vineyard’s grapes but I wasn’t keen on anything I tried there, according to my friends it was possibly coz the wine wasn’t sweet enough for me.
Westbrook Vineyard

Westbrook Vineyard

Westbrook Vineyard


Westbrook VineyardWestbrook Vineyard

After all that wine tasting we stopped at the Boric Food Market for a well deserved coffee and then headed home to wait for the evening’s activities.

Every new year’s eve night I try to do something different to celebrate.  This year we headed to Devonport for a late dinner at Portofino and then walked down to the wharf just in time to catch the Sky City fireworks display.  Portofino was great – I think I’ve found a new fave place to eat on the Shore – best Tequila and orange ever!!!