Skip the mundane evening routine and come in to the city centre for a night of live shows and delicious food. With an extensive range of eateries to choose from, and a great line-up of exciting events and gigs, there's nothing better than a lively night in our buzzing city centre. From catching a performance from the Royal New Zealand Ballet to a musical at The Civic or a comedy gig at The Classic, there's something to tickle everyone's fancy.

Dine at Elliott Stables, then catch an Urzila Carlson gig | December 

One of New Zealand's best-loved comedians, Urzila Carlson is bringing her trademark deadpan humour and cheeky wit to audiences in Auckland this December. Before her gigs (or after), grab a bite to eat at Elliott Stables. Just up from the Aotea Centre where the gigs are taking place, wander in and choose a table in the Village Common – here you are greeted with a range of eateries offering different international cuisines. With tempting and exquisite food dreamed up by specialist foodies you are spoiled for choice. 

Dinner and drinks at Tanuki’s Cave, then laugh the night away at Big Wednesday | Every week

Travel down the stairs to Tanuki’s Cave, where you can sit at the bar and soak up the funky and intimate atmosphere at one of Auckland's favourite dining hot spots. There is an extensive selection of yakitori (assorted meat charcoal grilled on skewers) & Kushiage (deep fried breadcrumbed skewers) to accompany your Japanese beer or chilled sake.

After a delicious meal at Tanuki’s, head to The Classic Comedy and Bar for a quickfire show of fresh comedy and fresh line-ups every week. Known as the home of comedy, and the only full time comedy bar in NZ, you’re in for a hilarious night at The Classic with plenty of laughs and a whole lot of fun to be had.

Dine in The Kimchi Project’s courtyard before experiencing the ballet with The Sleeping Beauty | December

The Sleeping Beauty is the quintessential classical ballet. The grandest of fairy tales, luxuriating in Tchaikovsky’s gorgeous orchestral score, it spills over with fairies, woodland sprites, handsome princes and, at its heart, an enchanting princess. This new Sleeping Beauty will unfurl like a fragrant summer rose, with all the radiance and joy that any ballet lover, young or old, could wish for. 

Pair your night of ballet with a bite from the Kimchi Project. Just minutes from Aotea Centre, The Kimchi Project is a great spot for pre-theatre dining. Take a seat in their gorgeous outdoor courtyard whole enjoying a meal of Korean fusion delights like kimchi fried rice, and delicious bao buns. 

For a night of rock, check out the Come Together concerts after dinner at PappaRich | October, November & January

Right in Aotea Square, the highly rated Malaysian restaurant PappaRich is a must try. Extremely popular in many countries across the globe, PappaRich is serving up authentic and mouthwatering Malaysian cuisine. Whether it be an order of mee goreng or curry laksa and roti canai, we know you’ll be leaving this restaurant fully satisfied.

After a great meal at PappaRich, join New Zealand’s greatest rock musicians as they unite for an extraordinary series of concerts, performing Neil Young’s Live Rust, Dire Straits’ Brothers in Arms and The Beatles’ Abbey Road albums live. 

Grab dinner at Trocadero before Le Basement XXXmas Cabaret | November and December 

In the heart of Auckland’s entertainment and theatre district you'll find Trocadero Restaurant and Bar, creating fresh, modern cuisine that lets the authentic flavours of New Zealand shine through. Enjoy their fresh and seasonal menu before crossing the road to catch Le Basement XXXmas Cabaret at the Basement Theatre. The show is centered around the idea of the once famous and thriving “Le Basement Cabaret Club” being in jeopardy, having fallen on hard times in 2020. The owners have booked a famous Kiwi musician to play a set that will hopefully save the club - bringing their audience and reputation back from the brink, and turning the fate of the club around. But! They’ve over promised what they can deliver for this mega superstar, and the club is literally falling down around them. If the show fails, the only thing they’re getting for Christmas is an eviction notice. Will they pull it off? Wait and see and enjoy the show!

Staying the night?

Why not grab a room for the night and take a mini break in the city centre? From brand new to long standing favourites and boutique hotels, there's plenty to choose from. Below, we've listed a few of our top picks for an easy one night getaway close to all the live show action. Or, check out our hotel edit of the best hotels in the city centre for every occasion for more inspiration.

Last updated: 06 November 2020