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The Observatory Buffet Restaurant, SKYCITY – CLOSED

4 star rating
15 reviews

Cuisine: New Zealand, Pacific, Seafood, Buffet

Cnr Victoria & Federal Sts
(Sky Tower, SKYCITY Auckland)
Auckland Central
Auckland City
09-363 6000
The Observatory is now CLOSED

Due to the exciting development of a new signature restaurant at SKYCITY Auckland over the coming months The Observatory Buffet Restaurant is now closed. We apologise for any inconvenience.

Announced 1 year ago


  • Facilities/Features:
    • Business Dining
    • Scenic View
    • Private Dining Room
    • Private Functions
    • Wedding Functions
  • Payment Types: EFTPOS, Visa, MasterCard, AMEX, Diners
  • Price Range: Splurge, Above $35
  • Dress Code: Smart casual
  • Alcohol: Beer, Wine, Spirits, Cocktails
  • Seating for: 150 per sitting
  • BYO/Corkage: No BYO
  • Parking: Pay
  • Good For Groups: Yes
  • Good For Children: Yes
  • Takeaways: No
  • Takes Reservations: Yes
  • Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
  • Outdoor Seating: No
  • Meals: Lunch, Dinner

The Observatory Buffet Restaurant is now CLOSED. We apologise for any inconvenience.

For a dining experience with magnificent views of Auckland, take a ride up the Sky Tower to The Observatory Restaurant.

With stunning seafood and succulent specials the buffet style restaurant provides a unique dining experience. The restaurant is also open for breakfast and lunch.

Please check the SKYCITY website for up-to-date menus.
Admission to the Sky Tower Main Observation Level and Champagne Mumm at Sky Lounge is complimentary for The Observatory guests 45 minutes prior to, and post dining. The Sky Tower Observation Levels close at 10.30pm Sunday to Thursday and 11.30pm Friday and Saturday.

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15 Reviews for The Observatory Buffet Restaurant, SKYCITY – CLOSED

2nd March 2013
5 star rating
My partner and I came for the Buffet Lunch. I have been to several buffet meals but this was one of the best. A huge selection of seafood and carvery. The desert selection was delicious, everything was bit sized so you could taste each item. Service was great and the view was one of a kind, there were skywalkers straight outside our window as well. Would definitely go again.

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16th February 2013
4 star rating
We came here for a birthday a while ago and were very impressed, mostly with the incredible views but the food is excellent considering it’s a buffet restaurant. Everything is a level above your usual family dining, I remember mostly eating salad because they were so interesting and diverse! Most of the options are seafood though there was a decent roast selection which our meat-loving friend not so keen on the kaimoana found very satisfying. The dessert selection was full of cute tarts and pastries as well as a variety of great ice cream. I’m sure the view during the day is great but the night view was really something. Unfortunately we didn’t have a table by the window but you get to have a look when you line up for your food anyway and diners get a free pass to the Observation Deck.

One small gripe that we had which was no fault of the restaurant’s was that a few of the guests were dressed a bit too casually considering a high standard of dress is requested, which is mentioned on their website and which I was reminded of on the phone when confirming our booking. Most diners were dressed formally to semi-formally but at one particular table I saw jandals (in mid-winter), trackpants, old t-shirts and the like.. it came across as disrespectful when most guests and the staff put in an effort to present themselves well. It did unfortunately confuse and ruin the ambience slightly and I noticed these guests were getting looks from other tables so I believe my group weren’t alone in feeling that way. I don’t mean to come across as a snob in any way but it should be obvious from the prices and the setting that this isn’t just your local Valentine’s down the road.

This place is more special occasion than weekly dining but it is a great place to celebrate and take out-of-town guests. Will be returning!

Visited June 2012

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8th February 2013
5 star rating
Always have a great experience when dining at the observatory, love the food, its always lovely, just on the pricey side though,don’t think they should be charging that much. they are quite strict with seating times. the scallop mornay is always so delicious, but always miss out on the crayfish.

Visited March 2012

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Jo A.


9th September 2012
2 star rating
Last dined here 6 years ago – raved about it ever since but dined here again last Friday night for a special occasion and we were all very underwhelmed. Only come here if you are a seafood lover – as previous diners have commented, the only red meat was just ham for the carvery and then lamb ribs on the buffet which were both dry. No beef as stated on the menu online. A carvery at lesser places always has 2 selections. A real lacking in red meat and hot food in general which at the price charged is poor value for money. Won’t be returning.

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30th August 2012
5 star rating
Staff always friendly and attentive. Food great for the most part, but the occasional dish not so good so its nice to know that they intend changing the menu regularly which gives one something new to look forward to trying next time.
However the best thing for me here is the feeling of being in a very special place. It is great in daylight hours but simply awesome in the evening. The best time to book is early evening, when you can get the benefit of both. You really do feel like you are in your own little world, not being aware of most of the other diners around you as you enjoy the varied dishes while looking out over Auckland. If you havent been before, make sure you allow yourself time either before or after your meal to enjoy the views from the observation deck. Stunning and a must if you have visitors from o/seas. Such an easy way to show them Auckland and much more pleasant than standing out on a hill in the cold :)
It may not be somewhere you can afford to go regularly, but for those special occasions it is a must. Thank you again.

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24th July 2012
2 star rating
We went to Observatory for our Wedding Anniversary on Sunday night
Terrible mistake
We booked for the second session for 7:45. Arrived at 7pm and was told at the base of the tower, the table would not be ready before 7:45. We arrived at the Restaurant at 7:35 to find only 2 other tables occupied.
This was a Sunday night. The Hot food was only luke warm at best, and had clearly been sitting there for many hours.
The only Roast was Ham, which had been sliced into tiny pieces, and kept under a heat lamp, which was now dry and shrivelled, but nearly cold. When I asked for Hot food, they heated a few slices in the microwave.
The vegetables were Broccoli and potato which were bot cold. There was battered fish and chips, again cold, and they had added spicy salt all over the chips rendering them way too salty and edible.
The lamb Ribs were mainly fat , and only tepid, the only hot food that twas OK was the BroadBill in Sauce. Even the smoked fish was very dry, and had been sitting out for ages.
The salads and cold seafood was OK, but was not fresh due to the time sitting out.
Desserts were nice, but the cream in a bowl had been over beaten and left sitting out to get warm.
In summary, the food was very disappointing, and choice on hot dishes was very poor.
The wait staff were overattentive, and must have been bored. They kept trying to clear plates while we were still eating from them.
I would not ever return.

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4th May 2012
5 star rating
Perfect dining xperience.Good prompt service – great people – good food, expecially the fish section. The desserts were good too. The table was a bit small but things were cleared as we finished. Does get quite busy but will definitley will go back here.Gotta try the scallops – very different !!!

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1st July 2011
3 star rating
Great location with best view.
But a bit disappointed by the food variety consider the price they charge. Food itself is OK

Maybe if it’s a bit cheaper than i won’t mind the limited food choices they have

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28th June 2011
5 star rating
One of my favorite restaurants! Food taste great and a large selection. Service is fantastic as soon as you go up for seconds you old plate is off the table before you return with you new plate. Love the romantic vibe great for those special occasions. I have gone multiple times and even at the price of $62 per head it is a great dining experience

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12th April 2011
5 star rating
The staff were very helpful & friendly, the food was delicious & very well presented. Pretty good for how much you pay & you get to have a look around when youve finished your meal. Will definitely return :D

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10th April 2011
1 star rating
Not a place I would go back to. We went out as a group for a birthday dinner, only to find at the end of the night that we couldn’t each pay our part of the bill. How many people can afford to pay for an 8 person group meals and drinks. Other restaurants of higher and lower standing will allow each person to pay their part. You can even do that in a supermarket, pay some cash some eftpos and even credit card all in one transaction. I guess they really only want cuples to dine. I know 8 people that will never be going back to Sky City.

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John R.


12th March 2011
4 star rating
I do like this restaurant. However the night we dined for my partners birthday. It was extremely busy and the buffet was not replenished fast enough so you stood around waiting for food. The selection is always impressive and tasty. The petite desserts are dreamy, I always have two plates of the tiny morsels.If you get there early you can have access to the observation deck to take in the stunning views of Auckland City and its surrounds. To make this a standout restaurant would be to make this also a revolving restaurant. Good work guys.

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16th June 2010
5 star rating
Super excellent! Definitely worth the cost – Best buffet restaurant I have come by. So much variety in food (must love seafood though as it does have a heavy seafood theme), heaps of deserts, YUM YUM YUM!

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27th April 2010
4 star rating
We’re invited by a friend of us for dinner a few months ago. We were very surprised by the variety, the freshness, the quality of the buffet. And …. the dessert.. !!! SUPER !!!!
And of course the view !!! Fantastic !!!

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9th October 2009
5 star rating
We visited this restaurant for the first time last night for my fiance’s birthday. It was the best dining experience we have ever had. The service and the food deserved greater than a 5 star rating. The freshest seafood, the most succulent NZ Lamb and wonderful mouthwatering desserts all beautifully presented. We were given a delicious complimentary entree, warm fresh rolls brought to the table with a selection of butters and dips and coffee served to the table after the meal. The staff were attentive without being intrusive and friendly. There is no faulting this restaurant, I can’t recommend it highly enough.

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