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Having stayed in Christchurch a couple of days ago, I checked in at a hotel in the centre of town. Christchurch locals may realise the problem with this - because of the closed red zone, there are not many areas of interest, eating options, etc, in this area any more.

What areas would be a better place to stay if I'm looking for easy walking access to restaurants and nightlife?

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hostel or motel or hotel? This does make a difference as there are 'pocket areas' of motels, for instance. –  Mark Mayo Jun 23 '12 at 21:00
    
Honestly I'm not fussy - I view hotels and motels as interchangeable these days, and the same with private rooms at hostels. All assuming they meet a basic level of upkeep, but that would depend on specific establishments which is outside of what I was looking for with this question. :) –  dlanod Jun 23 '12 at 21:03

2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted

If you can stay in or near the new 'SoMo' area - south of Moorhouse Ave, it's the new vibrant post-quake rebuild area. My understanding is that the are some accommodation hostel / guest house spots open nearby.

If you're eyeing up motels, then Riccarton Road (Riccarton area) - there are lots in Papanui / Merivale as well but that area has been hit harder. There's a mall and lots of restaurants in the area.

Both 'SoMo' and Riccarton have become more focused 'nightlife' areas since the quakes. Riccarton will have more students, while SoMo is a slightly older demographic - late 20s/30s (although depending on events on that night this can easily change).

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I second the Riccarton Road recommendation. Although it's a bit pricey, I recommend the Parkview on Hagley. It will run 150-200 per night but it is well located by bars, restaurants, and shopping along Riccarton. Also, it is adjacent to Hagley park. Take a walk through the park, the botanical gardens, take in a rugby match. On the other side of the park, you are in the CBD and you can enjoy some disaster tourism and check out the Re:Start mall on Cashel street.

Plenty of other motels along Riccarton as well for a variety of budgets. I am not affiliated with the Parkview but stayed there frequently when I was in the process of moving to CHCH. Friendly staff, great amenities, brilliant location.

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