Albany is a northern suburb of Auckland, one of the several cities in northern New Zealand. It is located to the north of the Waitemata Harbour, 15 kilometres northwest of the Auckland city centre. The suburb is in the Albany ward, one of the thirteen administrative divisions of Auckland City. One of the city's newest suburbs, it was until relatively recently a town in its own right, and still has a feeling of not being truly a part of the city, which lies predominantly to the southeast of it. Much of the land to the north of Albany is still semi-rural. The Māori name for the area was Okahukura (literally, 'place of rainbows' or 'place of butterflies'). The town was originally known as Lucas Creek, but was renamed in 1890 after Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany, a son of Queen Victoria.
In 2005, there were plans to turn a major swath of Albany into a planned mini-urban centre, described as a "happy mix of businesses, hotels, shops, apartments, and entertainment (including) an environment of parks and lakes and of tree-lined streets, paths and cycleways linking to the new Albany park-and-ride bus station and the rapid-busway lanes along the Northern Motorway to downtown Auckland", according to a newspaper report. It would be home to 10,000 people. In most respects, development has proceeded accordingly.
The North Shore City council has expanded Albany's parkland; in 2007, it paid $3 million for new land totalling 7,000 square metres (75,347 sq ft). There is approximately 1,200 ha (2,965 acres) of parkland across the city. Kell Park reserve next to the new Albany Village Library was known for its free-range Bantam chicken population and pirate ship flying fox playground.