$60 million hotel proposed for Queenstown

An artist's impression of a new Frankton Rd hotel. Image: Supplied
An artist's impression of a new Frankton Rd hotel. Image: Supplied
An Auckland-based developer is proposing a $60 million tourist hotel on the main road into Queenstown.

Shundi Customs Ltd has lodged a resource consent application for an upmarket, 68-room hotel on Frankton Rd, less than 1km from the CBD.

It has said there is a shortage of visitor accommodation in the resort, ''and even more so a severe lack of high-quality, five- to six-star accommodation''.

The hotel, on an empty section formerly occupied by a motel, would be two and a-half levels off Frankton Rd but five levels on its southern side, because the site slopes down towards the lake.

Shundi Customs Ltd, owned by Auckland and Chinese shareholders, last year bought the 4656sq m site, surrounded by hotels and motels, for more than $10.4million.

The company last year received resource consent for a 52-storey apartment tower in the Auckland CBD, at the time touted as New Zealand's highest residential tower.

The Queenstown hotel is designed by Dunedin-based Ashley Muir, whose firm, Wales & Mason Architects, produced two earlier plans for the site.

''The clients are experienced hotel operators and they are serious about putting a very good hotel into Queenstown,'' Mr Muir said.

''It's their opinion, and that of other people, that the best hotels there, with the possible exception of Eichardt's, aren't at that level.''

According to the resource consent application, the hotel comprises 65 ''generously-sized'' guest rooms, and three two-bedroom guest apartments.

There is a 350-capacity restaurant on the Frankton Rd ground floor, or third-floor level on the southern side.

There are meeting and conference rooms and a restaurant and lobby ''with [a] reflecting pond beneath''.

On the basement level are 51 car parks - above planning requirements - with valet parking. There are also two coach drop-off and pick-up parks, below the porte-cochere.

The hotel largely meets the ''restricted discretionary'' 15m height limit in the proposed district plan, compared to the current 8m limit.

The exception is a 0.6m protrusion ''along a sliver of the roof'''.

Kelly Bray, who operates the neighbouring Alexis Motel, commented that the hotel will ''fire quite a good shadow across to us''.

He said a layer of people living above Frankton Rd would lose their views if it went to 15m.

The hotel is the latest in a succession of plans for new hotels in Queenstown, including a 17-apartment complex at the base of the Skyline gondola; a $60million, 227-room hotel for the corner of Stanley, Sydney and Melbourne Sts; a 130-room complex at Remarkables Park.

An application for a consent for a 131-room, five-storey Ramada Hotel on Frankton Rd will go to a resource hearing next month, as will a consent application for a 260-room, four-star hotel at Kawarau Village, in Kelvin Heights.

A 69-suite five-star QT Queenstown on Brunswick St will open early next month and a 60-room Jucy Snooze backpackers hostel under construction on the corner of Camp and Memorial Sts, is expected to be completed in March.

Work is also well advanced on a 54-room boutique hotel in Henry St.

By Philip Chandler

Comments

This development illustrates the inadequacy of councils parking requirements. 68 rooms, a 350 seat restaurant but only 51 car parks. That 51 car parks is above councils requirements, but will need to cater for all staff, guests and restaurant users a kilometer from town and public car parks. Council parking policy failing Queenstowns needs.