Two major developments and a piece of prime real estate are exceptional new additions Aotearoa’s accom scene.
A site on Rotorua’s waterfront has come on the market following the announcement last week of a 55 million revamp of the town’s lakefront and Whakarewarewa Forest.
The vacant land, on the corner of Lake Rd and Rangiuru St, is being marketed as a development opportunity for a new hotel or apartment complex.
It encompasses more than 2000 sqm of freehold land on the high-profile corner opposite the Soundshell on one side and the village green on the other.
Odessa Properties bought the site when it built the adjoining Novotel and Ibis hotels as a way to protect its investment, but the land is now considered surplus to requirements.
Some 240km north in the nation’s capital, the former Qantas headquarters at Auckland International Airport will be converted into a 144-room hotel to complement the nearby Ibis and Novotel properties
While no management agreement has yet been announced, an upscale brand is expected to be chosen as tenant in the next few months, with construction slated to begin later this year.
The attraction for developers is obvious – in the year to June 30, the number of passengers using Auckland Airport increased 5.7 percent to 20.5 million, with international passengers reaching 11.2 million and domestic passengers growing to 9.3 million.
SO/ Auckland, due to open next month in the former Britomart-based Reserve Bank building, is another luxury development for the city.
Each international SO/ hotel is described as “an artistic vision brought to life by celebrated names from the world of fashion and design”. In Aotearoa, the WORLD fashion brand has spent the last three years collaborating on the development.
“We needed a designer with an approach as bold and enterprising as the SO/ brand; energetic, social, bursting with individual character but also inherently a reflection of Auckland,” said the hotel’s general manager, Stephen Gould.
“WORLD is a playful mix of sophistication and dynamic style and therefore was an obvious choice. SO/ Auckland is an avant-garde masterpiece imaginatively inspired by WORLD.”
The 130-room Accor-owned hotel will feature a café, lounge, spa, fitness centre and indoor heated pool and a restaurant led by chef Marc de Passorio, former owner of the Michelin-starred L’Esprit de la Violette in Aix-en-Provence, France.