Development welcomed and not

In Dunedin: Hotel project terminated.

Plans for a $100 million waterfront hotel in Dunedin have been scrapped and the developers’ partnership with the Dunedin City Council has descended into acrimony.

Hotel developer Jing Song yesterday confirmed she had torn up a memorandum of understanding with the council, signed just last month, which had aimed to find ways to progress the project. . . .

In Auckland: New luxury hotel to boost Auckland economy:

A new five-star hotel development on Auckland’s waterfront will strengthen the region’s visitor economy says Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED).

Waterfront Auckland and Beijing based developer Fu Wah International Group have formed a partnership to build a 200 room hotel on the western edge of the Viaduct Harbour by 2017.

ATEED Chief Executive Brett O’Riley says the new hotel will be excellent for Auckland and help contribute to growing the visitor economy, in line with the targets in the Auckland Visitor Plan.
“The hotel – in its amazing location on the water’s edge in the heart of Auckland’s innovation precinct – will enhance our premium accommodation offering. As part of our strategy to attract more high-net wealth individuals to holiday and do business here, we’ve been working with the Fu Wah Group to help them identify the advantages of doing business in Auckland,” he says.
“We are focussed on positioning Auckland as a premium destination and having a globally recognised luxury hotel will add to the tourism offering.” . . .

This looks like two cities with two difference approaches to development.

One welcomes it the other does not.

Whether or not that is fair, is moot, but that’s the perception and anyone contemplating investment will be aware of it.

2 Responses to Development welcomed and not

  1. Dave Kennedy says:

    From what i know about the Dunedin hotel, it wasn’t in keeping with the general image of the city. It seems that Dunedin’s lack of of a long term strategy was the issue and they shouldn’t have allowed the developer to think such a project was possible in the first pace.

    Once a city has a strong plan and vision then it is much easier to attract investment. Investors want to have security in knowing that ongoing development and future investment will support and enhance their own.

    Invercargill is attempting to revitalize the inner city and I have been involved in shifting our Farmers Market into the centre. So far it has been a huge success. The market has seen increased numbers and it has made the inner city a more active and vibrant place. All the surrounding retailers will benefit from having more activity in the centre. The mistake our city made was to establish our largest hotel on the outskirts of the city because visitors are less likely to spend as much time in our retail centre. I can see that a large hotel development in our inner city would be useful.

    Wellington has done a brilliant job of making their waterfront an feature and the development of the city appears to celebrate its best features. For Dunedin to approve a high rise hotel close to an underdeveloped waterfront seemed to be a little odd. I didn’t get the vision and they probably need to go back to the drawing board and have a clearer idea of how they want the city to develop. It was probably the right thing to do to pull back on the hotel idea, but not a good idea to muck around a useful investor.


  2. TraceyS says:

    There’s a really interesting article in this month’s Time Magazine about appliance maker Haier ( Haier was recently in the Dunedin news for its plans here (

    As with the Hotel project, many of the comments are not exactly warm towards the world’s largest appliance manufacturer. Although the Council seems to be positive ( Why are we not even more excited?

    The Time Magazine article emphasizes Haier’s goal to reform itself to become “synonymous with quality, rather than a low price”.

    This could be great for Dunedin going forward. Let’s hope they don’t need any future consents though. No matter how positive the Council may be, the RMA process is still open to being thwarted for all the wrong reasons.


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