Late last week the company lodged a resource consent application with the Queenstown Lakes District Council for a three-storey building on the corner of Marine Parade and Church Street beside Eichardt’s Private Hotel.
The $6m Michael Wyatt-designed building is designed to house a cluster of premium retail, office space and accommodation.
The overall architectural design approach for the new building on the781m2 site, which Skyline Enterprises has owned for approximately 10 years, is to deliver a building of high architectural quality that while modern in design, is sympathetic and responsive to its historic neighbour Eichardt’s.
First floor frontages to Marine Parade will be clad primarily in Oamaru stone, while further along Church Street it will feature weathered and exposed steel.
The building design includes decks and terraces at the upper levels, with a deck at the upper floor level enabling that part of the building to be set back from Marine Parade so it does not dominate the street.
The ground floor retail space of approximately 700sqm has been set aside for a cluster of high-end retail stores, the first floor for either premium office space, more retail or visitor accommodation, and a luxury two-bedroom apartment with extensive balconies is planned for the top floor.
Skyline Enterprises CEO Jeff Staniland said the company had already worked alongside the QLDC Urban Design Panel to ensure the concept was in line with council’s guidelines and vision for the CBD.
He said the “time was right” to proceed with the building.
“All business indicators are that this is a very positive time for investment in a development such as this, on the most high-profile piece of undeveloped land in the CBD,” he said.
“Skyline Enterprises already has over 70 tenants in the CBD and there is currently strong demand as there hasn’t been any new supply come to the market in recent times, making that balance very favourable.
“Our recovering economy, aligned with current and predicted growth in the Asian markets and coupled with trends in luxury shopping habits is giving us further confidence in the market.”
Mr Staniland said it was too soon to confirm when the building might get underway as that was subject to the resource consent process, but hoped it could be completed in 2015
News of the development has been welcomed by business and tourism leaders in the resort town.
Destination Queenstown Chief Executive Graham Budd said he welcomed the development of the last piece of prime downtown waterfront land.
“This supports our DQ strategy of attracting more high-value visitors who stay longer and spend more,” he said.
“Shopping is a very important part of holiday travel and there is growing demand for more premium retail choices in Queenstown.”
Queenstown Chamber of Commerce CEO Ann Lockhart said the Chamber would be delighted to welcome the new development as a “strategic asset” to the downtown area.
“The Chamber is currently spearheading a project around revitalisation of the CBD in conjunction with the Queenstown Lakes District Council and this is very much in keeping with our plans,” she said.
“This will be a premier building in one of Queenstown’s most high-profile areas. Queenstown sits in the most magical setting for a resort town, and the CBD is the jewel in that crown. The Chamber’s aim is to continue to grow and re-energise the CBD in a sustainable manner and to a standard and quality you would expect from an international resort.”
Architect Michael Wyatt said the site was unique in its location and the history of Queenstown.
“It has never housed a significant permanent structure since the stables for the early Eichardts Hotel were removed in the mid-nineteenth century. The construction of a building fit for the site, its immediate built environment and the Queenstown CBD is long overdue.”
Skyline Enterprises is a diversified company operating predominantly in the leisure and entertainment fields both in New Zealand and overseas with businesses including Skyline Queenstown, Skyline Rotorua, The Helicopter Line, Mitre Peak Cruises, Christchurch Casino and Skyline Luge Sentosa. For more details go to www.skyline.co.nz/newzealand/