Search on for Auckland City hotel sites

5:00 AM Saturday March 25, 2017 Colin Taylor

An artist’s impression of a potential five-star hotel that could be built at One Market Place in Viaduct Harbour. Photo / Supplied

One Market Square, Auckland from Colliers International NZ on Vimeo.

International hotel investors are now looking to buy into the Auckland market, but there are not enough properties to satisfy demand, says Dean Humphries, international director of hotels for Colliers International.

“Auckland hasn’t been the focus in the past for top international hotel investors, but that’s changing rapidly with an influx of inquiries within the last 12 months,” Humphries says.

Auckland is underrepresented in major five-star brands, he says, pointing to the likes of Marriott, St Regis, Westin, Shangri-La, Fairmont, Mandarin Oriental, Radisson, Four Seasons, Peninsula or Rosewood, none of which have a presence in Auckland.

A range of five-star hotels are currently being built in all the major capital cities in Australia, and Humphries hopes Auckland can join that trend.

“Investors are recognising the huge economic benefits of the current tourism boom to this region and the future investment returns that can be anticipated from building quality hotels in strategic locations,” he says.

Increased overseas investor interest in Auckland hotels is evidenced by an announcement that a 21-level, 255-room Four Points By Sheraton hotel will open at 396 Queen St later this year along with a new Sebel Hotel planned for Manukau City.

Also, it was announced last week, that Colliers International has been appointed by Viaduct Harbour Holdings Limited (VHHL) to undertake a global search for a world class development partner to build a luxury hotel at One Market Square in Viaduct Harbour on a site occupied by a Simunovich Fisheries building.

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The proposed Auckland Viaduct Harbour site of a new luxury five-star hotel is identified by a red border. Photo / Supplied

“The City of Sails is fast becoming recognised as one of the world's leading gateway cities and tourism hotspots,” Humphries says.

“With New Zealand’s tourism boom continuing and Auckland hotels performing at record trading levels, many of the world's leading hotel investors are actively reviewing opportunities in Auckland.”

Humphries says top investors are typically looking for exceptionally well located, high quality hotels to add to their existing portfolios in other gateway cities such as Sydney, Singapore, London, Hong Kong, New York and Tokyo.

“The issue is we simply don't have any existing hotels for them to purchase and the solution is to find a strategic development opportunity that will met their strict criteria. In this regard the Viaduct site at One Market Square ticks all the boxes.”

A preliminary design by architectural firm Warren and Mahoney, a leading architectural firm envisages a 165-room hotel with floor area of 12,000sq m on a 1288sq m site.

Humphries says One Market Square provides the opportunity to bring some of the world's leading hotel operators to New Zealand.

“This is a chance for the right developer to bring a new global luxury brand to the city’s vibrant waterfront. One Market Square is without a doubt the best hotel development opportunity this city has seen in decades.”

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Dean Humphries, Colliers International