Americans living in Rotorua have described their shock, horror and excitement at news Donald Trump has been elected the new president of the United States.

Reports are coming in that Hillary Clinton has called Trump to concede.

Ginny Buchanan left her hometown of Atlanta, Georgia, in 2008 but returns at least once a year. She didn't vote in this year's election.

Before the election she told the Rotorua Daily Post she didn't approve of either candidate but would prefer Clinton to win.


Tonight, as Trump marched towards victory, an emotional Mrs Buchanan said she was horrified.

"I can't stop crying. It's an absolute shock. You would have thought America was so ahead of the times and they would've known better.

American expats living in Rotorua. Alyssia Abbott, left, and Ginny Buchanan are horrified at the election result.
American expats living in Rotorua. Alyssia Abbott, left, and Ginny Buchanan are horrified at the election result.

"I'm just really disappointed. I never would have thought that this would happen, I'm worried about my family and friends back home. I don't have any words for it.

"I thought Hillary had this in the bag. I'm stunned," she said.

Ma Higgins Cafe owner Charlie Windell was born in South Carolina and has always been a Republican.

A dual citizen who has lived in Rotorua since 2002, he chose not to vote.

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"If I were over there, I would've voted Republican because that's what I've done all my life. They are not always going to have a likeable candidate, as like today."

Mr Windell said he was surprised by the result because he thought it would have gone the other way.

"I'm sure there's going to be some negative response, but America voted and they have to work with it.

"Hopefully Trump can get some decent people around him and have some decent advisers," he said.

Mountain Bike Rotorua Adventure Hub tour guide Marcello Ojerio is an American Filipino who has been living in New Zealand for almost 10 years.

He is a dual citizen, but this year, he decided to abstain from voting to make a stand.

"I call New Zealand and Rotorua my home, but what happens in the United States seems to have a profound effect on us.

"I made a conscious choice to not vote. I don't feel comfortable with either candidate. Having a vote is important and in my mind it's just as important to feel good about using that vote."

He said he was a little surprised by the result.

"I do think that a lot of people that have been sitting on the fence who didn't want to tell people their views, they were afraid until getting into the booth."

He said he had no idea what would happen to America from here.

"I think that's exciting and scary. I'm excited because I don't know and I'm scared because I don't know.

"I feel very fortunate that I'm a New Zealand citizen."

Co-owner of Sabroso, American John Loeffler, told the Rotorua Daily Post before the votes were counted that in his view the election had been a big corporate show.

Marcello Ojerio says he is scared and excited by Trump's victory. PHOTO/BEN FRASER
Marcello Ojerio says he is scared and excited by Trump's victory. PHOTO/BEN FRASER

"It almost makes you cry when you think about how much money they spend campaigning. That money should be spent elsewhere," he said.

"I would have voted for Clinton if I was there. I don't like the idea of people being able to buy political office with wealth.

"This might be the beginning of a dictatorship if Trump gets in. Hitler, Mussolini and Putin all got elected at some time. I just hope this doesn't become a wrong turning point in history."

Rotorua couple Prue McGuire and Terry Robinson have been on holiday in the United States and are flying back to New Zealand today.

They spoke with the Rotorua Daily Post as the votes were being counted.

"We think it's a really good time to get out of this country," Ms McGuire said.

Ms McGuire, a local lawyer, said all shop assistants in Houston's airport were stuck to their phones.

"Texas support Trump and are firmly Republican. Lots of people have wanted to talk to us while we've been here about the election - everyone seems to have a strong view one way or the other. But most we have talked to in Chicago, Florida and New Orleans have been Hillary supporters."