Developers of Auckland's new $300 million Park Hyatt say it will open a few weeks after the middle of this year after an American man complained that he could not book a room in December.
A spokesman for Fu Wah which is building the hotel said today: "There will be a grand opening and the Park Hyatt sign is now on the building. There was never any formal opening set for June. It will be opening a few weeks later."
But the American who wants to stay there said he tried to book for December but was refused.
"I have contacted Hyatt hotels to book a room at the Park Hyatt Auckland which was slated to open in June 2019. They inform me there is no release date at present. I hope to stay at the hotel in December of this year," the man said.
Richard Aitken, Fu Wah South Pacific region area general manager said today: "The booking systems are not open yet. The opening process will run through a number of stages over a number of weeks."
No precise date has ever been given for the opening but the Herald reported last September how the developers indicated then that the hotel could open around mid-2019.
Aitken said today: "We are largely on programme for our opening sequence."
One of China's wealthiest women is behind the 195-room hotel, nearing completion on the Wynyard Quarter's Halsey St opposite ASB North Wharf.
The project is being built by Hawkins and China State Construction.
Fu Wah International, said to be one of Beijing's largest commercial property developers, was founded and is chaired by Madam Chan Laiwa, China's richest women, estimated by Forbes to have US$4 billion ($5.8b).
Fu Wah International lists her profile as chairwoman of the Beijing Overseas Chinese Chamber of Commerce, executive vice chairwoman of the China Overseas Chinese Entrepreneurs Association, deputy director of the subcommittee for Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Compatriots and curator of the China Red Sandalwood Museum in Beijing.
She is said to have been was born in 1941 in Beijing's Summer Palace and is a descendant of a noble Manchu family of the Qing dynasty.
Another person questioned whether the hotel had cost $300m to build but said it was closer to $400m.
But the Fu Wah spokesman said there was no question about the branding and the Park Hyatt sign was up on the Viaduct Event Centre side of the building facing Karanga Plaza.
Because Fu Wah was a private business, it was not obliged to release financial information, he said.
John Key was Prime Minister in 2016 and attended the ground breaking ceremony for the hotel then, holding Chen's hand as they entered the site of the former Team New Zealand base for the America's Cup.