It seems tourists cannot get enough of New Zealand — and the Queen City in particular, says Nick Thompson, hotels and tourism director for Bayleys Real Estate.
Thompson says international visitor arrivals and spending are at all-time highs, with forecasts pointing to further strong growth out to 2024, particularly in Auckland.
A global reputation as a safe and scenic destination, coupled with more air capacity, has proved a winning combination, he says.
"Add to the mix a softer New Zealand dollar, which is down about 7 per cent against most major currencies over the past year, and things look even better."
Australian visitors are forecast to lead the way over the next seven years, says the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, and they tend to arrive in and depart from Auckland.
Thompson says a Travelodge hotel development in Auckland's Wynyard Quarter is part of a surge in large-scale hotel developments coming on-stream across the city in the lead-up to America's Cup 2021.
"This includes the Park Hyatt, nearing completion immediately across the road from the Halsey St Travelodge site.
"Just 200m from a hospitality and entertainment hub, the Halsey/Pakenham St apex is the perfect location for a hotel.
"The mixed-use Travelodge-hotel, retail, and car parking configuration will see a much more efficient usage of the land in the fastest growing city-fringe part of Auckland," says Thompson, who brokered the leasing contract for Infratil.
"The clever design of the Travelodge property has added a dual edge to the premises by delivering more than 300 new car parks to a surrounding precinct which has seen phenomenal commercial building growth over the past years but which has struggled to deliver sufficient car parking.
"With continued interest in the sector and an ongoing shortage of hotel inventory there is an extensive development pipeline emerging, with more hotel development recently announced for Auckland.
"However the sum of both the hotels now under construction, plus those soon-to-be-built still won't satisfy demand. So, with the Travelodge scheduled for completion in 2020, the venue will be in a good space to capitalise on that guest-night demand," Thompson says.
Bayleys Research has been published just as other accommodation sector sales have been announced.
The 4.5 star Waldorf Stadium Apartment Hotel, Auckland CBD, has been bought by Malaysian-owned Mulpha Group for a reported figure of about $55m.
The 178-unit hotel, was sold by private Australian investors. The leasehold land sustaining the 10-year-old Waldorf Stadium Apartment Hotel — with its stock of studio, one, two and three-bedroom self-contained units — is owned by Ngati Whatua Orakei.
The 32-room Parklane Motor Inn, Takapuna, recently sold for $10.6m plus GST. The 3096sq m site sustains 2160sq m of amenities.
In Palmerston North, the 72-room Hotel Coachman in Fitzherbert St was sold by owner/operators to the Distinction Hotels chain. (Distinction has 11 NZ hotels, with locations in Whangarei, Rotorua, Hamilton, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin, Fox Glacier and Wanaka). The Palmerston North property, which has 85 staff, was advertised for sale at $8.6m.