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Award-winning design for Queenstown hotel

Media release from Novotel Queenstown Lakeside
24 November 2008

Award-winning design for Queenstown hotel

The new look Novotel Queenstown Lakeside has continued its winning form with a commercial architecture award for its stylish, contemporary design.

Designed by Dalman Architecture, the project has been awarded a New Zealand Institute of Architectures (NZIA) Southern Architecture Awards in the Commercial category.

The award for the Novotel Queenstown Lakeside project was presented on 21 November at an awards ceremony held in the Dunedin Museum. The southern-based architecture company’s project may now be considered for a New Zealand Architecture Awsard in 2009.

Queenstown’s Rilean Construction has already been recognised within the building industry for its work on the $13million, 16-month refurbishment of the Novotel, having won the Southern Tourism and Leisure Project Gold Award and Regional Supreme Commercial Award in June. Rilean is now a finalist in the National Registered Master Builders House of the Year and Commercial Project Awards which will be announced on 28 November at a gala function at the SkyCity Convention Centre in Auckland.

Novotel Queenstown Lakeside General Manager Jim Moore is delighted for Dalman Architecture, saying the win is well deserved.

“We’ve had lots of great feedback about the hotel design so I’m delighted that both Dalman Architecture and Rilean Construction have been recognised by their peers for the skill and effort that went into the project.”

Dalman Architecture project architect Jim McKie says they are thrilled with the award win.

“It’s an honour to have our work rewarded by the industry, especially locally, and to be a possible finalist for the New Zealand Architecture Awards. The project was complex and challenging but we have a great team at Dalman Architecture and together we developed a holistic solution which works well. In particular, Shona Henderson and Karl Day did a remarkable job documenting the project. Coffey Projects and the other project consultants deserve recognition for their role inn the success of the project as well.

“The Novotel staff were great to work with, and the general manager at the time, Carl Braddock, worked hard to keep the hotel running smoothly during the whole building project. Rilean also did an amazing job within a tight timeframe and worked effectively to mitigate issues like the project staging, and limited site access.”

Dalman Architecture’s brief was to turn the hotel, with its unique post-modern façade featuring distinctive curved parapets and trellis work, into a contemporary, stylish resort.

Initially they were only to undertake a feasibility study for adding a new floor of rooms, but the brief grew to encompass architectural design for the new floor, lifts and stairs, and interior design for the reception area, foyer, bar and restaurant.

As an older building built to older building codes, Dalman Architecture was required to design the new floor of rooms in timber, presenting a challenge to keep the building watertight during construction and making acoustic design between floors a major design issue.

Stone columns were added to clearly define the base, middle and top of the façade, and the new addition to the top of the hotel was made visually lighter with sunshades and a glass balustrade. These both work functionally but also add interesting texture, variety and interest from street level.

The main entrance now stands out more with three lift lanterns to soften the height of the lifts and provide markers at night for visitors. Being visible from all around Queenstown, the original triangular turrets enabled people to orientate themselves in the town. The lanterns do the same thing but in a far more contemporary way.

The restaurant upgrade was to provide seating for 66 more patrons in the restaurant and link the restaurant dining experience to the public, achieved by pushing the extension towards the street.

The slatted timber in the new mezzanine area provides warmth to the space and acoustic control. The colours generally are light and fresh, but rendered in a classic style.

The new bar is a slick atrium gallery bar experience opening out into Novotel's award-winning garden courtyard.

Rilean Construction General Manager Steve McLean added his congratulations.

“I’m really pleased for Jim and the team – they were a pleasure to work with and we hope to continue working with them on many more projects in the future.”

Dalman Architecture continues to build a reputation as an expert in designing challenging and high profile commercial projects in the southern region. Current projects in Queenstown include five new high end apartments on Queenstown Hill.


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