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A major Queenstown convention centre at Remarkables Park

A major Queenstown convention centre at Remarkables Park

Remarkables Park has announced details of its major multi-million-dollar Queenstown convention centre scheduled to open in the second half of 2016.

Plans for Stage One of the centre, which will be capable of providing for up to 900 conference delegates, were last week (June 12) reviewed by a joint Queenstown Lakes District Council and Remarkables Park Design Review Board (DRB).

Next Tuesday (June 24) after final recommendations are received from the DRB, a resource consent for the 2,700sqm centre will be lodged with the council.

“As this activity is zoned for within the Remarkables Park Zone, we’re anticipating that we should have consent by the end of July at which stage we’ll be able to work on detailed construction drawings in preparation for lodging a building consent,” said Remarkables Park Ltd CEO and director Alastair Porter.

“Its exciting news for Queenstown that we’re underway with this much sought-after facility and we’re really pleased to now be able to show people what we’ve been working on.

“We’ve got a striking building in a beautiful location looking out to The Remarkables mountain range, Coronet Peak and Ben Lomond. The emphasis has been on developing a functional design to provide a very flexible-use format following months of behind the scenes research, consultation and hard work.

“We were delighted to receive positive initial feedback and constructive ideas from the design review board which was made up of highly experienced Queenstown architects and landscape architects.

“This centre is in a warm and sunny location and is part of a major expansion of the Remarkables Park Town Centre. The immediate proximity of this town centre helps underpin the convention centre development.

“We’ve recently employed highly-experienced hospitality industry senior executive Alan Paris to facilitate taking this to market, talking to conference organisers and following up on positive leads. The Queenstown Council has also been kept updated with the Remarkables Park convention centre development.”

While Queenstown and in particular the CBD is a successful and vibrant tourist destination, a convention centre facility will further broaden the Queenstown tourist market.

“This is a key investment that will significantly contribute to the economic welfare of the whole district,” said Mr Porter. Building is expected to start in the autumn of 2015.

Mr Porter said the convention centre would provide for plenary, dining, exhibition, cocktail and breakout facilities for conferences as well as being capable of hosting a wide variety of events and community activities.

It has been designed by architects Mason & Wales to be constructed in two stages, after research trips to Australia last year and to Rotorua, Auckland and Hamilton earlier this year ‘fine-tuned’ what was needed. Input had also been sought from conference organisers and tourism consultants about what should be included in the centre.

“After our research trips to look at other facilities and the requirements of conference organisers, we’ve increased the space we’re planning to offer,” said Mr Porter.

“Stage One could, for example, provide for a conference for 900 people lecture-style, followed by 600 for dinner plus 50 to 60 full-size exhibition booths. For a dinner alone, it could cater for 900.

“Stage Two, which has been designed to cater for future growth and development, would increase that capacity by more than 50%.”

Stage One of the centre will have two adjoining conference spaces, breakout rooms, an exhibition and pre-function foyer. It will be a flat-floor facility to enable maximum flexibility, and the building will have an overall height of around 12m.

The convention centre will be a vibrant extension to the Remarkables Park Town Centre, including two new planned hotels, new retail stores, cafés and bars, all part of a new High Street to the north of the convention centre development.

While hotels at Remarkables Park will obviously be popular with conference centre delegates, there are a further 650 rooms within 5km, and CBD hotels are only 10 minutes away.

Mr. Porter confirmed that the centre was being developed by Remarkables Park Limited, a subsidiary of Porter Group Limited.


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