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Boutique arts hotel to open at Arts Centre of Christchurch


An experienced, family-owned, Kiwi company is set to manage a boutique arts hotel and events centre at the Arts Centre of Christchurch te Matatiki Toi Ora.

Sarin Investments will manage the 33-room hotel in the former Physics and Biology buildings and the ground floor of the adjacent Observatory Tower building. The company will also operate an adjacent events space.

Arts Centre chief executive Philip Aldridge says the hotel will bring another dynamic aspect to the centre.

“Our vision is to create a centre of the arts and hub for creativity that has many layers and experiences; for example, visitors could come to the Arts Centre for a retreat, attend a performance, be part of a workshop, go to a movie, dine, and stay the night,” he says.

“Combined with the neighbouring University of Canterbury Music and Classics departments, plus the boutique cinema and arts residencies just across the South Quad, the hotel will really reinvigorate the centre.”

Philip says the Arts Centre’s primary goal is to foster arts, culture, education and the creative industries, and to achieve that, the centre must generate reliable income through businesses, such as the hotel.

Sarin Hotels chief executive officer Udai Sarin says his family is excited about the opportunity to create “a truly special” hotel in what they believe is one of the best locations in Christchurch.

“We are looking forward to celebrating the unique architectural heritage elements and carefully including modern services and technology so that the hotel stands out from the crowd,” he says.

“Our goal is for the Arts Centre hotel to be Christchurch’s foremost luxury hotel.”

Christchurch’s Jessica Close has been appointed to complete the hotel’s interior design. Well known for her distinctive use of colour, pattern and classical detail, each room will showcase local talent and reflect the arts and cultural nature of the centre through bold contemporary art, fabric and furniture.

The hotel is expected to open in early 2022.

After fundraising is complete, the historic Observatory Tower, including the Townsend Teece Telescope and new education rooms, will be fully functional, open to the public and operated separately to the hotel.

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