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Hotels See Strong Bookings Post World Cup

Media release

13 September 2011

For immediate release

Hotels See Strong Bookings Post World Cup

New Zealand hotels look set to enjoy periods of high demand during the RWC but are also looking beyond the tournament with some regions predicting strong conference and meetings business after the tournament.

Conference and meetings bookings are already strong for November and December in many areas.

New Zealand Hotel Council (NZHC) Executive Officer Rachael Shadbolt, said: “Strong convention and meetings business is already on the books in November and early December, particularly in Auckland and Wellington.

“The industry often talks about a period of business displacement during and after a major international event, and while some of the meetings in November may have been moved from September and October due to the RWC, it is still a great result that hotels have been able to secure some pretty significant business immediately after the Cup,” she said.

Many NZHC hotels throughout the country still have some availability during Rugby World Cup matches – although a number are full for key games - with good availability during the weeks between games.


Auckland hotels have reported strong conference and meetings bookings for November, with early December looking busy too. “The Pacific Forum the week prior to the RWC kick off was a great boost for Auckland hotels involved in that event and it no doubt would have pushed business out to other hotels also” says Jeffrey van Vorsselen, Managing Director Langham Hotel Auckland and NZHC Auckland Regional Chair.

“September and October are looking good around the major pool games, the semis and the finals but it has been a challenge to fill the mid week gaps. November is looking good for conventions and meetings with many hoteliers very positive about business leading into the summer high season,” he said.


Wellington has also reported strong conference bookings for October and November with very positive signs for the summer.

“The World of Wearable Art shows in August and September were a good lead in to the RWC” said Olivier Lacoua, General Manager, Quality and Comfort Hotels and NZHC Wellington Regional Chair.

“The American travel writers conference in November, which is expected to attract around 500 delegates, will also be a huge boost to the city.”


Dunedin hotels are close to being fully booked for the Elton John concert on November 25 at the new covered Forsyth Barr Stadium.

“The opening of the new stadium has been excellent for the Dunedin Hotels,” says Greg Hewland - General Manager, Scenic Hotel Dunedin City and NZHC Dunedin Regional Chair.

“We have been accommodating a large number of visitors for matches at Carisbrook Stadium for years, and now with the new function facilities at Forsyth Barr Stadium, it has meant that we are picking up more large conference accommodation bookings.

“The opening of the stadium couldn’t have come at a better time given that the Town Hall is currently closed for renovations. This means Dunedin can still comfortably cater to the conference and meetings market.”

There is still plenty of hotel room availability for the England vs Georgia Rugby World Cup match on 18h September, and also for the England vs Romania match on the 24th September. There is also availability in all mid-week periods in September and October.

Central Park, Nelson/Marlborough, Canterbury

Rotorua has strong conference bookings for October with 300 delegates expected to attend the Australian travel writers’ conference and Nelson is also looking forward to a busy October with Tasman hosting the South Masters Game for the first time from October 15-23. 3,000 participants will be taking part in the event in Nelson and there is expected to be a flow-on effect throughout the region.

Christchurch hotels that are open have been trading well, although weekends are proving quieter, due to many corporate EQC workers heading home for the weekends and limited leisure visitors currently staying in Christchurch.

August Results

NZHC hotels also enjoyed a strong August in most areas, with Auckland hotels in particular enjoying a 12.5% growth in RevPar.

Wellington, Rotorua, Dunedin and Marlborough also enjoyed a good August including three large conferences at the Marlborough Convention Centre averaging 350 delegates at each.

NZHC Board Update

The NZHC’s board for 2011-12 was elected at the recent AGM. They are: Independent Chair Jennie Langley
Paul Richardson, Accor Hospitality VP for New Zealand and Fiji;
John McIlwain, Rydges Area General Manager New Zealand;
Brendan Taylor, Managing Director, Scenic Hotel Group
Jeff Shearer, Chief Operating Officer, Heritage Hotels Management.

Regional Chairs include:

Christchurch -Bruce Garrett, General Manager – The George
Auckland - Jeffrey van Vorsselen, Managing Director – Langham Hotel Auckland
Rotorua - Fraser McKenzie, General Manager – Novotel Lakeside and Ibis Rotorua
Wellington - Olivier Lacoua, General Manager – Quality and Comfort Hotel
Queenstown - Penny Clark, General Manager, Goldridge Resort
Central Park - Kathy Guy, General Manager, Bayview Wairakei Resort/Chateau Tongariro
Dunedin – Greg Hewland, General Manager, Scenic Hotel Dunedin City
Nelson/Marlborough – Brett Inkster, Heartland Hotel Marlborough


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