Submissions close 10 May : Proposed 17-storey, est. 62.5 metres-high Moray Place hotel/apartment building

Where to access more information about the application:

Dunedin City Council website:

█ Current notified resource consent applications

Applicant: NZ Horizon Hospitality Group Limited
[ ]
Subject site: 143-193 Moray Place
Status: Non-complying activity
Submissions close: Wednesday, 10 May 2017 at 5:00 p.m.

█ Application information + submission information/online form at:
143-193 Moray Place – Non-complying activity – LUC-2017-48 and SUB-2017-26

A P P L I C A T I O N ● D E S C R I P T I O N

Land use consent is sought to construct and operate a commercial residential development involving 210 visitor accommodation rooms (hotel rooms), 64 self-contained apartments, four self-contained penthouse suites, together with licensed premises, retail, conference, meeting facilities and on-site amenities, parking, and servicing. The development proposes a new building with 17 storeys (including the lift core on the top of the building, and three levels of the building extending below ground). The overall height of the proposed building varies in relation to the existing ground level, but will be approximately 62.5m at the highest point above the existing ground level (including the lift core). The proposed building is assessed as a non-complying activity under the operative Dunedin City District Plan. The application includes an assessment of effects.

Land use consent is also sought for earthworks because the site development will involve an estimated 8,914m3 of earthworks and a maximum cut depth of 7.35 metres from existing ground level.

Subdivision consent is sought for a unit title subdivision in relation to the proposed building. The application includes plans of the proposed subdivision.
The subject site is located in the Central Activity Zone in the operative Dunedin City District Plan and is located within the north Princes Street/Moray Place/Exchange townscape precinct TH03.

The proposed building is a non-complying activity under the operative Dunedin City District Plan (due to non-compliance with Rule 9.5.2(i) no front or side yards, Rule 9.5.2(iii) veranda requirements along Filleul Street frontage of the site, and signage under Rule 9.5.2(vi)). The building also exceeds the maximum 11 metre height limit under Rule 9.5.2(ii) which requires consent as a restricted discretionary activity under Rule 9.5.3(i). The proposal is also a controlled activity under Townscape Rule 13.7.2(i).  

The proposed earthworks are a restricted discretionary activity under Rule 17.7.3 of the operative Dunedin City District Plan.

The unit title subdivision is a non-complying activity under Rule 18.5.2. Rule 18.5.3 requires that every allotment in a subdivision must have both legal access and vehicle access to a formed road. The rules for subdivision do not expressly provide for unit title divisions where the allotments created may comprise multiple units within a building.

The subject site is zoned Central Business District in the proposed Second Generation Plan and a secondary pedestrian frontage applies.

The proposed 2GP was notified on 26 September 2015. The relevant objectives and policies of the 2GP must be considered. Rules in the 2GP can be deemed as operative if no submissions have been made in opposition. The application says that some 2GP rules may be deemed operative. If the decision maker determines that 2GP rules are deemed operative these rules will apply instead of the corresponding Dunedin City District Plan rule. {bolding by whatifdunedin}

SUB-2017-26 & LUC-2017-48 – Public Notice (PDF, 31.4 KB)

Please read the accompanying documents and reports that apply to this application, as listed here.

M A K I N G ● A ● S U B M I S S I O N

Online submission form

SUB-2016-26 & LUC-2017-48 – Submission Form (Form 13) (PDF, 38.9 KB)

IMPORTANT: If you wish to make a submission on this application you may do so by sending a written submission to the consent authority, Dunedin City Council at PO Box 5045, Moray Place, Dunedin, 9058 Attn: City Planning, no later than 5:00 pm on the closing date shown.

The submission must be dated, signed by you, and include the following information:

• Your name and postal address and phone number/fax number;
• Details of the application in respect of which you are making the submission including location;
• Whether you support, oppose, or are neutral towards the application;
• Your submission, with reasons;
• The decision you wish the consent authority to make;
• Whether you wish to be heard in support of your submission.

Please note: If you make your submission by electronic means, a signature is not required.

An acknowledgment of your submission will be sent by post when the submission is accepted as complete. The application may be viewed at the City Planning Enquiries Desk, Customer Service Centre on the Ground Floor, Civic Centre, 50 The Octagon.

You must serve a copy of your submission on NZ Horizon Hospitality Group Limited, the applicant, whose address for service is Anderson & Co Resource Management, PO Box 5933, Dunedin 9058, as soon as reasonably practicable after serving your submission on the Dunedin City Council.

Alternatively, you can Email copy of your submission to NZ Horizon Hospitality Group Limited via Anderson & Co Resource Management (Dunedin) –
Attention: Conrad Anderson

V I E W S ● A N D ● L A N D S C A P E ● C O N T E X T

7. Architectural Drawings, including Arch Statement and earthworks (PDF)
8. Subdivision plans (PDF)
13a. Photomontage notes (PDF)
13b. Photomontage (PDF)
13c. Anticipated Views Assessment Notes – supplementary (PDF)
20. Urban Design (PDF)
21. Memo – Re: Glass (PDF)

NB. Note a number of the angled street views provided in the application are partial only – the full extent of the proposed building (in order to help assess accompanying effects) is not given except in wider landscape perspectives such as when seen from across the harbour or along street vistas. Most close-up perspective views of the proposed building, such as when seen from the Octagon, may appear to be ‘diminished’ or foreshortened in height – scale accuracy is difficult to determine in the presentation renders without technical knowledge of how the views were generated. It is somewhat likely that independent peer review(s) of the (landscape and townscape) presentation renders provided by the applicant and their consultants will be sought by submitters, if not the processing authority.

█ Spokesman for the (unnamed) developer is Anthony Tosswill of Tekapo, NZ.
Mr Tosswill has noted in comments to What if? Dunedin that he speaks for the developer. Mr Tosswill is not the developer, as may have been construed from news items published by the Otago Daily Times previously.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

Selected renders from application documents : Thom Craig Architects and Paterson Pitts Group

*Poor quality of images as received via DCC webpages.


Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, DCC, Democracy, Design, District Plan, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Geography, Heritage, Hotel, Infrastructure, Name, New Zealand, OAG, Ombudsman, People, Pet projects, Politics, Project management, Property, Proposed 2GP, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Structural engineering, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, Urban design, What stadium

70 responses to “Submissions close 10 May : Proposed 17-storey, est. 62.5 metres-high Moray Place hotel/apartment building

  1. Elizabeth

    The following comments were received for publication by What if? Dunedin in late April. Links to the threads where they are now published are provided here:

    2017/04/24 at 9:37 pm
    Anthony Tosswill
    In reply to Elizabeth.
    why do you wish to destroy employment in Dunedin, why do you want to prevent creating Jobs and more revenues for the Community and supporting Tourism and local Business?
    Why do you wish to keep subsidizing Dunedin venues when they can support themselves with the Services that this Hotel can offer.
    Why dont you disclose who you are so People can judge you and your motives. The Jobs that Cadburys will make redundant are you able to give them Jobs or the new Students ending there education.
    When was the Last New Hotel Built in Dunedin? Dunedin None Queenstown 6, Queenstown 26,000 Dunedin 126,000.
    How about supporting Development, and Jobs or are you one of those that just as you say destroy everything before its starts.
    Who am I, I am a spokesman for the Developer


    2017/04/24 at 9:46 pm
    Anthony Tosswill
    In reply to Elizabeth.
    Great Video, it suggests you are supporting Terrorism. Is that amusing blowing up things. It also suggests you want to stop Jobs, supporting local Business. preventing People attending Events and Venues, dislike tourism and dont want a venue that supports Dunedin. I suggest you at least remove the Blowing up of the Developments its in very bad taste.
    When reading comments on this site its easy to see why it has so little support.
    I am a spokesman for the Developer, who are you?


    2017/04/25 at 4:58 pm
    Anthony Tosswill
    In reply to Peter.
    I would like to point out that Residents in Londo complained about the about the Shard in London and the London Eye yet, Yet Today we Recognize London for these 2 Buildings as they are also Top Tourists sites as is the Palace. Hindsight is marvelous
    Do you recall the complaints when the stadium prior to been Built now its recognized as one of the Top 20 in the World. Dunedin be proud.
    One may tell us of Identical Buildings so we can learn from your expertise.
    The Design relates to minimizing views from residents behind plus maximizing views of Tourists that want to appreciate Dunedin and its Harbour we believe in our design and concept.
    Retrospective opinions are great if you are trying to stop the future progress of Dunedin, if your view point is taken seriously its Dunedin’s loss.
    Spokesman for the Developer.


    2017/04/25 at 5:28 pm
    Anthony Tosswill
    In reply to Elizabeth.
    Hi Elizabeth,
    you made several comments. Architectural design.
    a) Design and the Changes,
    In Response, I respectfully point out that does not relate to commercial facts or results, hence for any 5 Star Hotel and in Particular in Dunedin our view is very different but it is for this type of Development whats been Built in All Cities around the World, we are one of the 99% (Not the 1%)
    b) We have incorporated a Design that shows off Dunedin, with new Technology that is expected today by 5 Star Guests. Dunedin is the Showcase, the Development is to provide Access to the City not be the City~
    You suggest and refer to your time and Resources “What are They”?
    It Also appears that you think Asians are also different or at least there Money is, maybe you should complain also about the contribution made by Asians that go to Otago University is their money bad? I like Asian People, I married to one.
    Love to know more about whatever Cargo Growth is? Are you a Supporter of Cadbury Factory Closure as well? Is that not a local Resource?
    400 Persons Daily Spending Money in New 5 Star Hotel in Dunedin is Growth to Dunedin, please re add up the equation since you have an alleged financial background your sums should add up one cold think,
    Good on you Farmer for having an independent view point congratulation is this Elizabeth’s Blog its appears to be!
    Spokesman for the Developer


  2. Hype O'Thermia

    Sometimes random thoughts come into my mind. Today’s is “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool…” and I think it may be an old saying with a few more words to it. Ahem! (No, that’s not one of them)

  3. Weird. Fishy. Lack of transparency. If this hotel/apartment complex turns out to be full of Chinese students and anyone comments that this changes the city culturally and socially not necessarily for the better, then they will be called ‘racist’. If (like me) you worry about such high density development adversely affecting Dunedin’s old water infrastructure, then you are a doomsday-predicting stick-in-the-mud. Free speech on public affairs seems to be frowned on in some quarters in Dunedin. But here it seems to be positively forbidden. But money talks. Loudly.
    Doesn’t the article say that the DCC ‘contributed’ a vast sum for assessing the suitability of the site, its stability and so on? I really wish they wouldn’t give money away to developers. Where does it say in the Local Government Act that that is a ‘purpose of local government’?

    • Elizabeth

      DCC has said it paid for the geotech report only. But how much else. The ratepayers own the carpark site and have not been consulted on its future sale or use – given the ever increasing loss of central city car parks promoted by DCC.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        Suddenly they needed a geotech report for an asphalt floored, non-roofed, car park site.
        Do you really think they’d give our rates money away to obtain geotech reports for developers?
        Oh, You do, eh.
        Me too.

  4. Calvin Oaten

    In reply to Anthony Tosswill, I say, wasn’t the old Post Office converted to a hotel? Wasn’t the former Cargill House converted to a hotel? Isn’t it a fact that the Victoria Hotel has just been hugely enlarged? Is it not a fact that there is a new hotel built on the St Clair Esplanade? Look at the Motel areas of George St. I suggest that Mr Tosswill does his homework before getting into print on the subject. Do some homework on the need for a five star establishment and he will quickly come to the conclusion that there is little demand for five star accommodation, and that is already accommodated. Fact, the developer sees it as an exercise to develop, flick on and pocket the profits. Like the waterfront exercise it will probably never be built. Just the DCC will spend capital in trying to make it happen.

  5. Elizabeth

    ODT 4.5.17 (page 12)

  6. Elizabeth

    Contrary to the letter to editor writers’ beliefs above, Anthony Tosswill writes to this website saying that he is the developer’s spokesman. Developer unnamed.

    Or is he speaking for his (developer?) company NZ Horizon Hospitality Group Ltd of which he is sole director, and sole shareholder (via Tosswill Trustee Ltd of which he is the sole director and shareholder).

    Mr Tosswill doesn’t seem to have surrounded himself or invested in his companies with much talent.

    I do hope this isn’t Jing Song II.
    Elements of the DCC fell hard for that (overseas) facade, and may do so again, this time via even hotter Asian money.

    I hear someone at Enterprise Dunedin is pushing this project hard – no not the Director of ED, but a chap with no background or current expertise in the hotel industry or tourism sector at all.

    Related Posts and Comments:
    7.4.17 Proposed hotel *height and design* —the very least of it #sellingoursouls
    5.4.17 Application lodged for FIASCO Hotel by Tosswill #DunedinWrecks
    15.10.16 Battle of the hotels : DCC meat in the sandwich (unedifying)
    11.1.16 Un hôtel. Dunedin.
    1.4.14 HOTEL Town Hall… Another investment group, Daaave’s pals from the communist state?

    █ For more (such as posts on the unsuccessful waterfront highrise hotel/apartment building proposal for 41 Wharf St), enter the terms *hotel*, *41 wharf st*, *gelber luftballon* or *yellow balloon* in the search box at right.

    • Hype O'Thermia

      “I hear someone at Enterprise Dunedin is pushing this project hard… ”
      I think this is a necessary condition for plunging into this plastic bucket of bullshit: “…no not the Director of ED, but a chap with no background or current expertise in the hotel industry or tourism sector at all.”

  7. “I hear someone at Enterprise Dunedin is pushing this project hard… ”
    Policy decisions should be made by elected council, not by individual staff members. There is not sufficiently robust governance/management separation upheld at DCC, meaning lack of transparency, accountability and inclusiveness in decision-making. Cannot go on!

    • {This comment has been released from the spam filter at 2:41 a.m. on 16 May. -Eds}

      Actually, in case readers haven’t worked it out, allowing council staff members to make policy decisions is forbidden because it makes corruption possible, Even easy. As in “I’m in a position to help you out so you do the same for me eventually, one way or another.” I think What if? referred to the successful prosecution of some council roading managers [Auckland] getting nice presents/overseas trips from certain roading businesses subsequent to awarding contracts to same roading businesses.

      The idea of having one group of people to make the decisions and an entirely different group of people given the responsibility for carrying out those decisions impartially goes right back to the Ancient Greeks.

      Here’s a good explanation of it:

      And a quote: “An effective and productive governing body/chief executive relationship is built on …(among other things ;;;)
      an ability to engage in robust debate and a mutual willingness to challenge and to offer and receive constructive criticism.”

      So there’s that ‘criticism’ again. I groan at DCC Council meetings when I hear councillors assert that unanimity indicates harmony. Not necessarily. It might just as easily indicate that all councillors are making exactly the same mistake. Or they might not be thinking for themselves and just following along with whoever is the most DOMINANT (ie bossy). Creative struggle please!

      GP people and others who have used real consensus decision-making process know that it leads to much better outcomes, in terms of both actual decisions and also ongoing relationships of mutual respect amongst the decision-makers.

  8. Elizabeth

    NOTE ███
    DCC is publishing submissions received (public feedback) at its website.

    Go to this DCC webpage – click on ‘Show All’:

  9. Farmer

    I was in town for a function on Thursday night and we parked up Stuart St and walked down the the Octagon. As we were walking down, viewing the streetscape and skyline, I wondered if there was an outpouring of opposition and gnashing of teeth when Forsyth Barr House was built? maybe there was, I’m only a young bloke!!

    • Elizabeth

      Originally, Forsyth Barr House was home to the Methodist Central Mission who built it.

      In his book ‘The Heart of a City’, Norman Ledgerwood comments on the part history of the Methodists at the Octagon…. the ODT article doesnt mention the modern tower building on the corner of Stuart St!

      “In 1911, the Methodist Central Mission bought 35 The Octagon (now the Hoyts cinema) and, from 1912, shared its main auditorium with lessees who enticed movie-goers in with a variety of short films, travelogues and news-reels. Episodical shows such as The Lone Ranger and Buck Rogers, combined with trays of ice creams, ensured regular attendance at each matinee. The theatre companies leasing the auditorium were required to provide the mission with a synopsis of every film to be shown, and the lease stated the mission could prohibit the screening of films it considered to be objectionable on the grounds “that the same extol vice, or are inimical to public morality or to the Christian religion”. The lessee would be fined 10 each time it showed a film the church had not approved. The mission sold the Octagon Theatre to Amalgamated Theatres Ltd in 1967. The company demolished the building in 1993, to make way for the new Hoyts mutliplex.”

      Preceding the MCM building was the tallish Hallenstein building on the corner at Princes St.

      In the article, ‘An anniversary, Methodist Mission, and a song.’
      Colin Gibson writes:

      William Ready began mission work in Dunedin 120 years ago.

      My thoughts are turning to preparations for the 120th anniversary of what was then called the Dunedin Central Mission, marking the occasion when the Reverend William Ready commenced his mission work in the lower Octagon, then surrounded by the hotels, brothels and drinking dens which attracted idlers and the urban poor. Ready was himself the product of the London slums, one of the lucky boys saved from its squalor and hopelessness by an act of charity. He became a minister of the Bible Christian Church (a smaller offshoot of Wesleyan Methodism) and was sent to New Zealand in 1887. When he came south from Christchurch in May 1890, charged to do a similar work, he immediately began in the way he believed was most appropriate-he stood on a soap box, sang a gospel song, drew a crowd and invited them to worship the next day.”

  10. Farmer

    That is interesting to get the history of the building and the site, thank you.
    My point was though, what would you be saying if the present building was being proposed to be built right now? Given its height and proximity to the magnificent church across the road? There would probably be loud opposition to the plan, yet because it has been there a few years no one look twice at it.

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Yes, we get used to things, we get on with life. Look at the people who have a terrible accident, lose a leg, or sustain trauma to the brain so they have to re-learn all the things they used to do without having to think about them. In nearly all cases they adjust, find ways of being happy with every small improvement in function, every new thing they can manage to do by themselves, find other things they can do instead of their pre-accident activities.
      So when something ugly is built that spoils beautiful views, blocks the sun, funnels the wind, in a few years we forget the view and people who weren’t here back then don’t miss what they never saw. When we get into a sunny spot, when we turn a corner and get out of the wind, we feel pleasure in those sensations.

      Is this a good reason to give up road safety, rules against dangerous employment conditions, encourage (or force) safety rules in sports? There’s nanny-state and there’s sensible avoidance of severe injury. There’s nimbyism and there’s protection of the environment, including the urban environment, against allowing the few to foul it up for the rest of us – even though nearly all of us can manage self-preservation “forgetfulness” about how much has been taken away from us, for the advantage of a very very few.

      • Elizabeth

        Hype, here you may be headed to the resource management issues of cumulative adverse effects, and mitigation.

  11. Farmer

    I’m not a redneck (despite what you may think haha) and certainly not pro development at any cost, but I’m just trying to get my head around why it is that EVERY city in the world of any size has tall buildings – offices and hotels – in its CBD, but no sir, we can’t do it in Dunedin. What makes Dunedin so unique that we have to do the opposite of what happens everywhere else. With the offices and hotels come commerce and shops and tourists and conferences and vibrancy and jobs. Is downtown Auckland or Sydney or Melbourne really that bad?

  12. Farmer

    Hype, so I’m taking from your post that you don’t like FB House and would oppose it being built now and wish it wasn’t there? Which is kinda my point. Is it really that bad to look at? Does it really block out the sun and block views and funnel wind? Does it really detract from the beautiful church across the road? Would Dunedin really be a better place if there was only a 2-storey building there?

  13. Hype O'Thermia

    Cumulative effects, yes. I get somewhat p’d off when the argument is used that (x) was done therefore nobody should complain about (y) and (z) and then (ABCDEFG).

    Prosecution: Your first or “baby” teeth fell out did they not?
    Victim giving evidence: Yes
    Prosecution: Did you have 2 wisdom teeth removed?
    Victim: Yes
    Prosecution: Is it correct that in 1984 your tonsils were removed?
    Victim: Yes
    Prosecution: And your adenoids a year later, and your appendix in 1998?
    Victim: Yes
    Prosecution: I put it to you that your reason for complaining that the defendant’s actions directly caused the loss of your left eye and hearing in your left ear is a manipulation of the justice system as a way of getting revenge
    Victim: He left me with only one eye! I’m still getting severe headaches!
    Prosecution: Please just answer the question.
    Victim: Yes
    Prosecution: You have already lost teeth and tonsils, adenoids and appendix yet you are making a big drama out of the loss of one – I repeat, only ONE – eye, and loss of hearing in one – ONE! – ear!

  14. Farmer

    Which raises interesting questions in my head that someone here will be able to answer. I don’t know much about the city’s building plan as I am only a spectator on the sideline. But is there anywhere in the city I could build a tallish hotel that would comply with the rules? And that would also meet with the approval of the self appointed ‘guardians of the city’? And from an investors point of view it would have to be reasonably close to the central city? It has been suggested to me that somewhere near the stadium would be a good place? Between the stadium and the CBD – like where Placemakers used to be. Would that meet with your approval? Or is everywhere off limits?

    • Elizabeth

      Farmer, sorry – no time to debate the issues, Wednesday for submissions is looming. You need to try and read the second generation district plan (2GP), including the maps. It is a large unwieldy document of over 1000 webpages. However, it is worth persisting with and becomes more logical the longer you stick with it – despite the various sections deserving to be strongly appealed.

      To read The Plan, go to


      Note this from the 2GP:

      Section 2. Strategic Directions

      2.4 Dunedin is a Memorable City with a Distinctive Built and Natural Character
      Objective 2.4.1: Form and structure of the urban environment
      The elements of the urban environment that contribute to residents’ and visitors’ aesthetic appreciation for and enjoyment of the city are protected and enhanced. These include:
      a. important green and other open spaces;
      b. trees that make a significant contribution to the visual landscape and history of neighbourhoods;
      c. built heritage;
      d. important visual landscapes and vistas;
      e. the amenity and aesthetic coherence of different urban environments; and
      f. the compact and accessible form of Dunedin.

      [See Policy]

      Policy Identify and protect key aspects of the visual relationship between the city and its natural environment or heritage buildings and landmarks through rules that:
      a. restrict the height of buildings along the harbourside to maintain views from the central city and Dunedin’s inner hill suburbs across the upper harbour toward the Otago Peninsula; and
      b. manage the height of buildings in the CBD to maintain a primarily low-rise heritage cityscape. [my bolding and italics]

      This policy was arrived at by various forms of public consultation. The 2GP is effectively community owned once made operative.

      We’re still working through public hearings of the various 2GP topics and following this, legal appeals will commence via the Environment Court where options for mediation, expert conferencing or court action may ensue.

      The current district plan took 10 years to become fully operative. DCC is hoping for smooth passage for the 2GP but no-one is under any illusions it will be a quick untroubled process.

      Anyone is free to apply for resource consent to build a tall building anywhere in Dunedin City….but the gateway tests and other checks and balances (see all reports and assessments) are technical and expensive, and have the ability to seriously impact, in the current financial market, a developer’s ability to finance the project from go to whoa. There are other technicalities which the Moray Place proposal will highlight for this developer or any other developer.

      Far better to develop tall structures in a city that has zoning to accommodate highrise, with an established space demand.

      In terms of the proposed 17-storey, 62.5m high hotel apartment building for 143-193 Moray Place:

      The 2GP again, a sniff: Height
      New buildings and structures, and additions and alterations must comply with the following:

      Zone/Centre – a. Central Business District Zone (CBD)

      1. On sites which adjoin George Street

      1. Minimum height of buildings (above ground level) – 8m
      2. Minimum number of storeys for buildings (above ground level) – 2 storeys
      3. Maximum height of buildings and structures (above ground level) – 12m
      4. Maximum number of storeys for buildings(above ground) – 3 storeys

      2. On sites which do not adjoin George Street

      1. Minimum height of buildings (above ground level) – 8m
      2. Minimum number of storeys for buildings (above ground level) – 2 storeys
      3. Maximum height of buildings and structures (above ground level) – 16m
      4. Maximum number of storeys for buildings(above ground) – 4 storeys

      Go to

  15. Farmer

    I didn’t mean you to go to all that trouble and time!! I do understand that you can apply to do anything anywhere in the city, but I thought there might be an area of town where you build a tallish structure ‘as of right’ so there would be no arguments and court cases. Just like there are areas where you can subdivide land down to lifestyle block size to satisfy that market and most other places you can’t. – and rightfully so.

    • Elizabeth

      Was quick, Farmer, stuff already pulled for submission purposes. But yeah, the 2GP is upon our heads…. Note even places like Auckland and Wellington require setbacks for tall buildings at the waterfront to prevent overshading etc of public space. Here, where there is potential for liquefaction of reclaimed land tall structures are an issue (even industrial ones) – and where there are areas of substantial bedrock, these tend to be residential or commercial where the new max height limit of 16m will apply. Currently we’re stuck at 11m (from ground level) in the operative district plan.

      So could we build a tower on a corner lot within Queens Gardens/Exchange area – not easily if ever.

      Given how the Japanese are developing tall timber structures for downtown and harbourside areas subject to quakes it’s a great pity we can’t further the architectural exploration in a sympathetic way at Dunedin.

      It’s not that all height is bad. Not by a long shot.

      Could we now build a NEW towering cathedral spire of any iconic landmark value ??? The district plan system is ultimately too conservative, it seems.

  16. Peter

    How ironic that given Dunedin likes to promote itself as a ‘creative’ place, where exciting things happen, we are given this three prong glass tower as a proposed design for a new hotel. Boring. Boring. Boring. The world is full of this kind of thing.
    A five star hotel would be great, but is it too much to ask for some imagination? Sack the architect who came up with this.

  17. Elizabeth

    Mon, 8 May 2017
    ODT: Towering ambitions: landmark decisions
    Life & Style Magazine
    By Bruce Munro
    Debate over the design of Dunedin’s five-star, glass tower hotel bid is heating up. Is it a good “fit” for Dunedin? How does it compare against a selection of 10 celebrated hotels from around the globe? You decide. Three-quarters of the public submissions on the proposed 17-storey Dunedin hotel oppose the plan. During the past month, 43 people have told the Dunedin City Council what they think of the plan to build a $75 million 64m-high five-star hotel on the corner of Moray Pl and Filleul St. […] Opposition centres on concerns about the height and the design of the hotel. Those in favour mostly cite economic benefits. The neutral submission is not opposed to the hotel in principle, but is concerned about the impact of the height. Cont/ + Images

    ODT cites:
    1 – Hilton Hotel Schiphol Airport, Netherlands
    2 – Hoshinoya Tokyo, Japan
    3 – Minories Hotel, United Kingdom
    4 – Montage Palmetto Bluff Inn, United States
    5 – Burj Al Arab Hotel,  United Arab Emirates
    6 – Albons Calm Hotel, Spain
    7 – Sofitel Hotel and Spa Queenstown, New Zealand
    8 – The Renaissance Barcelona Fira Hotel, Spain
    9 – Cabinn Metro Hotel, Denmark
    10 – Crest Hotel, New Zealand [distinctly NOT fitting the alpine landscape at Queenstown – waiting for some rich Chinese with an ego-maniac sense of crassness]

    █ “Hotel Tosswill” at Moray Place/Filleul Street (read off-the-shelf designbuild from Asia, with treacle tweaks by Craig) is SO NOT in the same league as the top 9 hotels listed above; 10 is grossly ‘fanciful’ (planning term).


    When it comes to hotel design, Dunedin can learn from Hobart.

    Mon, 8 May 2017
    ODT: Hotel design: back to the future is where it’s at
    By Russell Lund
    OPINION The proposed Filleul St, Dunedin, hotel is a remnant of outmoded thinking. Nothing ever remains the same, and the winds of change are sweeping through the accommodation industry.
    I recently spent time in Hobart to see how it had been able to develop many of its waterfront heritage buildings into viable economic propositions, and received some valuable insights. Hobart now has a population in excess of 200,000, but it was and still is a regional city in economic decline, isolated from Australia’s major centres.
    Like Dunedin, it has the lowest average household income of any major Australian city, and sees a bright future in tourism based on its built heritage, natural environment and outstanding regional food and wine products.
    The accompanying photographs show the two hotels rated by TripAdvisor as the best and second best (of 46) hotels in Hobart. The Hotel Grand Chancellor Hobart is a rectilinear 4.5-star human filing cabinet that is described on TripAdvisor as an architectural scar on the Hobart cityscape. Its level of discernible architectural merit is of a similar standard to the proposed Filleul St hotel which is to say, none at all. Despite its brutal urban demeanor, The Hotel Grand Chancellor is a busy hotel. Its 244 rooms run at an impressive 93% occupancy, but you can hire a room there at any time for less than $A200 ($NZ215).
    However, the modest Henry Jones Art Hotel nearby, with 52 5-star rooms, a former jam factory, knocks the Grand Chancellor for a revenue six. It also runs at 90%. occupancy, but its average tariff is about double the Grand Chancellor’s, at $A350-$A500 per night. The Henry Jones is able to charge this premium because the property is unique, even in a city renowned for its building heritage. Cont/

    • Gurglars

      The Henry Jones Hotel is the only hotel in the world that I want to stay in. All the others I have to stay in.
      It is an outstanding reconstruction a 5 star hotel inside an old jam factory which keeps the architectural features inside and out.

      Outstanding and what Dunedin needs. Probably the only building capable of such a transformation now in Dunedin is Russell Lund’s Loan and Mercantile building. The BNZ building could have been a possibility.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        There’s something weird about belief that people who can and will pay 5-star prices want generic cookie-cutter accommodation. Do they buy chain store shoes? Don’t have to worry about how long they last if they can afford to throw ’em away after a couple of wears yet they seem to want designer clothes, watches etc and not simply ones labelled “designer” and available in high street shops by the dozens in every colour.
        But they want to stay in accommodation with no atmosphere, no particular charm, nothing memorable?

  18. Elizabeth

    Reference supplied by Russell Lund:

    5-star Hotel constructed inside part of the former Ghirardelli chocolate factory

    Fairmont Heritage Place, Ghirardelli Square [via @fairmontGhirSq]

    █ Website:

    From Wikipedia:

    Fairmont Heritage Place, Ghirardelli Square is a residence-style hotel located on San Francisco’s Ghirardelli Square, which is a San Francisco Landmark.

    The hotel was constructed inside part of the former Ghirardelli chocolate factory, which opened on the city’s waterfront in 1893, with room rates starting from 800 dollars per night. In addition to being a hotel, the property offers residential purchasing opportunities.

    Unlike most Fairmont hotels, the Fairmont Heritage Place, Ghirardelli Square does not boast a long history, having just opened in 2008. However, the building in which it resides does have a history.
    Ghirardelli Chocolate was founded in San Francisco, California, by Domenico Ghirardelli in 1852, under the name Ghirardely & Girard. The business flourished and grew, and by 1893, had outgrown is facilities. That year, the company purchased the Pioneer Woolen Mill building, located on what would become San Francisco’s Fisherman’s Wharf. All chocolate production moved to that building, where it remained for 67 years.
    In 1960, the chocolate manufacturing operation was sold, and moved to San Leandro, California. Fearing the old building would be demolished, and an important part of San Francisco’s history destroyed, shipping executive, William M. Roth, along with his mother, purchased the former chocolate factory property.
    Included in the deal were the Chocolate Building, the Mustard Building, the Cocoa Building, the Apartment, the Power Plant, and the Clock Tower. One factory building was demolished, and replaced with what is now the Wurster Building. The Roths’ plan was to turn the property into a specialty shopping center while retaining its Victorian style. The renovation also entailed strengthening the structure of the remaining buildings, and constructing an underground garage.
    On November 29, 1964, the new shopping center opened, and in 1965, Ghirardelli Square was declared a San Francisco Landmark.
    In 2008, part of the Clock Tower Building opened as the Fairmont Heritage Place, Ghirardelli Square. The hotel is one of Fairmont’s smaller properties, with just 53 residence-style rooms spanning four floors.
    Read more

  19. Hype O'Thermia

    In Dunedin it appears that saying “5 star hotel” creates $$ signs in DCC and Council eyes and prevents clear sight of the rest of the proposition. So far “the rest” has been “big, cheap’n’nasty design, mostly apartments and other facilities that have nothing to do with 5 star hotel accommodation”. In other words, blind ’em with bling and while they’re still dazzled get the sign-off for whatever you want that’s against the District Plans that are supposed to apply to all of us, for the good of the whole city now and in the future.
    Developers know vulnerable people can’t make wise decisions when shiny $ signs overrule the thinking parts of their brains.
    Give’em the old razzle dazzle!

  20. Elizabeth

    A full submission very much worth reading:

    Greenwood Roche Attn: Lauren Semple, Millennium and Copthorne Hotels New Zealand Limited Attn: Lauren Semple

    Submitter ID 587988

  21. Gurglars

    The biggest problem Hotel developers face is that the DCC feel a need to be involved either in the land sale or lease or in some other commercial way. Given the paucity of commercial success of all the ventures of the DCC including Wall Street and Delta acquisitions this commercial hope driven by a no recourse situation using other people’s money must be halted stopped and by fiat ensuring such commercial activities by persons with little, no or failed commercial ambitions are stopped forever. The National government should pass laws to stop this by all councils.

    • {This comment has been released from the spam filter at 2:36 a.m. on 16 May. -Eds}

      Gurglars, I think such laws already have been passed with the Amendment to the Local Government Act 2002 to stop Councils spending money on all sorts of whims and fancies and not attending to their core business; specifically:

      10 Purpose of local government
      (1) The purpose of local government is—
      (a) to enable democratic local decision-making and action by, and on behalf of, communities; and
      (b) to meet the current and future needs of communities for good-quality local infrastructure, local public services, and performance of regulatory functions in a way that is most cost-effective for households and businesses. (ends)

      Formerly councils could do anything that they thought would further local wellbeing, including ‘economic wellbeing’; and they may well have thought that financially supporting big investment in the city justified what might be called easing an applicant through the process promoted that. Or bends over backwards to help. Or laying down the red carpet …(Actually, I think DCC may actually still have a ‘Red Carpet’ scheme to encourage business investment in the city.) Critics would just call this ‘corporate welfare’ though.

      The trouble is that this significant change to the law doesn’t seem to have been noticed, let alone complied with.

    • Gurglars, I think such laws already have been passed with the Amendment to the Local Government Act 2002 2014 to stop Councils spending money on all sorts of whims and fancies and not attending to their core business;
      10 Purpose of local government
      (1) The purpose of local government is—
      (a) to enable democratic local decision-making and action by, and on behalf of, communities; and
      (b) to meet the current and future needs of communities for good-quality local infrastructure, local public services, and performance of regulatory functions in a way that is most cost-effective for households and businesses. (ends)
      Just got to figure out how to make them obey the law!

      • Elizabeth

        Ridiculous. So widely worded they can and do anything. Thank god! (in some cases). Interpretation.

        • Well, they used to be able to anything before the 2002 Amendment. See:

          Whether they recklessly spent too much money or whether costs just went up markedly is disputed. But the Amendment has really restricted their powers and their spending. But they just don’t seem to have noticed. The most striking anomaly to me is how local government, including DCC, still seems to be full steam ahead with spending money on ‘local economic development’. Including ‘welcoming’ big investors like hotel developers. So where does it say anything like this in law quoted above?

  22. pb

    How about a glass behemoth on the beach, towards Brighton? Like the Gold Coast. Surely that’d make a killing. The developers & builders could go bananas, get their slice. It would at least block the southerlies, even when it was empty.

  23. Elizabeth

    View from Filleul St [Paterson Pitts Group]

    The submissions process will be followed by a public hearing before independent commissioners, expected to be later this year.

    Thu, 11 May 2017
    ODT: Public slam proposed hotel
    By Vaughan Elder
    The Dunedin City Council has been flooded with submissions opposing Dunedin’s proposed five-star hotel. The deadline for receiving submissions on the proposed $75 million Moray Pl hotel was yesterday. Just before the deadline, the council had received 245 submissions. Council resource consents manager Alan Worthington said of the 195 submissions it had processed, 147 were opposed, 33 were for and four neutral. More submissions were likely to come in at the last minute, late yesterday afternoon, Mr Worthington said. Cont/

    Other stories at ODT:
    11.5.17 Govt hotel role suggested
    8.5.17 Towering ambitions

  24. Elizabeth


    Excerpt from Aurora Energy Ltd submission on LUC-2017-48 and SUB-2017-26 [screenshot]:

    Repeat: “The substation has been in this location since 1959 and is continually upgraded and maintained as load grows within the Central City. Aurora has planned works for the Smith Street zone substation over the next planning period, as outlined within the Aurora Asset Management Plan 2017-2027, including; cable upgrades, circuit breaker and transformer replacement in 2020 – 2021.” [my underlining]

    Full submission

  25. Elizabeth

    At Twitter:

  26. Elizabeth

    People in support are like ‘prostadia’. If they didn’t make submissions on the application (a colleague’s analysis of submissions received Clearly Shows they’ve failed to organise themselves, again) then their opinions do not count – they need to Wake Up / Grow Up. Just as Mr Tosswill (spokesman for the Unnamed Developer….) must do – or he will be had for breakfast. An underwhelming bunch of comments from the man today in ODT, go Anthony!!

    [For ODT’s information]
    We understand Pullman Hotels is fêted as hotel manager.

    Fri, 12 May 2017
    ODT: ‘Overwhelming’ support
    By Vaughan Elder
    The developer of a proposed five-star hotel for Dunedin has dismissed submitters against the project as a tiny but vocal minority. […] The developer, Tekapo businessman Anthony Tosswill, of NZ Horizon Hospitality Group Ltd, said by email yesterday the submissions against the project did not reflect the views of the wider Dunedin population.

    People were “very busy” and those without “hidden agendas” did not have the time to write submissions in support of the project, he Mr Tosswill also blamed what he called biased coverage in the Otago Daily Times for the number of opposing submissions which were lodged with the council in the final week.

    ….The council had received 263 submissions, of which 200 were opposed, 56 in favour and seven neutral, Mr [Alan] Worthington said. This was the largest number of submissions the council had received for a resource consent since the 507 submissions lodged after Betterways Advisory Ltd proposed a 27-storey hotel and apartment tower on the city’s waterfront in 2012.
    Read more

  27. Sally

    I am curious as to the councils website showing a submission from The Otago Chamber of Commerce.
    Is it a valid submission from the Chamber ?
    When clicking on this submission form 13, I find it is in the name of Dougal McGowan. There is no reference in this submission form to suggest it is a submission from the Otago Chamber of Commerce. I presume that the submission form 13 is the official document.
    There is however accompanying documentation from the Chamber. It shows that the Chamber has around 1000 members. A survey put out by the Chamber to members on the proposed hotel shows only 40% responded, and only 32% supported. Not a good look of support from the Chamber.

    {Moderated. -Eds}

  28. Peter

    Build it and THEY will cum.

  29. Elizabeth

    At the top of this thread we see that Anthony Tosswill (Tony! to his friends) is not all that literate. So who wrote the “story” uploaded into the ODT today ? Was it Enterprise Dunedin, or Terry Davies, or the Dread DCC Comms. Nah, the webs we weave.

    Don’t tell me Tosswill has paid a car salesman or real estate skirt to script for media.

    Piss poor effort, Boys.

    We consider it’s not worth printing.


    [the picture at FB don’t help]

    At Facebook:

    • Farmer

      ‘We consider it’s not worth printing.’
      Who is ‘we’?
      Regardless of who the author of the article was, it puts up the other side of the debate and offers a bit of balance.
      It’s funny how you deem something to be ‘not worth printing’ just because it doesn’t agree with your ideology. Have you ever paused to think that your stance might not be necessarily be correct, once history judges you 50 or 100 years down the track?

    • Hype O'Thermia

      Oh, (Tony! to his friends). I’d heard he was called T****.
      Mightn’t have been his friends though.

      {Moderated. Maybe a cartoon could say a thousand words. -Eds}

  30. Helen B

    Written no doubt by his waaay more literate mate Tony Crick – doing his job as marketing spin doctor for this proposal. Wonder how ‘For it’ Mr Crick would be if the bloody thing was built right through the middle of his harbour view instead of behind it?!! Love the way Mr Tosswill writes off all opponents as ‘anti – progress’, when from what I see, many still support the need for a 5 Star hotel in Dunedin – Just not his boring clanger of a design, in this important location. Come on Russell Lund. Beat this bastard to the post and get backing for your very excellent idea of a chocolate themed hotel in the existing buildings on the Cadbury site. Just build it.

    • Farmer

      Such venom and anger and hatred!!! I don’t think the developer has done anything to warrant him being called a ‘bastard’. Show some class!!

    • Farmer

      I didn’t ask who ‘we’ was in a literal sense. But the point of my post remains. Why do you rate something as ‘not worth printing’ just because it doesn’t agree with your stance?

    • Farmer

      So I’m an interested bystander in all of this. I don’t agree with parts of the proposed hotel plan, but agree with the concept of trying to get something done and trying to keep our city moving forward.
      As I have said before, I haven’t traveled widely, but quite a few trip to Oz. Sometimes I think some in Dunedin think we have ‘sole rights’ to history and heritage’ – we certainly don’t.
      The thing that strikes me – and I would like someone to give me some answers – why is it that a lot of other cities – think Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide – seem to be able to seamlessly merge the ‘old’ with the ‘new’ , but it’s just too hard in Dunedin. Why is Dunedin so special that we achieve what these other cities do?
      In these cities, a newish modern building actually highlightsthe historic restored building next door. Why can’t this happen in Dunners? Why does it have to be all or nothing?
      I was in Adelaide a couple of years back and me and wifey were standing in the middle of the large open space in the middle of the city – and I remarked on a wonderful old restored building, surrounded by modern stuff, but just looking all class and wonderful. Then another caught my eye …. so we did a 360 degree turn on the spot and there were 13 wonderful historic restored buildings!!! Probably just a fraction of what Adelaide has to offer, but just wonderful to see – all from the same spot!!! The new modern bustling city didn’t detract from them one bit. Why can this happen in Adelaide and not in Dunedin?
      Heritage and history is wonderful, but you have to be really really careful that it doesn’t hold you back from taking bold steps forward. What is built today will be a historic 100 year old building in 100 years time – obvious I know, but do you ever think about it in those terms? The history and buildings we cherish today may have been radical when they were built – and built by developer ‘bastards’ at the time!!! And as an aside, I farm the land that has been farmed by 4 generations of my family, boundaries unchanged, for 105 years, so no one need give me a lecture on the importance of history – I’m doing it every day!!
      An astute ‘ fellow farmer’ told me ( and I always remember his words) – we were discussing the economy and the city etc etc over some Xmas beers – and he said ‘Watch where your investment money goes, that’s where our children go’. And sadly, I think he was right. While Auckland Sydney and Melbourne and Queenstown are ‘going ahead’ with building and investment ad businesses and jobs, Dunedin is sitting still, and our kids all drift off to get careers, and that’s sad. This proposed hotel will not fix Dunedin’s problems on its own, but it’s a start and a part of the ‘move forward’. A lot of it is just a mind set – that ‘yes’ we can do it and build it and create it in Dunedin. Unfortunately, as soon as ANYTHING gets proposed for Dunedin, the answer, the ‘default setting’ is ‘NO’

  31. Elizabeth

    Message for Farmer.
    We means everyone who volunteers time and ideas behind the dashboard at the What if? Dunedin website owned by me – presently all of a mind on the proposal. We’re not asking, I’m not asking, who you are. Don’t need to – know who you are, no intention to disclose your identity. Welcome to blogging.

    Don’t suppose you made submissions on the Dunedin City District Plan or the second generation district plan – so no investment.

    • Farmer

      I didn’t ask who ‘we’ was in a literal sense. But the point of my post remains. Why do you rate something as ‘not worth printing’ just because it doesn’t agree with your stance?

    • Farmer

      Hi Elizabeth, just read your answer to me again. Yes I guess that’s the beauty of ‘owning’ a blog site – you can post or cut who ever you like!!
      So you know who I am? Thats fine, I have no problem with you or anyone else knowing. I have only started contributing lately as you know, and yes is is interesting – and a little addictive.
      Regarding your last sentence, no I didn’t make submissions to the DCC plans – but that doesn’t mean I have no investment – I have invested my whole working life and hundreds and thousands of $ and thousands of voluntary hours into my community – as you will know. I’m passionate about my community and city and just want it to get better.
      Here is a suggestion – I would love to meet some of you guys!! How about we meet up for a social drink in town one Friday night after work so I can ‘come out of the closet’!!! haha Obviously you wouldn’t post it publicly, but you have all our e-mail addresses?

    • Farmer

      Are you not going to post my contributions of last night? I thought they were sensible and well written and just offer a bit of balance to the discussion. Let people pile in and disagree with me if they like. Honest and robust discussion is what it’s all about surely
      Farmer Fred

      {A number of your comments were automatically filtered to spam. Occasionally a contributor’s name or pseudonym triggers the filter even after a period of successful posting. Will monitor. They now appear at Comments. -Eds}

  32. Helen B

    B for Bullying a Banal Bloody Building before us, A for his Arrogant Attitude – so Assured he’s Actually doing Dunedin a favour!?!, S for Selling Stakeholders Self-interests above ours, T for Total ****** (according to his friends), A for Actuating Another Absurd Attempt at Asinine Architecture, R for Representing Risky Red-hot Riches, and D for Disdainful Disregard of our Democratically Developed District plan.

    {Moderated. -Eds}

  33. Calvin Oaten

    When all is said and done, it is the fact that this hotel is like the waterfront model, not viable in Dunedin economically, nor should it be built for that reason at least. Just look at the fact, a ‘five star’ hotel, means a tariff that has a limited demand. Well met by the Scenic Circle and the Distinction I would think. Dunedin is not a high value destination, but more a middle of the road type of visitor. Then there is the cruise traveller who brings their own facilities. A few for sure, but already catered for by the existing trade. The danger is if it gets built it will destroy the whole, leaving disaster in its wake. Think on it long before rushing in with your support. I don’t know anything of Mr Tosswill but suspect he either flicks it on or burns.

    • Farmer

      Calvin, what a sad post!!! As I have said before, whether it is economically viable is not for you or I to ponder. The same as the last themed bar or cafe that opened.
      And how sad that you pitch our city in such mediocre terms!!!
      Shoot for the stars mate!!! The same as those who built the buildings we now celebrate!!! No one would get anywhere if we all thought like that!!

  34. Calvin Oaten

    Good on you, but when you see the tattered remains untenanted and broken then you will see reality. If you really want to see a dose of unreality supported by the DCC and ratepayer’s treasure then take a wander down and browse the Stadium. If that had been put there by private money and relied on customer use it would be done and dusted, just like an unused or underused ‘five star’ hotel. That Stadium costs in excess of $20million per year to keep operating, who in the private field could sustain that? How’s that for another ‘sad post’?

    • Farmer

      Yes I agree that a full commercial feasibility study should be undertaken if it is public (ratepayer) money being spent, and like you I shake my head at the $20M pa the stadium costs. But unless I have missed something, this is private investment money being spent is it not? Did Emersons have to prove the need and profitability model for the new brew house on Anzac Av before they got resource consent?
      I hardly believe the hotel will be ‘tattered remains untenanted and broken’!! You wondered aloud in an earlier post about the need for a 5 star hotel in Dunedin. If you are correct and they have trouble filling it, then I’m sure they can drop the level of service to 4 star level and drop the tariff accordingly. And if it is not profitable and only bumbles along breaking even (which I don’t think it will) it won’t cost you or I anything as ratepayers will it?

  35. Calvin Oaten

    It won’t cost ratepayers anything? For a start, it’s ratepayer’s land at present. What will it be sold for? Ask yourself where will the other hidden subsidies come from? What, when the developer comes looking for relief because it doesn’t quite meet its targets. Farmer, I don’t know how long you have been watching this DCC organisation, but if you look at the Wall Street mall and its sort of operation for starters then you might get an idea. For more look at the Dunedin Conference Centre, built for $50 odd million. When it was first mooted it was to cost a projected $14million. Then it moved to $18million, then it finally got to where it is. The galling part is it got the big tick on the basis of a consultants report which based its figures on a minimum 36 major conferences per year. At that it would show a razor thin surplus before depreciation, debt servicing or taxes. After factoring in those it would lose $4.2million per year. Now if you think it hosts anything like 36 major conferences per year then go and ask them. I was there on a tour last year about October, and in the course of conversation I asked how many they had that year. She thought for a moment and said about 14. Say no more. I say again, if that hotel is built it will be a disaster. Farmer, these things don’t run on enthusiasm.

  36. Farmer

    Well Calvin I guess we will just have to agree to disagree.
    If the council was going to finance / build / run the proposed hotel I would be absolutely against it. I think the council has no place in such ventures, or in shopping malls! Maybe you know more than I, but I thought the only involvement the council has is selling them the site?
    Do you know if the new Distinction Hotel is profitable? Is it any of our business? Does it impact on our pockets as ratepayers if it is running at a loss? Why would this hotel be different?

    • Elizabeth

      Farmer. Correct, the council is the land owner only for now. You and Calvin are both correct in that. However DCC’s handling of property assets is a long story. Some woeful. Some fine – depending on the various property managers had. City Property is currently being restructured.

      Poor business skills historically have sunk various of council’s property schemes.

      Of course the 4.5 star Distinction Hotel is managed for profitability. A very skilled hands-on owner with several well-performing hotels in his established portfolio. Heaven sakes.

      • Hype O'Thermia

        “A very skilled hands-on owner with several well-performing hotels in his established portfolio.”
        You appear to be drawing a “Distinction” between someone who actually Has (and runs) hotels successfully, and the kind of gobshites who have plans a-plenty but no solid proof of investors, ability, feasibility, or understanding of why people with buggerall track record are in a poor position to demand extreme changes in the District Plan to accommodate their tacky visions of grandeur.

        • Elizabeth

          Rather, old chap.

          The work put into redevelopment of the former Chief Post Office was very carefully costed and staged as a long term investment – this after damage brought to the interior by a previous owner, and street kid activity.

          One time absentee building owner, Singaporean George Wu, had a (joke) Dunedin property manager named Kingsley Kung (now dead), who infamously planted a gang debt collector in the custodian’s flat on the ground floor to Bond St.
          Kung had sizeable gambling debts at the Casino (an investigating detective conveyed to me at the time these were worth about $120,000). He rid the debt by allowing the gang debt collector (a thug local police were scared of – name withheld here) to truck out building materials and other stored fittings and fixtures, for sale in northern centres. A bonanza.

          The current owner was so committed to the building that in the face of construction industry ups and downs he actually bought the building twice. The history is well documented at What if? and by MSM.

          He is also the driving force behind Dunedin hosting New Zealand’s largest international tourism conference [Trenz] next year.

          To further prove Geoffrey Thomson is no slouch, he’s opening a new Distinction Hotel on Cathedral Square at Christchurch in early 2018:


  37. Elizabeth

    Meanwhile, here’s another bunch wanting ‘someone’ to do a hotel or a hostel ‘at Stadium’… would take the heat off ratepayers (cf Moray Place/Filleul St proposal).

    At Facebook:


    █ 53 Anzac Avenue —On site at their factory, Miller Studios (aka Miller Creative Group) have a nice old well-built industrial shed that should be adaptively reused.

    Question – where is MCG moving to ?

    3.7.16 ODT: Miller move suits ex-CEO
    Sally Rae caught up with former Silver Fern Farms CEO Keith Cooper and asked him about his latest role with Miller Creative Group. “Damn interesting” is how Keith Cooper describes his role as managing director of long-established Dunedin firm Miller Studios. It has been a busy four months for the former Silver Fern Farms chief executive with the 103-year-old business about to rebrand and relaunch as Miller Creative Group. Cont/

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