Developer and DCC Go Back and Forth on Five-Star Hotel Plans

The plans for a 17-storey five-star hotel planned for Dunedin’s Moray Place have been amended by its developer in the hope that it will be accepted by the Dunedin City Council.

Phil Page, Partner at Gallaway Cook Allen Lawyers and lawyer acting for Tekapo businessman and the hotel developer Anthony Tosswill, told Critic the main change is that the 17-storey tower facing St Paul’s Cathedral will be lowered by one floor, while the tower facing Filleul St would drop by two floors.

The tower at the back of the site, facing Smith St, would remain the same height, at 17 storeys, and there will now be one more level below ground for parking, he explained.

The height of the hotel would remain at 62.5 metres at its highest point above the street’s existing ground level, with the two-level car park remaining in the developer’s plan.

A ‘Dunedin Hotel Economic Impact Assessment’ revealed that the 18-month construction phase (at a build cost to the developer of $63 million) of the hotel alone would “add about $30.4m to GDP in year one and $15.2m in year two”.

The ongoing contribution to GDP is calculated based on guests’ average spending, likely to be in high amounts, at either 65 or 75 percent occupancy throughout the year.

This calculation shows total guest spending of between $19.4 million and $34.7 million. However, these economic predictions are dependent on two key assumptions: firstly, that “all guests staying in the hotel would not have visited Dunedin in the absence of a hotel,” and secondly, that “the construction of the hotel does not displace any investment that would have occurred had the hotel not been built”.

This article first appeared in Issue 20, 2017.
Posted 10:32am Sunday 20th August 2017 by Joel MacManus.