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November, 2019

A hotel developer is having a second crack at building Queenstown's
highest building.
Graham Wilkinson was granted permission to build a 393-room, seven-
storey hotel in Brecon St in July, but now wants to add two additional
If granted, the new central Queenstown hotel would be 27.7 metres
high  almost twice the 15.5m permitted limit  and could have 442
Wilkinson said the new building would look better than the shorter
With Skyline reconsidering its plan for conference facilities at the top of
the gondola, Wilkinson now thought his hotel might need them.
He is considering allowing twice the space for conferences available at
the nearby Millennium Hotel, the largest hotel-based conference facility
in central Queenstown.
That would reduce the number of rooms to about 360.
"This is not some cynical room grab. It's about making the building
better and getting more flexibility," Wilkinson said.
The proposed hotel development is for three and five-star hotels across
four buildings and includes a central piazza and 12 commercial spaces.
The site is home to an outdoor mini golf facility. It has a convoluted
planning history.
In early 2018, Wilkinson proposed a nine-storey building but fought
against public input.
Wilkinson expects the new application to be an easier process. It has
been publicly notified, with submissions closing on November 15.
He was not concerned about the new proposed height of the building
because it was "dwarfed' by Bob's Peak at the rear.
The nearby proposed Lakeview development on the former camping
ground would allow for buildings up to 11 or 12 storeys, he said.
There were buildings of similar heights in Queenstown but they were
built into hillsides.
A heritage-listed cemetery and stone wall is next to the proposed
development but Queenstown Historical Society concerns about the
proximity were resolved when Wilkinson did a land swap with the
Queenstown District Council to build a road and allow a 20m set back.
Historical Society chairwoman Marion Borrell said Wilkinson had been in
communication with the organisation and she held no further concerns.
Across the road, Queenstown Gold wants to construct a two-storey
commercial building.
Tenants will include chocolate cafe Max Brenner, dessert cafe Gelato,
Mexican restaurant El Camino Cantina, ten-pin bowling, a bar and other
retail, commercial or food outlets.
Nearby, the council and investors are planning a billion-dollar
development over three hectares, including residential housing, hotels,
co-working and co-living facilities, and hospitality and retail buildings.

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