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July, 2021

The new 182-room Holiday Inn Queenstown Remarkables Park is set to
open in November with 33-year-old hotel manager Matt Simister at the
helm, his first role as general manager.

Hes well underway choosing his staff and taking the reins of the brand
new 182-room property tucked behind the Ramada Remarkables Park in
Frankton, Queenstown. The new hotel is due to open in time for the
peak summer season.

Matt, a Kiwi who originally hails from Tauranga, has most recently been
operations manager of the Crowne Plaza Sydney Coogee Beach, says its
very special coming home to New Zealand to open a brand new
Queenstown property.
I feel very privileged to be opening a new hotel.

He says hes been spoilt for choice in selecting his senior staff with a
very high calibre of applications pouring in from ex-pats living overseas.
Some hotels in other resorts overseas are only operating at five or six
percent occupancy due to the decimation caused by the Covid crisis,
says Matt. As a result many have been letting their ex-pat Kiwi staff go
and weve had some excellent applications from those ex-pats wanting
to return home from the likes of Thailand, Fiji and Korea, he says.
Many of those Kiwi ex-pats in senior roles overseas are wanting to
come back to New Zealand and focus on family a bit more. Its been a
really tough 18 months and many of those hotels have been riding it out
until now, says Matt.
Not wanting to capitalise on any other hotels demise, he says theres
been something of a silver lining in that for his new hotel. Weve had
some really good candidates across the board, including chefs, Its really

While its exciting to be launching a new project in Queenstown, Matt
says hes very realistic about the current market, whats coming and the
challenges he may have filling a lot of his other frontline roles, such as
baristas and housekeepers. Other new Queenstown hotels due to open
are finding staffing challenging.

Meanwhile, the new Holiday Inn Queenstown Remarkables Parks shiny
new rooms went on sale recently for peak season January and Matts
confident the punters will like what they see.

Source: Hospitality Business Magazine


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