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News Release


Crown land earmarked for five-star hotel adjoining convention centre

JLL are commencing an international campaign to seek an operator and an investor for a hotel site on Cathedral Square



Long term investment with development potential/new-zealand/en-gb/news/916/long-term-investment-with-development-potentialAUCKLANDLong term investment with development potential
Former Fire Station on high profile corner site/new-zealand/en-gb/news/915/former-fire-station-on-high-profile-corner-siteCHRISTCHURCHFormer Fire Station on high profile corner site

Hotel Site line small-min.jpgAn operator is being sought for a five-star hotel, which will form part of a well-planned development in Christchurch’s Cathedral Square. 

JLL Managing Director Nick Hargreaves says once an operator is located his team will then proceed to find an investor/developer to construct the 180 - 220 room hotel.

“This project has been orchestrated in great detail by crown agency Otakaro. Once completed, the hotel will sit in a prominent corner lot next to the north-west corner of Cathedral Square between the convention centre, which is currently under construction, and the new Christchurch Library across the road on Colombo Street. The hotel will boost tourism in Christchurch and bookings at the convention centre, as at present there is no such accommodation of this quality in the vicinity,” he says.

The completed hotel will sit on a 1,662sqm site and have internal access through to the convention centre. It will benefit from a number of shared services and facilities, while still providing all the amenity of a five-star hotel within its own building envelope. 

“This is a prime location,” says Ōtākaro Chief Executive, Albert Brantley. “Having a premium quality hotel adjacent to the convention centre will help us secure significant business events. It’s one of those ‘boxes’ that conference organisers want to tick.”

To assist in progressing the development, Otakaro has consulted Christchurch City Council about building and resource consents, which will be required once the final design has been confirmed. Resource consent is required for buildings over 28 metres in height. Otakaro have explored initial design for options around 45 metres. 

1,250 buildings were demolished following the Christchurch earthquake in February 2011, including the original convention centre and most of the high quality hotels in the city. 

“The city is currently missing out on approximately $90 million per year as a direct result of not having a convention centre. High quality accommodation facilities are required to facilitate convention bookings while providing a top end option for visitors to Christchurch, essentially the two go hand in hand,” says Hargreaves. 

The convention centre is due for practical completion in the first quarter of 2020. The hotel site will be available for development six months prior to completion of the convention centre. 



Tom Barclay Associate Director of Research and Consulting at JLL says, “The new convention centre will provide capacity for up to 2,000 delegates. This will create significant flow on effects for the local economy. While hoteliers will be an obvious beneficiary, this piece of infrastructure will drop cashed up convention goers into the middle of the developing CBD retail scene. This bodes well for those in the northeast quadrant of the CBD around New Regent Street, which are somewhat disconnected from the core retail precinct at present. The convention centre will act as a link to these nodes and help drive the performance of the highly competitive food and beverage scene.

“There are wider reaching consequences particularly for the tourism industry, with some delegates likely to stay on and work in a trip of the South Island as part of their long-haul trip to New Zealand. Undoubtedly, the convention centre will drive higher performance of the local hotel market while underpinning the GDP story for Christchurch and the wider South Island.” 

The original convention centre that was destroyed by the earthquakes had capacity for up to 650 delegates and helped Christchurch lay claim to 24% of the national convention business. A $220 million extension has been proposed to double the size of the former centre so that multiple events could be held in tandem.

JLL Christchurch Director of Sales and Leasing Hamish Stallworthy says, “The convention centre is one of the most important pieces of South Island infrastructure and will be one of the last pieces which completes the Christchurch rebuild puzzle.

“The rebuild has been a time consuming process for all Cantabrians. Following the recent announcement that the Christchurch Cathedral is to be restored and having other properties in the Square already underway is a big win for Christchurch.”

The property will be marketed through an International Expressions of Interest campaign which will seek registrations during early 2018.