Thursday, June 29, 2017
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Auckland

NZ Hotel Industry Awards – 33 finalists named

The finalists in the New Zealand Hotel Industry Awards have been revealed and five regions dominate the line-up – Auckland, Rotorua, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown.

Homecoming parade for Emirates Team NZ

Planning for a homecoming parade in Auckland for the victorious Emirates Team NZ is underway.

Queenstown Airport soars with 17% jump in passengers

Queenstown Airport’s total passengers jumped by 17.1% to 119,231 in May 2017, compared to the same month last year, according to owner Auckland Airport in its latest traffic update.

Major refurb for Auckland Airport Holiday Inn

Holiday Inn Auckland Airport today announced a full refurbishment of all public spaces, starting next month.

Tourism boon predicted from Great Barrier dark sky status

Great Barrier Island, located 100 kilometres north-east of central Auckland, has become the first island in the world to be designated an International Dark Sky Sanctuary.

Last week to apply for Auckland Airport development grants

Applications for Auckland Airport's fifth annual round of Tourism Development Grants close at the end of this week.

No excuse for illegal camping

With Auckland expecting 34,000 visitors for the upcoming All Blacks vs The British & Irish Lions Test matches, Alexandra Park is reporting solid bookings from fans as an official pop-up campervan site.

Video: ACB Auckland Famil Day MEETINGS 2017

The Auckland Famil Day video from MEETINGS 2017 produced by ATEED's Auckland Convention Bureau.

Nick Hill appointed new ATEED chief

The Board of Directors for Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), Auckland’s economic growth agency and an Auckland Council controlled organisation, has announced the appointment of Nick Hill to the position of Chief Executive.  

TIA: Hotel conference explores the future

From collaborative cooking areas to robotic concierges and living hotels that look different every time you visit, the latest in hotel design and service trends will feature at next month’s New Zealand Hotel Industry Conference.  

Haka Tours goes premium with Black Label

Ryan Sanders’ Haka Tours is moving upmarket with the launch of a new Black Label premium product.

Norfolk Island Airlines is Auckland Airport’s 30th partner

The arrival into Auckland of a chartered Nauru Airlines B737-300 from Norfolk Island would not have turned many heads on Saturday afternoon.

Auckland Airport wins two international awards

Auckland Airport has won two international awards, with the company being named Australasia’s Leading Airport 2017 in the World Travel Awards and placing ninth in the world in the 2017 AirHelp rankings for airport excellence.

Kelly Tarlton’s launches Blue Project

SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s, with generous support from the Department of Conservation’s Community Fund, has launched The Blue Project, a marine outreach programme aimed at educating kiwi kids about the importance of marine conservation and sustainability.

Sichuan Airlines’ new Auckland route

Sichuan Airlines’ new Auckland route provides New Zealand’s first direct connection to south west China

An Operator’s View: Explore Group’s Kit Nixon

Explore Group's chief executive Kit Nixon tells us why the boat cruise and tour company set sail up the value curve, expanding overseas and delivering unique maritime experiences.

Auckland Australasia’s leading meetings and conference destination

Auckland has been named the top meetings and conference destination in Australasia at the 2017 World Travel Awards.

Weather dampens Rainbow’s End, Polynesian Spa owner’s earnings

A wet summer has contributed to flat earnings for the owner of Rotorua's Polynesian Spa and Auckland's Rainbow's End. Rangatira Investments has reported operating earnings for the year to March 2017 of $11.7m, up slightly...

The Nation: Auckland Mayor Phil Goff

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff talks to Lisa Owen on The Nation about the prospect of facing a legal challenge to his targeted accommodation rate.

Targeted accommodation rate will backfire on Auckland

Waikato-Tainui warns that Auckland Council’s rate increase targeting commercial accommodation operators will put new hotel developments and jobs at risk.

Auckland Airport launches jobs and skills hub

Auckland Airport formally launched Ara, its South Auckland jobs and skills hub, on Friday.

MEETINGS 2017: Accelerating events sector to inject $311m

New Zealand’s international business events sector is positioned for a period of accelerated growth after securing events that will deliver $310m boost to the economy.

Legal threat looms as Auckland moves to adopt targeted rate

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says the accommodation targeted rate will ease overall rates burden for residents. Credit: Radio New Zealand The hotel industry is considering a legal challenge after Auckland Council's finance committee voted 11-8...

Auckland to hold World Veterinary Association Congress in 2020

Auckland has secured the bid to host another top international congress at the NZICC in 2020 worth an estimated $6.2m to the regional economy.

Auckland rises up international rankings for business events

Auckland has moved up 14 places in the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) rankings to 79 from 93 last year – continuing its rapid climb up the ranks as a business events destination.

Celebrating life, diversity and the city’s urban rebirth

Following an extensive $22 million refurbishment, AccorHotels New Zealand are delighted to announce the rebranding of Mercure Auckland to Grand Mercure Auckland.

P&O to launch winter cruises from NZ

P&O Cruises will base its Pacific Jewel ship in Auckland next winter and provide an extra five itineraries in a record programme for New Zealand. The cruise operator has announced its 2018 New Zealand schedule...

MEETINGS 2017: Buyers look to NZ to meet diverse requirements

More than 500 conference, event and incentive organisers have descended on Auckland for CINZ MEETINGS 2017 which kicks off in earnest today.

Watered down bed tax for $10 million

PRESS RELEASE: Auckland Chamber of Commerce Auckland businesses are already paying 2.73 times more rates to Auckland Council than residential rate payers. “It is from this pool of money that Council should promote Auckland, if it is...

TIA: Auckland accommodation targeted rate “illegal”

Auckland mayor Phil Goff’s proposed accommodation targeted rate surcharge has been declared “illegal” by the Tourism Industry Aotearoa.

Auckland Harbour Bridge to be lit up

The Auckland Harbour Bridge will soon be covered in coloured lights as part of the multi-million dollar energy efficiency partnership between Vector and Auckland Council.

Air New Zealand ‘Sheeran’ the fun

Air New Zealand has announced it will operate 52 extra one-way flights to help fans see Ed Sheeran.

Auckland arrivals surge 21%

Auckland Airport’s international visitor arrivals surged by 21.3% in April on the back of the World Masters Games and Easter.

Replacing the targeted rate

The Auckland Mayor’s office is offering to replace the controversial targeted rate on commercial accommodation providers, but wants the sector to wear the substantial cost for a year.

Top event organisers ready to do business in NZ

Leading business event organisers from around the world are heading to New Zealand’s largest business tourism trade exhibition in Auckland next week.

Consortium to lead design of the ‘airport of the future’

PRESS RELEASE: Auckland Airport Auckland Airport announces appointment of specialist consortium to lead design of the ‘airport of the future’ The creation of a combined domestic and international terminal at Auckland Airport – a key milestone in...

NZICC cooks up fourth 2020 event win

The New Zealand International Convention Centre has added a fourth conference to its 2020 schedule winning a major international food congress.

Free electric cars for corporate travellers

Regular business travellers will be able to book an e-Golf for their day of travel, free of charge.

Auckland’s peak summer season the hottest yet

Storms came and went, but it was a long, scorching summer for Auckland as far as tourism goes.

New Ambassador for Auckland Sir John Kirwan shows off the region

Rugby legend, mental health campaigner and proud Aucklander Sir John Kirwan is schooling up British and Irish Lions fans

China-NZ Year of Tourism opportunities on the horizon

Auckland is gearing up to seize opportunities created by the official bilateral ‘China-New Zealand Year of Tourism’ in 2019.

Alexandra the great new option for Lions campervanners

Auckland’s ability to host an army of camper van-driving British and Irish Lions rugby fans at temporary campgrounds next month has just been boosted with at least 200 new sites now available at the region’s famed trotting venue Alexandra Park.

TRENZ: Auckland to host tourism activity extravaganza

Auckland will host hundreds of influential international tourism representatives next week to an afternoon of exciting activities, ranging from a face to face encounter with a shark to an afternoon of decadence at a local hotel.

Auckland Airport: German visitors jump 15%, Aussies drop 7%

Auckland Airport’s visitor arrivals from Germany were up 14.9% in March 2017 compared to the same month last year.

Date set for 2017 PATA Global Insights Conference in Auckland

The PATA Global Insights Conference (PGIC) returns to Auckland on Friday, 29 September 2017 with the theme ‘R U Future Ready’?

Airport eGate expansion nears completion

Customs Minister Nicky Wagner has announced 15 new eGates are now fully operational at Auckland Airport arrivals, meaning Customs’ nationwide upgrade and expansion of eGates is almost complete.

Meet New Zealand in one day at CINZ MEETINGS

CINZ MEETINGS 2017 is the opportunity for event organisers to plan their next year in a day, and to meet all New Zealand under one roof.

An Operator’s View: Kelly Tarlton’s Tim Keeling

Kelly Tarlton's SEA LIFE Aquarium's general manager, Tim Keeling, tells the Ticker about the attraction's strategy to partner with other operators, driving local engagement and its new Aquarium After Dark event this weekend.

World Masters Games to inject $53m, 266,000 guest nights

The largest event New Zealand has hosted since the 2011 Rugby World Cup starts today with an opening ceremony at Eden Park in Auckland this evening. The World Masters Games 2017 will see more than...

Record summer of concerts delivers $37m boost for Auckland

Music lovers from around New Zealand flocked to Auckland’s outdoor stadiums this summer, boosting the local economy by more than $37M – the city’s most successful outdoor concert season to date.

All Blacks share their ‘Insider’s Guide’ to Auckland

With less than 80 days to go until kick off for the first All Blacks game in Auckland in the DHL New Zealand Lions Series, three All Blacks took some time out from training to share their favourite things to do in Auckland.

Targeted accommodation rate compromise – still flawed

Talk of a compromise targeted accommodation rate that excludes camping grounds, backpackers and motels on the fringe of the city is underway at Council but not in a way that includes the tourism industry and business and may result in a response that is flawed and potentially illegal.

International tourism buyers eager for TRENZ 2017

New Zealand’s continuing popularity as a visitor destination is fuelling demand for international travel and tourism buyers wanting to come to TRENZ 2017.

CINZ opposes Auckland accommodation targeted rate proposal

Conventions and Incentives New Zealand is adding its voice in opposition to Auckland’s proposed targeted rate hike for commercial accommodation providers.

Retirement and travel are intertwined

The Retirement Lifestyle and Travel Expo, happening over the weekend from 8-9 April, is an event celebrating the products and services available to get the most out of life for Baby Boomers and Retirees.

Is Auckland’s proposed targeted rate losing council support?

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff's proposed targeted accommodation rate is losing council support.

Support for inner dolphin cruise berths

The decision on the best option for berthing large cruise ships went before the Planning Committee today, with councillors providing, in principle, support to an inner dolphin.

“Disaster, unfair, unaffordable” – submissions slam targeted rate

Auckland’s “poorly designed” targeted rate has been slammed as a “disaster” with “massive unintended consequences” in a raft of industry submissions.

Auckland Council needs to accept facts

Auckland Council’s proposed $28 million targeted rate on commercial accommodation would have massive unintended consequences for the city and must be dropped.

First ever Melbourne Cup cruise from NZ

P&O races towards a record 2018 with first ever Melbourne Cup cruise from New Zealand.

Four Points by Sheraton to debut in Auckland

The 255-room hotel will be located in the heart of the city at 396 Queen Street, Auckland's main retail and dining strip.

Chris Roberts v Phil Goff: We break the bout down

Ahead of the consultation period on the measure drawing to a close on 27th March who fared best from the latest round in the ring?

Luxury hotel planned for Auckland waterfront

A new 165-bed luxury hotel is planned for the last remaining waterfront site in downtown Auckland.

USA travel industry treated to warm New Zealand welcome

America’s largest network of travel agents enjoyed a warm Kiwi welcome last night to kick off their 18th Annual International Summit.

Impose targeted visitor tax at border, not on councils

A targeted visitor tax imposed at New Zealand’s border is the fairest way to ensure tourists contribute to cover costs of their visit.

Q&A with TIME Unlimited Tours’ Ceillhe Sperath

Ceillhe Sperath's award winning TIME Unlimited Tours offers excursions around Auckland – and further afield - as well as Māori cultural tours.

Hotel occupancy falls across NZ over summer

Hotel occupancy dropped by 2.5% over summer as the average room rate across New Zealand grew by 12.7% to $199.99.

New Fullers ferry to cope with tourist demand

Fullers is introducing a new vessel, Capricornian Surfer, dedicated to Devonport to cope with tourism demand.

Colliers: Looming hotel crisis and how to avert it

New Zealand is heading for an 'accommodation crunch' that will put its tourism industry at risk - here's how to avert it, says Colliers.

Record numbers heading for RTONZ-Inbound Trade Event

A record number of inbound travel companies are heading for the RTONZ-Inbound Trade event in Auckland.

Graham Matthews to leave GM role at Auckland Airport

Graham Matthews, general manager airport development, is leaving Auckland Airport to focus on family matters in the UK.

Auckland’s appalling targeted accommodation rate

The Tourism Industry Association's Chris Roberts questions the fairness of Auckland mayor Phil Goff's proposed targeted accommodation rate, which could see some operators hit with rate increases of 250% or more.

Auckland cruise arrivals near 90k in record February

The Ports of Auckland handled 31 cruise ship visits for the month of February, welcoming 89,516 visiting passengers and crew.

CINZ MEETINGS 2017 showcases 19 NZ regions

New Zealand’s diverse regions will be on show for more than 600 business event organisers at ASB Showgrounds in Auckland this May.

PCMA: What NZ can do to win business events and visitors

The Professional Convention Management Association’s director of global development, Michelle Crowley, tells us what makes NZ attractive to the global conference market.

Industry rallies against Auckland’s accommodation targeted rate

A month-long consultation period on Auckland Mayor Phil Goff’s proposal for an accommodation targeted rate opened this week.

Auckland nears 1m international passengers for January

For the second consecutive month, Auckland Airport welcomed a record number of international passengers.

Auckland’s accommodation targeted rate won’t help the city

Hotels currently under refurbishment and new hotels are faced with massive cost increases long-term because of mayor Phil Goff’s accommodation targeted rate.

New campervan park in time for World Masters Games

A new short-term campervan park at Ellerslie Racecourse has been given the green light, opening up some additional accommodation options in time for World Masters Games 2017 and the DHL New Zealand Lions series.

Auckland Airport welcomes Sichuan Airlines

Auckland Airport welcomes the announcement that Sichuan Airlines will start flying between Auckland and Chengdu in China from June this year.

NZICC secures 1200-delegate medical conference

THE NZICC has booked another major conference for 2020, securing the Tripartite Colorectal Annual Meeting

Auckland tackles freedom camping issue

A bumper tourism season is increasing tensions between freedom campers and locals in Auckland, prompting new moves to see if the conflicting needs of freedom campers and local residents can peacefully co-exist.

New 5-star hotel to meet growing demand at Auckland Airport

Auckland Airport and Tainui Group Holdings have announced an agreement to develop a new 5-star hotel adjacent to Auckland Airport’s international terminal and the existing 4-star Novotel hotel.

InterCity’s airport buses now offer ‘business class’

Travellers on InterCity’s direct bus service between Hamilton and Auckland Airport can now enjoy a taste of business class on the road.

First event wins for NZICC a sign of spoils to come

The first confirmed conferences for the New Zealand International Convention Centre are set to deliver an $11m boost to Auckland’s economy in 2020.

SkyCity’s NZICC on track but it’s not committing to other expansion plans

The $700m New Zealand International Convention Centre and Hobson St hotel projects remain on-budget and on-target despite owners SkyCity remaining uncommitted in other expansion plans.

Airbnb: Which councils are following Queenstown’s lead?

The issue of whether residential ratepayers who rent out their homes for profit should pay rates in line with their commercial counterparts is not a new one.

Auckland Airport welcomes world’s longest flight

Auckland Airport welcomed Qatar Airways on Monday as the airline launches the world’s longest commercial passenger flight on the Auckland-Doha route.

P&O’s Pacific Pearl arrives with Auckland Nines fans

More than 1700 Nines supporters have sailed into Auckland this morning on P&O’s Pacific Pearl, marking the start of a four-month season of cruises from New Zealand which will contribute close to $20 million to the nation’s economy.

Auckland tourism boss Brett O’Riley resigns

Auckland promotion agency ATEED boss Brett O'Riley has resigned after five years in the job.

Showcasing New Zealand as a photographer’s paradise

Tourism New Zealand and Nikon Australia have today launched a new global partnership to dshowcase New Zealand’s landscapes and Nikon’s KeyMission 360-degree camera.

TIA: Auckland visitor levy unfair

A proposed new visitor levy for Auckland unfairly targets accommodation providers and fails to take account of the economic benefits tourism brings.
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ROUND UP

April 2017

Mike Hosking: Lot of fuss over Waiheke bus There has always been a tension about Waiheke. The NZ Herald

Flights delayed, cancelled out of Auckland There’s disruption for flights in and out of Auckland airport on Wednesday evening as wild weather bears down on the country, with one plane bound for Kerikeri forced to turn around in the air. Stuff

Aucklanders told to prepare for cancelled bus and ferry services as extreme weather predicted Auckland Transport says disruption to public transport tomorrow seems inevitable, with extreme weather predicted. 1 News

Auckland receptionist takes silver in world champs An Auckland hotel worker has claimed silver in the 2017 receptionist world championships. Stuff

‘A number will end up in cars’ – fears for the homeless as accommodation books out for Lions tour There are concerns for those relying on Auckland motels for emergency housing as two big sporting events are set to kick-off in the city. 1 NEWS

Waiheke bus protesters make tourists get out and walk Around 150 protesters blocked tourists on Waiheke Island from travelling by bus. Newshub

Auckland Airport launches Strata Club to reward frequent fliers The airport has launched its own loyalty scheme that rewards frequent travellers. NBR

Air New Zealand adds new jet service between Auckland and Dunedin Air New Zealand is adding a new return jet service between Dunedin and Auckland from July. The Press

Chinese developers to build $20 million hotel on Dominion Rd A resource consent has been lodged for a 60-room hotel. NZ Herald

Airport parking costs: Are travellers being charged fairly? A new report into airport car parking has questioned whether travellers are being fairly charged. NZ Herald

April fools! Zipline ride from One Tree Hill a flight of fancy If you thought a half-price deal to zipline 800m off the peak of One Tree Hill was too good to be true – well, you were right. NZ Herald

Lions surcharge shock: $780 for camper, now $2100 Businesses are being warned against price gouging during the Lions Tour, with one vehicle rental company hiking prices by up to 200%. NZ Herald

March 2017

Does Auckland’s tourism trumpet need muting? Auckland is filled to the brim so why is it still being promoted as a destination? Radio NZ

Chinese hoteliers on Goff’s new rates rise: ‘If only we’d known …’ If Fu Wah International Group had known its Park Hyatt Auckland hotel would be treated as responsible for 10% of the Auckland visitor economy, it would never have agreed to invest here. NBR (subscription)

Road closures expected as Auckland Airport motorway upgrades continue Passengers can expect a lot of changes on their journeys to and from Auckland Airport in the coming months. Stuff

Rachel Smalley: Auckland needs a second airport I saw the Prime Minister speak to a business audience last night – the Business North Harbour Association had a ‘meet the prime minister’ evening. Newstalk ZB

Pillow tax: Tourism industry wants to know more about where Ateed spends its money Commercial accommodation providers targeted by Auckland Council to pay for promoting the city are concerned about a lack of information on the agency they are being asked to fund. The NZ Herald

Motels given millions to house homeless Five Auckland motels have received more than $1.3 million of taxpayer money in just three months to house homeless people. Radio NZ

Ateed turns to private sector to help capture Auckland’s growth Auckland’s economy is growing at a fast clip but not fast enough to bridge an alarming infrastructure funding shortfall. NBR (subscription)

Passengers on flight delayed for 42 hours have nowhere to stay – because Auckland is booked out for Adele Passengers on a Malaysia Airlines flight delayed by more than 42 hours due to a mechanical fault are stranded at Auckland Airport because all nearby accommodation is booked out for Adele. The NZ Herald

New Pullman for Auckland Airport The first image has been released of the 250-room Pullman Hotel to be built beside the Novotel at Auckland International Airport. The NZ Herald

Search on for Auckland City hotel sites International hotel investors are looking to buy but there are not enough properties. True Commercial

Goff backs airport light rail sooner The Auckland mayor is urging the government to push ahead with light rail to the airport. Radio NZ

Superliners set course for Auckland The superliner Pacific Jewel will become a regular fixture on Auckland’s skyline next year. The NZ Herald

Tourism New Zealand deny funding request from Duco Events for Joseph Parker fight Duco Events has failed to get backing from Tourism NZ. Stuff

New Sheraton planned for Auckland’s Queen St After many years without a Sheraton hotel, Auckland is about to get the brand back. The NZ Herald

Auckland accommodation rate plan ‘like the Chinese poll tax’ One veteran of the hotel sector says the proposed Auckland City targeted rate on the accommodation sector was a blunt weapon like the Chinese poll tax. The NZ Herald

Staying at the Novotel Auckland Airport Linda Thompson checks into the Novotel Auckland Airport. The NZ Herald

Auckland waterfront plans: Wharf extension for superyachts likely to draw criticism The Auckland Council is dusting off plans for the city’s waterfront that include new cruise ship facilities, berths for superyachts and a park on Wynyard Pt. The NZ Herald

Hundreds criticise Auckland Airport for shooting security dog Auckland Airport is acknowledging the public outcry after 10-month-old trainee security dog Grizz was shot dead and is promising its own investigation. Newstalk ZB

Tourism may be too much of a good thing for overwhelmed New Zealand When their flight home to the U.S. from Auckland was delayed last month, a group of 53 elderly American tourists was put up in a traditional Maori meeting house for the night because all the city’s hotels were full. The NZ Herald

Auckland accommodation businesses on the warpath over planned rates hikes Auckland commercial accommodation businesses are squaring up for a fight over paying for city tourism promotion. Stuff

Road closures expected as Auckland Airport motorway upgrades continue Passengers can expect a lot of changes on their journeys to and from Auckland Airport in the coming months. Stuff

Phil Goff: Bed tax should pay for Auckland’s promotion Ratepayers have shouldered the burden of growth for too long and it is time to look for new solutions from those who benefit the most. The NZ Herald

World Masters Games to bring wealthy tourists, organisers say With over 27,000 well-off athletes set to converge on Auckland for the World Masters Games, organisers expect it to give a significant economic boost. The NZ Herald

Tourist boom pushing up room rates The booming tourism sector has helped drive Auckland’s average hotel room rate to $197 per night, up 9% on the previous year. The NZ Herald

Hotels go into battle with Auckland’s mayor Phil Goff over new rate to pay for promoting the city Auckland hotel and motel owners are on a collision course with the city’s mayor Phil Goff over a targeted rate they say will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. The NZ Herald

Emirates credits superjumbo for success of mega flight from Auckland to Dubai Emirates has carried around 200,000 passengers on its non-stop service between Auckland and Dubai and says the success of the route was based on upgrading to the A380 superjumbo. The NZ Herald

Auckland Council freedom camping pilot splits opinion Auckland Council’s freedom camping pilot has divided public opinion in the Rodney District. Rodney Times

Tribal trust’s case for share of Auckland islands tourism thrown out by High Court Court throws out judicial review challenging the decision to grant a five-year concession to Fullers was unlawful. NBR (subscription)

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff promises crackdown after 43 per cent jump in Ateed staff travel costs Auckland Mayor Phil Goff has revealed details about a crackdown on travel, hospitality and gifts after the council’s promotion agency reported a 43 per cent jump in travel costs to more than $900,000 over two years. The NZ Herald