Sunday, June 25, 2017
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Queenstown & Wanaka

Sellers bank $400K after skydivers smash jump target

Skydive Wanaka has broken through the 17,000 tandem jumps target set by Skydive the Beach allowing the Otago operation's previous owners to bank $400,000.

Haka Tours goes premium with Black Label

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

New sightseeing experience at Cardrona

With the new McDougall’s Chondola this winter, we’re very excited to launch a new Sightseeing product at Cardrona for the 2017 season & beyond.

Treble Cone on standby

Due to some unusually warm temperatures over the past week, the Home Basin has insufficient snow cover to proceed with opening day.

“Desperate need” for new Queenstown accommodation

Queenstown is in desperate need of new visitor accommodation and the response to date is well short of demand, according to Colliers International.

FMC: Time for Remarkables National Park

Federated Mountain Clubs (FMC) has launched its Remarkable Outdoors campaign headlined by a proposed new national park - ‘The Remarkables National Park’ in the Otago Southland high-country near Queenstown.

Delays on popular tourist route

People who use the road between Wanaka and Tarras, State Highway 8A, may experience some disruptions from next week

Airport chair appointed WOW trustee

A former top lawyer with strong family ties to the Battle of Britain has joined the Warbirds Over Wanaka Community Trust board.

$10m Chondola launches as skiers hit southern slopes

Cardrona's $10m McDougall's Express Chondola made its season debut with the opening of the Cardrona ski field.

Skyline Queenstown celebrates 50th anniversary

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHvnViKETXY PRESS RELEASE: Skyline Enterprises New Zealand’s most-visited tourist attraction, Skyline Queenstown, kicks off five months of community-focused celebrations to mark its 50th anniversary. The pioneering NZ-based global tourism company launches ‘50 Years of Fun’ – an exciting...

Queenstown Trails Trust targets $30,000 fundraising

PRESS RELEASE: Queenstown Trails Trust The Queenstown Trails Trust is spearheading a major fundraising appeal during June in a bid to boost membership and provide all important funding support for on-going trail development in the Wakatipu. CEO...

New parking options on the way for Queenstown Airport

Southern Lakes residents and visitors alike will soon see some changes to parking at Queenstown Airport.

An Operator’s View: Crowne Plaza Queenstown’s Anna Edie

Crowne Plaza Queenstown’s General Manager Anna Edie on adapting to her first general manager role in New Zealand, hiring great talent and operating with a point of difference.

Wednesday Letter: Tourism Minister Paula Bennett

Tourism Minister Paula Bennett on why she is focused on helping regional NZ, the government's funding priorities, and why Queenstown and other regions may be able to get more support.  The tourism industry has enjoyed...

Go Bus wins airport park and ride contract

Go Bus has secured the contract to deliver passengers to and from Queenstown Airport's new 150-space park and ride facility.

Eichardt’s Private Hotel in symphony with budding violinists

Queenstown’s Imperium Collection of luxury hotels is set to enter the winter months on a high note.

International C&I buyers do it the Wanaka way

In the largest famil of its kind in Wanaka, 31 international incentive travel buyers are sampling the experiences on offer in the Central Otago town.

Net zero energy camp manager appointed

Peter Kerr has been appointed Manager of Camp Glenorchy, a new residential tourist destination for meetings and retreats, school trips, family celebrations, and friends who share a love of the great outdoors.

Skyline faces Ziptrek objections to $100m gondola plan

Ziptrek Ecotours’ director Trent Yeo will today give evidence in Skyline Enterprises’ application for a $100m redevelopment in Queenstown.

New tourism hub for historic high country station

A historic central Otago high country station is creating a new Wanaka tourism hub by expanding its experiences offer.

Nomad goes 360° as it expands offering

Nomad Safaris, Queenstown’s oldest off-road tour company, has introduced two new activities to its adventure menu for 2017.

Treble Cone gets its guns out

Treble Cone are proud to announce extra snowmaking facilities for the 2017 season.

New CEO for Queenstown Trails Trust

PRESS RELEASE: Queenstown Trails Trust The Queenstown Trails Trust has appointed respected Queenstown businessman and elite sportsman Mark (Willy) Williams as its new chief executive. Chairman Tony McQuilkin says Williams, who replaces Mandy Kennedy as CEO, brings...

Destination Queenstown’s new winter campaign

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0pJG4cUWCNs Destination Queenstown’s new winter campaign has been created entirely from user-generated content (UGC). The Regional Tourism Organisation has created short clips using videos and photos from visitors’ social media channels to encourage Australians to visit...

New head chef at Crowne Plaza Queenstown

More than a decade of travel and culinary adventures has come full circle with the appointment of Robin Lilley to the position of head chef at Crowne PlazaQueenstown.

New Zealand tourism talent exported to Las Vegas

A unique New Zealand adventure tourism experience favoured by celebrities including Fast and Furious’ film star Michelle Rodriguez is heading to Sin City.

Skyline Enterprises appoints pharma boss as new CEO

Skyline Enterprises has appointed former GlaxoSmithKline Australia boss Geoff McDonald as its new chief executive.

An Operator’s View: NZ Fine Touring Group’s David Kettle

NZ Fine Touring Group co-founder David Kettle on the Wanaka-based company's expansion plans, preparing to enter a new market segment, and why the inbounder is considering entering the hotel sector.

QAC secures control of Wanaka Airport

Queenstown Airport Corporation has secured the lease of Wanaka Airport allowing it to control the two largest airports in Central Otago.

Real Journeys hits ‘Go’ on merger

Real Journeys has restructured its business to create two distinct tourism companies.

Easter travel tips from Queenstown Airport

With so many people on the move, we wanted to give you some travel tips to make your weekend run as smoothly and safely as possible.

Unique honey centre to target Chinese market

A unique new honey centre is to be built in Queenstown to tap into rising demand from Chinese visitors for the local delicacy.

Colliers: NZ hotel deals top $500m

The New Zealand hotel market has seen its most buoyant period of activity in a decade with over $500m of hotel assets changing hands in past two years.

Festival of Colour opens with fire, song & poetry

More than 850 people gathered on Lake Wanaka’s waterfront for bonfires, song and poetry at the opening night celebrations of the seventh Festival of Colour.

Rare bird returns home this weekend

A ‘rare bird’ will take flight over Queenstown this weekend as part of the Aviation Pioneers’ 70th Anniversary Reunion, which runs 7-9 April.

Airbnb Trips NZ: the conditions and costs of launching your experience

Launched last week, the peer-to-peer accommodation provider has added Queenstown to its Experiences offer.

Shotover Jet achieves Qualmark Gold in Sustainable Tourism

Shotover Jet has for the first time achieved a Qualmark Gold Sustainable Tourism Business award, with Qualmark confirming the experience as a ‘must do’ Queenstown activity.

Last reunion of Queenstown aviation pioneers

Queenstown aviation pioneers and their families will gather at Queenstown 7-9 April 2017 for a last reunion.

Coronet Peak launches midweek night skiing

Coronet Peak is bringing out the stars on Wednesdays nights, as it extends its popular Friday and Saturday Twilight and Night skiing experience to Wednesdays during July.

TripAdvisor: Queenstown NZ’s #1 destination

Queenstown has been named the number one destination in New Zealand in the TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice Awards 2017.

Treble Cone invests in new snowmaking system

Treble Cone is proud to announce that a new snowmaking system will be in place for the 2017 season.

Light-hearted video tackles serious topic

Lake Wanaka Tourism is launching a series of light-hearted educational videos, which aim to deliver some important messages to travellers visiting the region.

Queenstown convention lead leaves

Queenstown convention bureau manager Regan Pearce has left his position.

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.

Q&A with Cardrona Alpine Resort’s Bridget Legnavsky

Bridget Legnavsky, Cardrona Alpine Resort Bridget Legnavsky is the general manager of Cardrona Alpine Resort, which in recent year’s has been blazing a trail in terms of NZ skifield’s developing their summer offer. Winter is...

Golf courses forged by nature draw in the putters

New Zealand’s unique golf courses, many created within landscapes forged by nature are proving a drawcard for international visitors.

Quake delays launch of AJ Hackett’s $2m Nevis Thriller

AJ Hackett Bungy New Zealand has delayed the opening of its new Queenstown activity after crucial equipment was stranded by the Kaikoura Earthquake.

Q&A with JUCY’s Kat Van Dijk

Kat Van Dijk entered tourism relatively recently when she joined JUCY just over four years ago. She is GM Southern Lakes at what was originally a car rental company but has expanded into campervans, cruise and hotels.

Golf tourism to benefit from $5.5m in govt grants

Golf tourism is expected to benefit from a government injection of $5.5m into two major golfing events.

Access to natural heritage celebrated at awards

Six of New Zealand’s champions of public access were recognised on Tuesday for their achievements in enhancing public access and offering new opportunities for New Zealanders to experience our great outdoors.

Queenstown Airport interim revenue jumps 25% to $20m

Queenstown Airport Corporation has reported a solid half-year result, achieving a net profit after tax of $6.2m for the first six months of the 2017 financial year.

Cardrona invests $15m in winter ’17

Cardona Alpine Resort is on track to complete $15m of developments in time for the winter season.

Destination Queenstown collaborates with MiNDFOOD

Destination Queenstown has partnered with leading lifestyle magazine MiNDFOOD in an innovative partnership to promote Queenstown this autumn.

Real Journeys’ Richard Lauder on $20m Walter Peak investment and beyond

Real Journeys is embarking on an extensive development programme which will see it pump millions into its major attractions.

Queenstown Airport buys Wanaka farm, gets into $750k “groove” 

Queenstown Airport Corporation has acquired Windermere Farm, a 43-hectare block of land located adjacent to Wanaka Airport.

Destination Queenstown unveils new official visitor website

Destination Queenstown has unveiled a brand new website to showcase New Zealand’s favourite visitor destination this week.

Skydive Wanaka helps Aussies lift NZ revenue by 362%

Skydive the Beach reported an 84% surge in its half-year pre-tax profit boosted by its acquisition including Skydive Wanaka, which it bought in July last year.

Wellington, Queenstown airports lose court appeals

Wellington and Queenstown airports have both lost separate Court of Appeal decisions over their runway safety areas.

Southern Discoveries invests $2m into “seamless” Milford tours

Southern Discoveries will enter Queenstown’s competitive coach sector after committing close to $2m to launch a fleet of coaches.

New generation jet boat launches in Queenstown

An innovative new generation of jet boat has launched onto the Queenstown scene, able to carry almost double the number of passengers than an average river jet boat.

Public transport breakthrough for the Wakatipu

A much needed radical shift in public transport for the Wakatipu Basin’s residence and visitors has taken a step closer.

Iconic Kingston Flyer sells to investors for $2m

The iconic Kingston Flyer has been sold to a consortium of Queenstown investors for $2m.

Edie starts GM role at Crowne Plaza

Crowne Plaza Queenstown this week welcomes internationally-experienced hotelier Anna Edie to the position of general manager.

Queenstown’s mayor is now Real Journeys’ chairman – conflict of interest?

Is Queenstown mayor Jim Boult's recent appointment to chairman of one of the region's most prominent tourism companies, Real Journeys, a conflict of interest?

Jim Boult: Queenstown is too expensive, but not for tourists

With more than 35 years of experience in the tourism industry behind him, Queenstown's mayor and newly appointed chair of Real Journeys, Jim Boult, tells Tourism Ticker why he believes his town is getting too expensive, but not for tourists.

Is a gambling clampdown behind a big drop in Chinese visitor spending?

Chinese New Year spending dropped 10% across New Zealand compared to the corresponding holiday period last year, according to Marketview.

Hotel occupancy was down for Chinese New Year, even in Queenstown

Hotel occupancy across New Zealand dropped markedly for Chinese New Year in 2017, even in the country’s major resort town of Queenstown.

Queenstown Airport sees passenger numbers jump 13%

Following a strong Christmas and New Year travel period, passenger numbers at Queenstown Airport increased 13% over January.

Mahu Whenua adds luxury lodge-style accommodation

New Zealand’s newest luxury lodge and eco-sanctuary is now even more accessible for visitors to Wanaka and Queenstown.

Crowne Plaza Queenstown undergoes $500k refurb

Award-winning hotel Crowne Plaza Queenstown has a fresh new look for guests to enjoy following upgrades to public areas, rooms and conference spaces.

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.

Golf tourists to tee off at new Cardrona course

The southern lakes region is set to increase its golf tourism pull with the addition of a new “Alpine Links” course and four-star hotel in the Cardrona Valley.

Crowne Plaza Queenstown welcomes new F&B Manager

Premier lakefront hotel, Crowne Plaza Queenstown, has welcomed Catherine Bodnar to the position of Food and Beverage Services Manager.

Million passenger milestone for Queenstown

Air New Zealand is celebrating a new milestone after it carried a million domestic passengers to and from Queenstown in 2016.

New Warbirds website launched

Warbirds Over Wanaka International Airshow has launched a new website which it’s hoped will encourage more visitors to attend the biennial event.

New visually driven website for Lake Wanaka Tourism

Lake Wanaka Tourism (LWT) has launched a fresh new-look website, designed to reflect the updated brand rolled out earlier this year.

Real Journeys introduces Walter Peak Electric Bike Trail

Real Journeys’ latest Queenstown attraction carries visitors on one of the oldest forms of transport, the 104–year old TSS Earnslaw steamship, to one of the latest: the Ubco electric trail bike.
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ROUND UP

April 2017

Sunday sorted but… Wanaka shop owners are looking forward to trading on Easter Sunday without fear of prosecution, but still plan to open on Good Friday. ODT

Airport land battle keeps going The battle over 16ha of land at Frankton, known as Lot 6, may not yet be over. ODT

South Korean luge celebrated Queenstown tourism operator Skyline Enterprises has been formally congratulated by South Korean government officials at the opening ceremony for its $20 million luge investment in Tongyeong City. ODT

Accommodation registrations still coming in Council threats are flushing out Queenstown’s unregistered holiday let owners. ODT

Too few beds for two events Wanaka accommodation providers and Lake Wanaka Tourism are predicting there will be an accommodation crisis in March next year due to the Wanaka A&P Show and the Motatapu race both being held on the second weekend that month. ODT

March 2017

Freedom camping turns feral Freedom campers have been snapped sleeping under trees in Queenstown. Mountain Scene

Queenstown first in New Zealand to have Airbnb Experience Airbnb has launched it’s first New Zealand Experience destination as the company diversifies its offerings. Stuff

Resort restaurateur heads to beach Forty years after first coming to Queenstown, the resort’s longest-serving restaurateur is upping sticks. Mountain Scene

Resort tracks caked in cack Queenstown council’s parks boss Clare Tomkins says her team come across human poo almost daily. Mountain Scene

Levy on visitors rejected A visitor levy to pay for Queenstown infrastructure looks to be a non-starter. ODT

Remarkables set to install high-tech new ski lift ahead of new season The Remarkables skifield will open a pioneering conveyor lift. Stuff

$10m hotel build Consent’s been lodged for a new Queenstown hotel, which will cost up to $10m. Mountain Scene

New facilities, parks for SH6 tourists Car parking is to be extended and toilets provided for visitors at the Blue Pools tourist stop on State Highway 6 near Makarora. ODT

Old stalwart to return to skies A former workhorse of Queenstown’s skies will touch down in the resort next month for a get-together of airline pioneers. Otago Daily Times

NZ’s newest trail: Creatives lure travellers south with scones Three creatives are tempting travellers south using the humble scone. Stuff

PM ‘on edge’ at Wanaka attraction More precisely he was on the edge of local tourism attraction the waterfall climb at Wildwire Wanaka. Otago Daily Times

Queenstown Airport warned ongoing growth could start driving people out of Queenstown The Queenstown Airport Corporation has been warned not to kill the golden goose with its ongoing expansion. Stuff

Queenstown and Wanaka Airports to complement each other if working together Queenstown Airport Corporation representatives see the operation of the Wanaka and Queenstown Airports as complimenting each other, if they are granted governance of Wanaka. Stuff

A ‘fair go’ from taxes? A visitor levy is not the answer to Queenstown’s lagging infrastructure, NZ First leader Winston Peters says. Otago Daily Times

Resort restaurateur heads to beach Forty years after first coming to Queenstown, the resort’s longest-serving restaurateur is upping sticks. Mountain Scene

$20m redevelopment programme for Walter Peak Queenstown tourism firm Real Journeys is investing $20 million in farm tourism at Walter Peak, on Lake Wakatipu. Otago Daily Times