Major new SKYCITY hotel and laneway for Auckland
Date: 02 October 2014
SKYCITY Entertainment Group has revealed plans to build a new hotel and pedestrian laneway of bars, restaurants and boutique shopping on land it owns in the Nelson and Hobson Streets block, expanding the SKYCITY Entertainment Precinct.
SKYCITY chief executive Nigel Morrison made the announcement in August, saying, “We are excited to advise that a new hotel and contemporary pedestrian laneway will soon be added to extend the SKYCITY Entertainment Precinct over three blocks in the heart of Auckland’s inner city.”
The hotel and pedestrian laneway form part of SKYCITY’s master plan for the development of the Hobson and Nelson Streets block and will be built as part of the New Zealand International Convention Centre (NZICC) complex. “This master plan will further contribute to the rejuvenation of the central city’s western edge and create an enhanced contemporary and dynamic space for Aucklanders and tourists alike. We believe our new SKYCITY hotel will be an important addition to Auckland’s tourism infrastructure,” Mr Morrison said.
The new hotel is a major tourism project and will complement other hotels being built in downtown Auckland, he added. “Taken together, these developments are a major vote of confidence in Auckland’s future as a vibrant, evolving city of international standing. Indeed, SKYCITY has every confidence in the ongoing growth of Auckland.
“Our SKYCITY Hotel and SKYCITY Grand already have 90% occupancy, and through the combined work of Tourism New Zealand and Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development, we know that projected visitation to Auckland is expected to have strong growth.”
The new hotel will be five-star accommodation offering 300 beds, bringing the total number of beds available within the SKYCITY Entertainment Precinct to nearly 1000. It will be linked by an air bridge to the rest of the SKYCITY, enabling guests to enjoy the best in New Zealand dining, bars, entertainment and the unique Sky Tower experience within a short, covered walk from their hotel room.
“We are also creating a pedestrian laneway adjacent to the new SKYCITY hotel,” Mr Morrison said. “This laneway will be a contemporary version of the historic Vulcan Lane, with bars, restaurants and boutique shopping at street level. It will provide a pedestrian walkway linking Hobson and Nelson Streets for Aucklanders and visitors to use and enjoy.”
Design of the hotel and laneway is a collaboration between Warren and Mahoney and Moller Architects. Principal and executive director of Warren and Mahoney, John Coop, said, “We are designing a diverse and exciting place for tourists to visit and for the local community to use.”
Lightness and space
The new SKYCITY hotel is a landmark opportunity to create a truly international modern hotel within the central city, Mr Coop noted. “In Auckland, most of our current four and five-star hotels are from a previous era; they are constructed of very solid brick masonry or concrete, and while they may have been successfully upgraded, they still reflect the past,” he commented.
“With a completely new-build hotel, we have an opportunity to use modern technologies and contemporary design and planning methods in the room and fixture design. In a beautifully integrated project, we will create lightness in the way the space feels and capitalise on beautiful views towards the harbour and urban landscape.”
Mr Morrison said, “This is a very significant time for SKYCITY as it further invests in major infrastructure projects that will enhance the city of Auckland, benefit Aucklanders and visitors alike, and continue to strengthen our business.”
Credit: Construction News