The Rees Hotel to expand across New Zealand

New Kiwi hotel chain plots up to five new properties

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Owners of New Zealand’s multiple award-winning lodge and restaurant, The Rees Hotel Queenstown, have unveiled plans to replicate its successful platform to other key domestic tourist destinations, targeting the high-end international tourism market.

Effective 12 October 2018, the boutique property on New Zealand’s South Island will be acquired under new management of interests associated with Kiwi company, Pioneer Capital, and current board members of The Rees Management Ltd (TRML), Mark Rose and Bruce Davidson. The management sale and vision to expand the brand will see The Rees Hotel expand to “around five hotels on the tourist route”.

The Rees Hotel Queenstown - Entrance
The Rees Hotel Queenstown – Entrance

The Rees Hotel Queenstown opened in 2009 on the shores of Lake Wakatipu with spectacular views over the lake to the Remarkables mountains, comprises 60 hotel rooms, 90 apartments and five Lakeside Residences. The hotel, along with its fine-dining restaurant, True South, have been awarded a string of awards and accolades including New Zealand Tourism’s top Qualmark 5 Star Hotel & Gold Business Tourism Sustainability Award in 2018 and ‘Best NZ Hotel’ two year’s running  (2017 and 2018).

TRML will continue as manager of The Rees Hotel and the entire management team and all staff will be retained.

TRML Chief Executive Officer Mark Rose said the move had been in the planning for some time and that the brand’s additional properties, like The Rees Hotel Queenstown, would reflect “their unique ‘place’, with the same culture and high touch service that we are proud to offer”.

The Rees Residence
The Rees Residence – Queenstown

While unable to pinpoint specific locations in New Zealand, Rose told LATTE the company was “working on a couple of options at the moment and have a couple more in the pipeline”.

“The Rees has a huge database of past guests and we work closely with inbound – we receive many requests about expansion and this new partnership with Pioneer Capital will allow us to turn some of these options into reality,” he said.

The Rees Residences
The Rees Residences

“We are open to anywhere our tourists visit,” Rose said, with locations such as Wanaka,  Mt Cook, Nelson and Te Anau under consideration.

“The ‘touch points’ for The Rees Hotel Queenstown have always been about our sense of place, our amazing people, our high touch service, our history, location and our food and beverage. It is very important that we continue this “thread” in our next ventures and we very much want to include ‘the New Zealand experience” and Maoridom,” Rose told LATTE.

Expansion could come in the form of new builds, management agreements or leases, with the aim to feature a landmark dining venue such as True South in Queenstown.

True South Dining Room - Image credit S Goodwin Photography
True South Dining Room – Image credit S Goodwin Photography

Quizzed if growth could pertain to The Rees Hotel brand crossing the Tasman to Australia, Rose said, “We are proud New Zealanders with a sense of our unique place and culture.”

“It is more about the location and the people than acquisition for acquisition’s sake. We want to create a real brand with consistent brand standards that are uniquely New Zealand.”

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