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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, December 11, 2002

Outrigger to run first resort in New Zealand

By Kelly Yamanouchi
Advertiser Staff Writer

Outrigger Hotels & Resorts has signed its first hotel management agreement in New Zealand for a resort that is scheduled to open in time for ski season in Queenstown next year.

The Outrigger Queenstown at the Beacon will be a 99-suite, 11-level resort condominium project with "alpine vistas" on New Zealand's South Island. Outrigger signed a letter of intent with developer Wensley Developments Ltd., which has two other hotels in the area.

The first phase of 37 rooms and suites is scheduled to open in June 2003, and the final stage of 62 rooms and suites is planned to open in December 2003.

"It's a leisure destination, it has shopping and lots of activities, and it's absolutely drop-dead gorgeous there," said Outrigger chief executive David Carey.

Bill Henderson, Outrigger's vice president for business development, said the company has had its sights on New Zealand for more than eight years. He said the resort will target travelers from the United States, Australia, Japan and Europe.

Henderson expects to announce additional New Zealand properties early next year, with the long-term goal of as many as six hotels and resorts there in the next three years as the Hawai'i hotelier continues to branch out overseas.

Outrigger expects its New Zealand operations will mirror its business in Australia, where it manages seven properties and will open three more in the next six months.