Sections sell by word of mouth

Ready for open day: From left, tui sculptor Dan Kelly, Glen Tui Heights developers Janine Twose and Mark Wikstrom – and Wikstrom's photo-bombing son Luke

A Queenstown subdivision, which launches its next stage with an open day today, recently experienced a spontaneous mini-boom.

The first stage of Glen Tui Heights, at Bob’s Cove, comprised 15 sections above the Glenorchy Road, most of which have been built on.

Developers Janine Twose and Mark Wikstrom have now completed the development work for the second stage, below the road.

That originally comprised 34 lots.

Due to the resort’s housing shortage, however, the developers decided to split up three big sections, ranging from 7000 to 9000 square metres, into 15 lots.

Wikstrom says after he and a surveyor spent a recent Saturday marking out the sections, most of which were 1000sq m, a neighbour came over and offered to help sell them.

“Strictly by word of mouth, by Sunday night we’d sold eight and by Monday we’d sold the lot – boom!”

About 12 sections sold for $350,000 and the larger sections for more.

That $350,000 is the new going rate, Wikstrom notes – “two years ago, we wouldn’t have got that, and now they’re shooting out the door”.

He says they attracted “a whole lot of young couples just hanging out for sections, because there’s nothing around”.

He quips that after socialising with some of the new buyers on the Sunday night, “I woke up and thought, ‘what the hell have I done here, I don’t know anyone’s name, I don’t know who’s bought what’.

“Luckily, my neighbour sent me over a bit of a spreadsheet of who these people were, their phone numbers and what sections they’d got.”

Wikstrom says Saturday’s open day marks the end of two years’ hard work developing the next stage.

“The main mission has been getting the main access road in – it’s up to the same standard as a highway.”

He says a lot of infrastructure that he and Twose have put in is “way over the top”.

“We’re not just in there to do a development and make some money and get out.

“We’re living there and our families and friends are living there so we’re actually overdoing a lot of the things that we are required to do.

“We feel we’re creating an extremely special place to be.”

They’ve designed the second stage to have blocks of five or six bush-surrounded sections coming off the main access road.

Three of the five sections in the first release have pre-sold for between $500,000 and $650,000.

They’re hoping to sell the other two on Saturday.

The other blocks will be released over the next few years.

Wikstrom says the prime sections are down towards the waterfront.

“They’ll have water views, they’re all elevated, all surrounded by bush – they’ll be the top-of-the-line stuff that you just can’t get.”

He says Glen Tui Heights’ second stage has more sun and lake views than the first stage.

“Some sections you won’t see anybody, they’re complete-ly surrounded by bush.”

Besides the nearby mountain biking and walking tracks, Wikstrom says the other advantage is you don’t need to negotiate Frankton Road.

“The traffic is just brutal out that side of town.

“We’re 15 minutes out [from the CBD] and 16 if you follow a campervan.

“That’s the only drama you get, and it’s a nice drive.”

Saturday’s open day, including food, drinks and a bouncy castle, runs from 11am till 4pm.

Access by the Tui Drive entranceway, beside two tuis sculpted by Glenorchy’s Dan Kelly.