Amway army Queenstown-bound

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A whopping 10,000 Chinese visitors are Queenstown-bound next year.

Hilton Queenstown has been given the nod as next year’s Amway accommodation provider – the Chinese visitors form part of a business programme announced by former Prime Minister John Key last April.

Hilton boss Chris Ehmann is stoked. He attributes the coup to an existing relationship with other Hilton Resorts worldwide and says it’s good news for the entire Wakatipu basin.

Amway incentive groups usually travel in big packs but Ehmann says that won’t be the case next year.

The tourists will descend on Queenstown in waves of 500 a week – the first time that’s been trialled – and locals shouldn’t be concerned the town won’t be able to cope with the influx.

“It is a fantastic piece of business. It is not going to mean the city will be absolutely choc-a-bloc full.

“The Hilton will be full … but that doesn’t mean all the restaurants are going to be packed and you won’t be able to get a jetboat because Amway is in town.”

Destination Queenstown boss Graham Budd isn’t able to confirm who else will benefit from the big-bucks Chinese ticket, but says he’s expecting to hear “any day now”.

Budd says it’s a win for Queenstown and dismisses concerns the visit will create problems around infrastructure, believing they’ll “hardly be noticed”.

It’s estimated the Amway visit is worth $50 million to New Zealand.