Gold-plated rental pad

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A Queenstown letting agent has listed a Lake Hayes mansion at what he reckons is the resort’s steepest rent – $3000 weekly. 

It’s certainly the Wakatipu’s most expensive rental property, Keith Hibbs of Executive Accommodation says. 

The property – at 89 Sicilian Lane, high above the picture-postcard lake – has five bedrooms, five-and-a-half bathrooms, two lounges, a cinema room, four-car garaging and panoramic views. 

Hibbs listed the property for long-term rental about a month ago – there were no nibbles so the rent’s now negotiable, he says. 

Anyone signing up at $3000 a week would have to shell out $18,450 upfront – that’s one week’s rent in advance, another four weeks’ rent as bond, and a $3450 letting fee. 

While Hibbs may have the resort’s most expensive rental on his books, his firm also rents out at least 20 other properties fetching $1000 or more per week, he says. 

Who rents these luxury residences? 

“Movie crews have taken a couple,” Hibbs says, plus foreign businessfolk who base their families here while they commute to work elsewhere in NZ. 

“I think we’re going to see a whole lot more of that,” Hibbs predicts. 

Another segment is people who rent while they search for a place to buy. 

“And they pay some good money,” Hibbs says.