Stalled big Queenstown project rumbles into life

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One of Queenstown’s biggest stalled projects at arguably the area’s best spot is rumbling back into life.
 
Investor Michaela Meehan’s Winton Partners NZ Ltd recently snapped up prime waterfront development land beside the Hilton hotel complex at Kelvin Heights for an undisclosed sum after receivers put it up for sale. 

Winton is now selling off some of the site’s lakefront sections – for up to $1 million-plus in some cases – as part of an exclusive 33-lot residential subdivision called Lake’s Edge. 

Meehan, who recently shifted her family from Sydney to Queenstown, says: “Our view is it’s the best piece of land in Queenstown.” 

Earlier ambitious plans for the four-hectare site were shelved when Auckland developer Nigel McKen-
na’s $300m Kawarau Falls Station project fell over in 2009. 

Financier Bank of Scotland International poured in millions to complete the Hilton hotel complex which was stage one of the development – but the McKenna company behind stages two and three of the project was placed in liquidation and receivership.

Plans for stages two and three included three consented, upmarket hotels, including an InterContinental with a 1000-capacity conference centre.
 
Receivers instructed an Auckland real estate agency to place the $15m stage two and three site on the market a year ago. 

Meehan notes founder of Queenstown William Gilbert Rees settled there. 

“He didn’t live there for no reason.” 

Meehan – a former Danish Olympic sailor also behind the proposed Northlake subdivision in Wanaka – doesn’t rule out building some visitor accommodation in the future. 

“We think the current highest and best use is to develop a prestige residential enclave. 

“The market feedback’s been good – we’re sure there’ll be strong interest and we’ll price it sensibly to sell it off the plan,” Meehan tells Mountain Scene

Local Ray White salesperson Cameron Reed effusively calls it “Queenstown’s best lakefront development”.
 
His firm is releasing the Lake’s Edge subdivision on-site this weekend.scoop@scene.co.nz