This week in Mountain Scene history


1975 The Hairem Salon opens a sauna and massage parlour in Queenstown Mall. The sauna (right) is mixed but there will also be “evenings for men and women only”.1985 Queenstown shop owner the late Les McAndrew is an early opponent of backhander and discount demands creeping into resort retailing. Taiwanese tour guides are the worst culprits, he says. 

The Ministry of Education announces a new primary school for fast-growing Frankton – the MoE hopes to open it in 1998. The school will be funded from the education package announced in the Government’s budget. The same official report says a new high school will be needed in the Wakatipu within the next decade. In fact, Frankton’s new Remark­ables Primary opens 12 years late – in 2010 – and the Wakatipu is still waiting for its second high school. 

The Michael Hill World Violin Competition – being recorded by Concert FM in Queenstown’s Memorial Hall – is brought to a halt for 20 minutes. The delay is blamed on noise from rugby players showering and yahoo-ing in the Wakatipu Rugby Club changing rooms below. 

Newlyweds Rod Nielsen and Sirene Millar gift a $25,000 animal ambulance to the SPCA after asking guests at their Fiji nuptials for donations rather than wedding presents. Nielsen, a Queenstown developer, is bankrupted in 2009 for almost $17 million. The couple live in Las Vegas.