By PHILIP CHANDLER
In a major milestone for Queenstown’s first retirement village, mayoress Karen Boult this week turned the first sod on a grand $12 million clubhouse.
Queenstown Country Club (QCC) owner Arvida — which bought the Ladies Mile ‘community’, as it likes to call its retirement villages, last year — says the 1650 square metre facility is not only a vote of confidence in the local market but also a welcome injection of money and jobs in the current climate.
With 100-plus workers expected on site at the peak of construction, the economic impact could be three times the project cost, Arvida boss Bill McDonald says.
Like the community’s so-far 48 two- and three-bedroom homes, the lodge has been designed by local architects Warren and Mahoney.
The design echoes an alpine lodge, with vaulted ceilings and large expanses of glass to reflect views of the Remarkables and Coronet Peak.
Features will include a 15-metre swimming pool and indoor spa pool, 50-seat movie
theatre, bowling green, games room, fitness centre, library, bar and cafe, two lounges and a kitchen and dining area.
‘‘The clubhouse will quickly become a vibrant hub where our residents and their friends and families will be able to socialise, share great food, use the pool and gym, look after their health and pursue special interests,’’ McDonald says.
‘‘It will be the beating heart of a community that’s all about living a fulfilling and stimulating life.’’
Construction’s expected to take 14 months.
QCC sales manager Hilary O’Hagan says another 13 settlements on homes are due between now and next March.
‘‘Demand has been very strong post-lockdown with almost all our built stock selling down.
‘‘Many residents have commented they are very pleased to be living at QCC during this pandemic because they don’t feel isolated, with great neighbours all looking out for each other.’’
While the clubhouse is being built, a company belonging to original QCC developer Fraser
Sanderson continues work on the second stage of a nearby commercial and medical hub, including Southern Cross Central Lakes Hospital.