Development potential: One of the land owners, Graeme McMillan, has designed this hotel concept for the site


The largest undeveloped site either side of Queenstown’s Frankton Road has just gone on the market.

About 100 metres long, the one-hectare parcel, largely forested apart from one house, runs from Frankton Rd down to the Frankton Track, and is just west of the Oaks Shores

It’s being marketed by Wanaka realtor Graham Berry, from Berry Real Estate.

The property’s made up of five titles — 279, 285, 293, 297 and 307 Frankton Rd — with a
combined rating valuation of $12,870,000.

However, going by recent sales in which land in this vicinity is fetching about $2000 per
square metre, its market value is probably at least $20m.

Berry says a buyer could bid for just part of the site, however he believes it’s got more development value as an aggregated whole.

Prime site: The block, outlined in red, runs down between Frankton Rd and the Frankton Track

Southland engineer Graeme McMillan, whose company Untouched Frontiers Ltd owns two of the sites, says ‘‘it’s the last, biggest chunk available for sale between Queenstown and Frankton, on either side’’.

He’s even drawn up plans for a proposed 217-room Star Hotel, with both casino and conference facilities.

Using a natural slope, it’s up to six storeys high, and in one artist’s impression he’s put in
two floating pontoons, just in front, for helicopter access.

‘‘It’s a very doable exercise,’’ he says.

The name, ‘Star’, comes from the name of the Gold Coast casino.

Ironically, Auckland-based casino company SkyCity did buy property below Frankton Rd for a five-star hotel, with a possible casino, just two years ago, paying $16m — however that site’s much closer to Frankton.

While primarily an engineer, McMillan says he also has an interest in commercial architecture — in Queenstown, he’s also designed apartments at Goldfield Heights and a car museum at Bob’s Cove.

Berry says though McMillan’s designed a hotel, the high density-zoned site’s equally suitable for condominium or apartment development.

Not only does the site have fantastic views, he points out it’s also a short walk to  downtown Queenstown.