Category Archives: Accommodation

Winter School Holidays


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"Mum, I'm Bored"

Unless you’re a skiing family, school holidays in winter can be a bit of a challenge. So why not be really different and bring the family to Auckland which offers hundreds of events and activities, plus museums, art galleries, funparks, adventures and a huge variety of shopping and dining opportunities.

Viaduct Auckland New Zealand

While the waterfront, especially the Wynyard Quarter, is probably the favourite with visitors, this school holiday season sees the return of the Aotea Centre Ice-skating - a hugely popular event for all ages. A must-do activity in the Auckland events calendar, this year’s Aotea Square Ice Rink is set to be the biggest yet! For the first time, Aotea Square Ice Rink will be complimented by a free Winter Lounge, courtesy of Auckland Live, which will be lit up in celebration of Matariki, the Maori New Year, as well as the beautiful installation Mountain of Light by Angus Muir Design.

Aotea Square Ice Rink

The Auckland Art Gallery is renowned for its international exhibitions - and this year is really special. The body - in all its complexity - will be explored in The Body Laid Bare: Masterpieces from Tate, Auckland Art Gallery's major exhibition for 2017.

Beautiful, sensual and at times provocative, more than 100 artworks from the Tate, London, will tell the story of the nude and trace artists' captivation with the human body over the last two centuries. 

At the heart of the show is Auguste Rodin's 'The Kiss' which is traveling outside of Europe for the first time. Other key works include Picasso's Nude woman in a Red Chair (1932) and Bonnard's The Bath (1925).

Picasso's Nude woman in a Red Chair

After the ice-skating and the Art Gallery, it's probably time to eat - and Auckland's restaurants and cafes offer a huge range of choice, far too numerous to list here - But "Heart of the City" has this fun web page that will give you some great ideas to suit your taste and mood.

With the Lions Tour ending on 8 July, the pressure on accommodation will have slightly eased on city centre and waterfront serviced apartments, so the time to book is now!


No Room at the Inn?


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Auckland visitor numbers are increasing hugely this month as entrants, officials, and supporters of the World Master Games 2017 descend on the city. The organisers of the games say that there will be over 25,000 participants, from more than 100 countries competing in 28 different sports.

Many participants and teams are already here and using our wonderful beaches and parks to get their fitness up-to-date so they are ready to perform to their best in this great community event. Overseas visitors especially will be interested in aspects of Maori culture all around them - and especially at formal welcome ceremonies.

World Master Games 2017

An analysis of the hotel sector last year found unprecedented demand for rooms in Auckland and warns that chances of finding one will get even tougher this year when major events, such as World Masters Games and the Lions Tour, come to the city.

These visitors can't help but notice all the tall cranes throughout the central area - and will correctly assume that we are in the middle of a building boom - with offices, residential apartments and hotels in construction.

lighter quay

This hotel shortage will take time to catch up to demand - but many media are reporting that there is NO accommodation left in Auckland for the World Master Games! Well, it's tight - but there are many different types of accommodation available, many of it as private home stays, and some sports clubs are creating temporary space in their club rooms. But there are also vacancies in serviced apartments in the city centre. Just keep looking!   Auckland is looking forward to welcoming you.

Despite the negative and inaccurate press - THERE IS ALWAYS ROOM somewhere in Auckland for our visitors.  

The mammoth task of preparing for the Games involves countless hours of voluntary work, not just the organisation of all the events, but also the hugely important job of packing the competitors individual back-packs - all 25,000 of them!

Preparing for the World Master Games

 


Critical Shortage of Visitor Accommodation in Auckland


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The popularity of New Zealand as an international destination, and in particular its major city, Auckland, has built up tremendous pressure on the city’s accommodation stock.

To meet current and future demand a record number of new hotels are either planned or under construction to provide for this much needed accommodation.

Critical shortage of visitor accommodation in Auckland

A recent market analysis stated, "Despite Auckland’s large hotel inventory, strong growth across all of Auckland key tourism segments has resulted in a critical shortage of hotel rooms during peak periods and consistently high levels of demand outside these periods".

Visitors have a wide range of options in hotels, B&Bs, rental apartments, serviced apartments, right down to camping grounds, backpacker lodges, and, of course, family accommodation.

In addition to visitor accommodation Auckland city is also expanding its residential stock with several new apartment blocks under construction to meet a growing population and a shift to renting as opposed to owning.

New accommodation in construction at Auckland

As in most major cities, house prices have been climbing which has led to an increase in investment in the apartment market to cater for a growing demand for rental properties. Rents are also rising as rental properties are snapped up by both owner-occupiers and investors.

Auckland is a vibrant, multicultural city and is attracting record numbers of visitors and new residents, and, with strong economic growth, is proving very attractive to property investors.


Auckland Anniversary Day


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Auckland Anniversary Day is celebrated annually and always includes a variety of events in and around the city and especially on the Monday on the sparkling waters of the Waitemata Harbour.

The holiday usually falls on the Monday closest to 29 January, the anniversary of the arrival of William Hobson, later the first Governor of New Zealand, in the Bay of Islands in 1840. In a tradition dating back to 1842 the day is celebrated by a major regatta on the Waitamata Harbour which features literally hundreds of boats.

AH Reed records in his The Story of New Zealand that there was a whaleboat race between the harbour-masters men and visiting sailors for "a purse of five ponds". Reed also mentions a "native war canoe race", a feature we still have today in the waka race.

.As a yachting event it pre-dates the more prestigious America's Cup by 11 years.

Auckland Anniversary Day

Hobson's barque, the Anna Watson, arrived in Auckland Harbour on 15 September 1840 and proclaimed that Auckland would be the capital of the new colony of New Zealand.

A foundation ceremony took place at 1:00 pm on 18 September 1840, on the higher ground at the top end of present-day Queen Street. Hobson named the new settlement in honour of George Eden, 1st Earl of Auckland, a patron and his friend. The New Zealand Government Gazette announced royal approval of the name on 26 November 1842

The first immigrant ships sailing directly from Britain started to arrive early in 1842. From early times the eastern side of the settlement remained reserved for government officials while the settlers, mostly mechanics and artisans,set themselves up on the western side, in areas like Freemans Bay. 

Auckland Anniversary Day

As the city grew, so too did the regatta until it gained the reputation for being one of the biggest one-day regattas in the world.

Nowadays the Regatta attracts a huge fleet of vessels including, tall ships, gaff riggers, sloops, racing keelers, multi-hulls, sailing dinghies, radio controlled boats, waka ama, elegant sea scout craft, perfectly restored classic yachts, an armada of over 20 vintage tugboats and America’s Cup prototypes.

Auckland Anniversary Day

Apart from the on-the-water action a host events ane activities are taking place around the city.

If you plan to visit the city you consider booking serviced accommodation which may be available close to all the action.


Ready to Make your Property a Rental?


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The Auckland Apartment Market is Hot!

With the current trend towards ever-increasing apartment building many owners/investors will be entering the market and looking for a return by way of rental income for all or part of the year.

Rentals may be short or long term, furnished or unfurnished.

There is plenty of demand for long term unfurnished apartments, especially in Auckland.

Short term fully-furnished serviced apartments are set to be in increasing demand to meet a chronic shortage of hotel rooms in Auckland.

Whatever form of rental is envisaged it is critical that presentation of the property to prospective tenants is of the highest standard.

Here are eight tips to guide new landlords on the rental journey.

1. First impressions are everything - clean the property and present it well.  Remove as much of your personal items as possible.

Auckland Apartment

2. Touch up the painted walls, professionally clean the carpet and replace old or damaged furniture - fresh paint, new carpet and smart furniture makes your potential tenant feel at home immediately.  Create the standard so that your tenant knows how you expect them to return the property back to you.

3. Mirrors bring in light and reflect views into an apartment. If you are lacking views from the property use art works to create a view/style within the rooms.

Auckland Apartment

4. Make sure the property has the style in paint/furniture/soft furnishings that is consistent.  Don’t mix styles and try to choose what suits the development, location and size of the property rather than your own personal tastes.  

 5. Make the beds with fresh linen & towels, clean curtains, and set out the home with items that make the benches, kitchen, bathrooms look practical and spacious.

Auckland Apartment

6. If you want to stand out in the crowded market of rental properties you have only seconds to catch the eye of the renter. Make sure your listing photos are emotive and the captions support the image you are wanting to create.  

Auckland Apartment

7. Remember to include the date the property is available from and all your contact details! 

8. If the property is occupied while you are advertising it, rather than reducing the rent to compensate offer an added benefit to your existing tenant such as a complimentary clean prior to open homes together with some added touches as fresh flowers and/or a bottle of their favourite wine.


Anzac First World War Heritage Trail in Auckland


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Auckland Remembers Those Who Stayed at Home

Each year, on 25 April, New Zealand and Australia commemorate Anzac Day to honour those who fell in battle during the many wars and conflicts over the years. The date itself marks the anniversary of the landing of New Zealand and Australian troop (Anzacs) on the Turkish Peninsular at Gallipoli.

The story of Gallipoli is part of the Australasian heritage - two young nations going to war together to serve King and Country in foreign lands.

While much has been written of the horrendous battles and campaigns of the First World War, there are no battlegrounds here in New Zealand but there are many sites which are significant to New Zealand’s involvement in the war.

Auckland Council has established a trail of 56 sites between Wellsford and Waiuku that were used during that long-ago war by those who stayed behind and played their part on the home front. The heritage trail includes halls where funds were raised to support the soldiers overseas, schools where kids followed the war on maps, the home of a sailor who won a Victoria Cross…. all adding up to a thought-provoking journey back in history.

It is not a walking trail or intended to be followed sequentially, but is designed so people can visit these sites at their own pace and learn the stories of monuments, rolls of honour, war memorial halls, significant gathering places and more. There will be signs that provide you with information at each site until 2019.

Throughout the the Auckland Region there will be many local commemorations on Anzac Day, the largest of which will be the Dawn Service at the Auckland War Memorial Museum.

The New Zealand Government has initiated a programme of events,local and national, to commemorate the 100 Anniversary of the First World War [1914-1918 and wherever you travel throughout  the country you will see reminders of the war that established the Anzac tradition.


Property Investment Management


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After months of steeply climbing property prices in Auckland the rate of increase has slowed down and the market is becoming attractive again to the more traditional residential investor. Quality housing is still outstripping supply and investment opportunities are opening up again.

There seems to be demand coming from investors new to the residential market and they need to establish some clear investment priorities when considering entering this market. Generally the choice will be between long term growth or rental return. Houses typically offer greater long term capital gain if chosen well, while apartments generally provide a higher yield for a lower purchase price – in other words, more rental return for the dollar.

New investments in residential property need to be held for at least two years to avoid being classified as trading with consequent tax implications.

Apartments are generally easier to manage and improve because exterior maintenance is handled through the body corporate for the whole building. Every apartment owner in a block is a member of the body corporate and it is important for intending purchasers to acquaint themselves fully with the Long Term Maintenance Plan for building, and check out the AGM notes for the previous three years.

Apartments will be either freehold or leasehold – the latter meaning rent will be payable on the land. While investors will have their own legal advisers it is wise to consult a reputable property management organisation for expert advice on the potential risks and gains of the investment.

Property managers have the necessary expertise to advise investors on rental returns, body corporate and leasehold arrangements, and can put you in touch with appropriate professionals such as valuers, brokers and real estate agents. The managers naturally take care of day-to-day  matters, lettings, inspections and body corporate relationships.

With any property investment, location is the key. As Auckland’s population and visitor numbers grow, congestion also grows and proximity to public transport will be an important factor in both capital gain and strong rental potential.

The growth of Auckland into a truly international city is already witnessing high demand from overseas companies and individuals for quality rentals – and quality rentals demand quality property management.

 

 


Auckland is Building for the Future at Wynyard Quarter


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Tall cranes abound in New Zealand's international city, Auckland, still referred to by many as The City of Sails which sits on the edges of the sparkling Waitemata Harbour. Those tall cranes are busy constructing offices, shopping malls, hotels and apartment blocks - even a new theatre - mostly within the central part of the city.

Major development activity has been under way since 2011 at the Wynyard Quarter, a reclaimed area bordered on three sides by the inner harbour and the Viaduct Basin, a popular social entertainment venue. Wynyard Quarter is developing as a unique waterside community with its mix of business and commerce, residential and hotel accommodation, open spaces, bars, cafes and restaurants.

                             

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Summer is the time to visit Silo Park, venue for many of Auckland's outdoor events, with concerts, festivals, movies - or just the sheer fun of being there amongst the crowds enjoying the markets or strolling along beside the vessels tied up at the wharf.

If you're staying in an apartment around the Viaduct area  Wynyard Quarter is just a few minutes walk to the west.

 

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Capital Gains Tax on Rental Properties - Should I Buy Now or Later?


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The winds of change are blowing: 1st October is coming and with it will come the capital gains tax on rental properties. So, should you buy now or later? It all depends on your long term plan of ownership of your investment property.

Remember the tax will only apply if you sell the Investment Property within two years of ownership the tax is on the profit of the sale. Exempt are the following: family homes, inherited, or the home is needing to be sold due to a relationship split. This change only really clears up a problem of people whom were trading property and not declaring the tax gained on the sale.

The old law said that if you brought a property with the intention of selling if for gain that gain is taxable. The problem was the intention it was never clear. Now it is clearer if you buy and sell within the two years the tax will apply on the profit of sale.

The interesting thing is what happens if there is a loss on the Sale? Will you be able to claim this against your taxes? The other change is for overseas buyers whom will require a NZ Bank account and tax number Should you buy now or later? It all depends on a number of things the reason why you buying, how long you wish to hold and will the numbers add up giving you a return on the investment.

Property is a cycle and as long as you understand the cycle and you know where you are in the cycle when you buy you can either buy and hold, buy to sell, buy to improve and hold or sell. What is important just like every other decision you make get a team of experts around you to help you make the right decision for you.

We like to work with investors before they buy so we can help with advice on rental returns, and where to buy and what will work for both the investor and us. Just like all good sport teams you need to know whom to go to for the job to be done.


David Graham is Principal of Quinovic Viaduct, Auckland property management specialists. Find out how to list your apartment with them.

 


Self-Contained Apartment or Hotel Stay - What's right for you?


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For most people looking for accommodation for their Auckland stay, the first place that comes to mind is a hotel. But there is another alternative that could suit you well - a self contained apartment.

There's a certain romance and excitement at the prospect of staying at a hotel. They're great for short visits when on-demand service is what you need, and privacy, independence and flexibility are less relevant.

However, what these apartments can give you is the opportunity to 'settle in', even if you are only in Auckland for a week. Often more affordable than a hotel, the value of having your own space is priceless. Apartments like those we offer at Quinovic Viaduct are fully furnished and offer the comforts of home in convenient, central locations at great value rates.

You'll also get more space for the price. You’re not just confined to a small bedroom but will generally have a separate living and dining area - a real benefit if you’re staying in Auckland for a long period of time or if you're travelling with family or a group. Everyone can have their privacy when needed but still enjoy spending time together in a shared living area.

Apartments also offer the luxury of your own fully-equipped kitchen. Stay in and cook with produce from the local markets or go out and enjoy Auckland's world class cafés and restaurants - it's your choice. It’s also great if you have special dietary requirements or if you’re traveling with children.

One of the perks of staying in a hotel is not having to make your own bed, unless you sleep in and forget to put up the “do not disturb” sign. It can also be a hassle 'tidying' every day prior to housekeeping’s arrival. Self-contained apartments give you the flexibility to come and go as you please with a weekly housekeeping service, providing occupants with greater privacy.

Quinovic Viaduct manage fully furnished quality apartments and townhouses in Auckland CBD and adjacent suburbs, ideal whether you're staying for a week with your family or seeking accommodation for large groups on business contracts.

Contact us to discuss how our self-contained apartments can meet your needs.