The week in New Zealand real estate - 4 June 2020

Auckland CBD in sunset  hero

A weekly update of the biggest real estate news from around New Zealand.


  • Fidelity Life is moving from Newmarket to Mansons TCLM’s 136 Fanshawe Street development. Fidelity Life have leased 3,200 sqm plus naming rights. More info here.
  • Construction has started on the first of five Union Square precinct buildings in Hamilton’s central city. Tenants include Rabobank NZ and AA Insurance. When complete the precinct will total 30,000 sqm of office space. More info here.
  • A University of Otago study of 2,593 workers found that 73% reported being equally or more productive while working from home during lockdown. 89% wanted to continue working from home at least part of the time once lockdown lifts. More info here.


  • Laminex is planning to install 1,000 solar panels at its Hamilton plant’s roof. When completed it will power 79% of the plant’s annual electricity usage. More info here.


  • Commercial Bay’s shopping precinct will open on 11 June. Opening was to occur on 28 March but was delayed by lockdown. More info here.
  • New Zealand’s largest furniture retail store, Nido, partially opened over the weekend. The $60M, 27,000 sqm store in Henderson will fully open next month. More info here.
  • Bunnings has confirmed it will close seven stores by the end of the month. The stores are located in Ashburton, Cambridge, Rangiora, Te Awamutu, Putaruru, Hornby and Hastings. More info here.


  • Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Whai Rawa are altering the plans for stage 2 of their North Shore subdivision. In response to COVID19, housing designs will now include a flexible room downstairs that could function as an office or bedroom. More info here.

Hotels and tourism

  • Napier City Council has approved plans to restore the category 1 listed, historic Criterion Hotel in Napier from a backpacker’s hostel into a boutique 20-suite hotel. More info here.
  • Christchurch’s Convention Centre (Te-Pae) has been delayed from October to early 2021. Many affected bookings had already been cancelled due to COVID-19 . More info here.
  • US billionaire Bill Foley is developing a winery and gin distillery complex at Te Kairanga vineyard in Wairarapa. More info here.


  • The government is temporarily changing the Property Law Act to provide for compulsory arbitration for small business tenants who have been unable to negotiate lockdown rent relief with landlords. More info here.
  • Landlords have been given a five-month extension to meet this year’s Healthy Homes requirements More info here.
  • Auckland Council will not proceed with the Queens Wharf mooring extension for mega cruise ships due to funding restrictions in its Emergency Budget. More info here.
  • An inconsistency in the way development levies have been calculated in Nelson has lost ratepayers more than $500,000 in levies over 14 years. More info here.

Related Experts

Chris Farhi

Director | Strategic Advisory

Auckland CBD

Chris is a Director within the Strategic Advisory team. The team helps you with your big property decisions and complex transactions.

Chris' advisory work focuses on:

  • Decision making processes (eg property strategy, business cases, feasibilities, etc)
  • Tenant representation for large lease transactions (office,  industrial and specialist-use)
  • Multi-site networks (eg consolidation strategies, optimisation, etc)

Chris’ background in brief:

  • Property strategy advisor for some of New Zealand’s most successful private sector, public sector and non-for-profit organisations.
  • Tenant representative (tenant-paid lease negotiator) for organisations ranging from small-to-medium enterprises through to major listed companies and government agencies.
  • Specialist skills in commercial leasing, financial analysis and market research.
  • Part-time lecturer at the University of Auckland Business School and commercial leasing trainer for the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Chris’ qualifications include Honours degrees in both Civil Engineering and Property from the University of Auckland, and a Master of Philosophy from the University of Cambridge, UK. He is a Chartered Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Outside of work, Chris is a combat engineer in the NZ Army Reserve and a keen baker.

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