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New association to represent hotel owners announced

At the Hotel Industry Conference held in Auckland on June 20 2019, Scenic Hotel Group executive chairwoman Lani Hagaman announced a new Industry Association to represent hotel owners in New Zealand.

The formation of the Hotel Owners Association is a result of recent attempts by local Councils to introduce various hotel bed taxes to fund local infrastructure and related costs.

“While hotel owners support investigating funding options and are prepared to contribute to the solution, it is simply unfair to have them solely shoulder the burden,” says Lani.

“We have seen some inaccurate statements that suggest bed taxes are only paid by guests, but international studies show the reality is that hotel owners will suffer significantly.”

Several major hotel owners had committed to funding the Association including identifying and engaging an executive director based in Wellington. An interim board had also been appointed until all owners had the opportunity to participate.

Lani stressed in her speech that the vision of the NZHOA is to work closely with TIA on common issues. However, the group believe they need an independent voice to lobby on behalf of specific issues that affect them directly.

“Everyone is in agreement that New Zealand urgently needs more hotels and as one of the largest economic drivers to the economy, it makes no sense to disincentive investment in this manner,” says Lani.

Lani has agreed to act as interim chair of the Association until all hotel owners have had the opportunity to have their input and vote on the governance structure.

More information will be distributed to key stakeholders and interested parties in the coming weeks.

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