The Paihia Youth Hostel land, buildings and business have gone on the market as part of a national strategy to concentrate resources on what YHA chief executive Mark Wells describes as “key strategic locations”.
The Whangarei YHA is also for sale. The rating valuations on the properties are $1.35 million and $450,000 respectively.
Mr Wells said while the Bay of Islands was a key strategic location for Northland, Paihia “did not meet the criteria as a key location in the national context”.
“That figures more prominently for us now,” he said.
The Whangarei YHA went on the market last month with NZ sales and marketing manager Daniel Shields saying the organisation’s entire network of properties was being assessed with a view to doing what it took to survive the worldwide economic downturn.
The strategy was aimed at making the best use of resources but the process was “redirection rather than retrenching”.
Gilbert Whalley, YHA Whangarei branch president and a national life member, said members were disappointed that more links in the chain were going but acknowledged hostel use had been declining. Hostels at Opononi and Kaitaia had closed some time ago.
Northland could be left with just one facility for hostellers, an affiliated operation in an Awanui camping ground, should buyers of the two properties choose to drop YHA affiliation.
Mr Wells believes the greatest value of the Paihia hostel particularly is operating under the YHA brand “but that’s for the buyer to determine”.
Colliers International Whangarei is advertising the Whangarei YHA as a going concern or vacant possession with option to buy the YHA contract.
The Paihia sale offers two options, purchase as a freehold going concern, with the option of retaining YHA affiliation, or a 25-year lease (or up to 30 years).
The Paihia complex is a double-storied 55-bed facility advertised as a “boutique lodge” offering twin and double rooms, and dormitories ranging from three-bed to eight-bed.