The 25-year lease that Queenstown (New Zealand) Lakes District Council has signed with campground operators CCR is a “win-win” situation for the council, the lessees and also for campers, Scoop Regional reported.

Mayor Vanessa van Uden said that the council decided as a matter of principle last year that it was not its role to run a commercial accommodation operation or to compete with other accommodation providers. “This outcome meets that expectation, and at the same time delivers significant revenue to Council – both a capital sum for goodwill, and an ongoing lease rental payment which will be linked to revenue.”

The total price paid for the 25 year lease was $3.2 million, including lease premium and goodwill, with annual rental of $878,000, subject to periodic review.

Five of the Council’s campgrounds and holiday parks are included in the lease, which became operative last month. CCR was already managing most of the Council’s major campgrounds.

CEO Adam Feeley said that the properties had been independently valued and the lease provided for rental at market rates with regular reviews.

Last November, CCR took over most of the camping grounds under a management agreement as an interim step, but Feeley said a long-term lease was always the preferred option. It provided more certainty about income for the Council and was an incentive for the campground managers to invest in improved facilities.

“This agreement means that the campgrounds are run by a reputable and experienced operator, while still enabling the Council to ensure that appropriate quality standards are enforced,” he said.

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