For those who missed the Premier’s regular stint on the nation’s radio this week, here it is:
Renovations of private dwellings – Four private dwellings are being renovated to be used as rented accommodation under a government project hatched between the Premier and former NZ Minister Murray McCully. The intention is to make use of vacant homes to add to the pool of available accommodation which can be used by tourists and others. Premier told his listeners that the project had not been the success he had first envisaged mainly because homeowners had failed to meet the necessary requirements. When the renovations are completed, the house will be rented out to recover costs. Once costs have been recovered, the house is handed back to the family. Premier said that the first house to be completed under the scheme is that of Robert Jackson of Hakupu.
Most tourist accommodation are located on the western side of the island from Avatele to Namukulu. On the eastern side of Niue, a pilot project to build tourist accommodation in the villages had made a beginning with two units at Tuatea in Hakupu. Despite a promising start, the two units have largely remained vacant with occasional use by Hakupu visitors. At Lakepa, a project spearheaded by Assemblyman Kupa Magatogia, has had some success with extensive renovations of the old Lialagi primary school. The old school has two self-contained units and a larger dormitory complete with a kitchen suitable for large family groups. Kupa and Mary also have two self-contained units next to their home. At Mutalau is a one unit accommodation Humu Retreat.
Experience has shown in neighbouring islands that village based tourist accommodation has been the most successful where visitors can take part in the normal day to day activities. That may prove to be a bit more of a challenge for Niue villages since most of the people are at work during the daytime.