Hunter Furniture set to reopen

TAMLYN STEWART
Last updated 05:00 28/02/2013
Matt Roberts

REVIVAL MODE: Matt Roberts, general manager of Hunter Furniture, which is reopening in Moorhouse Ave.

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Christchurch-based furniture retailer Hunter Furniture is set to reopen tomorrow, joining the likes of Harvey Norman and Smiths City's Powerstore in the bulk retail zone on Moorhouse Ave.

Hunter Furniture has also sub-let parts of its showroom at the Midway Moorhouse development to The Home Theatre Store and Kitchen Things.

Total Food Equipment is next door, and Hunter La-z-boy, Pet Central, Chain Reaction Cycles, Asko Design, Powerstore and Furniture Concepts and Back to Bed are also tenants at the Midway Moorhouse retail precinct.

Hunter Furniture general manager Matt Roberts said the business had remained committed to a Moorhouse Ave location despite extensive quake damage to its previous building, about 50 metres west of its new site. Walls were damaged and foundations lifted.

Moorhouse Ave was a prime location for bulk retail before the earthquake and would continue to be one now, Roberts said. The area was seeing a revival as retailers returned, he said.

Hunter Furniture's landlord, 218 Moorhouse Ltd, had indicated soon after the February quake that it wanted Hunter Furniture as the anchor tenant in a new building on the site and was happy to purpose-build for the furniture retailer.

Roberts said he and owner Lionel Hunter had looked at a location on Blenheim Rd but the speed limit there was 60 kilometres an hour, while traffic on Moorhouse Ave travelled at 50kmh, which was better for the business.

"And we always felt this was going to be a bulk-retail precinct anyway. "We get 40,000 cars a day coming up and down Moorhouse Ave and that's important to us."

Their landlord had also supported the idea of a co-operative tenancy arrangement.

Hunter Furniture, as head tenant, has subleased part of its showroom floor to Kitchen Things and The Home Theatre Store and is in negotiations with a cafe to open on the site as well. The businesses complemented one another as there was a crossover in customers, Roberts said.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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