Popular Picton backpackers on market

Last updated 05:00 26/05/2012

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The Sequoia Lodge backpacker business in Picton is up for sale for $950,000.

The business on State Highway 1, five minutes from the centre of Picton, claims to have a steady flow of visitors all year round.

It caters for ferry passengers and tourists on the Queen Charlotte Walkway and other Marlborough Sounds attractions.

The lodge, on 1.25 hectares, can sleep up to 65 people in shared, family-style or private accommodation and charges range from $22 a night for a dorm room to $96 for apartment-style accommodation.

Nick Lambert, Bayleys Nelson regional tourism and business agent, described it as a "flashpacker" lodge which provided for upmarket backpackers.

"The current owners have prided themselves on providing one of the best backpacker accommodation options in Picton," he said.

"Many of the backpackers we are seeing utilising this style of accommodation were the `first generation' of backpackers from the 1960s and 1970s who have matured in years yet still want the freedom of staying in a three-star rated accommodation venue in a style they remember from their younger days," Lambert said.Major renovations were completed two to three years ago. These included a new kitchen, TV room, laundry, extra rooms and a spa pool.

Guests are offered free all-day breakfasts, use of bicycles and transfers to and from the ferry terminal.

Lambert said its location on the main road in and out of Picton ensured visibility to passing traffic.

"The business regularly receives good reviews on the Trip Advisor website and is also listed on three of the major booking engines used by budget-conscious travellers – Wotif, Hostelworld and HostelBookers," he said.

"Business had also been generated through relationships with hostels from Wellington to Christchurch."

Sequoia Lodge Backpackers would suit buyers looking to take on an established hospitality business, and who wanted flexibility in management of the business.

"The current owners do not live on the premises, preferring to manage the business from their home in Nelson," he said.

"However, should the new owner wish to live on site there is a fully self-contained apartment which could be used as owner's accommodation."

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- The Dominion Post

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