A suburb on the North Shore of Auckland is experiencing a revival that may see it competing with the likes of Ponsonby Rd. While the main strip of Takapuna once looked rather tired, landlords are getting stuck into refurbishment to attract top tenants and a resurgence in retail and hospitality is underway.rn
The popular McKenzies precinct development took place in 2013 and brought in some big retail brands, including Lululemon and Huffer, as well as dining establishments Mexico, Blunderbuss and The Commons.
Now, many other developments dotted around the area are taking shape.
JLL Auckland retail specialist JJ Hong says landlords are willing to invest money to refurbish their Takapuna premises.
“They are thinking of the long-term payoffs more than the short-term expenditure. The good tenants are not in any rush. They will happily wait for the ideal site,” Hong saya.
“The established retailers have their own design teams who know the concept well. They prefer to take responsibility for the fit-out work – whether the landlord contributes or not.”
One of the most recent additions is an outdoor dining lane dubbed Fortieth and Hurstmere.
It houses the likes of Bird On a Wire and Kombi Coffee, in which an espresso bar is run out of a Kombi van.
Hospitality entrepreneur Mimi Gilmour’s Fish Fish and Burger Burger are also opening in the lane later this year.
Just along from the lane on Lake Rd, Superette Takapuna and Josh Emmett’s Malaysian-inspired restaurant Madam Woo joined the fray in 2015.
“The premises owned by Ben Cook had been empty for a number of years, following the vacation of Postie Plus,” Hong says.
“After refurbishment the property attracted interest from the owners of Madam Woo. It has been touted as one of Queenstown’s best places to dine and Takapuna residents now get to enjoy it too.”
The retail landscape is also starting to take hold, with a redevelopment of Hall’s Corner to menswear retailer 3 Wise Men moving in.
Around the corner, a property on Bryon Ave is being redeveloped and JLL is seeking tenants for the space. It will include ground-floor retail with glass frontage opening up onto the street.
There’s also plans to refurbish a six-storey building on Lake Rd to put in retail frontage.
Another project is planned for 16 Northcroft St, with property investment company RJH planning on extending the building out to create a “top quality retail space,” Hong says.
Just over 16,000 people live within a 2km radius of Hurstmere Rd.
The population of the Devonport-Takapuna local board area is estimated to be at 60,1000 people and is forecast to grow to 74,300 people by 2038.
As the area intensifies, JLL predicts there will be even more of a demand for retail and dining experiences in the area.