Brothel fate nears ruling
The fate of a super brothel proposed for the central city will be decided by the end of next week.
The Penthouse Club complex will include a ground level bar and restaurant, brothels and a strip club on the second and third floors, and four floors of hotel accommodation if it is approved.
Property developers John and Michael Chow are behind the plans.
Independent commissioners appointed to decided whether the venture will be given resource consent spent last week listening to submissions from the public.
One submitter compared prostitution to cigarettes – calling it a ‘‘legal activity but not a desirable one’’ that would only degrade the city.
He said a brothel in the city centre would cause nuisance, offensive behaviour and create an environment like Hunters Corner in Papatoetoe.
But lawyer for the Chow brothers, Russell Bartlett, objected to discussions about the planned brothel activity – as the hearing was about the building, not prostitution, and a brothel is a permitted activity.
Hearing chairman David Kirkpatrick agreed, saying a review of the permitted activities was not within the panel’s authority.
A number of submitters were also opposed to the apparent disregard for the city’s heritage by the Chow brothers.
The site of the brothel would be the site of the former Palace Hotel which was demolished after being damaged while being renovated by the brothers in 2010.