Copthorne Hotel

The Copthorne Hotel in central Auckland is an established and high profile landmark, that is strategically sited on Anzac Avenue, in Auckland’s Central Business District, just “down the hill” from the University of Auckland Campus and close to the Vector Arena.

The Copthorne, which is in easy walking distance of the Viaduct and Parnell and has views of the Waitemata Harbour, has witnessed considerable change in the last 40 years and the Millenuim Hotels decided that it was time for an exterior “make over”.

However this “make over” wasn’t going to be a simple “lick of paint” as the Copthorne is a 9 Storey Hotel and Matassa Property Services was chosen to manage
this comprehensive project.

The Millennium Hotels original brief included the repainting of all exterior surfaces, the repairing of the existing mansard tiles and the repainting of the longrun roof. In the original brief the Copthrone Hotel was to be closed for one month over the December / January holiday period.

After a further review of the project logistics it was decided, due to the access difficulties and timing issues, to replace all Mansards and Roofing with new products and to extend the project over a 3 month period. This would allow the Hotel to remain operational during the renovation.

Due to the cost in attaining local government approval to change the Mansard profile it was finally decided to “tile over” the existing Premier Sky Blue tiles with the Metrotile Shake profile in Ironsand which tied in with the new exterior colour scheme.

Megami Roofing was appointed to undertake the “over tiling” of the Hotels Mansard, which is one of the more and significant and challenging projects undertaken by any roofing company.

Stage One of the project, which involved tiling over the Premier Tiles with the Metrotile Shake profile was always going to be a challenge due to the angle and pitch of the Mansards and the fact that they were seven stories up. After reviewing the various options it was found that a fixed scaffold would have been 3 times more expensive than the final solution that involved using swing stages, a boom lift and some abseiling. In addition the fixed scaffolding
would have been an “eyesore” and hindrance to guests during the period of the project.

In order to complete this project Matassa had on call a 30 tonne crane to lift up the new roofing iron and safety fencing. It also served, from time to time, as a working platform for the Megami Installers, who also worked off swing stages and booms. Professional abseilers were also used to “over tile” some of the more awkward corners and the project was completed without incident.

The cutting of the tiles to fit dormer angles and corners of fire escapes proved to be most challenging but the final result was exceptional with the Mansard fully tiled in the Metrotile Shake profile, This gave the Hotel a more modern look even before the painting started.

Stage Two of the project involved painting the exterior cladding, which was a difficult project in its own right. The profile and finish of the “Roskill Stone” was rough and pitted and it was not a simple case of painting a block wall. The only way to cost effectively paint the “Roskill Stone” was by spray
painting. This required the balcony and room doors to be covered and masked each day. With any spray painting operation wind direction was an issue which complicated the day to day operation. However the painters were always careful and cautious and the job was completed with no incidents. Dulux Hibuild Acrashield Coatings were used to recoat the 9 storey hotel bricks and stucco base and Dulux Gloss Enamel was used on the balcony railings.

Stage Three of the project was contracted to Total Roofing and involved the replacement of 1,120 lineal metres of longrun roofing. This was a more traditional reroofing project however with the Hotel still using 13 500 litre Plastic Tanks and Copper Pipes for their amenities everything had to be
relocated “twice” to allow the old rusting iron and rotten timber Tank supports to be replaced. The roofing was replaced with Colorcote Dimondek 40 .75 gauge product. Temporary PVC pipes and 25mm Hosing were used by Plumbworx to keep the hotel operational during the relocation and renovation. Fortunately the only minor problems were a couple of call outs and leaks to the 6th floor suites during the replacement process.

The re-roofing of the top roof was completed in autumn with the installation of a new Enviroclad Gutter, which was laid over the existing guttering system.

The renovation of any building can present unforeseen problems and the height of this project required particular attention to meet safety standards. It is testament to the project management and skills of those working on all stages that the project was successfully completed

Client: Millennium Hotels
Keiran Davies

Main contractor: Simon Pringle
Matassa Property Services Ltd
Roofing Manufacturer;
Metrotile NZ Ltd.
Telephone: 09 299 9498

Metrotile Installer: Dave Moselen
Megami Roofing

Profile: Metrotile Shake Ironsand

Manufacturer: Dimond
Telephone: 0800 Dimond

Dimondek Installer: Gerrard Newman
Total Roofing

Profile: Colourcote Dimondek
40.75 gauge

Colour: Sandstone Grey

Plumbing: Mike Robinson

Paint Manufacturer: Dulux NZ
Sean Truesdell

Access Equipment: At Height
Mike Sharp

Crane: On Call Cranes
Fay Parkinson