Over 35 Years

David Gaze lands his first job – Papakura City Council First large commission – McVeagh Fleming law firm relocation in Auckland Relocated Bayley’s Real Estate from a small office in South Auckland to City Road, Central Auckland. Decades of work unfolded with those considered the ‘high fliers’ of the 80s - Chase Corporation, Equiticorp, Landmark etc. plus institutions and stalwarts such as NZI, BNZ, Ministries of Education, IRD etc.

The team refurbished and relocated to a penthouse in Newmarket, but with rapid growth and 50+ staff, took the two top floors of an 8-storey building in Newmarket - which has since become 277 Westfield Shopping Mall.   Gaze procured naming rights for the building, signage that could clearly be seen from the Newmarket motorway viaduct. Even today people still remember that high exposure and we attribute much of that to those naming rights. The same year we opened an office in Wellington.

With the ‘boom’ of the 80s Gaze listed on the New Zealand Stock exchange to attract funds for acquisition of value-add properties.  When the crisis hit, David immediately privatized and paid every shareholder back what they had invested, even though the value of all shares had dropped significantly.  Gaze purchased a property in Ellerslie, where we kept our heads down, determined to survive the tough property downturn. Purchased 309 Broadway, refurbished, leased and sold a number of years later - at a price we couldn’t refuse - to the Lowy family for their 277 Broadway expansion.

After Niue was hit by a devastating cyclone, Gaze developed and delivered prefabricated motels and undertook the complete rebuild and refurbishment of what was the only international hotel on the island at the time.

This opened the doors to the rest of the South Pacific, allowing Gaze to supply construction materials, bulldozers and graders to numerous island nations, including American Samoa, Papua New Guinea and Samoa.

America lifted the embargo on Vietnam and Gaze expanded into Vietnam where we converted and fully refurbished old French Villas into housing for international diplomats and offices for High Commissions. We relocated and refurbished commercial premises for companies re-opening their doors in Vietnam, including Coca Cola, Johnson & Johnson, American Consulate, Pan Am, French Consulate, United States Embassy etc. We were contracting to a large Korean developer, building apartments on the side of golf courses in Ho Chi Minh city when Korea had a massive financial crisis.  Koreans fled town, the development ceased although 75% complete and we were out of pocket millions of dollars. We cut our losses, closed the Vietnam operation and refocussed on Australasia.

David Gaze relocated to London and expanded Gaze into Europe where we were involved in post-war commercial projects within the Balkans and large hospitality and tourism developments in Malta - using our NZ operation’s expertise and partnering with European companies.

As part of our continued Corporate Social Responsibility Gaze established a Memorandum of Agreement with the International Trust Fund (ITF) and partnered with the United Nations, to deliver Demining & Mine Victims Assistance in Croatia and Sarajevo. Here we demined land in Croatia and Sarajevo, we sold and repeated the formula. David and his family returned to a New Zealand that was poised for great growth in the property sector. Gaze employed 35 staff nationally and the Gaze Foundation for educational equity was established.

Gaze opens a Christchurch office following the devastating earthquakes in the region. We now have a very successful team completing earthquake repairs, seismic upgrades and relocating Canterbury companies into new premises. It was also the inaugural year for our investment arm, Gaze Property Partnerships, with projects ranging from 8-storey office towers to major industrial developments.

Multiple investment partnerships established for the development of value-added commercial property, an exciting arm of the company which continues to grow as investments become available. 

Gaze head office relocates to the space that was once the infamous Rakino’s Bar on High Street – we still have the liquor licence!



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