Two Wellington sex entrepreneurs, whose 125-year old Palace Hotel (also known as Aurora Tavern) in central Auckland was in the process of being transformed into a brothel, are “gutted” that the Auckland City Council has demolished it.
Michael and John Chow’s property company, which purchased the Victorian- style building in 2008 for $3.3 million, had hoped to have it operating as a brothel by January next year, just ahead of the 2011 Rugby World Cup. But when dangerous cracks appeared in the facade of the category B – Historic Place Trust protected building on Thursday afternoon and an urgent investigation by Council officers and independent consultant engineers had concluded that the three-storey building could collapse, it was demolished that night.
Michael Chow is reported as saying:
“We have invested millions and millions on the property. I feel gutted, I feel they came to my home and they pulled it down. It was just a little bit of a crack“. [Emphasis added]
The decriminalising of prostitution under the Prostitution Reform Act 2003, opened up more than a little bit of a crack in the legal framework that had previously protected women to some degree from the exploitation and moral debasement – associated with prostitution. The ‘reform’ forged a liberal breach so wide that living off the earnings of prostitution, soliciting for sex on city streets and operating as a pimp, have become flaunted ‘celebrity’ lifestyle choices, when once these morally bankrupt activities were highly stigmatised and convicted offenders were constituted criminals.
A former MP has recently boasted publicly that she intends to open up and operate a brothel in Auckland where women can be serviced by male prostitutes. And of course there is the other former MP, who when in the House promoting prostitution law reform, dazzled her colleagues with stories of her colourful sordid lifestyle as a male prostitute. She contended that selling sex as a business operation should be treated in law as no different to selling pizzas.
Where once a moral framework stood tall championing fidelity within marriage, faithfulness between spouses, and respect for women; there now stands a pile of rubble littered with used condoms and the paraphernalia of drug-induced sex-for money exploitation activities.
But of course we must move on and grasp the ‘benefits’ of the ‘enlightened’ brave new world…. the glamourised “Sex-industry” billboards declare the true picture of the industry (Yeah right!)
There are the innumerable sexual needs to service of the male visitors to Auckland in 2011 who will be pumped up by rugby world cup fever and booze. Kiwi hospitality demands that sex palaces as the Chow brothers had so brilliantly conceived, adorn inner city Auckland streets and nearby leafy suburbs.
What better way is there to boost the impotent NZ economy that seems to be at the mercy of fluctuating overseas exchange rates, flounders under the sicknes of influxes of foreign pathogens and pests that breach our biosecurity sentinels, and is bedevilled by natural disasters?
If local government officials and politiciands can only ensure that Chow-style rugby fever sex palaces are awash with plentiful supplies of condoms, administered by hygiene-conscious and well-groomed local kiwi service agents, our nation can avert the threat of an influx of foreign STDs, and boost the local ecomomy.
Why should the Chow brothers feel “gutted” that a potential Victorian-style sex palace, that could have earnt them millions, has been demolished by a zealous safety conscious Council? Why should they retaliate by threatening to take legal action against the Council over the lightening demolition that has cost them millions?
Why not just reflect thoughtfully on the wise sage who is quoted in the NZ Herald as poignantly pinpointing the probable causes of the Palace-to-rubble phenomenon.
“It might just be time, dodgy design and a bit of God’s wrath at prostitution, but the end of the Palace or Aurora Hotel in downtown Auckland was somewhat inevitable.”
Sex palace plan reduced to row over a pile of historic rubble.
By Michael Field. Auckland. Dominion Post, November 20, 2010. p. A7.