Hospitality New Zealand has congratulated the New Zealand Parliament for quietly and effectively fixing an anomaly in the new liquor laws which would have required hotels and motels to remove all mini-bars on December 18.

Clare Davies, Hospitality New Zealand accommodation spokesperson and Hospitality NZ Board Member, said a section in the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act 2012 would have had the unintended consequence of totally banning mini-bars from mid-December.

“However, Parliament unanimously passed the Statutes Amendment Bill 2013 last week which contained a simple clause fixing the problem. The amendment specifically confirms that the institution of mini-bars can continue in New Zealand motels and hotels. Our members certainly welcome that correction,” she said.

“The legislation was never intended to ban mini-bars and, once the mistake was identified, the Ministry of Justice worked with the hospitality industry to ensure it was fixed before owners had to start pulling drinks out of fridges.

“Hospitality New Zealand congratulates all Members of Parliament and the officials at the Ministry of Justice for solving a problem created by the wording in the original piece of legislation.

“We thank Minister Hon Chester Borrows for submitting the Supplementary Order Paper which contained the mini-bar amendment. Hospitality NZ is pleased to have been able to play a constructive role in efficiently solving this issue before it had a real impact on our members.

“As the holiday season approaches, Kiwis can be rest assured that they will still be able to enjoy a cold drink from a mini-bar at accommodation venues around the country,” she said.

Pictured: A Nero bar fridge from Weatherdon