Caves to Castles: The Development of Second Home Practices in New Zealand

Using New Zealand as a case study, this paper turns a historical gaze to the development of second home practices, arguing that it is not possible to fully understand changes in second home practice through a narrow focus on housing policy. Rather, as second homes reflect the social, political, economic and cultural contexts in which they are situated, wider government ideology and policy changes, along with changing trends in leisure consumption, must be taken into account. The paper finds that in the 1880s when access to leisure and land tenure was limited, second home practice in New Zealand was very basic and male-dominated. Government-mandated access to leisure and favourable social welfare policies after 1945 meant second homes became the domain of middle-class families. The rhetoric of consumption also flowed into second home practices. The 1984 neoliberal policies led to wealth accumulation for some New Zealanders and rural outmigration for others, which was reflected in the rise of both luxury and re-use second homes. This paper provides useful baseline information for future research efforts, and encourages consideration of the broader implications of policy decisions (not just related to housing) at both national and local government level.


Journal article

Geographic Coverage

New Zealand

Journal citation

Journal of Policy Research in Tourism, Leisure and Events Volume 11, 2019 – Issue 1. Pp 1-15


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Abstract included in PLA’s Research Connections article in Parks and Leisure Australia Vol 23.1 Autumn 2020


Due to copyright restrictions, only the abstract is available


Walters, Trudie (Author)


Taylor and Francis online: 2019