… lex-neiafu

King opens $2m business complex in Neiafu

Thursday, July 29, 2021 - 15:59.  Updated on Thursday, July 29, 2021 - 20:24.
Neiafu, Vava'u

In Vava‘u, HM King Tupou VI officially launched the Fungalelea Business Complex on the Neiafu waterfront of the Port of Refuge, on 28 July.
The $2 million pa'anga complex built by the Sanft family has a 60m frontage on Neiafu’s main street, with a three storey complex that goes down to the waterfront.
Otto Gustav Sanft, gave an overview of the project and said that 80% of the rental space of the building had been rented out, “although not all tenants are able to open for business today.”
The building was constructed on the site of the old trading store established by the Sanfts. The Sanft descendants celebrated their 145th year of business in Vava‘u that was established in 1875.

The Fungalelea Business Complex on the Neiafu waterfront. Vava'u. 28 July 2021.
The Sanfts were plantation owners and general exporters. In the past, businesses in the area had also included wholesalers and retailers, a footwear shop, manufacturing, garment sewing, and an export juice factory. In 1975 the business was incorporated as O. G. Sanft & Sons Limited. It had branches in Nuku'alofa and Vava‘u.
In 2017 the board of directors of O. G. Sanft Vava‘u Ltd. decided to build a business complex to support the economic development in Vava‘u. Lisiate ‘Esau Tupou of Quality Design Ltd. and Carl Sanft jointly created a design for the building that is multi-functional. In the future it can be modified into a hotel.
When Otto, a student, the youngest son of Carl and ‘Anaseini Sanft, returned to Tonga from New Zealand for his semester break last December, he stayed to help with the construction progress over the last seven months.
Otto said he was, “honoured and thankful for this present the project overview of the Fungalelea Business Complex. “I have gained valuable experience and learning that will assist and help me a lot to complete my academic study.”
The Sanft family started their business in Vava'u in 1875. Previous heads of the business were, successively, the late Messrs. Christian, August, Albert, Frank, Otto, Charles, Herbert and Ralph Sanft.