The Founders - Peter Hanson & Joan Hanson

Aotea Gifts was founded by Peter and Joan Hanson.

Peter had a wide ranging commercial and military background. In the late 1970’s when Peter was leading the Royal New Zealand Artillery, he noticed a small tourism retail business on route to the army base. This became the first Aotea store.

Aotea Gifts evolved from these small beginnings and soon expanded into Auckland, Christchurch, Rotorua, Queenstown and Tekapo.

Peter’s attention to detail and understanding the requirements of international travellers became the “Aotea Way” which has guided the company over more than 40 years.

For many years a common passion of both Peter and Joan has been Boating, Skiing, Gardening and Travelling. These interests influenced the company, its products and the way the business interacts with its customers.

Peter passed away after a brief illness in 2019. Joan continues to be closely involved in the business operations and strategy of Aotea Gifts. She is very active with boats, skis and gardens; and is looking forward to Aotea welcoming its international customers again.