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Changing of the guard at the Coromandel’s Bayleys offices

After 25 years, real estate stalwart, Mary Walker, is stepping down as owner of the Coromandel Peninsula’s two Bayleys Real Estate offices.

Mary is handing over the reins to Bayley family member, Chris Bayley, real estate professional, Shaun Paterson, and existing Bayleys Coromandel shareholder, Karl Davis. Chris and Shaun both have strong connections to Mercury Bay while Karl, a long-time member of the Hauraki North Rugby Club and top rural real estate salesperson on the Hauraki Plains, has a home in Pauanui.

Shaun spent his formative years in Whitianga and has returned home with his wife and baby after 11-years working in the corporate real estate sector in London. He previously spent five years working for Bayleys in Auckland. Shaun’s father, Garry, spent his real estate career working for Mary.

Chris, son of Bayleys Real Estate founder Graham Bayley, says he is excited about taking over from Mary in what has become one of the agency’s most successful provincial locations. He has been working in the family business since the 1980s - establishing the agency’s South Auckland office, selling real estate and managing various commercial property teams at the Bayleys head office.

“Mary has done an outstanding job building and cementing the Bayleys brand throughout the Coromandel,” says Chris, who has owned a holiday home in Cooks Beach for some 25-years and is a member of the Mercury Bay Game Fishing Club. “For years I’ve been reading about Aucklanders getting out of the ‘big smoke’ to a much more rewarding quality of life in the regions. The past couple of years under Covid restrictions have certainly driven home that message to me personally, hence the move to the Coromandel.”

Under Mary’s watch, Bayleys Whitianga first began trading in Albert Street before moving to new premises - currently being refurbished and modernised to accommodate more staff - on The Esplanade 20 years ago. Bayleys Thames opened 10 years ago.

Mary says she intends to spend more time travelling around New Zealand with her husband, Ross, in their campervan as well as spending some with her daughter at their coowned horse breeding and training stables in the Waikato.

Over the years, Mary and Ross have been staunch supporters of Coastguard New Zealand and the Mercury Bay Art Escape. Bayleys Whitianga and Bayleys Thames have also been supporters and sponsors of other philanthropic causes such as surf lifesaving, lunches-in-schools, guide dogs for the blind, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

“It has been a fantastic time running Bayleys in Whitianga and Thames, but the past two years under Covid have really brought home to Ross and me the importance of family,” says Mary. “So we’re going to enjoy life a bit more with the kids and see more of the country, and hopefully a bit more of the world as well.

“We’ll still be living in Whitianga and Ross and I will be actively involved with Coastguard and the Art Escape, so you’ll still see us out there fishing or wandering around the local arts scene, on the golf course and of course sipping the occasional glass of wine.” Shaun says that while there may be new faces “behind the scenes” from a leadership perspective, there will still be the same professional salespeople and administration team in the Coromandel’s Bayleys offices. “It’s business as usual in what is a seamless transition,” he says. “Combined, Karl, Chris and I have deep-rooted networks across the Coromandel and a passion for the local area. We are excited about working with clients, both existing and new, as the area continues to grow and evolve in the years ahead.”

Bayleys Real Estate is New Zealand’s largest full-service real estate agency with a network of 90 offices and employing more than 2,000 sales and support staff.

Pictured is Mary Walker with the new owners of the two Bayleys offices in Whitianga and Thames, Karl Davis (on the left), Chris Bayley (second from the right) and Shaun Paterson.


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