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Wanderlust Taupō yoga festival cancelled after organiser’s liquidation
The US-based owner of the Wanderlust yoga event brand has cancelled its planned Taupō festival after its Australasian organiser went into liquidation earlier this month.
Sean Hoess, Chief Executive of the United States-based brand owner Wanderlust Holdings, last week announced the cancellation of the Taupō event, due to have been held from 8th to 11th March, after failing to find another event management company to take over the license for the festival.
Huess said ticket holders, who had paid up to $490 for their tickets, would receive a full refund within two weeks. Tickets cost up to $490 each.
According the Stuff.co.nz website, Hoes had been in talks with six event management companies in Australia and New Zealand, but no licensing partnership was agreed.
Directed and owned by Jonnie Halstead, Yoga Events Australia New Zealand (YEANZ), which held the license for the Wanderlust festivals in Australia and New Zealand was placed in liquidation on 12th January, owing at last $1.6 million to Wanderlust, regional councils, equipment suppliers, yoga teachers and speakers that had still not been paid for attending its Sunshine Coast event last year.
Hoess said the liquidation came as a shock to the company, releasing a statement that advised “unfortunately, given the very short timeline and financial challenges caused by YEANZ's insolvency, we could not find a partner who is willing to produce the Taupo festival. We therefore regretfully announce the cancellation of Wanderlust Great Lake Taupo 2018.”
Hoess is also reported to have said that he would consider paying Yoga Events' debts to save Wanderlust's reputation.
Wanderlust Taupō had been staged over three years, backed by the Taupō District Council.
A replacement event at Wairakei Resort, where the event was to be hosted, is reportedly being planned by its management, however.
Resort General Manager Kathy Guy said resort staff were working with a number of people to organise a new weekend package to entice yogis to stay for a "mindful weekend".
She advised “while we cannot release all the details just yet, the new package will definitely include yoga and wellness sessions, an ethnic Friday food market with raw and vegan options, and entertainment on the Saturday.
"We are confident that this will still be a soul-nourishing weekend to spend with friends and like-minded people."
Images: Wanderlust (top) and Sean Hoess (below).
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