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Work begins on Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa

Work begins on Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa
December 8, 2017

Work on a Rotorua’s major new spa development is set to get underway, with New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today helping to turn the first sod of Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa.

Speaking at an official ceremony with representatives of the Government’s Maori caucus and Pukeroa Oruawhata Trust representatives, Prime Minister Ardern described the development as an exciting one and says it is fantastic to see the investment in tourism infrastructure, advising “I can’t tell what I am more excited by, the fact that this is a spa… or actually the fact that this is iwi land, iwi led and the fact that it will create jobs for your local community.”

Prime Minister Ardern spoke highly of the way Ngati Whakaue and Te Arawa elements were woven through the development.

Prime Minister Ardern and Pukeroa Oruawhata Chairman Malcolm Short, accompanied by local tamariki, used ceremonial shovels to turn first sod, marking the start of work on the site.

Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa is a luxury spa and wellness centre which is being developed by Pukeroa Oruawhata on Rotorua’s lakefront. It is expected to boost the local economy by tens of millions of dollars a year.

Short says the sod-turning marks an important step in the project and follows considerable work behind the scenes to get the development to this stage, explaining “it is exciting to be at a point where groundworks can now get underway and we can start to see the site transformed. This is the first step in creating a wider health and wellness campus on our lakefront site.”

Short says the development is about growing the local and international visitor economy for the benefit of all of Rotorua, and extending the destination’s existing spa, health, wellness and visitor experiences. The intention is to prompt visitors to stay longer, and experience more, in Rotorua, adding “Ngati Whakaue, Te Arawa and Maori culture sit at the heart of Wai Ariki, with the 650-year history of the tribe and Rotorua’s spa heritage forming an intrinsic part of the development.”

Elements of Ngati Whakaue and Te Arawa culture will be infused throughout, from the design of the building to its unique spa and wellness offerings, with Short concluding “as an iwi led development on iwi land, we have a proven history of developing projects for the economic and social wellbeing of Ngati Whakaue and the wider community.

“We are confident this development will continue this, not only by providing another income stream but also through providing new employment for locals in an exciting and growing industry.”

Images: Pukeroa Oruawhata Chairman Malcolm Short with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at the official sod turning of Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa (top) and an artist's impression of the completed Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa (below).

25th October 2017 - LEISURE PORTFOLIOS ON FRONT BENCH IN NEW ZEALAND’S NEW GOVERNMENT

24th September 2017 - MAORI LEGENDS AIM TO BRING WAI ARIKI HOT SPRINGS AND SPA TO LIFE

9th September 2017 - NEW LUXURY SPA AND WELLNESS CENTRE TO OPEN IN ROTORUA

6th September 2017 - TOURISM TAX ON THE AGENDA IN NEW ZEALAND ELECTION 

21st August 2017 - INTERNATIONAL VISITORS TO NEW ZEALAND SPEND $10.3 BILLION IN YEAR TO JUNE 2017 

29th January 2017 - SIGNIFICANT GROWTH IN INTERNATIONAL WELLNESS TOURISM


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