With just a few short weeks to completion, Rotorua Mayor Tania Tapsell got an inside look at the city’s new Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa, nestled into the newly re-developed lakefront.
Wai Ariki combines the region’s healing geothermal waters with the centuries-old legacy of Ngāti Whakaue culture, healing practices and manaakitanga (caring hospitality) to offer an authentic wellness and spa experience for manuhiri (visitors).
“Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa is a welcome refresh to our already established brand as a world-class spa and wellness destination. We’re very proud this has been developed locally by Pukeroa,” says Mayor Tapsell.
“It’s been exciting for Rotorua watching this stunning development be built in the past six months. After seeing it today, I can’t wait for the doors to open to locals and visitors,” she says.
Pukeroa Oruawhata has developed Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa, which will be managed by Belgravia Leisure, an acclaimed Australasian spa and wellness provider with more than 30 years of experience in the industry.
Ngāti Whakaue businesswoman Rania Sears has been appointed as Wai Ariki General Manager, with Pukeroa trustees being actively involved in seeing the kaupapa through to its opening.
“Wai Ariki is a game changer for Rotorua, its local economy, tourism sector, the community and our people,” says Pukeroa deputy chair, David Tapsell.
“This is not only the most significant spa development in Aotearoa in recent times – it is also one of a few indigenous-owned operations in the world.
“Wai Ariki plays to the collective strengths of our region and our iwi. It is the most recent embodiment of the reason the geothermal city of Rotorua was established here in the first place; it allows us to demonstrate and leverage the manaakitanga we are renowned for; it adds to the wealth of quality visitor experiences our district has to offer, and it will reclaim Rotorua’s position as an international spa and wellness destination.
“Bookings are already open online, and we can’t wait for the Belgravia team to open the doors in a few weeks and welcome manuhiri in.”
Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa is a 4,453m2 development designed to take manuhiri on a unique healing and relaxation journey. Every element contributes to a total wellbeing experience through a connection to the Ngāti Whakaue people, and the places and practices that have defined them through the centuries.
Bookings and gift vouchers are available online now here.