Watch: 'Depressing' footage reveals demise of Waiwera hot pools

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 7 Dec 2021, 3:07PM

Watch: 'Depressing' footage reveals demise of Waiwera hot pools

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 7 Dec 2021, 3:07PM

New footage of the abandoned Waiwera Thermal Resort has given another insight into the heartbreaking demise of a once-thriving attraction. 

This week footage emerged on social media showing a group of people walking through the abandoned resort to showcase what had become of the former North Auckland wonderland. 

The haunting images show debris, rubbish and junk sitting lifelessly amid empty abandoned pools and smashed windows. 

A deconstructed slide has murky green sludge and water sitting at its end with broken bits of slide floating. 

In the video, broken wood and decking is flailed across the ground like a damaged construction site. 

It comes after footage emerged last year of Waiwera Thermal Resort. 

Kiwis took the opportunity to share how they feel about the state of the resort, with many saying it's a stain on their childhood memories. 

"This makes me sad to see my childhood gone," one wrote. 

Another said: "It's so depressing. I used to always go there as a child." 

"Oh my goodness I'm crying! The memories! The yearly summer school trips. It's such a shame. It's really sad," a third added. 

Waiwera Thermal Resort has been left abandoned for years. Photo / TikTok 

New $250m plan surfaces for abandoned Waiwera Hot Pools 

For those devastated at the state of the hot pools, your childhood memories may soon come back to life after a new plan to rebuild the resort came to life last year. 

The iconic Waiwera hot pool complex closed its doors for a $3 million renovation in February 2018 and has never reopened. 

But in September 2020, the present owners made preliminary decisions on a $250m masterplan. 

Evan Vertue, Waiwera project director for property company Urban Partners, said last year the pools and the slides could return to Waiwera, along with a day spa, a hotel spa complex, a micro-brewery and apartments. 

"We are very advanced with our council resource consent for the extraction of the geothermal water." 

While the wellness/spa complex might be a cheaper and less risky project, Vertue reckons it makes sense to start by building the water park and slides. 

"It's a strong, high-foot traffic attraction and would get Waiwera on the map. 

"We haven't scoped up the whole investment, but we are in the $250m stage, so we are going to look for other parties to hold hands with us on this one." 

And as for timing? The whole project might not be complete in the next 10 years, "but it will be well on the way. Patience can't go on forever". 

However, earlier this year, Auckland Council told the Herald it "had not received any new or recent consent applications for geothermal water extraction at Waiwera." 

The council added: "There is however an existing consent that was granted in 2015, which is valid until December 2026."