In first place: Hawke’s Bay Regional Aquatic Centre wins at 2023 Property Industry Awards

Auckland, 23 June 2023: The Hawke’s Bay Regional Aquatic Centre, one of the only FINA International Swim Meet qualified pools in New Zealand, won Excellence and Best in Category in the Holmes Group Tourism and Leisure Property Award tonight. This was one of 10 Excellence and Best in Category awards handed out at the Property Council New Zealand Rider Levett Bucknall Property Industry Awards, Aotearoa’s most prestigious property awards programme.

The 5,167m2 facility is situated within the Hawke’s Bay Regional Sports Park and its adaptability means that it can meet the needs of both serious competitors and recreational users alike.

At the heart of the aquatic centre is the 10-lane, 50-meter competition pool, meeting world championship standards. With a movable bulkhead, the pool can be reconfigured to accommodate either short course swim meets or six canoe polo courts suitable for international canoe polo events.

Additionally, the centre has a 25-meter warm-up pool ideal for recreational activities and hydrotherapy pools that are used for rehabilitation and therapy, catering to the needs of people throughout the region.

To ensure that the facility met international standards the team carried out significant prebuild research with Swim New Zealand, other pool operators and sports media to understand the most important design features required to make the facility attractive to national and international events. These included adding in additional width to poolside walkways, a pre-race competitor waiting room, two large high-rise camera and commentary platforms, and removal of external glass to stop glare.

“What makes the Property Industry Awards truly unique is that they assess return on investment for the lifetime of a building. While this might sound straight forward when you’re measuring a financial return, it becomes far more complex and meaningful when you consider the return on investment as it pertains to people,” said Leonie Freeman, Property Council chief executive.

“Overall, the Hawke’s Bay Regional Aquatic Centre is an impressive facility that delivers on all these measures and is sure to attract visitors from all over the region and further afield. Whether you’re a professional athlete or simply looking for a fun day out, this facility has something for everyone.”

A multi-media communications room can facilitate live streaming of events and international media are able to broadcast directly from the site without the need for outsourced broadcast facilities. The pool also features a special cleaning and filtration system to keep the water crystal clear, whilst providing fixed seating capacity for 840 people and temporary seating for up to 1,662 – the largest in New Zealand.

Accessibility features were also well considered and include a pool pod to allow for dignified independent access to the pools and an accessible ramp access to the training and learners pool.

Now in its 24th year, the Property Industry Awards celebrate and showcase superior examples of iconic projects in property development and investment across a broad range of sectors and design disciplines, recognising outstanding projects, developments and refurbishments.

“Property is Aotearoa New Zealand’s largest industry, contributing over $41.2 billion (15 per cent) to our GDP and employing over 200,000 Kiwis. Behind the pretty buildings and architectural flair are dedicated people creating spaces for you and I to live, work and play. Together, we are shaping cities and regions where communities thrive,” concluded Freeman.


Holmes Group Tourism and Leisure Property Award
Excellence and Best in Category
  • Hawkes Bay Regional Aquatic Centre, Hastings
  • Submitted by Apollo Projects
  • Owner/developer: Hawke’s Bay Community Fitness Centre Trust
  • Construction: Apollo Projects Ltd
  • Architect: Warren and Mahoney Ltd
  • Service engineer: Powell Fenwick Consultants
  • Structural engineer: GHD Ltd
  • Mechanical engineer: Active Refrigeration Ltd
  • Quantity surveyor/project manager: Apollo Projects Ltd
  • Civil engineer: Cook Costello
  • Auckland Zoo – Tātaki Auckland Unlimited, Auckland
  • Sudima Kaikōura, Kaikōura
  • Cloudy Bay Vineyards – Founders Cellar, Blenheim
  • Taumata o Kupe, Auckland
  • The Langlands Hotel, Invercargill
  • The Observatory Hotel, Christchurch
  • voco and Holiday Inn Express Tower, Auckland
  • Waikato Regional Airport Terminal Resilience Project, Hamilton



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