Local Talent Wins Design for Waiariki’s $12 Million Tourism And Hospitality Centre

19 Mar 2016

The winning design for Waiariki Institute of Technology’s new $12 million Centre of Excellence for Tourism & Hospitality will feature a 150 seat demonstration kitchen lecture theater, and barista lab among its key attractions.

“Waiariki is thrilled to be working once again with the local team of Darryl Church Architecture (DCA),” says Kathryn Bloor, Facilities Manager, Waiariki.

“Our design competition resulted in a range of outstanding submissions from local and national architects. DCA showed a clear understanding of the brief, and the needs of a Tourism & Hospitality building to strengthen academic delivery and community support functions on Rotorua’s busy Mokoia Campus. 

Scheduled to break ground in November 2016, the modern centre will replace the campus’s original prefabricated buildings, which have served as ‘A Block’ since construction for ‘Waiariki Community College’ began in 1976. To mark this passing of the torch, a ceremony is being planned for mid-2016.

The first of the campus’s redesigned facilities to be built in full view of the public, on the corner of Old Taupo Road and Mokoia Drive, two separate three story buildings will form the core of the new facility, united by a shared roof.

The top floor of the smaller of these buildings will offer a 50 seat restaurant, with views out to the bubbling mud pools of Whakarewarewa.

Stating that the circular patterns of these iconic mud pools inspired the shape of the design’s organic floor plate, Darryl Church says basing the design of a tourism and hospitality centre on the likely birthplace of New Zealand tourism only made sense.

“Darryl Church Architecture in association with MOAA architects are excited to have won the Tourism & Hospitality design competition and continue our relationship with Waiariki Institute of Technology.

“Timber design is also going to be a feature of the building and we are working with some of the most clever engineering minds in New Zealand to develop innovative timber engineering solutions which align with Rotorua Lakes Council’s “Wood First” policy. This project will be a real boost to our growing portfolio and in turn a boost to the local economy as the DCA team continues to grow.”

Sheltered within the structure’s contemporary form will be Waiariki’s popular culinary arts, tourism, travel and hospitality qualifications. Teaching kitchens, a hotel training reception, and a climbing wall befitting the modern adventure tourism student will merge seamlessly with an atrium, offices and classrooms expected of a new-age educational facility.

“We are still riding on the high of creating Waiariki’s Health and Science Centre, with industry awards still rolling in,” says Darryl. “To date the Health and Science Centre is one of six global short-list finalists for a World Architecture News Colour award, and it has won the 2015 Supreme ADNZ design award, a Waikato/BOP NZIA award and is a Resene Total Colour Award winner.”

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Page last updated: 02 May 2017