$3.2 million hydro slides open at Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa


A New Zealand first has been unveiled, with the opening of two state-of-the art hydro slides at Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa (HSTPS).  

The Violet Vortex and Waiau Winder, named following thousands of public votes, cements the complex’s reputation as home to New Zealand’s best aquatic experiences.  

The new Violet Vortex is an adrenaline-fuelled ride full of twists and turns and featuring LED technology.  

The slower Waiau Winder features visual projection technology never seen before in New Zealand. It has the ability to display unique imagery inside the slides and today, gives slides the experience of going past an aquarium.  

The slides replace the old green and beige slides built in 1998, which had an estimated 17 million rides taken on them, and complement the Superbowl and Conical Thrill slide experiences, which opened in 2010 and 2019.  

The opening ceremony featured year three and four school students from Lincoln Primary School’s Class Miro who triumphed in an Ultimate Ball Run school competition, earning the privilege of the first public rides.  

Teachers were encouraged to incorporate the competition into their existing curriculum, fostering the development of science and maths skills as students designed and built their best ball run.  

HSTPS General Manager Graeme Abbot said the Lincoln Primary School class was chosen for its remarkable display of teamwork:

 “While we received some phenomenal entries, with impressive engineering skills, Lincoln Primary School’s entry stood out for its genuine teamwork, creativity, and storytelling.

 Our team is so excited to welcome Class Miro as the first official sliders on the Waiau Winder and the Violet Vortex. We are sure these slides will take them on a ride like nothing they’ve experienced before.”

 Graeme says the opening of the new slides is a major milestone for Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa.

 “It marks a significant celebration, following months of relentless effort and commitment from the entire project team.”

 Samara Brown, one of Class Miro’s teachers, said the class was determined to win:

 “We gave each student an opportunity to plan and design the ball run and our parent community brought in so many pipes and supplies. It was really amazing.

 “We are so immensely proud of the students for working as a team the whole time. What an amazing way to start our last term of the school year!”

 Hurunui Mayor Marie Black opened the slides, acknowledging the $3.2 million investment in HSTPS. “This is going to elevate Hanmer Springs as a destination that will be hard for anyone to miss.

 “As the sole owners of Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools & Spa, the Hurunui community sees the benefits of these investments every time. This year, the complex is set to pay $2.4 million in dividends, which is ringfenced for community parks and reserves.”

 The slides are now open to the general public.

 NZ residents are encouraged to sign up for PoolsPlus Loyalty Card which grants a 20% off individual entry prices!

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