November 3, 2009

Kia Ora !*FIRSTNAME*!,

Trans-Tasman launch

Air New Zealand, in liaison with Destination Rotorua Tourism Marketing (DRTM), launched a major campaign in Sydney yesterday to promote its new trans-Tasman flights.
The four-week campaign features bus side, online, office tower and print advertising featuring the healing hot springs that are world-renowned throughout the region. The first two weeks of the campaign will boast an enticing introductory offer of $199 per person, one way for travel in 2010.
Air New Zealand general manager Tasman Pacific Airline Glen Sowry says the new service will further highlight the diverse tourism offerings of New Zealand.
“Rotorua is an iconic destination with thermal features not seen anywhere else in the world. This campaign aims to both remind Australians of what lies just three hours away and also introduce people to the natural wonders of this incredible region.” 

Flying visit from Steve

Steve Williams, Tiger Woods’ New Zealand caddy, was in Rotorua for just over three hours last Friday filming a US TV show.
Steve visited the Agrodome, where he was given an exclusive sheep shearing lesson, Zorb Rotorua and Te Puia, where he was filmed doing a hongi with a warrior in traditional Maori dress.
His Rotorua itinerary was arranged by Destination Rotorua Marketing, in liaison with Tourism New Zealand.

The Rotorua footage will form a segment of the show “My New Zealand”, which is part of Kiwi Challenge coverage to air on NBC Sport on November 14 and 15, 2009. NBC Sport has more than one million US viewers, and also airs in 20 other countries.
Steve, who divides his time between New Zealand and his international commitments, enjoyed his time in Rotorua, saying it’s a great place with a wide range of activities.

Forum in November

Destination Rotorua Tourism Marketing will be participating in a Tourism New Zealand road show later this month.
The forum will be held on November 25 in the Rotorua Convention Centre’s concert chamber. Please note this date in your diaries.  More details and invitations will follow shortly.

Party a success

Along with 14 local industry partners, DRTM attended the inaugural Rotorua Backpackers 'More than a one night stand' party on October 8 in Auckland. After a long period of limited activity in this very important sector it was great to give the region presence in Auckland. DRTM international sales manager James Fitzgerald says the evening was a great success, with excellent feedback and attendance from many Auckland-based backpacker companies. A fun amateur video featuring two European backpackers having a great time in Rotorua was compiled for the event, with the video being requested by a number of companies to play in reception areas and post on websites.

Good opportunities recognised at CINZ

DRTM’s new conference and incentive manager Denise Siviter attended CINZ 2009 earlier last month in Blenheim. She says it was a great opportunity to meet bureau managers from around the country, and a good time to further promote Rotorua to the C and I market.
Denise says the conference, themed Capitalising on Chaos, was all about identifying opportunities for Rotorua, and lessons learned following the challenges 2009 has held.
“It was also good to get an update and more of an insight on the Rugby World Cup 2011.”
Australia was one of the main topics of discussion at the conference, Denise says, with bureau managers discussing as a collective what expos and events are worth participating in.
Denise also discussed a PCO familiarisation with Air New Zealand and CINZ staff, and it is hoped this will be confirmed shortly.

New newsletter editor

Justine Southwick is now responsible for this monthly newsletter. Please send any future news and images to her for consideration. Phone (07) 349 7286 or email .

Australian social media sites embrace NZ

A survey company monitoring online social network sites says Australians are raving about scenery and adventure activities in New Zealand. The Nielsen agency has been tracking more than 25 million blogs and message board comments from across New Zealand and Australia since last year.
Queenstown was the most talked-about destination by bloggers, followed by Milford Sound and Fiordland, then Taupo and Rotorua.

Putting the power in your hands

Don’t forget to log in and keep your website listing/s up to date with new images, text and contact details as they change. If you don’t have a log in, please contact Adrian Hodge or phone 07 349 7281 and request access.
Visit to log in and edit your listings and view up-to-the-minute statistics of impressions, views and click throughs of your listing/s.

October 2009

Rotorua has the third highest forecast growth of visitor nights (+1.1 percent pa) over the 2009-2015 period for North Island regional tourism organisations. It was topped by Auckland (+1.6 percent pa) and Wellington (+1.3 percent pa), and was slightly lower than the national average (+1.2 percent pa).
Rotorua's growth in international visitor nights (+2.0 percent pa) is forecast to be marginally better than the national average (+1.9 percent) resulting in market share growing from 2.9 percent to 3.0 percent.  There is marginal growth forecast for most of our international markets, with Australia and China showing greatest promise (up 55,000 and 32,000 visitor nights respectively).  The worst performing market is expected to be UK (down 3,000 visitor nights).  Japan is forecast to have the same volume of visitor nights in 2015 as experienced in 2008 (62,000) after declining through to a low of 45,000 visitor nights in 2009.
Rotorua's growth in domestic visitor nights (+0.4 percent pa) is forecast to be the same as the national average (+0.4 percent pa) and results in static market share (3.4 percent).  There is marginal growth in visitor nights forecast for all domestic markets with no declining markets.

Rainbow welcomes new kiwi

Rainbow Springs Kiwi Wildlife Park celebrated the arrival of its 750th kiwi chick earlier last month. The chick, part of the BNZ Operation Nest Egg Save the Kiwi programme, hatched at 3.40pm on October 15, weighing 399.9g.
It has been named Shadow, following a social media naming competition won by Gabi Loose of Motueka.
Toni Thompson of Rainbow Springs says Shadow is doing well and is one of 31 chicks currently in the brooder room – the biggest number Kiwi Encounter has ever had at one time.
Shadow came from the Maungataniwha region.

Treks name being phased out

Treks was bought and taken over by YHA NZ on November 17 last year. As it has been a YHA hostel for nearly a year, the organisation will begin phasing out the Treks name.
Hostel manager Haylee Bloor says the rebranding will be a slow process, with no date yet set for complete phase out.
“Treks has been in the market place for five years and has good strong branding with it, so we have to smart about it.”
The business will become known as YHA Rotorua.

September arrival figures show positive signs for summer

Early signs of recovery are being seen for the New Zealand tourism industry, with a growth in September arrivals figures.
Statistics New Zealand figures released today showed that total arrivals for September increased 9.3 per cent on the same month last year; an additional 14,700 international visitors.
Tourism New Zealand (TNZ) chief executive George Hickton said the figures signalled a recovery in arrivals after the impact of the economic downturn and Influenza A (H1N1), which hit arrivals from Asia particularly hard earlier in the year.
“Today’s figures show our top five markets are all showing significant improvement on last month, which is great news for the industry heading into the crucial summer season.
“The US and China are recovering, Japan and the UK appear to have stabilised and Australia is still showing strong growth with holiday arrivals up 25 per cent in September; so Australia continues to be the foundation for our recovery,” he said.
TNZ’s ‘Which New Zealand Are You This Time’ campaign was launched in Australia in August and will continue to run till November. Campaigns are also running in the UK and Europe ahead of the peak booking season, and in China. More competitive airfares and an improvement in confidence are helping stimulate US outbound travel.
Later booking trends among travellers were making it hard to predict summer results, George said.
“Early indications are that summer is going to start slowly but pick up and we are certainly pleased to see some recovery in markets like the US and China, which are major contributors to New Zealand’s long-haul arrivals.”

Campaign to attract European travellers under way

Tourism New Zealand (TNZ) has launched a project to ignite European interest in New Zealand travel, with the 100% Pure New Zealand campaign being aired in eight European cities.
From September, the 100% Pure New Zealand campaign has been rolling out across five German cities and Amsterdam and Zurich. It started showing in Paris this month.
Earlier this year, TNZ identified that arrivals from continental Europe were holding up well, despite the economic downturn affecting travel out of the UK. In the year to August, arrivals from Germany were up four per cent and France up nine per cent, compared with the same period last year. Overall, arrivals from continental Europe were down only one per cent in the year to August. TNZ chief executive George Hickton says Europe has shown itself to be a resilient market in the past year, helped by the strong Euro exchange rate and growing demand for New Zealand travel.
"Having a city focus in regions with a higher concentration of our target market makes sense given the size of our budget.”
The Parisian campaign runs this month and next, predominantly in cinemas along with online and outdoor poster advertising.  In Germany, the campaign started on September 1 and runs till December across five cities: Hamburg, Frankfurt, Munich, Dusseldorf and Cologne. It features a mix of cinema, outdoor and online advertising.  Outdoor and online advertising started in Zurich and Amsterdam in late September and runs till December.
"Overall, Europe contributes about 20 per cent of New Zealand’s total arrivals, but because of spend, length of stay and their style of travel, European visitors make a significant contribution to the tourism economy," George says.

Conservation work recognised

The Rainbow Springs Kiwi Wildlife Park won the DOC Conservation in Action award at this year’s Tourism Awards.
The winners were announced at a special event in Wellington on October 6.
“We’re very pleased to see Rainbow Springs recognised for the continuing effort its team puts into conservation practices,” DRTM general manager Don Gunn says.
Rainbow Springs delivers an exceptional tourism experience that promotes conservation and educates visitors about New Zealand’s natural heritage.  It boasts the only kiwi conservation centre in the world that gives visitors a close-up look at the work being done to save New Zealand’s national bird from extinction. This includes hatching more than 700 kiwi for release back into the wild. The site currently houses more than 13 native or endemic animal and bird species, and more than 90 native plant species.
Throughout the year, the team at Rainbow Springs participates in pest trapping, weed control and tree planting on-site, and through external volunteer programmes in the Rotorua community. It facilitates courses to teach the correct handling of kiwi eggs for DOC staff, and involves schools and local organisations in conservation initiatives such as worm growing (for kiwi food) and tree planting. Tim Cossar, chief executive of the Tourism Industry Association New Zealand, which manages the Tourism Awards, says the winners are an inspiration and a reflection of the depth and quality of New Zealand’s tourism industry.
“In today’s challenging trading environment it is more important than ever that the industry and New Zealand recognise the excellence, innovation and dedication they represent.” Rainbow pic

Children in the Treetops

Treetops is appealing to the family market with a new range of activities for children. There is something for any child aged five and over, with some activities able to be adapted to suit any age. Options include: a teddy bears’ picnic, in which children can learn about the animals living on the estate and dine with the teddies before taking one home, and geocaching, a treasure hunt using a GPS.

New shuttle accesses wilderness playgrounds

A twice-weekly shuttle service, Te Urewera Shuttle, was launched on October 24. The service provides regular access from Rotorua to the remote wilderness playgrounds of the Whirinaki Forest Park, Te Urewera National Park and Lake Waikaremoana.
Operating on Wednesdays and Saturdays, this is the first scheduled shuttle service to operate between Rotorua and Lake Waikaremoana for several years.
 “The shuttle service is being operated by locals who know the road, and all that the region has to offer,’ says company co-director Joe Doherty.
“We have been getting regular feedback that the region needs a scheduled transport service, and we know the area has lost many potential visitors because they have not been able to get there.
“Te Urewera has a fantastic network of walking tracks, fishing and hunting spots, mountain bike trails, rivers, lakes, campsites and huts. But for large sections of the journey the road is narrow, windy and unsealed, which has been a real barrier to many people who are unaccustomed to driving on gravel,” Joe said
“By taking the shuttle, visitors can sit back, relax and enjoy the view. As a bonus, the local drivers will provide information on the region’s history, sites of significance, and the best places to go.”
The shuttle runs twice a week on Wednesdays and Saturdays over the summer season. This year the shuttle will start operating on Saturday 24 October 2009, and will finish on 10 April 2010. It will then start up again in October 2010. It will depart from the Rotorua Visitor Information Centre at 8.30am. The return trip will leave Lake Waikaremoana at 3pm and arrive in Rotorua around 7.20pm. Bookings are essential.
The shuttle service will be able to carry mountain bikes, so riders can access the new tracks in the Whirinaki Forest.
Te Urewera Shuttle is owned and operated by Joe and Jo Doherty and Richard and Meriann White.

Treetops launches wild food cooking school

Treetops Lodge and Wilderness Estate has launched half- and full-day wild food cooking experiences in time for summer.
The full-day cooking experience begins with a guided 4WD expedition into Treetops’ 2500 acres of native bush to discover the magnificent wildlife population. Unspoiled brooks are packed with trout and eels, there are herds of deer and wild pigs and native and introduced game birds. The best way to prepare and cook each of them is explained. Next is a one-hour bush walk to collect indigenous herbs and spices followed by an afternoon in the lodge’s open-plan kitchen. Treetops’ talented chefs combine the produce and indigenous ingredients of the forest to create a variety of unique dishes.
Half-day experiences begin with native ingredient gathering in Treetops’ 800-year-old forest. Accompanied by a knowledgeable Maori chef, guests discover such indigenous tastes as tangy kawakawaand peppery horopito. Then it’s back to the kitchen to watch these being transformed into gourmet dishes. The secrets of creating a hangi in the kitchen are also revealed. Both experiences include wine tasting, lunch, recipes and a Treetops apron. Advice is also given on equivalent flavourings in other parts of the world.
Each experience is designed for two participants.

New chef introduces Mediterranean tastes

Neil Slater is the new chef at Hamurana Lodge. He moved to Rotorua from Tauranga in September to take up the position, in time for Hamurana Lodge’s Le Manoir restaurant opening on October 8. Neil has worked in Italian restaurants and lived in Spain, so his dishes have a Mediterranean flavour.

A wealth of experience in new guide

Huru Perry Maika te Rangipuawhe has joined the Elite Adventures team as a tour guide. The local man is descended from the Tuhourangi people. He has been a guide in the Rotorua area for more than 30 years, and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Elite Adventures team.

More can be less

With the introduction of Qualmark Green assessments, many businesses are monitoring their resource use.  Monitoring is about combining data variables to obtain sector specific indicators. 
The term indicator is used because the information from a combination of data variables indicates efficiency.  For example, rather than measuring ‘rubbish to landfill’, an accommodation provider might consider dividing its rubbish by its number of guests, to result in a ‘rubbish to landfill per guest’ indicator. Even when total rubbish to landfill increases as a result of increased occupancy an accommodation provider that introduces a guest recycling system can expect to see their 'rubbish to landfill per guest' indicator decline.  Don't be unfairly penalised in your Qualmark Green assessment through poor selection of monitoring indicators - join the Rotorua Sustainable Tourism Charter to get assistance in formulating indicators appropriate for your business.  
Contact Gina George via email or phone 349 7289. 


November 7
This event comprises outrigger canoe races over 7km for singles and over 20km for six-member teams. Called the Hinemoa and Tutanekai races, the event is held on Lake Rotorua, celebrating legendary lovers Hinemoa and Tutanekai, whose story revolved around the lake.

Deepawali (Festival of Lights)

November 7
Deepawali is a well known Hindu festival celebrated by Indian communities worldwide. It is a smoke-free, alcohol-free and meat-free event.
It comprises various workshops covering subjects such as ancient Indian art (rangoli), yoga, Bollywood, how to wear a sari and henna hand decoration. There will also be an exhibition of Indian musical instruments, clothing and food stalls.
Following an opening ceremony there will be various workshops on ancient Indian art (Rangoli), ‘henna’ decorating, and yoga. There will also be special workshops on Bollywood and Belly dancing, how to wear a sari or turban, and Indian cooking. Food stalls will be supported by local Indian restaurants offering a variety of tasty vegetarian dishes. 
The programme will end with a spectacular fireworks display, along with South American drum beats and fire dancing.

Ibis Bike the Lake

November 8
Join 2000 other cyclists for our sixth anniversary and be a part of this fantastic event. The Hotel ibis Rotorua Bike the Lake is a scenic, yet challenging cycle ride around the undulating terrain that is the perimeter of Lake Rotorua. The event comprises one lap of the lake for novice and recreational riders or two laps for the more advanced riders. So come to Rotorua, New Zealand's thermal wonderland, and experience a fun, safe event totally organised for you. Be part of New Zealand's fastest growing bike ride.

Tour de Lake Front

November 14
Tour de Lake Front has been an annual children's biking event since it started in 2004. The event features a cycle course for children 5 to 12 years of age starting at the Rotorua Village Green, through Rotorua Lakefront parks and reserve tracks and garden as well as a challenging bike obstacle course. Emphasis is placed on participation and completion, and having fun riding with friends and family in a beautiful and scenic location. All participants who finish the course will receive a medal, certificate and goodie bag.

For more information on these and other events, go to

We have collected your contact details. This information is collected to enable us to keep you up to date with tourism news pertinent to the Rotorua tourism market and keep you informed of the activities of the Destination Rotorua Marketing office. We will not disclose your contact details to third parties.


Justine Southwick
Media Advisor
Destination Rotorua Marketing
Private Bag 3007, Rotorua
Phone +64 7 349 7286
Fax +64 7 349 4133