Waitangi Treaty Grounds re-opens Visitor Centre
31 October 2016
The Waitangi Treaty Grounds has reopened its Visitor Centre after extensive renovations. The upgraded facility has almost doubled in size and features a high quality gift ship and upgraded theatre to show the 20-minute documentary film: Waitangi, Birthplace of a Nation. A Carving Studio has been added to the Visitor Centre courtyard where visitors can watch two experienced carvers demonstrating their skills in wood and bone carving.
The original building, opened in 1983 by Prince Charles and Princess Diana, was designed by renowned Māori architect John Scott and is recognised as an important example of his work. However, the building became too small to cater for growing visitor numbers to the Treaty Grounds. The Trust has worked closely with Heritage New Zealand to ensure the design of the extension is sympathetic to John Scott’s original concept.
Waitangi Treaty Grounds Chief Executive Greg McManus says: “the Visitor Centre reopening is the latest development in an ongoing programme of improvements and innovations at the Grounds. We’ve received some great acknowledgements this year, winning the NZ Museum Awards Best Museum Project 2016 and the Māori Cultural Tourism category at the NZ Tourism Awards. With the enhanced Visitor Centre and the new Carving Studio we’re getting closer to realising our ambition to make the Treaty Grounds a truly world class culture and heritage attraction”.