New Zealand’s first large-scale inflatable water park, Kiwi Water Park, is set to open on Lake Dunstan just before Christmas this year.
The Facebook page for the park was created on November 3 and advertised for staff - including customer service and promo staff - on November 4.
Rutherford said that the response had been “overwhelming.” In one week, the Facebook page had over 6,500 followers, 5,500 likes, and received over 160 job applications - most of which were from people living in Wānaka. “We’ve had a lot of applications from ski and snowboard instructors at Cardrona and Treble Cone,” she said.
Queenstown businesswoman Emily Rutherford said the 10,000 square metres of inflatable equipment needed to set up the park was still en route from China - after significant delays with securing consent for the project - and was expected to arrive in New Zealand on December 13. After set-up and training were complete, she hoped to open the park around December 22.
The location of the park, near Lowburn, was chosen for Lake Dunstan’s warmer temperatures and its central location to Wānaka, Queenstown and the wider Central Otago region.
“Lake Wakatipu only gets to 12 degrees in summer whereas Lake Dunstan gets to 22 degrees in the middle of summer. It will be more pleasant for people and easier for many people to access.”
The park’s consent has been granted for six years from December 1 to March 31, and will employ around 15 members of staff including lifeguards, front desk operators and night time security guards for the first year. It will be yellow and blue, in recognition of it being the first water park in Otago.
“It’s going to be so much fun,” said Rutherford.