About Rotorua

Location & population

Rotorua is in a strategic central location positioned just outside of the golden triangle of Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga and has excellent infrastructure to facilitate the transfer of goods, energy and information.

With a population exceeding 70,000, Rotorua has a unique combination of a skilled workforce, a supportive business environment, and distinctive market opportunities that position it as a compelling destination for businesses and families seeking to flourish in a diverse and dynamic setting.

Key industries

Several major industries thrive in Rotorua, making our city a smart choice to do business.
Rotorua is well known for agriculture, forestry and wood processing, geothermal, Māori culture, and tourism, which significantly contribute to our economy and employment opportunities.

Recent projects 

Long-term partnerships and investments with central government, local iwi, businesses, and the philanthropic sector have allowed Rotorua to grow and transform into a vibrant, productive city. While providing high-impact outcomes for our community and visitors, these projects are strong indicators of a growing local economy, which helps to build business confidence and attract new investment.

Rotorua lakefront redevelopment

A four-year $40 million redevelopment of the Rotorua lakefront is underway, funded through a 50:50 partnership of the Provincial Growth Fund and Rotorua Lakes Council. The project will include new boardwalks, cycleways, walkways, playgrounds and landscaping, all working to improve the connection between the city and Lake Rotorua.
Enhancement of this area, right down to the shores of Lake Rotorua will not only increase cultural and civic pride, but private and iwi landholders around the lakefront have begun investing millions into accommodation and attractions.

Wai Ariki Hot Springs & Spa

Pukeroa Lakefront Holdings has built the $60 million Wai Ariki Hot Springs & Spa. This is the first major purpose-built spa since the original, now iconic, Rotorua Bathhouse was built more than 120 years ago. The luxury spa centre is positioned at the lakefront adjacent to the Village Green.
 Next door, investment is also planned for the 77-year-old Queen Elizabeth Health centre which is being rebuilt to an estimated $23 million.

Wai Ariki Hot Springs and Spa is the home to luxury hot springs, spa and wellness experience, built on the legacy of Ngāti Whakaue culture, healing practices and manaakintnga - the centuries-old and internationally renowned Ngāti Whakaue concept of welcoming manuhiri (visitors).

Whakarewarewa Forest redevelopment

The iconic Whakarewarewa and Titokorangi forests are enjoyed by many, and are popular playgrounds for local and visiting mountain bikers, runners and walkers. They also play host to numerous world-class competitions, particularly mountain biking events and marathons, attracting thousands of athletes, crews and supporters, and inject millions of dollars into the local economy.
Thanks to funding from the Provincial Growth Fund, and in partnership with iwi forest owners, Rotorua Lakes Council is currently managing an investment of $14.5 million to enhance the forest amenity and improve the experience for all users. The redevelopment of the forest will create significant opportunities for the city, as well as benefits for tourism.

Rotorua Museum redevelopment

The strengthening, restoration and redevelopment of Rotorua Museum Te Whare Taonga o Te Arawa is a key element of Rotorua Lakes Council’s Vision 2030. Rotorua Museum, is a significant building for our community and country. In 2016 damage from the Kaikōura earthquake meant the building needed to be closed. Extensive building and ground investigation has been carried out and detailed design completed.

In August 2023, following a community consultation, Rotorua Lakes Council elected members voted in favour of proceeding with the strengthening and re-opening of Rotorua Museum, subject to certain conditions being met, aimed at minimising financial risk.

Peka Industrial Park

Peka Industrial Park provides a modern industrial environment for a range of heavy industries. The vision is to create a hub for competitive production and growth that will foster prosperity and wellbeing for people and business in the Bay of Plenty.

 Situated at the southern gateway to Rotorua, Peka Industrial Park is well located to serve local, regional and national businesses. With easy access to state highways and positioned alongside the golden triangle of Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga, Rotorua offers the benefits without the price tag of larger centres. The 140ha property will see an initial development of 36ha over four stages.