A Brief Chronology

400x200 Historical painting The Bath House

Bath House Chronology 1902-1980

26 September 1902: Wohlmann submits initial plans
18 October 1905: Hutchinson tender accepted
31 May 1908: Building contract completed
13 August 1908: Building opened by Admiral Sperry of the American Fleet
1911 – 1912: South Wing addition completed
1 July 1947: Bath House transferred to Health Department
1 May 1963: Transfer to Rotorua City Council approved along with grant of $64,000
1965:Tudor Towers restaurant and later nightclub, takes up lease of upstairs area
October 1966: The building is vacated by the Health Department
1966: Council uses North Wing as storage depot and the area is used by Prisoners Aid and Rehabilitation Society, and Rotorua City Combined Clothing and Furniture Bank1 November 1969: City of Rotorua Museum officially opened in South Wing
12 October 1977: Rotorua City Art Gallery opens in North Wing

400x200 centennial project construction

Bath House Chronology 1981-Now

23 May 1983: Centennial Wing extension to South Wing opens
2 April 1985: Building is classified “B” by New Zealand Historic Places Trust. Coffee bar lease expires in North Wing
11 October 1986: North Wing Gallery extensions designed by Hocking & Verrall open
28 May 1987: Te Arawa gallery opens in Centennial Wing
31 August 1988: Art Gallery and Museum amalgamated
2 September 1990: Tudor Towers restaurant and nightclub lease expires
15 December 1993: Conservation plan commissioned
3 September 1995: Museum staff vacate work areas in North East Wing
6 June 1997: Taking the Cure exhibition opens in re-developed North East Wing
March 2006: Stage I of Centennial project completed with North Viewing Platform re-instated
November 2008: Stage II of Centennial project completed with opening of Rotorua Trust Galleries in North Wing
September 2011: Stage III of Centennial Project completed with the opening of the South Wing, named after Rotorua historian Don Stafford (1927-2010).
November 2016: Rotorua Museum closed to complete earthquake strengthening on the Bath House building.

400x200 Historical Bathhouse 1

More Information

Auckland Weekly News, 13 August 1901.
Bath House Records 1909, 1925-26, 1931 to 1939. Courtesy of Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
Bennett, Paul Rewi (1984). Tudor Towers – The Rotorua Baths. Victoria University of Wellington.
Boyd, Joan; Stafford, Don; Steele, Roger (eds), (1980). Rotorua 1880-1980. New Zealand: HA Holmes & Coy Ltd.
Daily Post, Rotorua. Various editions.
Herbert, Arthur Stanley OBE, MD, BS (1921). The Hot Springs of New Zealand. London: H. K. Lewis & Co. Ltd.
Morning Post, Rotorua. Various editions.
Rockel, Ian (1986). Taking the Waters/Early Spas in New Zealand. Wellington: Government Printing Office Publishing.
Savage, Paula (1980). The Government Gardens. Rotorua: Rotorua District Council Publication.

Stafford, DM (1986). The Founding Years In Rotorua, A History of Events to 1900. Auckland: Ray Richards Publisher.
Stafford, DM (1988). The New Century In Rotorua, A History of Events from 1900. Auckland: Ray Richards Publisher.
Wohlmann, AS, MD, BS (1914). The Mineral Waters and Spas of New Zealand. Wellington: John Mackay, Government Printer.
Wohlmann, AS, MD, BS (1914). The Mineral Waters and Health Resorts of New Zealand. Fifth Edition. Wellington: John Mackay, Government Printer.
100 Years of Rotorua (1979). Braynart Group.


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