Big plans as Snowplanet expands entertainment

An early concept drawing of the Tropical Bird and Butterfly House proposed for Silverdale.

Snowplanet in Silverdale has been approached by a number of organisations that want to operate large-scale entertainment businesses on its site, and a couple of them are making progress.

One of the largest is the creation of two indoor ice rinks, one for curling and one for ice skating sports. This $15m proposal by Ice Sports was detailed in Hibiscus Matters’ July 15 paper and is currently seeking funding from a range of sources, including Auckland Council. Snowplanet general manager Rojie Aguilar says it is slowly moving forward, and likely to be 2-3 years away.

A building currently nearing completion adjacent to Snowplanet is purpose built for laser tag. The facility is leased to Megazone, and company spokesperson Wayne Corlett says an opening date has not been confirmed as yet.

In addition, Snowplanet has resource consent for construction of an Airwave indoor surf facility. This would involve two units, inside which the Airwave system, developed by Ross McCarthy, creates standing waves. Mr Aguilar says Snowplanet is a partner in this one with Mr McCarthy’s company, AirWave Ltd.

Mr McCarthy told the paper while he would love to build at the Silverdale site in the future, there are no plans or a timeline for it at this stage.

However, the project that gets Mr Aguilar really excited is the Tropical Bird and Butterfly House, which he says will be one of a kind in NZ. Snowplanet has signed a heads of agreement with the company behind the project, Fusion 8. The company’s director is Leigh McKenzie of Ōrewa.

Mr McKenzie says the building, of around 2400sqm, will include a multitude of tropical plants, including rarities, and a section housing tropical butterflies and another for parrots.

Two restaurants and function areas are proposed – one with views of the butterfly and parrot houses “like dining in the Amazon” and an orchid house for high teas.

Mr McKenzie says the project is in the early stages of the resource consent process and all going well it could be open by the first quarter of 2022.


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