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Event Update - "Hawke's Bay Open for Business and Ready to Welcome You"

Event Update for the 2023 Apollo Projects NZ Age Group Swimming Championships

Tena koutou katoa,

Following a site visit to the Hawke’s Bay yesterday, we are excited to announce that the Hawke’s Bay region is open for business and looking forward to hosting the 2023 Apollo Projects NZ Age Group Swimming Championships. The event will be proceeding as planned 12 – 16 April at the Hawke’s Bay Regional Aquatic Centre.

The Hawke’s Bay Regional Aquatic Centre is looking immaculate and ready to host its first national event when the top 13 – 18-year-old swimmers from around New Zealand converge on the brand-new world-class venue. Hastings District Council and Napier City Council are both supportive of the event proceeding in the region and welcome the many benefits our event will bring to their businesses and communities.

As part of our visit, we have done some research as part of our quest to confirm the venue for the event. Below are some key findings to share:

  • A large percentage of accommodation providers across Napier, Hastings and Havelock North are fully operational.

  • Hawke’s Bay Airport is fully operational as normal.

  • Car hire companies at the airport are fully operational as normal.

  • Roads are improving and more roads re-opening each week which is reducing the traffic between Napier and Hastings. Please note the busier times on the main express way are during times we will likely be at the pool for heats and finals.

  • The option for driving to Hawke’s Bay is currently via Palmerston North. If you’re planning to drive, please keep an eye on roads opening as we drawer closer to the event.

To assist with your planning, the friendly locals in the region are offering support and advice to confirm and/or organise your travel for the event. Below are some recommendations to assist as we encourage you to book if you haven’t already.

Accommodation Options

There is currently good availability for the dates of our event in the first week of school holidays. If you’d prefer to avoid commuting on the expressway, we recommend staying on the Hastings and Havelock North side. There are also lots of school boarding house options, with some contact details below too.

Hawke’s Bay Tourism – accommodation guide

Napier i-Site – accommodation guide or accommodation request form or call 06 834 1911

Hastings i-Site – contact 0800 427 846 or email

Lindisfarne College – contact

Woodford House –

Transport Options to Hawke's Bay

With the Hawke’s Bay Airport fully operational, this will be the best mode for transport to the region. However, the road from Palmerston North is open for those wishing to drive. We will include more details on road accessibility, including State Highway 5, in our pre-event information the week prior to the event commencing.

Hawke's Bay Regional Disaster Relief Trust

Whilst hosting the event provides great support to local businesses, we are also offering some products for purchase with all proceeds to go to the regional disaster relief fund.

Our event merchandise partner, Teamline, are also contributing $2 of each sale to the relief fund too. Get your pre-order merchandise now:

We can’t wait to host the event in Hawke’s Bay and assure you they are ready and open for business.

A special thanks to the team at Hawke’s Bay Regional Aquatic Centre, both Hastings District and Napier City Councils, Swimming Hawke's Bay Poverty Bay and our event partner Hawke’s Bay Tourism and our principal partner Apollo Projects for their support in preparing to host you in the Bay.

Nga mihi nui,


Dale Johnson - Head of Participation & Events


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