It is the end of an era for Royal Akarana Yacht Club’s current clubrooms, but certainly not for the club, as they are founding partners of a new marine based multi-sports facility to be built on the site.
As an island nation it is no surprise that sailing and paddle activities are our most successful Olympic sports. For a long time Okahu Bay, and specifically the Royal Akarana Yacht Club, have been home to a number of our top Olympians and international competitors.
Royal Akarana Yacht Club has been operating at their Okahu Bay site since 1952, following a move from its previous clubrooms in Mechanics Bay. Since its inception in 1895 the Club has maintained a proud history of forward thinking and progressive development in the interest of its members and the sport of sailing.
This philosophy remains true today with its broad range of programmes including blue water sailing, youth development, Sailability and an inclusive community focus at the heart of the Club’s objectives.
Royal Akarana Yacht Club are now entering a new and exciting phase in their journey. On 30 April 2012 its members voted to establish the Akarana Marine Sports Charitable Trust and gift the Club’s leasing rights of its site in Okahu Bay to the Trust for the purpose of developing a new marine based multi-sports facility.
Founding partners Royal Akarana Yacht Club and Auckland Sailing Club, who have now merged their organisations, together with key partners Ngati Whatua Orakei, the Orakei Local Board and University of Auckland are instrumental in the delivery of this exciting project – the Hyundai Marine Sports Centre.
The new centre will be home to a wide variety of clubs including Royal Akarana Yacht Club, Auckland Sailing Club, Waka Ama, Sailability Auckland, Royal Akarana Paddlers, Auckland City Tri, The University of Auckland water sports clubs and many more.
“We are excited about the future of the Royal Akarana Yacht Club and the opportunities that the new facilities will bring, enhancing our relationships with other clubs and the community.”
Sally Garrett – Commodore, Royal Akarana Yacht Club
A natural stadium on the water, Okahu Bay is an ideal water sports venue and with the existing wharf and breakwater, provides a protected amphitheatre for on water activities and on shore spectators.
Okahu Bay has a rich historical and cultural presence on the Auckland waterfront. The Hyundai Marine Sports Centre will preserve this history as well as enhancing the vibrant environment by creating a new hub for the community of Orakei, Auckland and beyond.
The Hyundai Marine Sports Centre will actively promote and provide sports education, recreation and leisure opportunities in an environment in which people can grow and explore in and around the sea. With a public café and ability to host world-class sporting events, the centre will truly be a lively community destination.
Demolition of the existing Royal Akarana Yacht Club clubrooms is due to start in December and construction of the Hyundai Marine Sports Centre will commence in the New Year. The new facility will open in 2018, in time for summer.
During the construction of the new centre, Royal Akarana Yacht Club will relocate to temporary facilities on The Landing in Okahu Bay and will continue to run their full range of programmes and events.
The new Hyundai Marine Sports Centre will provide a safe pathway to the sea, enabling education, participation, and a destination for the wider community – the ideal place to host world championships!