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The waterfront in Auckland, New Zealand, is set to receive a massive facelift in the form of a $14.6 million redevelopment project. It is designed to cater to the region’s booming cruise economy, and already the redevelopment has seen Shed 10 on Queens Wharf transformed into an events centre capable of hosting 3000 people. Further upgrades mean Shed 10 will be out of action until April 2013, when it will reopen, equipped with new facilities to better serve the cruise industry.

The redesign will provide more space for functions, but will preserve the shed’s two levels, with customs, quarantine and immigration facilities housed upstairs and a more open baggage-handling area created on the ground floor.

Shed 10 joins a number of already established waterfront venues, including the Viaduct Events Centre and The Cloud. Waterfront Auckland’s development general manager, Rod Marler, told the New Zealand Herald that the events industry “see each of these working in a complementary way rather than competing”, and believe there is sufficient demand for another waterfront venue.

And that just may be the case. The number of cruise ships visiting Auckland has doubled in the past five years, and it is estimated that 97 cruise ships will have visited New Zealand’s largest city by the end of this year.

This coming season will see Voyager of the Seas, Carnival Spirit, Crystal Symphony and more in New Zealand waters. Check out our round up of Who’s Who Down Under for a look at the ships you could be cruising on.

Words: Matt Baxter