Hamilton New Zealand Temple
11th operating temple; closed for renovation; exterior refurbishment underway
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Address509 Tuhikaramea Road
Telephone: (+64) 7-846-2750
ServicesClothing rental available
Patron housing available
Distribution center nearby (Store Locator)
Announcement:17 February 1955
Groundbreaking and Site Dedication:21 December 1955 by Ariel Ballif, Wendell B. Mendenhall, and George R. Biesinger
Public Open House:28 March–19 April 1958
Dedication:20–22 April 1958 by David O. McKay
Exterior Finish:Reinforced concrete block manufactured at site; white painted structural steel
Ordinance Rooms:One ordinance room and five sealing
Total Floor Area:44,212 square feet
On July 23, 2018, the Hamilton New Zealand Temple closed for an extensive renovation project that includes seismic strengthening, upgrades to the electrical and mechanical systems, improvement of the floor plan, and replacement of all finishes and furnishings. Accompanying facilities will also be upgraded including the parking lot, patron and missionary housing, and visitors' center. Construction is expected to be completed in 2021 when the public will be invited to tour the temple during an open house. Following the open house, the temple will be rededicated.
Situated atop a stately hill in the rural outskirts of Hamilton, the Hamilton New Zealand Temple overlooks the 86 acres it shares with the former Church College of New Zealand—a Church-operated school for students ages twelve to eighteen that permanently closed in December 2009 after 51 years of operation. At the base of the hill is a popular public visitors' center, surrounded by beautifully manicured gardens. Guides are available to answer questions and direct visitors to the numerous displays on site including a magnificent replica of the Christus statue. At Christmastime, the grounds are filled with a dazzling spectacle of lights and displays.
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple was the first temple built in the Southern Hemisphere and second built in Polynesia, following the Laie Hawaii Temple (1919).
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple was originally named the New Zealand Temple.
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple is a sister building to the Bern Switzerland Temple.
In 1954, general authorities approved the construction of a temple for an undetermined location in the South Pacific. President David O. McKay himself would select the temple site during a two-month tour of the Pacific including Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, American Samoa, Tahiti, New Zealand, and Australia. Upon his return in February 1955, he recommended that the temple be constructed near the Church college in Hamilton, New Zealand, where the setting was ideal for a spiritual and educational center.
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple and adjoining Church College of New Zealand (permanently closed in December 2009) were both built entirely by volunteer missionary labor.
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple was originally constructed with a single auditorium-style ordinance room equipped with motion-picture presentation of the endowment.
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple features beautiful murals on the walls of its Celestial Room. (Only two other temples feature full Celestial Room murals: the Idaho Falls Idaho Temple and the Los Angeles California Temple. The corner pillars in the Logan Utah Temple Celestial Room portray a heavenly landscape, too.)
Prior to its dedication, some 112,500 visitors toured the Hamilton New Zealand Temple during its public open house.
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple was dedicated about five months before the London England Temple, marking the first time that two dedications were held in the same year.
The Church College of New Zealand was dedicated six days after the dedication of the adjoining Hamilton New Zealand Temple.
The first stake in New Zealand was created the month after the dedication of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple in the city of Auckland, about 80 miles north of Hamilton.
For a time, the Hamilton New Zealand Temple offered overnight endowment sessions from Friday through Saturday to accommodate the many members who came on the weekend.
The Hamilton New Zealand Temple closed in 1993 for two months to replace wall coverings and furnishings. In 1994, the temple closed again for 9 months for a more extensive renovation that included installation of air conditioning and removal of asbestos.