Members starting to swim uphill


Bosses of Queenstown’s troubled new $18.5 million swimming pool are scrambling to keep members happy after the lap pool’s closure.

Alpine Aqualand’s main swimming pool has been off-limits to the public for a week while experts have fixed a pressure lining fault caused by a blocked inlet valve, lifting the lining.

The pool hoped to reopen today after being refilled with 850,000 litres of water and chlorine levels balanced.

But several people who phoned to check if they’ll get an extension to their membership because of the closure were this week told by staff that the terms and conditions of their membership say there’s no obligation to do so, Mountain Scene understands.

A Queenstown mum-to-be, who doesn’t want to be named, says she was denied an extension to her membership because “they said their computer won’t allow it”.

Two months out from giving birth, she was offered a free hydroslide ride – worth $8 – instead.

Pool managers Lakes Leisure – a Queenstown Lakes District Council quango – claim they’ve been telling people they can get applicable extensions to their memberships since the beginning of the week.

Lakes Leisure events and marketing boss Karen Gemmell: “This lady’s fallen through the cracks somewhere so … we obviously want to follow it up with her and apologise and sort her membership out.”

Since Alpine Aqualand opened in May, it’s already had two other major problems with heating and pump failure, as well as a $625,000 cost blow-out.