Serene Soaking in Cedar Tubs
I was invited recently to take a soak at the Secret Spot Hot Tubs located on the southern edge of Rotorua, next to the Whakarewarewa Forest Mountain Biking carpark.
This brainchild of local brothers, Eric and Keith, was opened in October last year. There’s a licensed cafe with an outdoor area where diners can soak their feet in small cedar tubs.
There are 12 larger tubs that can be rented for 45 minutes at a time (bookings are made online at www.secretspot.nz). The water comes from a nearby, large cold spring that used to supply Rotorua with its drinking water. The water flows continuously through each tub, resulting in a complete replenishing every 15 to 20 minutes. A geothermal bore was sunk with plans to use it for heat-exchanging the spring water. Due to a combination of bureaucratic and technical reasons, the brothers opted to heat the water with biofuel.
The tubs are on the edge of the forest, overlooking a small stream. The open setting of each tub makes the most of the forest surrounds but means swimsuits are required. The crystal-clear water was a perfect 39C and there’s no chlorine smell as the water is treated in a non-chemical way (explained in detail on their website).
There’s a button that you can push while sitting in the tub to have staff bring food or snacks! There’s also chilled drinking water, a covered box for your towels and two small umbrellas.
The next best thing to a hot spring is a cold spring, especially if it’s been heated up! In addition to its cedar tubs, I can recommend the Secret Spot Hot Tubs for its relaxed vibe, tranquil forest surrounds and attentive staff.
Secret Spot Hot Tubs are open 9am to 10pm daily.