South Island’s jewel is shining again
Following 2011’s earthquakes, the people of Christchurch were left to pick up the pieces of their lives and rebuild their decimated city. Finally, their efforts paying dividends as Christchurch begins to resemble what it was before those tragic events. Bars, restaurants and hotels are all re-emerging in pristine condition, while Christchurch’s cultural community is creating even more reasons to visit the Garden City.
On June 30, the Red Zone Cordon – the fenced off and guarded area around the city’s inner center – was removed. Visitors are now able to stroll to Cathedral Square to see the many changes that have taken place with the rebuilding.
The Copthorne Commodore, Latimer and Chateau on the Park are just three of the city’s hotels that have made a comeback in 2013, while the Harlequin and Tequila Mockingbird have recently opened to critical acclaim on the culinary front. The latter is home to award-winning head chef Mark Sycamore, and will soon be joined in the rejuvenated Victorian arcade area by the Tannery, a bespoke food and drink establishment which is the latest brainchild of the industrious Cassel Family.
On the tourism side of the things, the iconic Christchurch Gondola has been operational again since March, ferrying riders high above the streets for a unique view of the city-scape. Above all, residents are proving that ingenuity and community spirit can create triumph out of tragedy.
The Quake City exhibit is making sure that insight and learning are instilled in all its visitors, and Japanese architect Shigeru Ban’s Cardboard Cathedral is a breathtaking monument to the building it has temporarily replaced. Most will agree that New Zealand’s second city is coming back stronger than it was before, and scores of visitors will surely want to arrive and find out why.
More information on the continuing rebuilding in Christchurch can be found on the city’s website.