Isaac Davison

Isaac Davison is a NZ Herald political reporter.

'Party central' opens for business

The Cloud, part of the Rugby World Cup 2011 party central on Queens Wharf, lit up at night. Photo / Natalie Slade
The Cloud, part of the Rugby World Cup 2011 party central on Queens Wharf, lit up at night. Photo / Natalie Slade

The transformation of Queen's Wharf was completed this afternoon as the Cloud was launched by Prime Minister John Key.

The 175 metre-long structure is the biggest fanzone for the Rugby World Cup, capable of hosting 15,000 people.

The $9.8 million government-backed venue also showcases 165 hand-picked New Zealand innovations from agribusiness, tourism, marine, aviation, forestry, fashion and wine.

Before a crowd of dignitaries, sports stars and politicians, Prime Minister John Key said: "I remember when we were counting 1000 days to go, now we're seven days to go and you can feel the excitement building.''

Rugby World Cup Minister Murray McCully said the REAL New Zealand Showcase highlighted that the country was greater than simply a tourism destination: "We are a innovative, sophisticated, technologically advanced country.''

The Cloud will host the Pacific Islands Forum and various business functions next week, before opening to the public on September 9.

- NZ Herald

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