An open letter to Function Centre stakeholders, clients and suppliers from our CEO

The Covid-19 situation has lead to the decision to hibernate our functions business.

As we celebrated our success hosting the 2019 IRT Interdominion series, it seemed unimaginable that within only a matter of months we would be facing a global pandemic, one that New Zealand would not escape unscathed.

Like the vast majority of other New Zealand organisations, we too have had to cut our cloth to fit the COVID-19 climate.  To do that, we as a team have had to look deeply into what is a highly complex, multi-offer business where one size simply does not fit all: Our current activities include; large scale tenancies on land owned by the Auckland Trotting Club Inc, a major harness racing and public event venue, a training track facility based at Franklin Park in Pukekohe and a TAB, gaming room and sports bar.

With the continuation of physical distancing and curtailment around large gatherings, the short and medium future of events, functions and large-scale public experiences is at best, uncertain. With this comes a stark reality shared by many New Zealanders, and that is the process of re-evaluating elements of our businesses to determine what is sustainable, and viable. While an imminent return to racing will signal the beginning of our core business restarting, the social uncertainty and commercial challenges around functions and large-scale gatherings has compelled the functions side of our business into hibernation. This will enable the board and executive the time to further consider the future of this facility, what a functions future may look like, and more importantly, when we may see a return to this level of hospitality.

For now, our immediate focus is to support our core commitment to employees, the racing community, and to enable a return to racing for our human and equine athletes on a world-class track. This also allows our team to work hard on the things that we can influence and plan for what is currently unknown and beyond our control.

The decision to hibernate our functions business has not been made lightly, most importantly, because it includes highly valued employees, many of whom have been with the business for a significant time. Likewise, we put on hold highly valued relationships and loyal clients, but we also look forward to a post-pandemic world when we may meet again.

We are confident that the popular ‘The Alex Bar and Eatery,’ will reopen with a food and beverage offering when the relevant level permits.

In the meantime, our team will be reaching out to necessary stakeholders to discuss details as required.

Kind regards,

Mauro Barsi

CEO, Alexandra Park

Join us for the trots at Auckland’s home of Harness Racing. View Calendar

Read Next

horse racing

New Zealand racing calendar confirmed

03 Jul 2020
  |  Racing
More than 1,000 race meetings at 51 venues throughout New Zealand were confirmed today by the Dates Committee of the Rac...

Return to Racing Opens to Public

17 Jun 2020
  |  Racing
Website Blog RTR

Return to Racing from 4 June

29 May 2020
  |  Racing
RETURN TO RACING at Alexandra Park, commences on Thursday 4 June, without spectators.
Return to racing dates Newsdesk

Return to Racing

14 May 2020
  |  Racing
We are pleased to announced the revamped dates for our Return to Racing!

The Alex Eatery to open in Alert Level 2

12 May 2020
  |  News & media
The move to Alert Level 2 on Thursday 14 May will see the return of The Alex Eatery!
Hero Image Covid Blog

Return to Racing at Alexandra Park

08 May 2020
  |  Racing
On behalf of the Auckland Trotting Club Board, we can share with trainers and key stakeholders what a Return to Racing w...
Trainers Racing

Trainers Update for Alexandra Park Racing

16 Apr 2020
  |  Racing
We are working closely with HRNZ and other NZ clubs to advocate for our industry in these challenging times. 
Blog Thumbnail

HRNZ: Guidelines Regarding the Care of Horses

27 Mar 2020
MPI have released guidelines regarding the care of horses as an essential activity.
Blog Thumbnail Herlihy

Treble was On The Cards for Herlihy

23 Mar 2020
South Auckland horseman Tony Herlihy had a good night at the office at Alexandra Park on Friday night, recording a drivi...
Blog  Covid

Legacy of Events & Entertainment Continues… Just Different

20 Mar 2020
"We've been doing Friday's differently for some time now, and in the coming months we will be making changes that will h...
Send an Enquiry