Hawke's Bay Naturist Club is the only naturist club in the Hawkes Bay district. Manawatu Outdoor Leisure Club lies 230 km to the southwest and Rotota Sun Club 150km to the northwest.
Our 4.5 hectare property is named "Rapere", a composite NZ Maori name, [Ra = sun, Pere = Bell], in honour of our founding President Norman Bell. More history can be found here.
Part of the land is flat and laid out in lawns with a clubhouse, lodge, swimming pool, games courts, children's play area and camping sites.
The rest is rolling hills with lots of trees where members have permanent baches (cabins) and caravans with attractive views over our grounds and surrounding countryside.
Members and visitors are welcome at Rapere at any time but Sunday is a popular day when you will find many members enjoying the naturist friendship at Rapere. Right from our first years it has been the custom to gather in the clubhouse at 3pm on Sundays for a cuppa and a chat.
The Hawkes Bay Sun Club was formed in 1962 by a group of families and individuals who used to meet regularly to spend the sunny days enjoying themselves all afternoon, either swimming or sunbathing at a riverbank in Hawkes Bay.
In October 1965, the local County Council offered for sale a roadman's cottage which had been vacant for months. After the members had inspected, Norman decided to risk his life's savings in the cottage with its 10 acres of undulating land. The club took over the grounds on 23rd December, 1965.
The grounds included a flat piece of land 4-5 feet high with weeds, a 5-roomed dwelling, a 2-bail cowshed, a fowl house and a concrete supply tank on a hill supplying water for the cowshed and the flush toilet in the house. Water was pumped from a well up to the supply tank.
There were only 11 adult members in those days and all they did each weekend was work, to provide screening and develop the grounds. In autumn 1966, a start was made on a grass tennis court and the first game was played in October that year, after 22 months of work.
The grounds have undergone continuous alteration and improvement over the years, as membership has increased, and now boast a clubhouse and swimming pools, built in the 70's, outdoor spa, outdoor entertainment area, flying fox, confidence course, manmade dam and much more. Water is now pumped from a bore and part of the ring road has recently been sealed.