Menu
In the News

Compare interior, exterior photos of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple from the 1950s and today

See photos from construction, open house and dedication in the late ‘50s and the temple’s interior and exterior after renovation

Hamilton New Zealand Temple baptistry and celestial room

Photos from inside the Hamilton New Zealand, from left to right: the baptistry in 1958 and 2022; and the celestial room in 1958 and 2022.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints


If a picture is truly worth a thousand words, then following is 31,000 “words” — or 31 interior and exterior photos — of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple from the late 1950s and today in 2022.

The photos, published on ChurchofJesusChrist.org, show the temple’s construction, open house and dedication events as well as interior images of the celestial room and baptistry prior to its 1958 dedication.

Other photos include exterior and interior images of the recently renovated temple in advance of its public open house — which begins Friday, Aug. 26, and runs through Saturday, Sept. 17, excluding Sundays — and its Oct. 16 rededication.

Dedicated on April 20, 1958, the temple is the 11th-oldest operating temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

For decades, it served as the house of Lord for New Zealand Saints and others throughout the South Pacific as they came to Hamilton to worship, learn of God’s plan of salvation, participate in temple ordinances and make sacred covenants with the Lord.

Construction of the New Zealand Temple — 1956 through 1958

With construction beginning in 1956, the concrete blocks were manufactured on site by the original construction crew, mostly comprised of labor missionaries who donated their time.

merlin_2936589.jpg

The walls of the New Zealand Temple take shape during construction in 1957.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936591.jpg

Construction of the New Zealand Temple’s spire in 1957.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936585.jpg

Workers build the front steps of the New Zealand Temple in 1957.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936575.jpg

The New Zealand Temple during construction in 1958.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The newly renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

The Hamilton New Zealand Temple has been closed since July 2018 for a series of renovations, including seismic strengthening and upgrades to its mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems.

The temple is 4,204 square meters — a little more than 45,250 square feet — and stands 47.5 meters tall (nearly 156 feet) from the main entrance to the top of the spire.

For the temple’s exterior, the historic painted concrete masonry remains unchanged.

merlin_2936573.jpg

Hamilton New Zealand Temple. 2022.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936555.jpg

Hamilton New Zealand Temple. 2022.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The celestial room of the New Zealand Temple — 1958

merlin_2936597.jpg

A 1958 photo: The celestial room in the New Zealand Temple is a place of quiet contemplation and reverence. A caption accompanying the photograph describes “delicate apricot tonings, with the wall with brass rod squares in gold fabric.”

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The celestial room of the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

Inside, the renovated temple’s layout has been reconfigured for better flow and efficiency. Some of the original design elements were restored, including the historic murals. New design elements reflect the work of the temple’s original builders as well as local Māori traditions.

Other interior features include oak millwork from Hamilton craftspeople and decorative painting derived from local Māori patterns.

merlin_2936543.jpg

The celestial room in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple is a sacred place that symbolizes the ultimate progression one can proceed toward heaven. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936545.jpg

The celestial room in the Hamilton New Zealand Temple has a subtle tree mural on the walls. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936549.jpg

The celestial room in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936547.jpg

The celestial room of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple features a historic mural that was restored during the temple’s renovation. Photo taken prior to the 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936577.jpg

A chandelier in the celestial room of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple. The photo was taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The baptistry of the New Zealand Temple — 1958

merlin_2936593.jpg

A 1958 photo shows the New Zealand Temple baptistry, which includes a mural depicting Jesus Christ’s baptism.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The baptistry of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

merlin_2936525.jpg

The entrance to the baptismal font in the newly renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple, as photographed in 2022, in advance of the open house prior to its Oct. 16, 2022, rededication

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936529.jpg

The baptistry in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple, prior to its 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936533.jpg

The baptismal font in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple is held up by oxen representing the 12 tribes of Israel. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Bride’s room of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

merlin_2936579.jpg

The bride’s room in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple, as photographed prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Sealing rooms of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

merlin_2936559.jpg

A sealing room in the Hamilton New Zealand Temple, where marriages are performed to unite couples and their families together forever. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936557.jpg

One of three sealing rooms in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple where marriages are performed to unite couples and their families together forever. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936553.jpg

A small sealing room in the Hamilton New Zealand Temple where marriages are performed to unite couples and their families together forever. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Instruction rooms of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

merlin_2936551.jpg

One of two instruction rooms in the Hamilton New Zealand Temple where devout Latter-day Saints learn about God’s creation, the purpose of life, and how to become more like Him and His Son, Jesus Christ. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936541.jpg

An instruction room in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple where devout Latter-day Saints learn about God’s creations, the purpose of life, and how to become more like Him and His Son, Jesus Christ. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Other areas of the Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

merlin_2936539.jpg

A sitting area in the lounge of the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple with original artwork of the Savior Jesus Christ. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936535.jpg

The lounge area of the newly renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple in August 2022.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936531.jpg

The lounge area of the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple with a painting of New Zealand scenery. Photo taken in 2022 prior to the temple’s public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936537.jpg

Original artwork depicting the beauty of New Zealand in the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple. Photo taken prior to the temple’s 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936527.jpg

The reception area of the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple, prior to its 2022 public open house.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Open house and dedication of the New Zealand Temple — 1958

The New Zealand Temple — as it was then known – was dedicated on April 20, 1958, by President David O. McKay. It was the Church’s 11th operating temple at the time.

The temple became the Church’s first in the Southern Hemisphere and third beyond the North American continent, following temples dedicated earlier in Hawaii and Switzerland.

General authorities accompanying President McKay on the trip to New Zealand were Elder Delbert L. Stapley and Elder Marion G. Romney of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Elder Gordon B. Hinckley, a newly sustained Assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve.

Some 112,500 people toured the temple during its public open house.

930f6a0b143011ed9b15eeeeac1eb71e645180a7.jpeg

Lines of people wait to tour the New Zealand Temple during its 1958 open house in Hamilton, New Zealand.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936595.jpg

A tent camp for visitors during the April 1958 dedication of the New Zealand Temple in Hamilton, New Zealand. A cutline accompanying the photo says: “There were 5,000 for the dedication ceremonies, approximately 1,000 from overseas.”

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

merlin_2936587.jpg

President David O. McKay, second from front right, at the celebration for the Hamilton Temple dedication in 1958.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Open house and rededication of the renovated Hamilton New Zealand Temple — 2022

The public open house for the temple, located at 509 Tuhikaramea Road, Temple View, Hamilton, New Zealand, begins Friday, Aug. 26, and runs through Saturday, Sept. 17, excluding Sundays; reservations can be made online at hamiltontemple.nz.

The Hamilton New Zealand Temple will be rededicated Sunday, Oct. 16, by Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

Hamilton_Temple_front_view_1_27_22_edit.jpg

The Hamilton New Zealand Temple, 2022.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Newsletters
Subscribe for free and get daily or weekly updates straight to your inbox
The three things you need to know everyday
Highlights from the last week to keep you informed