Kikikihi is the first of the nine world-wide qualifiers and it boasts one of the most beautifully presented and demanding cross-country courses in the world.
Designed by John Nicholson, brother of British-based Olympian Andrew, it has an enchanting "Winnie the Pooh" theme, with carved figures of Pooh, Roo, Tigger and Kanga abounding in the "Hundred-Acre Wood".
"Being part of this global series provides a great opportunity to promote Eventing nationwide and keeps New Zealand in the international loop of the sport," said Bruce Bason, president of Kihikihi Waikato Eventing Inc.
"We're really excited that the HSBC FEI World Cup Eventing series could become a vehicle for achieving much more cross-Tasman competition within our sport."
After Kikikihi, the action stays in Australasia, with a second qualifier at Sydney (AUS) on 2-3 May. The series final takes place for the first time in Eastern Europe, at Strzegom (POL) in August.