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Last detail re NI trip - Coromandel to Napier

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I have a few questions for you NZ experts: I'm leaving a day to travel from Coromandel Town to Napier. Once past Whakatane (too soon?), there doesn't seem to be many places in which to overnight.

Should I drive #2 thru to Gisborne, overnight, then on to Napier? Or should I overnight in Whakatane then drive to Napier the following day?

Or - plan C - drive 33, overnighting in Waihau Bay (there's a b&b there that looks nice) then on to Napier? That looks to be a long way around

We have to be in Napier to meet up w/friends, so skipping Napier isn't an option.

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