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Allfrey + South Architects

Let’s talk Architecture: Allfrey + South Architects

Architects Cymon Allfrey and Craig South announce a new brand, along with an exciting new group to draw people together with a shared passion for architecture.


Allfrey + South Architects


It is energising to have started the year with a fresh new brand, Allfrey + South Architects and to reflect on what that represents. The name change captures the strong partnership within our practice and gives a renewed sense of purpose for the New Year.
While the name is different, we have the same team of creative people on board who love everything about architecture.

We share a culture of collaboration and a desire to achieve extraordinary results. Wrapped up in our name too, is a sense of social responsibility that means we endeavour to create buildings that are completely in sync with their location and community. Above all, we recognise how privileged we are to be invited into our clients’ lives, to turn their dreams into architectural reality.

In truth, we are all totally passionate about architecture and love talking about it whenever we can and to whoever will listen. Wherever we go, we tend to explore and immerse ourselves in architecture and may easily get distracted by the curve of a wall or a choice of cladding. It’s an occupational hazard!


Allfrey + South Architects

We can’t help but bombard each other and our friends and family with architectural conversation, but last year we had one of those light bulb moments when we realised other people might also be genuinely interested in what we have to say. That moment arose from an open studio session where we met a lovely couple familiar with our work. They wanted to delve deeper into our design theories and hear about our current projects. Their level of curiosity really impressed us.

It got us thinking that there must be other people in and around Christchurch who would love to discuss architecture and would like to get involved with a group that could make that happen.


Architect Craig South
Craig South
Cymon Allfrey
Cymon Allfrey









Jennian Homes

Building Dreams: Jennian Homes

“ We had an extremely successful end of 2018 with enquiries, signings and new builds,” says Dwayne Prendergast who, together with Sue Prendergast and Paul and Bubs Jenkins are the owners of Jennian Homes, Canterbury.


Jennian Homes


“We’ve built up a massive momentum and the whole team is buzzing for 2019.”  Owners since mid-2016, they are supported by a team of in-house sales and accounts professionals, and they are thrilled to have a fantastic set of skilled personnel in the key project management group. “We’ve all got such energy and enthusiasm for what we achieve here, and it’s because we work with great brands, great trades and we get great results.

“We’ve completed numerous homes for delighted clients, and we are proud of what we are doing,” Dwayne says. The team has expanded the area it covers and Jennian Homes Canterbury is now creating dream homes for happy clients from Kaikoura to Timaru.

Three key words drive this team: honesty, quality and communication. “We are open and upfront with clients about pricing and products,” Dwayne says and client feedback reflects the value of that. Communication is continuous, from sales to completion and excellence in communication has enabled the team to complete builds for clients based in Australia and Hamilton, and for mobility-impaired clients, each of whom could not regularly be on site. Other testimonials include: “adaptable, they were able to make adjustments as we moved through” and, “efficient with timeframes, all the way from sales to completion”.


Jennian Homes

Jennian provides a range of designs unique to the company and covers everything from first homes, to batches, to architecturally designed homes, and of course they work to client-owned plans as well. “All of these sectors are going full speed ahead and that’s the way we love it,” Dwayne says.

New plans were brought to the market in the middle of last year and these have been very well received, with three new show homes to be added this year. There is one to be built in Timaru, one in Rolleston, and the third at Ravenswood; a home featuring large open-plan living and a modern designer kitchen with integrated pantry, and clad in James Hardie products with a monopitch roofline.

With a career spent as a builder, in building supplies and in building companies, Dwayne has “done pretty much everything in the industry”. His favourite part of the whole new-build process at Jennian is “completing dreams”.  “We love to see the smiley faces, to help young people into their first homes, and to build the ‘forever home’ for families.”



Jim the Builder

Construction from go to Whoa! Jim the Builder

From initial concept designs, right through to handing over the keys to new homeowners, the highly skilled team at Jim the Builder takes pride in overseeing every stage of its projects.


Jim the Builder



Whether it’s a new build, earthquake repairs, or large-scale alterations, the friendly, professional staff will be with you every step of the way. This helps with continuity, quality, and communication, says Managing Director, Andrew Clark. “We’re old-school carpenters as far as builders go. We do everything from putting up roofs to installing windows,” he says.

“We don’t subcontract out; our staff are employees, so that helps us maintain delivery of product, makes sure the job’s on time, as well as being able to maintain quality throughout. We stay on jobs from go to whoa.” Project Managers are experienced at liaising with clients and the foreman and, because a lot of their work involves earthquake renovations and repairs, they will assist people with insurance wrangles, ensuring all work is compliance-based.


Jim the Builder


Established in 2005 by Operational Director Jim Stenberg, Jim the Builder has been recognised in numerous local and national awards for building excellence. As a registered Master Builder, the team passionately produces homes with the highest standards of design, craftsmanship and attention to detail. “We’ll tailor to any budget and we do a lot of higher-spec properties, which the guys love because it allows them to showcase their skills.”

The company also completes hillside work, which Andrew describes as very challenging. Jim the Builder has a booming apprentice programme and ensures all staff are put through different levels of Site Safe courses and first-aid training. “Health and Safety is a big part of our business,” Andrew says.


Jim the Builder

“We’ve invested a significant amount of time and money into health and safety, and we have an in-house health and safety manager who is responsible for maintaining all the paperwork and does on-site inspections.  “We also have regular barbecues where we bring in specialist speakers. For example, we brought in Wormald to make sure staff knew how to use a fire extinguisher; and others to teach them how to safely use tools.”

All this makes for a tight-knit team of skilled builders and staff, dedicated to delivering homes of the highest standard. “We’re committed to quality delivery and communication is a big part of what we do,” Andrew says.
“We’ll always put the client first in all decisions and our foremen have become very highly skilled, that’s for sure.”


Jim the Builder

So, if you’re thinking of renovating, or undertaking an exciting new building project this year, jump onto Jim the Builder’s website to read case studies on its award-winning buildings and to find out how the team can help achieve your dream home.


Innovate Renovate

Innovative renovation specialists: Innovate Renovate

They are Ron and Adrian Bradley and together they are Innovate Renovate, specialist renovation managers. “We can carry out renovations and repairs of all types and complexity, from fixing a leaking tap to building a new house around a tap!” says Adrian with a chuckle.


Innovate Renovate


He is serious though. Since Adrian and his father began Innovate Renovate five years ago they have undertaken many different projects, not only earthquake repairs for which they have earned a deservedly strong reputation, but also bathroom, kitchen and laundry renovations, garage conversions and deck construction, as well as painting, plastering and general drainage works.

Currently they have several projects on the go involving the insulation of rental properties to ensure they meet the requirements of the latest legislation. “We have a number of repeat clients now and word of mouth recommendations about what we can do have spread. We are known for being able to think outside the box to analyse problems and find solutions for them. We are often asked to take on jobs others don’t want to touch. We thrive on challenges and feel a great deal of satisfaction seeing projects completed to a high standard.”



Innovate Renovate


Adrian says that Innovate Renovate’s team treats every job in someone else’s home as if it was their own home. Only the best detailing and finish is good enough for them and they take a great deal of pride in adding value to properties through their workmanship.


To find out more, visit or phone 03-351 7039 and speak with Ron or Adrian.


What’s in that building?

What’s in that building?

The CBD is buzzing. Even two years ago that could not be said with confidence and the fear was it may never be said again. But those fears are officially unfounded.


What’s in that building?


Sure, there are some large holes to still be filled, and a few spaces and broken facades to be decided on and reinvigorated. And, while some of the city’s most iconic buildings sit in ruin with many gone forever, all but the most pessimistic can take heart that some have been and are being restored, with some beautiful new buildings being erected to replace them.

In October, Turanga officially opened; five floors of knowledge, cutting edge digital technology, modern design features and displays of art and culture. The bus interchange on Colombo Street has already become an important feature of the new cityscape. Stylish and user friendly, as the city has come alive around it, it has become the central hub it was intended to be.

As more retail outlets, cafes, restaurants, and nightlife venues open, and with some very high profile projects scheduled to open in the next few years, the already buzzing city is set to erupt! With so many changes, however, navigating the city can be tricky. If you venture into The Crossing – a “diverse yet intimate, one hectare precinct of heritage facades… enticing laneways and open public spaces” and, of course, shops, shops and more shops – be sure to take some breadcrumbs because getting lost is a real possibility. It is however, a pretty nice place to be lost in for a couple of hours.



Plymouth Lane is a retail space, conveniently located under a multi-storey parking building with a huge cycle lock-up area and individual lockers. At the river end of Cashel Street there are cafés and eateries, including a Black & White Coffee Cartel, a Metromart and The General Store, popular with tourists and locals, for gifts and homewares.

If you have driven or walked along any of the main city routes and wondered what is in that shiny new building, you are not alone. Naming rights offers some indication, but more often than not, there are gems inside that may not be so obvious.
For example, Grant Thornton House on Oxford Terrace is not only the striking new home of the global accounting giant, it also houses Amaterrace Teppanyaki Japanese Steak House and, on the street level, the newly opened (early Jan) Chiwahwah Mexican Cantina and Bar.

Across the river is 93 Cambridge Terrace, a four-storey black-glass, nondescript building called Iwikau. Inside are Aurecon and EY. On the ground floor, West End Pharmacy, West End Expressmart, and West End Stories Café. But Iwikau’s surprise lies on the opposite side of the building, invisible from the busy thoroughfare. It is Ngā Mara a Te Wera, The Gardens of Te Wera.

Te Wera was a Ngāi Tahu warrior chief and had a long association with the area that came also to be occupied by the King Edward Barracks. It is a beautiful, quiet, shared seating space that respects its deep Maori and European histories. You can read more about it on the storyboard in the garden.



‘Detail by Davinia Sutton Ltd’

Local’s global success: ‘Detail by Davinia Sutton Ltd’

Multi award-winning local design studio ‘Detail by Davinia Sutton Ltd’ has been recognised on the international stage at the prestigious German Design Award for Interior Architecture 2019.’


‘Detail by Davinia Sutton Ltd’


Being one of the most renowned international design awards, Detail by Davinia Sutton has won accolades for two stunning kitchens and a bathroom. One of the kitchens was for a Canterbury client with a butchery background and a brief for a kitchen to reflect their love of cooking and entertaining. Core to the design was the island taking centre stage in laminated American White Oak timber – a modern take on the butcher’s block – with a scullery behind. Judges said Sutton’s contemporary kitchen was visually striking and notable for its superb details.

The second kitchen, in a Merivale home, comprises a ‘front’ and ‘back’ kitchen, separated by a box form and clad in two-toned, dark-stained, veneered joinery. The winning bathroom was for clients who wanted a space with ‘wow factor’ that invoked calm and serenity. Praised for its “modern, restrained form,” a freestanding bath provides stunning views.


‘Detail by Davinia Sutton Ltd’

Davinia, who has been in the industry for nearly 20 years, says the enormity of winning has not yet sunk in. “To win one award is an amazing feat, so to win three is very humbling – and quite overwhelming. I’m so rapt for our team and excited that New Zealand design can stand proud on the world stage, against European design and the best of the best. It’s also a great reflection of our local workmanship to be recognised globally.”


Contact Detail by Davinia Sutton on 03-356-2722 or visit Facebook ‘Detail by Davinia Sutton’.


Nathan Cook Builders

Personalised Perfection: Nathan Cook Builders

At Nathan Cook Builders, quality craftsmanship and working with customers to achieve their dream property is top of the agenda.


Nathan Cook Builders


Founded by Nathan Cook in 2002, the company has been operating in the Canterbury region ever since, completing numerous historic earthquake repairs alongside day-to-day projects. Operations manager Paul Robertson says the team works closely with architects and designers to help customers achieve the look they’re after and guide them through the process, all while sticking to budget.

“We aim for a more personalised approach,” Paul says. “We don’t tailor our customers to suit our mould; we mould to suit our customers. “Everyone who comes through the door has different criteria they want to work to and different personalities… some customers want to sit on the sidelines and watch; others literally want to be there swinging a hammer. We pride ourselves on being able to work in and allow them to be as involved as they want to be, ensuring their project is an enjoyable personal investment.”

Paul says part of their success has to do with a strong teamwork ethic and long-standing relationships with local subcontractors. If you’re looking to start a renovation, new build, or earthquake repair in the New Year, the Selwyn-based team looks forward to helping you out and making sure the process is as straightforward and transparent as possible.

“We keep everything open-book. Everyone’s on the same page; we pride ourselves on being upfront.” From architectural builds and commercial construction, through to outdoor living design and construction, the team can handle all aspects of your project.



Dr Megan Woods

Dr Megan Woods: The Influencers

As we head into our second year of office, it’s been great to be able to take some time over the summer break and reflect on a very busy 2018. There have been some significant changes to make sure that people are able to get their homes fixed and get on with their lives, and I have been thrilled to see some of the results that we’ve achieved.


Dr Megan Woods: Greater Christchurch Regeneration Minister
Dr Megan Woods: Greater Christchurch Regeneration Minister


A big step was the Independent Ministerial Advisor’s report in June, which demonstrated the need for a wide range of reforms to speed up the resolution of outstanding EQC claims. It was clear there was a lot of work to do to get those claims moving but some critical changes were made to ensure faster resolution.

As of the end of November 2018, there are only 2,337 EQC claims outstanding, with 72 percent of claims that were on hand at 30 June 2018 resolved. In addition, the launch of the Greater Christchurch Claims Resolution Service (GCCRS) in October was met with a great response and has made a difference for many people.

This year is shaping up to be just as busy. The Canterbury Earthquakes Insurance Tribunal will be established and the inquiry into the EQC will provide an interim report back by the end of June, but our major focus for 2019 will continue to be ensuring that people are getting their claims resolved as quickly as possible and are able to move on with their lives.



Paragon Fencing

A pillar of strength: Paragon Fencing

Known for its strength and durability, Paragon Fencing Systems’ high-quality PVC range has become a talked-about feature in subdivisions throughout Canterbury.


Paragon Fencing


At first glance it may look like a classic timber build, but on closer inspection, it’s revealed that the smart pillars are in fact pre-finished with an attractive sheen that won’t fade in the sun. Devotees of the system are quick to point out the many benefits of installing Paragon Fencing, including saying goodbye to regular painting and staining.

The custom-made PVC product won’t twist, blister, rot, peel, bend, crack, or be eaten by pests, can withstand everything from heavy rain to high winds and extreme heat, and is non-toxic and recyclable with no long-term maintenance costs. Paragon Fencing Systems has operated in Christchurch for the past five years, managed by a family with more than 70 years’ combined experience in the building and construction industry.

The company offers a friendly, personalised, responsive service and, such is the team’s passion for the product, they are happy to speak with anyone interested in knowing more, or visit you for an on-site quote. If the job is outside Canterbury, they’ll also work alongside local contractors anywhere in the South Island.

With a choice of sizes and styles that keeps expanding, the Paragon team may just have the perfect solution if you’re looking to replace an existing fence, or install a new build.


For a fast, free quote, email or visit for more information today.


Community Innovation

Rebuilding Through Community Innovation

The three innovative projects are among more than 32 projects which have received grants from Christchurch City Council’s Innovation and Sustainability Fund since it was set up in September 2017. “Christchurch is a city of opportunity and we want to be able to support the group and businesses in our community who have great ideas about how things can be done differently – and more sustainably,” says Cr Vicki Buck, who chairs the Council’s Innovation and Sustainability Committee.


Community Innovation


“Through the Innovation and Sustainability Fund we have given out $860,000 worth of grants to a wide range of projects that are making a difference in our communities and in our environment.’’


Projects that have received funding include:

City Harvest Food Rescue – A food rescue service that takes quality surplus food and redistributes it through agencies to families and individuals in need.

Lyttelton Library of Tools & Things – a library of community tools and a platform for workshops

Little River Trap Library – provides traps free of charge for three months with mentorship on use

LiteClub Christchurch – supports 10 local sports clubs to improve their resource efficiency and carbon footprint

Project Sea Change – an app to help the community monitor the location, amount and type of plastic litter


Applications from community organisations, social enterprises, education and business groups are welcomed at