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Author: Jess Murray

Next gen summer tipples

The sweet sound of a pour pricks many an ear on a hot summer’s day. While it’s hard to beat an ice-cold rosé or beer, last summer we saw a new wave of naturally flavoured and sweetened ready-to-drink alcoholic bevvies take the zeitgeist by storm with classy branding and highbrow flavour matches. This summer, the trend continues – so Metropol looks at the new sipping selection.



Gone are the alcopops, instead we’re seeing the rise of hard seltzer – a fermented and carbonated fruit-based alcohol. Tired of the basic apple cider? Zeffer takes a massive cide-step (excuse the pun) into making watermelon, orange and grapefruit and guava cider-based seltzers at less than 100 calories and 1.65g of sugar per drink. Launching November.

THE VERDICT: Fresh, zingy and surprisingly light. Go for guava!








Calling all kombucha lovers – because your favourite sugar-free probiotic fizzy fruit drink just got a whole lot quirkier. Bomb Bucha have released an alcoholic kombucha in lemon and mint, and raspberry and lime. Putting the kick in health kick! Less than 60 calories per drink and 1.87g of sugar.

THE VERDICT: The perfect balance of bitter and subtle sweetness.







There may be a lot of purists who believe beer should not be touched. But Club Setter’s beer-base seltzer, just 1.7g of sugar, less than 100 calories per drink and full of natural fruit flavour shows you can have the best of both worlds – fruit and froth.

THE VERDICT: The malty flavour of beer, with a fruity kick. We liked the watermelon best.






Pals captured the public’s imagination with its collection of boujee-flavoured RTDs in summer 2019. For 2020, we’re getting a peach and passionfruit remix. In this pastel purple can you’ll find vodka mixed with Central Otago peach, passionfruit and soda. This new flavour becomes the fifth friend in the Pals group.

THE VERDICT: Sweet yet refreshing, with no overpowering aftertaste.








Left Field is New Zealand’s first wine-based seltzer, providing a crisp base flavour enhanced with a refreshing array of fruity ingredients including yuzu, mint and cucumber with sauvignon blanc, strawberry and hibiscus with rosé, and pear and ginger with pinot gris. Only 68 calories per can and less than 1g of sugar.

THE VERDICT: Our pick of the hard seltzers. Refreshing flavours with that crisp wine finish.





Pink ladies of racing

Cup Week is as much about the fashion as it is the sport, so Metropol has pulled together a beauty look book to help inform your race face. This year, we’re all about fresh dewy skin with fun and vibrant pops of pinks. Afterall, the horses won’t be the only ones with thousands of eyes on them as soon as they pass through those gates.

Make up by Liv McCloskey – Kristen Stewart School of Make Up. Model, Milla from Portfolio Models.





Stila the spotlight. Stila Suede Shade Liquid Eye Shadow in Sassy.









An on point soft and subtle shade. Anastasia Beverly Hills Eye Shadow Singles in Ballet.









Shadows made to be seen in daylight. Maybelline Nudes of New York Eyeshadow Palette.











Ready, Set, Go! Make your makeup stay the day. Yves Saint Laurent Top Secrets Setting Spray.









Put some horsepower behind those lashes. Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara.









Add a burst of colour to your look. Anastasia Beverly Hills Eye Shadow Singles in Electro.







Start with wall art

Unless you are someone who walks around the house with their eyes closed, you are going to notice what is on the four walls of your humble abode. Whether you are a DIY diva or a pay and walk away type, Metropol has put together some tips for wowing your walls.


BOHO BEAUTY: A macramé wall hanging (like the one pictured) is something that from afar with its neutral colours appears simplistic but a closer inspection showcases the intricacies of the bohemian style goodness. Not to mention, they can easily be tailored to anyone’s design style.

PICASSO PRODIGY: Unless you are living in the Louvre your art doesn’t need to be by a famous artist. Our September 3 issue ran an article about getting creative with Resene paints. In short, paint your masterpiece yourself or enlist the help of the little ones to create some abstract artwork.


Eat. Teach. Love

Fionna Heiton could be Christchurch’s very own Julia Roberts. From getting over a relationship breakup by leaving her job in New Zealand and travelling to the Himalayas, to finding her future partner and starting her own international charity in Nepal: It feels like Eat. Pray. Love got a Kiwi revamp.

Our main character came to a crossroads in her life and, having always loved exploring the Port Hills, wanted to escape and explore the world’s most famous mountainous region: The Himalayas. So, in 1998 the English as a Second Language teacher packed up her rental cottage on Kilmore Street and set off for Nepal.

It was there in Kathmandu, within a few days of arriving, that she met her love interest, Durga Aran, while working for British charity Water Aid. Fast-forward to 2001, the pair were raising their twin toddlers – Rhona and Jamie – when the parents became troubled to learn about the Nepali school system.

In 2001, the mean years of schooling for the country’s 24 million people was just 2.5, according to UN data. In comparison, the mean years of schooling for New Zealanders was 11.5.

“Hundreds of thousands of children across Nepal spend their days in dark, dirty, empty classrooms, taught by poorly trained and demotivated teachers,” says Fionna.

This was the motive that brings us to the climax of the story – the first steps. The family travelled to the village area where Durga was raised, in between Kathmandu and the Tibet border, with the goal of creating a quality early childhood centre.

“We borrowed a jeep and drove up to the remote hillside village each day. Our days were long, hot and dusty,” remembers Fionna.

“But the need was so clear and we knew that simple activities and changes could make a world of difference for the children.”

Thus, First Steps Himalaya was founded, a charity that has been making a difference in transforming lives and working on the ground in Nepal for over 10 years.

“With the help of generous donors, classrooms are developed from dirt floors to carpet. Rooms are cleaned and painted. Wooden pallets for seating are replaced with low tables suited to young children. Most rural Nepali early childhood classrooms start with only a single chalkboard, but after being refurbished by the charity, the children have access to crayons, paper, books and quality, culturally appropriate learning resources.”

Having built a teacher-training centre in 2015, the team now run effective, hands-on teacher training courses across Nepal, empowering rural teachers to create simple, engaging lessons.

After learning how to make resources from things they can find in their village, teachers can then transform their own classrooms into safe and stimulating learning environments.

“We strongly believe the key to bringing about positive change in rural Nepali schools is the quality of the teaching,” says Fionna.

Recently returning to Christchurch, after a period in Nelson, reruns of the past came flooding back to our protagonist.

“I am so grateful for all the support we have had from friends in Christchurch, the rest of New Zealand and around the world. There is such a massive need in Nepal, and we are only just scratching the surface. First Steps Himalaya will be there for the long haul.”

So, what’s next for Fionna Julia Roberts Heiton? We would not be surprised if Hollywood came knocking on her door with a story like that.

For more information or to donate visit the charity’s website.



Don’t forget your roots!

Ever-popular Kiwi band Six60 famously sings ‘Don’t forget your roots’. Whilst we are aware the song was paying tribute to family – the line is not totally misplaced when it comes to haircare. We are talking about the roots on your head, and specifically the rise of scalp care or “hair skinification”.


More of a marketing monniker than scientific term, this is the concept of treating your scalp like it is an extension of your facial skincare routine.

Skincare has boomed in recent years, with tutorials and product reviews just as popular as those for makeup and hairstyling, so much so, the global industry is expected to be worth more than $1 trillion by 2025.

Although, this is not to suggest that the world just hasn’t been aware we have scalps – more that we need to start treating them with a bit more TLC.

And when treating your scalp like your face, those in the know recommend using similar types of ingredients you would see in skincare such as probiotics and hyaluronic acid.

Products to know include, Virtue’s scalp supplement and treatment and Neutrogena’s Healthy Scalp collection.

Virtue founder and chief executive Melisse Shaban said since its supplement launched in June, it became the brand’s number nine (out of 50) best-selling product by August.

So why are we seeing such a skyrocket in scalp care sales? Cynics may see it as commodifying a new body part – but there is evidence to suggest the scalp skin needs a similar level of considered care as the rest of your epidermis to prevent irritation, flakiness and build up in pores and hair follicles.


Walk of Art

Art in a Garden presents the outdoor exhibition Sculpture North Canterbury at Pegasus Bay Winery this spring. Art lovers can enjoy a glass (or two) of wine as they take in the work of some of New Zealand’s most talented sculptors – including Ben Foster, Matthew Williams, and Hannah Kidd – in the lush garden setting.


Ben Foster with Silver Figure


Commencing October 17 and running for six-weeks; this will be the event’s third year at the winery and is free to the public.

An exclusive preview launch party is happening Friday October 16 and the best part?

Gold Dipped Cone by Hannah Kidd

Tickets are still available! For a modest $40, guests are treated to the exhibition, a selection of canapés, live music, and performance art.

And if you are really feeling a connection to a piece, all of the art is for sale during the six-weeks.

Shadow by Ben Foster

If this sounds like something you just can’t wait to attend, tickets are only available from Eventfinda. Visit the Pegasus Bay Winery website for more details.


Basket case

Baskets are an easy luxe, warm and timeless décor addition to any room. Use your chosen woven as a fruit bowl or coffee table decoration or sit them on the floor to store plants, dried flowers or blankets.

Or, take inspiration from Instagram blogger Lisa Leonard and start your own basket wall.

Thrift for woven baskets to paint yourself or show your support for fair trade by purchasing similar pre-painted woven baskets from places such as Trade Aid.

Your basket wall is also something you can add to over time.

Dream big for beauty’s sake

Sleeping Beauty was put under a sleeping spell for 100 years, but it begs the question: was it really a curse or a blessing? Catching those Zs is a science-backed way to achieve an inner and outer glow, and here’s three ways to do just that.

Beauty sleep
“You look tired” are three words no one wants to hear. Dr Shelby Harris, a New York-based behavioural sleep-medicine specialist says sleep helps repair muscle damage and cell regrowth, improves brain function and regulates your mood. The key? Consistently having between seven- and eight-hours (and no, playing catch up at the weekend doesn’t count).

Princess and the pea
We’re recommending against putting your vegetables underneath your mattress, but we do suggest putting them into your body. So does registered dietitian and founder of wellness education studio, Nutritious Life, Keri Glassman. She says a well-balanced diet combined with at least 20-minutes of cardio exercise each day optimises your sleep – and therefore its benefits.

Screen queens
The one-more-episode mentality is a dangerous game to play before bed. Bingeing on streaming services or having one last scroll through social media keeps your brain active – resulting in a greater struggle falling asleep once you put your device down. The solution? Scientific studies suggest avoiding screens one to two hours before bed.


Pass the pasta, please!

Versatile in form and flavours, pasta is a classic staple on high rotation for many household menus for very good reasons.


But don’t make the mistake of relegating this ultimate comfort food to winter. Instead, impress your guests (or even just yourself) with these refreshing springtime pasta suggestions that will make anyone say, “Mama mia that is good!”.

The creamy no cream pasta:
Hear us out – for those of you that are dairy-free or vegan, this is the substitute for you. Make like top tier New Zealand chef Nadia Lim who uses a creamy cashew cream sauce in place of dairy alternatives to ensure creamy cravings are satisfied, but dietary requirements are not compromised.

The no fuss fancy pasta:
Instagram foodie favourite @alexskitchenstory makes using highbrow ingredients look easy (and ‘grammable). Alex shows us how sometimes all it takes is one gourmet ingredient like truffle oil to elevate any dish from ooh la nah to ooh la la. She pairs such luxe components with fresh, nutritious partners like fresh mushrooms and herbs.

The non-pasta pasta:
If you were wanting to mix it up, try creating a pasta dish… without the pasta. Scandalo, as the Italians would say. Opt for courgette spaghetti, like that pictured, using the refreshing vegetable in season from October until May. You can also try using kumara or broccoli stems, or purchase readymade options fashioned from lentils and pulses.


Magic in the kitchen: MF Turnbull

While there are cracks appearing in our celebrated kiwi lifestyle of late, there needn’t be in your kitchen joinery. Local heroes MF Turnbull are again working their magic to return your surfaces to a brand-new finish, bringing you a great deal of pleasure and saving waste to landfill.



Co-owner Monique Turnbull explains, “For around the last 15 years, some kitchen joinery has been created using a plastic wrap finish, which owners sometimes assumed was a paint finish.

“People are finding that the plastic wrap is cracking – lifting from the base and breaking away. The great news is that we have a technique to remove the plastic and put a completely new surface on the base which is generally still in perfect condition.”

Monique says they are resurfacing a kitchen a week at the moment.

If this is happening in your kitchen and you’d like to put it right, the process is simple. A quick call to MF Turnbull will see Steve come out and have a look and provide you with a quote.

If you prefer, you can simply email in some photos and receive an estimate before you consider a quote.

“We are seeing this effect at all kitchen joinery price points, and you’ll usually see it go at the edges first or inside the panel on panelled doors,” says Monique.

“You might see it in just two or three areas to start with. Some people choose to get a colour match in just those areas, but as the rest of it eventually goes most opt to get all of the joinery resurfaced with a two-pack urethane paint finish.”

Refreshing and renewing your home doesn’t end at the kitchen. Rejuvenate bedroom and dining furniture, doors, wardrobe doors and more by spray painting.

MF Turnbull can also do French polishing of antiques, and the modern equivalent – staining and clears in polyurethane.

“I really like the idea that it’s an environmentally friendly way to refresh your house, our approach means reuse of the kitchen or piece of furniture, rather than throwing it out and buying new,” says Monique.

“A client will bring in an unusual piece, it might have lovely proportions and be beautifully made but the appearance no longer suits.

“Refinished in a bright colour it can be a real showstopper, or it could go out the door and start a whole new life with a shabby chic-style distressed finish.”

Working with interior designers on a special or much-loved piece that needs to fit a new scheme is a speciality. Upholstered items with timber parts can be resurfaced before being taken to the client’s upholsterer for recovering.

Unusual items which pose a challenge are especially welcome – as the team at MF Turnbull thrive on turning visions into reality.

Such visions are achieved through consultation with clients, and showcasing samples and all the options available.