Designing for the "new" New Zealand
Exceptional places, exceptional people.
Kiwi Property, New Zealand’s largest listed property company, needed a workplace showcasing their property expertise. Designing for a ‘new’ New Zealand, our team realised the meaning behind Kiwi Property’s tagline “exceptional places, exceptional people”, by creating a fully-agile, innovative and belonging-driven workplace when Kiwi Property relocated to their Vero Centre premises.
The notion of a ‘new’ New Zealand speaks to what it means to be a Kiwi today. Regardless of age, gender or ethnic heritage, you are a Kiwi if you recognise certain cultural motifs from personal experience – the green of the Doc hut; the mottled glass and wooden benches of 50’s and 60’s state houses; the crisp and starry blue of the night sky. By infusing this Kiwi colour palette across the 967m2 interior, our design team made the workplace feel like home – right down to using household temperature 2700k lighting. By imbuing its spaces with a sense of familiarity and inclusion, the new workplace fosters staff connections and deepens a sense of belonging.
Recognising that we often spend more than two-thirds of our day at work, our design team took cues from hospitality to enhance the working experience. Guided by a central curved wall in South Island fjord hues, Kiwi Property’s 100 employees are guided around a series of spaces each offering a bespoke mood and feel. Lighting, materials and acoustics combine to form natural sequences, as sunny dining and softly-lit study areas suit employee needs as they evolve throughout the day. As a fully-agile environment allows each employee to choose the space they work in, traditional workplace delineations are blurred and gilded by copper, gold and sandy timber edges, connected by a shared client and staff space offering coffee, food and a scattering of informal furniture. The focus is on acclimatisation; on encouraging a comfort that breeds a greater productivity.
A truly New Zealand organisastion breeds innovation, and this was a key objective of Kiwi Property’s Vero building relocation. The new Kiwi Property workplace is a living showcase of a low-level, Southern-facing tower block made aspirational through design. Turning traditional northfacing entrances on their head, Kiwi Property’s new workplace greets its employees and guests with an in-house concierge, directing them to the leafier landscapes of its Southern stretch. Heroing employee agility and a non-hierarchical culture, a series of sit-to-stand desks, traditional benches, quiet pods, phone booths and collective workspaces weave their way across the floorplate, with the choice to join project groups in open spaces. Curves and soft tones create diversity throughout.
Designing Kiwi Property’s new workplace redefined what it means to be a modern Kiwi. By designing to principles of freedom, belonging and innovation, our team created a fully-agile workspace that reflects Kiwi Property’s goals as much as a workspace for a Kiwi.