Winola as this house is originally known, was constructed in 1911, for Mr J Smith Esq, the owner of the successful Wellington department store, James Smiths. Situated in a supreme location in Khandallah, overlooking Wellington Harbour, the house was a fine and grand homestead in its time.

Over the years the house had deteriorated considerably and by the time our clients purchased the house in 2002 the house was in a sad state. The house needed considerable restoration.

A complete demolition of the house was contemplated. However given the history of the house and its place in the neighbourhood, a responsibility was felt to reinstate the house.

The brief called for a large family house, with a variety of generous spaces. The house required reorientation and re-planning of many rooms particularly kitchen and family areas to work with the site and the environment. Development of the site also included a new swimming pool, spa complex, tennis court, triple garage and study above.

Winola is now a functional modern home but still retains its familiar ‘cloak’ which has been a central part of the neighbourhood for nearly 100 years.

NZ Institute of Architects Award