It’s time to shake off the winter blues and to usher in the new. To celebrate the reawakening of our fair city, here’s a roundup of the season’s notables - both old and new - doing a bang-up job of proving that Christchurch is much more than just a gateway to the south.
We predict that you’ll be perusing The Crossing’s charming brick laneways in no time. Fashion powerhouse H&M was greeted by eager fans clambering to get their hands on the stellar blend of easy favourites and out-there trends. Fresh Choice City Market’s ultra-convenient location and ample selection of gourmet and locally-sourced foods are sure to turn this boutique-style supermarket into a Christchurch fixture, and the local fashionistas will be thrilled to see beloved boutique RUBY regain their reign in the central city.
Cool and local fashion kid Infinite Definite pride themselves on their diverse range of high-end streetwear and discerning shoppers won’t be disappointed by their revamped location on the High Street tramway. The bright and airy new store provides a cool backdrop to their eclectic range of premium denim, footwear and covetable accessories, and the knowledgeable team will work with you to nail your look. Make room in your closets for this one.
Head Over Heels
Fuelling our collective shoe obsessions since 2006, Head Over Heels’ gorgeous range of high quality, stylish footwear will have you balancing shoeboxes on your way out of their store. They’ve recently settled into their newly minted home amidst High Street’s fashion boutiques and their line-up is quickly becoming prime material for stylish fantasies. Be sure to give them a peep – these are the kind of shoes that you’ll be hanging onto forever.
Oxford Terrace is quickly re-emerging as a hub for tempting culinary and late-night spots with the launch of old and new joints along The Strip. Original Sin is wooing diners with their fine fare, Fat Eddie’s is luring jazz cats back to the riverside and Kong Bar is wowing crowds with their retro cocktails in a chic, art deco-styled room. A toast to the return of late nights.
The brand new Crowne Plaza Christchurch boasts amenities that are sure to earn appreciation from travellers and locals alike. Smaller and more intimate than its original incarnation, the hotel’s new generation boasts modern guest and function rooms, a better-than-average library, the well-received Market Place and cosy, upmarket Social Wine Bar. Café 1851, their light-filled café off Armagh St, is the perfect spot for meetings or for tasty and quick café fare. An all-around winner.
The Boxed Quarter at Madras and St Asaph is breathing new life into the affordable-yet-delicious dining scene. Quash your cravings for hearty Korean fare at Steampunk Laboratory, grab a ‘gram-worthy selection of sushi at Rice and Paper and treat yourself to the seriously satisfying fare at Vietnam to Go. And let’s not forget Engine Coffee Brewers – this mighty little shop will soon have you hooked with their unwavering dedication to the perfect cuppa.
Action Bicycle Club
Welcome the warmer days with a tune up to your trusty bike – or a fresh new setup altogether. Strong advocates of urban cycling, the passionate team at Action Bicycle Club will get you jazzed about your daily ride with their colourful range of ultra-hip Goodordering bikes and with darling add-ons such as picnic-worthy bike bags inspired by Japanese design. Here’s to a cruisy and stylish commute.
Speaking of picnics, time to dust off the trusty blanket and sit under the canopy of spring greenery with a good read. Long-standing Christchurch institution Scorpio Books (in their new digs in the BNZ Centre) is a first-rate stop for literary fiction, biography, travel, gardening and much more. Talk to the friendly staff for their top picks and get ready to be swept away by new titles and old classics.
Ngāi Tahu art at CoCa
If you’re after something a little out of the ordinary, look no further than Paemanu: Ka Nohoaka Toi Ngāi Tahu Artists in Residence. This major new exhibition of Ngāi Tahu visual art will be calling Toi Moroki Centre of Contemporary Art (CoCA) home until November 26. Visitors can get up close and personal with a vibrant range of works, ranging from rock art to large-scale projections to contemporary works. Get amongst it.