Dome Cinema & Bar, Gisborne

We went to a movie at Dome Cinema in Gisborne for the first time this year, and what a treat it was. There’s a bar onsite, add a sunny evening and we were happy with a pre movie drink of cold Gisborne Gold.

Gisborne Gold at Dome Cinema & Bar

Gisborne Gold at Dome Cinema & Bar

Dome Cinema & Bar is in the grand old Poverty Bay Club, the cinema is in the billiards room of the former gentleman’s club. The bar still has a gentleman’s club feel with low lighting, old framed photos, an ornate wooden fire surround, and worn  leather couches. The gentleman’s club … Read the rest

Art Deco Masonic Hotel in Napier

There’s a rave review ahead for Art Deco Masonic Hotel in Napier. We remember when the hotel had a Breakers Cafe on the ground floor, what a transformation! In 2012 the hotel was renovated significantly and many of its Art Deco features were restored. The work of the owners’ was recognised recently when they picked up two awards at Hospitality NZ Awards for Excellence – Best Accommodation, and the top award – Supreme Award Winner.

From Breakers to Emporium Eatery & Bar

From Breakers to Emporium Eatery & Bar

We checked in to a Superior Queen Room to find we had French doors opening to the balcony … Read the rest

Art Deco Napier

It’s all about Art Deco in Napier, the architectural style that typifies many of the buildings that rose from the devastation of the Hawkes Bay earthquake. The earthquake shook Napier’s business district from its foundations on the morning of 3 February 1931. More than 250 people died in the Hawkes Bay region and buildings that didn’t collapse in Napier’s city centre initially were then mostly destroyed by fire and subsequent aftershocks.

One of the photos on a wall in the city - looking down Upper Emerson Street after the earthquake

One of the photos on a wall in the city – looking down Upper Emerson Street after the earthquake

But like the Art Deco image of the rising … Read the rest

Gisborne – our ‘go to place’ for sunshine

We often wondered about people who went to the same destination every year for a holiday, it didn’t seem like something we would do. Then one year we went to Gisborne and turned into the sort of people we wondered about. We don’t go every year, more likely every second, but it’s the one place we return to regularly. Given I recently resurrected Driving the East Cape from Gisborne to Opotiki, I thought I’d share some of what makes Gisborne a favourite destination for us.

Waikanae Beach, Gisborne

Waikanae Beach, Gisborne

The weather – It seems every Christmas/New Year in one part of … Read the rest

Ring the Westminster Chimes at The Faraday Centre in Napier

The Faraday Centre is a historical technology museum, it’s a hands on sort of place so you get to push, pull and make stuff go, not just look at it. You’ll find all sorts of weird and intriguing things like a Uranus electric mouse trap, a dishwasher from 1925, a 1907 Rover car, and old and unusual typewriters.

Ring the Westminster Chimes at The Faraday Centre

Ring the Westminster Chimes at The Faraday Centre

You can use the pneumatic conveyor system that once transferred money in cannisters through a series of pipes around Westerman’s Department Store in Hastings. Curiously, C1 Espresso in Christchurch are using a similar system … Read the rest

Smash Palace Bar, Gisborne

The name Smash Palace gives an indication of what to expect – think a guy called Gazza getting a liquor licence for his second hand shop / wreckers yard and inviting his mates around for a party. There’s a pool table, Lion Red on tap and a mix of soft and hard rock on the sound system. Smash turns it up mid January for the annual rock and metal event – Hell Smash Fest.

Welcome to Smash Palace, Gisborne

Welcome to Smash Palace, Gisborne

Smash Palace, Gisborne

Smash Palace, Gisborne

Outdoor seating at Smash Palace

Outdoor seating at Smash Palace

Smash Palace, Gisborne

Smash Palace, Gisborne

One of Gazza’s mates has conveniently landed a DC3 in … Read the rest

Kaiaua Beach Horse Races, Tolaga Bay

Racing this time at Kaiaua Beach Horse Races … Posse won race 2 with Lady Gaga coming home fourth; don’t know about race 1, we were getting the car stuck in a paddock; race 3 was a 22 horse race, our lucky dip pick Sarge came second but first place is the only one that pays at Kaiaua, it was Mac that stormed down the beach to take first and pay $10 the win ….

A big field at Kaiaua Beach Races

A big field at Kaiaua Beach Races

Time for hot chips and a bet on race 4, Posse took the win again with Lady Gaga … Read the rest

Happy New Year from the Skinny Dip Capital of the World

NEWS FLASH 😉 – It’s official, Gisborne now hold the Guinness World Record for Largest Skinny Dipping (744 people)! (On 8 March 2015 The Fig Group in Australia set a new world record with 786 people).

Gisborne 'Bay Watch' on duty

Gisborne ‘Bay Watch’ on duty

People have been getting their gear off around the world to try and beat the skinny dipping world record currently held by 729 people who bared all at a Spanish beach in July. In the naked queue for the record were 805 people who took to the water in November at a clothes optional beach in Florida, but they … Read the rest

Turkish Delight – Sea Breeze B&B in Napier

There are three themed rooms at Sea Breeze B&B in Napier – Imperial Asian, Turkish and Indian. Our choice was the Turkish room – it’s a visual delight with its rich red walls and gold trimmings. The room, and infact the whole B&B is so well maintained we felt like the first guests, however Cafer and Fiona have been hosting visitors for over 10 years.

Turkish Room, Sea Breeze B&B

Turkish Room, Sea Breeze B&B

Indian Room

Indian Room

The Turkish room has its own ensuite, the rich colours don’t continue in to the bathroom – it’s all white and spotless. There’s an LCD TV in all … Read the rest

Take a walk with words

Take a walk with words to celebrate National Poetry Day …..

Haiku Pathway, Katikati
Sandwiched between Robert Harris Cafe and Hammer Hardware in Katikati you’ll find the main entrance to the Haiku Pathway.The haiku are engraved on boulders along the path that follows Uretara Stream ….

Haiku by Barry Morrall

Haiku by Barry Morrall

Haiku by Patricia Prime

Haiku by Patricia Prime

Haiku by Jeanette Stace

Haiku by Jeanette Stace

Haiku by Margaret Beverland

Haiku by Margaret Beverland

Words on Walls in Napier
Many of Napier’s streets are named after poets, it seems a natural progression to write Words on Walls….

Words from the novel 'Owls Do Cry' by Janet Frame (1924-2004)

Words from the novel ‘Owls Do Cry’ by Janet Frame (1924-2004)

Janet Frame’s … Read the rest