Xintandi, Shanghai, 1000sqm


The brief was to design a space which delivered an authentic experience, that showcased New Zealand.  The space needed to be functional and flexible to provide a home for New Zealand companies to connect with Chinese companies and host clients and conduct day-to-day business.

The design needed to create an environment that told the New Zealand Story, a place of open spaces, open minds and open hearts.

Coming out of the lift you are instantly welcomed into a New Zealand space where the naturals colours from timber and stone evoke New Zealand’s striking landscapes. The patterned oak floor reflects a traditional Maori carving from a Marae (traditional meeting house).  This natural wood flooring is used throughout the whole space to create a sense of uninterrupted flow and bring natural warmth to each area.

With no formal reception desk, a New Zealand welcome greets you in the form of trained barista offering fresh coffee. The coffee counter uses a marbled green tone which represents jade (pounamu in Maori) which is a precious stone in both Chinese and New Zealand culture.

The greeting area opens out into a casual seating and meeting space area. The large tables were custom made with New Zealand native Rimu and Tawa trees. Beyond that there is a large event space for product launches and seminars and a fully-functional commercial and demonstration kitchen that doubles as a bar during evening events. Floor to ceiling windows fill the space with sunlight and the surrounding tree canopy envelopes the whole space.
The two independent spaces can be connected at the touch of a button which vertical retracts the wall into the ceiling cavity, creating a large harmonious entertainment wing for hosting 250+ person events.

In the business wing, more homely elements bring an even more relaxing working vibe. The brown leather seats, soft floral pink, green and yellow tones in the furnishings bring subtle bursts of colour to balance the space. The conference room not only creates privacy through excellent soundproofing it also provides cutting edge technology for hosting conferences around the world with high-end interactive media.

Contemporary New Zealand artists are displayed prominently throughout the space. Custom made pendant lights from various New Zealand Designers feature in the casual meetings spaces, hot-desking area and break out area.

New Zealand Central is a well thought out and designed space for connecting New Zealand business to China and allowing people to proudly showcase their country to future clients.

Photography: Brian Chua

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