Te Arai Beach House by Fearon Hay
Architecture / Fearon Hay
Photo / Simon Wilson

Best Local Architecture of 2021
/ Te Arai House by Fearon Hay 

Kicking off our top picks of 2021 is this stunning example of local architecture – Te Arai House by Fearon Hay. Situated amongst the dunes and pine forests of Te Arai this contemporary beach house recalls the classic design of rural New Zealand sheds with its timber cladding and simple gable form. Inside, the interiors designed by Sonja Hawkins beautifully complements the simplicity and durability of the architecture. Continuing to reference its natural surroundings, organic materials of stone, linen, timber, leather and wool are layered around the home, softening and giving warmth to its minimal, timeless design. 

Architecture / Fearon Hay 
Interior Design / Sonja Hawkins
Photo / Simon Wilson

Best Local Interior of 2021
/ Super Taper by Jack Mckinney & Katie Lockhart

Super Taper is a stunning renovation of a Freemans Bay villa with a seamless demonstration of classic meets contemporary. From the steep tapered roof that sheds light across the living room, to the carefully positioned windows that give privacy as well as curated views of the pool, this Ponsonby renovation ticks all our boxes. We especially love the textural and crafted feel of the interior that contrasts with the crisp white exterior. It’s a unique bridging of old and new that gives a calm and contemplative mood to the home. 

Architecture / Jack Mckinney Architects
Interior Design / Katie Lockhart
Photo / David Straight

Together with the timber cladding and roof, the material will age and silver over time – integrating the buildings with the landscape.
Fearon Hay

Best Global Interior of 2021
/ JIGI Poke Restaurant by VAUST Studio

We recently came across the newly designed interior for a Poke restaurant created by Berlin based practice VAUST Studio and fell in love. The interior design studio opted for a raw, monochromatic space with a focus on materiality. We love the textural combination of concrete, granite, and wood that contrasts with sleek stainless steel. The entire space is beautifully tactile and perfectly imperfect. 

Architecture / VAUST Studio
Photo / Robert Rieger

Best New Design of 2021
/ Maison/Objects by Rick Owens

2021 has been a year of great design, which has made choosing our top pick an impossible task! Among all the beautiful new designs we’ve come across however, the minimal design collection ‘Maison/Objects’ by Rick Owens is something we’d love to find under our Christmas tree. These brutalist bronze vases, candle holders and accessories are luxuriously textural objects that we’d love to have on display.

Maison/Objects by Rick Owens

JIGI Poke Restaurant by VAUST Studio

In design, some pieces are nice looking but they don’t have an aura. Rick Owens pieces aren’t even trying to be nice looking. They’re not trying to be comfortable or appealing. They’re just there and if you like them, you like them.
Ygaël Attali / Galerie Philia co-founder

Axel Vervoordt – Portraits of Interiors

Best Playlist of 2021
/ Our Top Songs of 2021 Playlist

It’s no easy feat to pick just one top song so we’ve put together a playlist of the songs that have been on heavy rotation for us this year.  All that’s left for you to do is press play and let the good times roll at home – Listen here.

Best Read of 2021

/ Axel Vervoordt – Portraits of Interiors

We’re admittedly a bit late to the game with this one but having long admired the work of the Belgian interior designer we knew we’d love this book. Showcasing an inspiring selection of eighteen recently designed homes, each incorporates nature and art to enrich a timeless interior space. 

2021 has been another loooong year never knowing what's coming next, so we have loved reflecting on the positives of this year. We hope you all have a well deserved Christmas break and we’ll see you in the new year!

From the gallery