Dating back to 1880’s (before I was born indeed) The Arts Centre Te Matatiki Toi Ora in Ōtautahi Christchurch is an absolute dream for those planning a getaway. Shopping, eating, drinking, lounging, movie going, arts, creative, mākete (market), music. All in one space so your wee tootsies don’t have to wander far. The Art’s Centre should be top of your list for must do’s in Christchurch.
A not for profit charitable trust currently in the middle of a $290 million restoration project as a result of the earthquake. It has worked hard to create buildings (23 heritage buildings infact) which house some of the most divine and wonderfully creative places. Wander, seek solace or hang out with your girlfriends for a weekend away to Christchurch.
At the heart of The Arts Centre and another reason it’s a must do in Christchurch are three pillars to their vision;
Kaitiakitanga- guardianship. Hold and develop The Arts Centre as a unique and outstanding cultural centre to promote, conserve and maintain the heritage integrity of The Arts Centre.
Whangai- nourish and foster. Foster, promote and facilitate interest and involvement in art, culture, creativity, the creative industries, and education.
He Tangata- for everyone. Engage in an open way with the community and be inclusive and connected.
With these in mind they have created one of the most beautiful spaces to wander, breathe and soak it all in.
Where to start?
A wee morning coffee at Bunsen (dog friendly!) and one of the largest muffins I’ve seen this side of the equator. Coffee: hot. Then a meander to the shops.
There’s a plethora (I always like to get that word in) of shops and they’re all housed under one roof; Indigo and Provisions showcasing retail, fashion and culture (don’t let me near it again, it’s beautiful and I want everything), Pepa Stationary makes your inner teenager squeal with their selection of stationary. Their space instantly makes you want to slow down, sit and write a letter to your best mate for a while.
Frances Nation who share their love for Aotearoa New Zealand-made homewares and gifts. Absolution where you can get a piercing or three. Skin Space a boutique apothecary (the best word ever created) offering honest skincare made with the planet and you in mind.
The Fudge Cottage which is, you guessed it, where the best fudge is available to taste and purchase and has been around for 30 years.
The afternoon demands your feet rest and you take in the beautiful new Cellar Door. Offering wine tastings and seasonal food menu.
A homemade organic icecream at Rollickin Gellato and then settle in for a movie at the beautiful luxury art-house Lumière Cinema with bar! Roll me up in a duvet I’m done!
I cannot express enough how beautiful The Arts Centre is and how hard they have worked to create something unique, beautiful, accessible and Christchurch’s ‘own’. It’s taken its place again on Worcester Boulevard where there’s so much going on.
The city is alive and The Arts Centre is living and breathing. Christchurch’s heart is beating with things to go on your list and this is one of them.
The Arts Centre Te Matatiki Toi Ora
2 Worcester Boulevard
03 366 0989
I worked in collaboration with The Arts Centre but if I didn’t think you’d love them I wouldn’t work with them.