Cheshire Architects 68 The Libraries

  • Pou Auaha / Creative Directors
    Nat Cheshire, Emily Priest
  • Ringatoi Matua / Design Director
    Dajiang Tai
  • Ngā Kaimahi / Team Members
    Jin Young Jeong, Tom Webster, Simon McLean
  • Client
    Cooper and Company
Judge's comments:

Thoughtful art, beautifully curated objects, a dramatic wine cellar, exquisite lighting pieces and a powerful chandelier shape this warm inviting space. One can almost smell the burnt timber, feel the curved concrete and brick columns, hear the opening of wine bottles and the clanging of glass.


Sitting within the heart of Britomart’s old heritage buildings, we wanted to insert a sympathetic set of hospitality spaces to service and aide The Hotel Britomart’s offerings within The Buckland Building.

The century-old brick, kauri timber beams and old relics such as patterned wallpaper and hand-painted typography are all treasured keepsakes that remind us of the buildings we sought to celebrate. We wanted The Libraries to have a unique fingerprint that could never be repeated, with Aoteroa’s landscape as our muse. We paired warm timbers and exposed brick with soft, neutral linens, terracotta and lush green woollen rugs, hand-tooled side tables and leather-backed chairs, alongside numerous handcrafted ceramics by local artisans.

The Libraries is a collection of sorts, with The Lounge, The Wine Library, The Chef’s Library and The Pupuke Room. We wanted each space to be as welcoming for a couple enjoying an intimate breakfast as it is for a group around the chef’s table experiencing an exquisite dégustation menu by the talented chef Tom Hishon.

The collection of spaces showcases the work of talented artisans and fabricators; a library of tools, artefacts and artworks are housed within the spaces, each with a strong connection to our land and culture. The collections are both of our own bespoke designs and works made in collaboration with local creatives, including ceramicists Jane Burn, Kristen Calder, Rachel Carter and Elena Renker; weaver Ruth Castle; painter and woodturner Peter Edmonds; woodturners Walk in the Park; glass artists Monmouth Glass Studio. We loved collating the space with such special pieces not to mention the local hands that created each of them.