Postcards from Napier

As promised, here are some pictures from our detour via Napier on the way back to Wellington.

At first I really wasn’t convinced I liked Napier – there’s a lot of art deco and it can be quite overwhelming. But then my first glimpse was one evening after a 5.5 hour drive. When I had a chance to see (and photograph) the city the next day in the sunlight (and heat – oh my god the heat!), it was more than enough to make me fall in love. Not that I’d want to live there mind, it’s a bit small and Wellington will always have my heart. But it’s a beautiful place to visit.

Here’s the best of Napier once again via instagram (p.s. if you’ve got instagram search for me @purplemagolia – I love discovering new people to follow!):

We're not in Wellington anymore....

We’re not in Wellington anymore….

On driving into Napier it became abundantly clear that we were in for some warm, borderline tropical, temperatures. It was amazing how different the climate was from both Wellington and the Coromandel.

Learning to love the Art Deco

Learning to love the Art Deco

Art Deco Street Corner

Art Deco Street Corner

Of course the most well known thing about Napier isn’t the climate, it’s the fact that following the 1931 earthquake which devastated much of the town, the everything was rebuilt in art deco style. It takes a bit to get used to but it definitely grows on you. I loved the way the city has worked so hard to preserve this heritage, right down to the shops signs and sculptures.

I love this statue so vintage, a little Virgina Woolf - awesome!

I love this statue so vintage, a little Virgina Woolf – awesome!

This is probably my favourite photo of the trip. Napier has reawakened my love of vintage things I think.

We loved everything about the Wholefood Cafe at Chantal Organics - including the decor.

We loved everything about the Wholefood Cafe at Chantal Organics – including the decor.

The amazing Wholefood cafe's menu. Yum!

The amazing Wholefood cafe’s menu. Yum!

A highlight of the trip, shopping wise at least, was being able to visit Chantal Organics. While we can’t afford to eat everything organic we try to our best to eat wholefoods that are sustainably grown or produced, sometimes this means organic, sometimes it doesn’t. Not only did Chantal Organics have an amazing array of organic food at good prices, it also had a fantastic Wholefood cafe. It also afforded me an opportunity to take some of those detail shots I so love taking.

I love little detail pictures and Chantal Organics was the perfect opportunity to take some more.

I love little detail pictures and Chantal Organics was the perfect opportunity to take some more.

Jars! I love these!

Jars! I love these!

We made the most of good prices (a result of a fertile climate no doubt) and stocked up before driving home, both at Chantal Organics and at the local farmers market. The highlight for me? Purple Heart potatoes.

Purple Heart potatoes - possibly the most exciting purchase of the trip!

Purple Heart potatoes – possibly the most exciting purchase of the trip!

Wool at Gather

Wool at Gather

Before we left we managed to squeeze in a trip to gather a gorgeous little boutique wool shop with amazing natural hand died wools. We didn’t buy anything but S. was definitely tempted by the DIY natural die kits.

Natural hand died wool

Natural hand died wool

All in all it was a beautiful trip and lovely wee stop on our way home. Napier’s definitely a place a could imagine visiting again. It’s got soul, a bit like Raglan does actually, though infinitely more classy. It’s all that art deco I think, it gives the city an air of confidence – or maybe it’s just murals like this one that leave that impression…

The City Beautiful she is indeed.

The City Beautiful she is indeed.

B.

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3 thoughts on “Postcards from Napier

  1. Lovely to see your photos and hear your impressions of Napier, B.

    I’ll always love Napier but to me it has become a bit too fake and touristy. When I was a kid growing up there, it was rough and gritty but [to my mind] had more character. There were a lot more art deco buildings but many of them were torn down because of the earthquake risk. This was back when no-one really cared about art deco, we took all those fancy buildings for granted!

    I remember when Chantal’s was a tiny little shop, but now – isn’t it fantastic?!

  2. Thanks for your lovely comment Anne-Marie. It’s so interesting to hear a different perspective. Chantal absolutely was fantastic. Better I think than what we have in Wellington in some ways,

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