Safari Group take the time to talk with Gary – one of our lead architects from Studio 37

Design Insight: Maximising value through architecture

At Safari Group we’re very proud of our long-standing industry relationships. We’ve been working with respected architecture firm Studio 37 for nearly two decades – long enough to have seen more than a dozen major projects delivered throughout New Zealand.

We caught up with Studio 37 Director, Gary Bickerton, to get his perspective on working with Safari Group and how architecture can influence the success of a development.


Tell us about your experience of working with Safari Group…

I’ve been working with the team at Safari for about 18 years. I have a lot of respect for (founders) Rob and Steve – New Zealand is a small industry and they have built a solid reputation that’s based on strong and enduring professional relationships.

Our relationship works well because both teams (Safari and Studio 37) have a ‘straight up’ approach – meaning that we’re always honest, upfront and transparent with each other. Whenever we face a challenge on a project, we meet it head-on together. That way, we can solve the problem quickly and get on with delivering the project.

What do you think makes Safari Group different from other developers in New Zealand?

Definitely the value generated by their long-standing relationships within New Zealand’s construction industry.

Over the years, they have built a network of consultants and contractors who know how to deliver Safari Group projects efficiently, to the quality standards they expect. The time and cost efficiencies generated by this approach means Safari Group can spend more time and effort on ensuring their clients receive the very best end-product.

Each of Safari Group’s developments meets global quality criteria set by Wyndham Hotels & Resorts – how does that influence your designs?

The specifications we’re provided by Wyndham Hotels & Resorts represent international best practice for hotel design. After so many projects, we’re very familiar with what works best – but we always consider the latest specifications in detail before starting a project.

We also spend a lot of time working with Safari’s team to finetune each design, so that it has its own unique edge which is perfectly suited to the location and end-users.

What’s been your favourite project for Safari Group to date?

Working on Safari Group’s head office on Graham Street in central Auckland was a real highlight. After so many years working with Safari’s team, it was a pleasure to help them create a beautiful space that will serve as their ‘home office’ for years to come.


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