Kindred Road's flagship store, showroom and café in Hastings is more than just brick and mortar for its founders.
Once the newsroom and printing plant for the Herald Tribune newspaper, the Tribune Complex located at 201 Queen Street East holds a family connection for Alice and Kris Sip, dating back decades.
“Two great-grandfathers on both my mother's and father's side used to work here,” Alice says.
“My great-grandfather, Jim Ward, was a linotypist and another great-grandfather, Emmett McIvor, was a racing reporter. It's quite amazing to now have a store in a spot that combines both lines of my heritage."
But they were drawn to the site - steeped in history and flooded with natural light - long before they knew a family connection existed.
“We knew we wanted to combine a showroom and café after spending time in both Toronto and the US, where Kris is from," Alice says. "We’d love going to grab a coffee at Starbucks within the Barnes and Noble bookstore, and then browse the shelves – it was a super relaxing thing to do."
"When we saw this spot at Tribune, we quickly realised it was the perfect place to capture the morning sun with a coffee in hand. Homewares and coffee seems like a match made in heaven to me, so we embarked on this journey and haven’t once looked back.”
The new offering boasts carefully designed luxury furniture, manufactured in small runs, sits alongside beautiful, contemporary homewares – with gastronomes Mitzi and Twinn running an onsite cafe serving nourishing salads, tasty sandwiches and homestyle baking.
With the success of their sister business, Flock – which does event styling and furniture hire – both Alice and Kris understand design, international trends and New Zealanders’ specific tastes.
Their appraising eye is evident not only on the shop floor, where plush sofas, elegant occasional tables and stylish ceramics sit alongside wicker baskets, crockery, and a small selection of clothing, but in the exposed steel beams, archways and polished concrete floors.
Words by Fiona Fraser