Mayfair Theatre

Mayfair Theatre

Canterbury Commercial

Located on the stunning Kaikoura waterfront, the bulk of original 1930's Mayfair Theatre was demolished following extensive damage from the 2016 Kaikoura Earthquake; only the unique Mayfair Pink historic art deco masonry façade was retained. The new building encompasses the entire 400 m2 site with the facility including a 92 seat multi-use cinema space, a dedicated 35 seat cinema, and a mezzanine exhibition/gallery space. Constructed with laminated timber framing and engineered plywood roof structure, this building is designed to service the local community for many years to come.

Located in Kaikoura, the project saw the site team stay away from home for the duration of construction. A huge amount of coordination was required to manage traffic, noise and lay down areas due to accommodation businesses on both sides. Day one of earthworks uncovered what became a significant, pre European archaeological discovery. Due to exceptional, culturally sensitive, respectful collaboration between Te Rūnanga o Kaikōura, archaeologists, Kaikoura Community Theatre Trust, RCP and Cook Brothers Construction, this potentially project ending situation was navigated to a successful resolution.

Despite numerous challenges including these discoveries, Covid 19 lock down and subsequent Level 3 & 2 restrictions the project was delivered in time for the original November 2020 opening. Any potential program slippage was mitigated through overlapping and resequencing work fronts. As the project was funded by a combination of insurance, community grants and donations, every dollar had to be spent wisely. Cook Brothers worked closely with the Client and design team to ensure that the project budget was adhered to without sacrificing the fundamental project adjectives.

The theatre was designed to be as eco friendly as possible. Utilising a unique Potius Structural roof framing system, and LVL Timber framing sourced from renewable Nelson Pine, this building is designed to resist mother natures forces and look great for years to come. The restoration of the historic masonry façade was a particular highlight. Restoring this unique piece of Kaikoura's history back to its original splendour was rewarding for all involved. 

Collaboration was the key to delivering this project. This remained true throughout the entire project. Open communication both up and downstream, utilising Cook Brothers initiatives such as Last Planner, ensured that the project ran smoothly. Cook Brothers also engaged with a combination of local and Christchurch based Trade Partners to deliver this amazing community asset. Utilising local supplier ITM Kaikoura for material supply ensured local involvement.

The Mayfair has held a special place in our teams hearts and we are so pleased to have worked alongside John & Sandra Wyatt, Kaikōura Community Theatre Trust, Chris Lowe (RCP), Te Rūnanga o Kaikōura, Irving Smith Architects, Kaikoura District Council Building Team and numerous Consultants, Trade Partners and Suppliers from Kaikoura, Christchurch and Nelson.