Sunday, January 24, 2010

National Tobacco Company Building, Ahuriri

Rothman's Building, AhuririProbably the most decorative Art Deco building in the Napier area is this former tobacco company building in Ahuriri.

Dating from 1932-33, it was designed by Louis Hay for the National Tobacco Company. At some point it was taken over by the Rothmans of Pall Mall and therefore my photos from 1999 show the building bearing that company's name. Since then, Rothmans are no longer using the building and the National Tobacco Company name has been restored to the front of building.

Rothman's Building, Ahuriri

Hay designed the building as a series of receding rectangular forms countered by 14 Art Nouveau style rose stems arranged in a semi-circle around the main entrance.

The space either side of the door is filled with sculpted flowers and a local New Zealand variety of bullrushes known as Raupo.

Rothman's Building, Ahuriri

Other decoration on the facade includes a pair of lamps with a small leadlight rose included at the bottom of the galss panel and a rectangular panel with stylised grapevines that wraps around the corner of the building.

Rothman's Building, Ahuriri

Even the tiled steps leading into the building are very decorative.

Rothman's Building, Ahuriri

Rothman's Building, Ahuriri

The floral theme is continued inside the building with roses in the leadlight glass of the large domed skylight. Roses, combined with oranges, again feature in the leadlight windows of the office.

Rothman's Building, Ahuriri

The interior woodwork includes small stepped art deco elements that are indicitive of the detailled attention given by Hay to this extraordinary building.

Rothman's Building, Ahuriri

4 comments:

  1. I love this building, it's fantastic

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  2. It is absolutely fantastic isn't it

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  3. Walter Isaac MARQUAND a master carver, carved the wooden doors; he came from St Peters Port, Guernsey - Channel Islands with his family in 1908:

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    Replies
    1. You can't really see them in my post but they are lovely as you would imagine given the rest of the building.

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