GHDWoodhead creativespaces were engaged to deliver the turnkey design and build interior fitout of Sanford’s head-office in Auckland.

The office consists of 2 floors located above the Sanford Fish Market and Seafood School within Auckland’s vibrant Wynyard Quarter.

This historic building required seismic re-strengthening to bring it up to code, and it was during this work that the beauty of the extraordinary brickwork and unique building structure was discovered.

The previous use of the building to smoke fish is still discernable in the uniquely aged colour of the exposed brickwork.

As designers we chose to celebrate the history, designing a fitout that highlighted and complemented it, while also embracing the future.

The key design objective of the fitout was an innovative design that was fresh yet familiar, with a sense of quality and transparency.

The colours, textures and finishes all make reference to the maritime theme based around the fish market and seafood industry.

From the utility “boatshed” to the fish scale kitchen splashback, small human touches such as the life ring and rope screens reinforce the theme.

The slick, black understated reception counter, with vibrant graphic backdrop resolutely bring Sanford into the modern-day commercial workplace.

The result is a paradoxically timeless yet historic fitout that is a joy for staff and visitor alike.

Sanford is a publicly owned New Zealand fishing company that loves seafood and supports sustainable fishing and aquaculture, both here and overseas.

More than 150 years ago, founder Albert Sanford went fishing for snapper and formed plans for a business that would ultimately grow into New Zealand’s biggest seafood company.

Started as a family business in Auckland in 1881 it has grown into a company of nearly 1600 people. With more than 130 years of sustained growth, Sanford has a sense of pride about its history and is also excited about its future.

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