Old School Collective

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Cafes icon

Monday8:00 am – 3:00 pm.

Tuesday8:00 am – 3:00 pm.

Wednesday8:00 am – 3:00 pm.

Thursday8:00 am – 3:00 pm.

Friday8:00 am – 3:00 pm.

Saturday8:00 am – 4:00 pm.

Sunday8:00 am – 4:00 pm.

1429 Main North Road, Waikuku

027 274 7689

A day trip to the rural township of Waikuku is now a whole lot more interesting with the opening of the Old School Collective - a new boutique retail and lifestyle destination. Cruising into the village on State Highway 1, it’s near impossible to miss the retro logo of a soaring dove over a rising sun (the original school logo), marking your destination. With plenty of parking at the rear of the complex, it’s easy to pull up and explore everything on offer here.

When the opportunity to buy the 140-year old school grounds came up, co-founders Lisa Willetts and Sandy Williams put their hands up and envisioned an exciting North Canterbury destination filled with interesting retail, lifestyle services, and a café that would provide locals and visitors with healthy, simple nourishment and great coffee. Just over a year later, the Old School Collective is exactly that.

A selection of individual retail and lifestyle businesses make up the collective, operating out of completely renovated old classrooms. The offerings are plentiful.

Fashion lovers can stop in at Louis Who, a clothing boutique boasting a huge range of pre-loved pieces by local labels such as Karen Walker, Juliette Hogan & Trelise Cooper, along with exclusive new one-off pieces sourced directly from Melbourne.

Next door, Good Dirt Flowers florist and gift store and Woven Verandah outdoor furniture store share a space. Here you’ll find fresh locally grown florals to brighten up your day, unique little gifts and local Common Goods waxed canvas bags. Swedish-style all-weather wicker chairs and couches along with beautiful NZ wool blankets wait to spruce up your outdoor space.

On the lifestyle side of things, there’s The Health Project health coaching and tailor-made health programmes. And for those looking for a sweet treat? Swing by Milly's Fudge and Chocolates for delicious handcrafted delights. 

At the end of the old court Twine Antiques spreads into two rooms, a shed and a courtyard with the most incredible collection of treasures to discover. This store is a must-pop-in for anyone who loves vintage and antiques. 

Finally, The Office Cafe is the perfect spot to rewind, nourish your body on some hearty, healthy kai and delicious coffee. Take a seat on the terrace and send the kiddos to play on the court complete with hopscotch lines and play equipment. There’s really no excuse for not getting out of the city once in a while. Make The Old School Collective your next weekend mission.

Words by Petra Nyman & Photography by Nancy Zhou

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1429 Main North Road, Waikuku

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