It’s not unusual to find some of New Zealand’s specialised businesses tucked away in lovely country towns like Greytown  (only 20 mins drive from Martinborough). The Retro Room owned by Julie and Merv Saunders, restore art deco furniture using the original high quality frames and re-upholstering them in beautiful, colourful fabrics:

Greytown Art Deco shop

Some of my generation recall how we thought these chairs were so terribly old-fashioned after we’d moved on to  monochrome blacks and greys. I can remember actually taking beautiful chairs like these to the dump. What a fool! They’re all the rage now and I want them back!

Greytown Art Deco Shop chairs

Merv’s a very approachable bloke and we had a great conversation about how people have lost the eye for quality and everything has become so ‘cheap’ and disposable. Feast your eyes upon these Venetian mirrors – sure beats the heck out of the three-ducks-in-a-row:

Greytown Venetian Mirrors

Of course Greytown is not just about finding a unique piece of furniture but also about beautiful restored heritage buildings…

Greytown Buildings

…and Marilyn Monroe.  Yep, that girl sure gets around and what man would refuse a chance to pose for a photo. So after a lot of mucking around with Michael trying different posses and ignoring pedestrians around him, this is the truly amazing result:

Greytown and Marilyn Monroe

Moving along nicely, the second interior-related business we visited was Country Traders.

Greytown Country Trader sign

If you’re looking for special antique furniture and fittings, you could spend a long time in this shop. Go on, check it out:

Greytown Country Trader shop

We bypassed a rather chaotic café with fabulous homemade cakes, in favour of a tidier café with a great street appearance.  It was not a wise choice but you live and learn. I have a special affection for Greytown. To me it represents rural kinship, a slower pace and a kinder world. It’s definitely worth a visit.

4 responses to “Greytown New Zealand”

  1. Carol Worthington says:

    I am wondering if The Retro Shop is open 24/7 or which days it is closed.

    • GuestNZ says:

      Hi Carol, as far as I’m aware The Retro Shop is opened 10am – 4pm, Thu to Mon – Closed: Tue, Wed. Hope you get to visit this shop and meet the wonderful Merv. Not sure when you’ll be visiting (we’re in winter months at the moment) but you’ll find some very special boutique vineyards in this area as well. Happy travelling.

  2. Julie says:

    Hi there!
    This article has just been forwarded to me, and we’re so thrilled you loved what Merv and I do! However, we’ve now moved The Retro Room into its own premises (as it so richly deserved) across the road at 95 Main Street from our original store Chambers on Main. AND we’ve opened a contemporary branch called The Design Library at 115 Main Street (in the old Library). A family affair with our son Kirk and daughter-in-law Shelley helping us with one or other of our stores and them in their contemporary one. We are all open Thursday to Monday (or by appointment at other times) and would love to welcome you into our worlds!
    Thanks again for your kind words,

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