Tag Archives: UFL Group

Hampton Down’s Members Lounge


One of our most exciting and creative fit-outs of late, is the members lounge at Hampton Downs Raceway in Meremere. The owners approached UFL in late 2015 with an exclusive design and fit-out brief for the new lounge which was still under construction. The raceway was enjoying bumper seasons and wanted to provide a smart yet relaxed lounge for private memberships.


The brief was not dissimilar to a high-end airport lounge, a place where people could socialise, work, or just get away from it all and relax. The space occupies a large second storey which is surrounded by decks with premium views overlooking the racetrack.


The lounge was divided into zones through the choice of furniture which includes Oh! lounge chairs and Chat ottomans by Sancal, UFL’s Pacific Series high-back sofas for privacy and J-Series barleaners, tables and Arper’s Juno chairs for dining. The piece de resistance is our own Panama modular sofa which runs like a spine through the middle of the space.


For the outdoor area we chose Vondom Stones lounge chairs and occasional tables, and Vases barstools paired with Andreu World Reverse leaners. This all-weather area needed elegant yet tough furniture which could withstand a variety of conditions.

An on-point selection of furniture has created a fun yet sophisticated lounge, drawing race car enthusiasts to enjoy Hampton Downs in style.


Photos by Jeremy Toth

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Figueras International Seating



UFL are delighted to welcome Figueras International Seating into our fold of European suppliers. World leaders in the design and manufacture of seating systems for theaters, auditoriums, and concert halls, Figueras have recently fitted out the magnificent Len Lye Gallery in New Plymouth with their Flex 6036 armchair. Designed by Patterson Architecture, the gallery which was purpose built to house the works of kinetic sculptor Len Lye, makes a profound statement and demanded furniture which was on par with its architecture.


In 2014 Figueras was awarded the Spanish National Design Award for its work to date. This is the highest award in the field of design and innovation bestowed to companies in Spain. Figueras’s attention to creating quality designs which incorporate the latest technological advances, leverages their specialized engineering and design capabilities to produce innovative solutions like fixed and mobile seating systems, platforms, telescopic tribunes and mobile floors. Despite humble beginnings as a small carpentry workshop in Barcelona, the company have now completed over 40,000 projects worldwide and installed 10 million seats into such high-end projects as the White House Press Room, The United Nations in Geneva, and the Philharmonic of Paris. The product is now available for projects within New Zealand exclusively from UFL.

With the creation of new division Figueras Engineering & Consulting in 2006, the parent company consolidated its course of carrying out custom-design projects by offering comprehensive engineering solutions particular to the individual client. Each new seating system or model is developed to meet the needs of the project, with particular emphasis on making the most of available space. Figueras are experts in optimizing space and enhancing profitability through movable seating systems that allow a single space to accommodate a range of different uses.

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Sublime New Collections by Mobles114


Mobles114 unveiled two breathtaking collections at Salone del Mobile this year. With wire furniture currently so on-trend, the Spanish manufacturer delivered undeniable crowd-pleasers.


Martin Azua is the creative genius behind Rambla. Delicate to behold, Rambla’s tough, its namesake is the famous promenade in Barcelona which runs from the heart of the city to the port. Historically one could hire tables and chairs on the street, for a rest and a drink with a friend.


Azua works in Barcelona and combines teaching and product design, with interior design and temporary installations. Highly committed to the environment and society, his work is based on abstraction and experimentation. Among his more famous projects is the Basic House which has formed part of the permanent collection at the MOMA in New York since 2007.


Rambla is available in crisp green, yellow, charcoal and white. Manufactured from steel rod, its contemporary shape reinterprets tradition and the most cosmopolitan Mediterranean lifestyle. The chairs are roomy and comfortable, with relaxing arms and an optional polyurethane foam cushion.

Stackable Tube boasts a distinctive, well-resolved design. Gentle curves defy the industrial origins of the collection which is manufactured from continual steel tube. Available in a sophisticated colour palette of white, blue grey, black, chestnut brown, olive grey and anthracite, Tube is simple and smart, perfect for hospitality projects or residential interiors.


Tube is the brainchild of Eugeni Quitllet, a designer who is making a huge name for himself in Europe designing for the likes of Vondom, Kartell, and Lexon. With an international career that started with Philippe Stark, Quitllet now runs his own studio in Barcelona. Expressive and unique, Quitllet resists trends, he has been described as a tireless seeker and a lover of technology, defining himself as a ‘dreamsigner’, a designer and dreamer, following his own instinctual process.


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Salone del Mobile 2016

Nani_lattice_2As a group of furniture professionals at UFL, our muse is the international circuit of furniture fairs, of which Salone del Mobile in Milan is the absolute darling. We visit every year; to seek inspiration and draw from new trends, new ideas and new products. We see our role in the milieu, as that of curators; selecting only the choicest offerings from simply thousands of new items, bringing them home to New Zealand to share with our local cliental.

Salone de Mobile is growing. It seems like the industry is adhering to its former glory and this year Milan was simply bursting out of her skin. Outstanding events and happenings were woven into the entire fabric of the city, from tiny apartments in Brera to the historical buildings within the city’s centre. Even the post-industrial warehouses of Ventura Lambrate held startling exhibitions of new products, alongside the delicious art galleries and the main Rho fairgrounds themselves. Salone 2016 truly surpassed our expectations with the vast array of superb installations, breath-taking new releases and magnificent parties.

Here are some of the highlights from Milano 2016:

Salon del Mobile









Andreu World_stand


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Catifa_new colours



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Goodness Gracious


Uber-cool furniture manufacturer Bend Goods from Los Angeles, are relative new kids on the block but they’ve already made their mark on the international design scene in a seriously big way.

Founded by Gaurav Nanda in 2010, Bend produces steel wire furniture for contract and residential projects worldwide. Nanda credits the inspiration behind his company to California’s red hot modernist architecture. With so many stunning examples of the style, Nanda wanted to design furniture that would look at right at home in any one of these Mid-Century masterpieces.


Bend’s galvanised goods include barstools, dining and lounge chairs, coffee tables, pendant lights and accessories, all designed for indoor and outdoor use. Each design has a moniker that makes them seem like one of the family. There’s Lucy, Betty, Ethel and Captain, there’s Bunny and Peacock too and the furniture looks so damn good, it just squeals revelry.


Maybe it’s the weather, California’s eternal sunshine, but Bend’s furniture makes one want to stop what they’re doing, and get down to the serious task of socialising over cocktails. There’s colour galore, powder-coated pastel perfection available in a veritable spectrum, there’s sparkly gem-toned headiness, or super sharp metallics in Gold, Bronze, Rose Gold and Chrome.



The manufacturing of Bend’s products engage a hand-crafted method of shaping and spot welding – a process the company calls ‘bending.’ Each ‘bend’ is carefully arranged to ensure structural strength, whilst the angles of the chair’s back, the curves of the seat and the closeness of the wires are designed to encourage relaxation and utility. Bend’s seating is remarkably comfortable, making it suitable for broad reaching applications such as corporate fit-outs, hospitality and residential environments. Bend are committed to issues of environmental impact and responsible manufacturing processes.


Exhibiting at the illustrious Salone del Mobile Milano 2016 for the very first time, Bend Goods have world domination firmly in their sights. UFL is thrilled to be in on the action recently adding Bend Goods to our exclusive portfolio of international design companies, and proudly making Bend’s good-time party pieces available to all sophisticated kiwi spaces and places.





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Divine In The Details


The Raglan modular sofa system designed by Piergiorgio Cazzaniga for Andreu World, is a new sofa in their superb range of soft seating.


Designed for collaboration areas in corporate, public and private spaces, the Raglan collection comprises of a lounge chair, a two and three seater sofa and combinable modular pieces. An occasional table completes the range and is particularly suitable when used as a corner or middle unit if the Raglan is installed as a modular system.


The defining feature of this collection is the beautiful piping detail on the seams around the arms, legs and back of each piece. The seat and back are made from flexible foam and the robust injected aluminium frame is available lacquered in white or black or a polished aluminium finish.


Raglan is characterised by its elegance, simplicity and comfort. The meticulous upholstery and overall sophistication of the Raglan collection foretells of an illustrious future in elegant projects worldwide.


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Law & Order


Understandably UFL’s repertoire of assignments is not confined to our own back doorstep, that being Auckland. Recently we supplied a combination of Spanish and NZ made furniture to a boutique law firm based in Rotorua.

Lance Lawson Barristers & Solicitors, employed Auckland’s RCG, to create a new office environment for their busy practice. One which would both develop and promote an edgy, contemporary culture, whilst upholding the integrity of their business.


If RCG is ringing bells, that’s because we recently featured another project by the company’s own Ceili Murphy on our blog. This talented local designer worked on the revamp of our UFL HQ no less.

The hub of Lance Lawson, is a central space which runs through the middle of the building. Coined ‘Marketplace’, it was inspired by such and gives the whole office a great sense of openness that encourages transparency and collaboration amongst the team, creating a relationship-driven gravitational pull if you like.



The Marketplace incorporates slick, monochromatic finishes mixed with timber for a warm, lived-in feeling. Piergiorgio Cazzaniga’s Reverse tables are teamed with Lievore Altherr Molina’s Lottus chairs, and our own J-Series leaner is teamed with the Lottus barstool.


Our first foray into designing custom workstations was applied in collaboration with RCG for Lance Lawson. This new commercial avenue burgeoned for UFL during 2015 with the installation of several large-scale desking fit-outs within Auckland.

Lance Lawson’s desk-pods were created to help teams work together within the company. Custom light fittings sit above the stations and this traditional desk structure contrasts effectually with the more relaxed breakout areas. The result is a mixture of classic UFL pieces and custom desking working together to form a fun yet business-like space.




Photos by Amanda Aitken

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Vision Streaming At CBD Office


October 2015 saw the completion of UFL’s largest office fit-out project to date. The client was Visionstream, one of Australasia’s most prominent telecommunication companies who provide design, construction and maintenance services for advanced communication and industrial networks.


The well-located new headquarters at 8 Hereford Street, CBD, aptly represents Visionstream who occupy two floors of the prestigious address, which is also soon to be home to Hereford Residences, bespoke apartments with views over Auckland’s Waitemata Harbour.


UFL worked directly with the developer, Tawera Group, along with Josephine Design and Paul Brown Architects who designed the space to encompass workstations and accompanying storage for 450 employees. Product supplied exclusively by UFL includes Novah Cluster desking, storage, meeting tables, cafe tables and chairs.



Photos by Simon Wilson

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Hellmann Future Proofs


When a company casts their collective mind back over the year that was, we agree one of our proudest 2015 moments was fitting out Hellmann Worldwide Logistics’ new headquarters. A benchmark in design, functionality and innovation, the new building is 15,000-square-metre ambient and controlled-temperature warehousing complex and head office at Landing Drive, Auckland Airport.


We’ve probably all seen the building by now, designed by Auckland’s RTA Studio, it’s hard to miss. Almost rock-like in its presence, the building presses down on the earth and one end appears to sink right into it. Superbly modern, the architecture is worthy of the world’s most advanced freight-forwarding company. Hellmann Worldwide Logistics operates 443 branches in 157 countries and employs in excess 16,500 people to serve their customers worldwide.

The new Auckland facility has positioned the firm to deliver a new and expanding level of service to its international and domestic customers. It has also united Hellmann’s two previously-separate Auckland operations in one location.


Hellmann New Zealand’s managing director, Chris McCagney says, “Our owners, Jost and Klaus Hellmann, have committed Hellmann globally to a very high bar in terms of service excellence, quality, innovation and environmental care. This development ticks all the right boxes. The move to this unique facility at Auckland Airport will bring together the ambient and controlled-temperature operations of Hellmann Worldwide Logistics and Hellmann Perishable Logistics in Auckland onto a single prime site, increasing our agility, operating efficiency and capacity for growth.”

“A key driver was to look at the wider environment and trends, both here and particularly overseas, to understand the types of customer needs we expect to be servicing in the future and the infrastructure that requires, we also worked to ensure we didn’t box ourselves into any corners and built in the flexibility and scale to adapt and grow as tomorrow’s requirements reveal”.

“Increasingly we are seeing customers who require multiple types of infrastructure across the supply chain and to be able to obtain that from one company, on a single site is a very compelling proposition.”


Mr McCagney says sustainability and minimising ozone depletion/ global warming impacts were other key drivers in the build, so as to maximise the potential for customers to trade off “clean and green”.

“Our refrigeration plant utilises ammonia which has a very low carbon footprint and by installing a large air-cooled condenser, this plant requires no water or other chemicals. We’ve also invested in high-end electric forklifts, variable speed drives, EC fans, LED lighting and daylight harvesting to minimise power usage.

“The green aspect of this facility is huge and we have also become a much more efficient business.”


UFL worked closely with top management personnel, to create a polished, efficient and fun head office. We were asked to deliver a complete design and supply package, which included the boardroom and meeting room, the reception area and counter complete with custom joinery, spatial office design for 60 staff which included a huge amount of desking and mobile storage units, also breakout spaces and a huge, vibrant and friendly café. Eclipse Architecture were also involved in the design of the interior. Colour design was required and saw us pairing neutral greys, blues and blacks with chrome finishes, and bright yellow within the upholstery and polypropylene used in the chairs.


Mr McCagney says a focus on people and fostering a culture drove the integrated nature of the design, which has turned traditional warehousing form on its head by incorporating an office within the overall build.

“A key aspect of this is the cafeteria which we have designed in an open-plan form within the two-storey administration area. When a customer arrives at the reception foyer they are instantly integrated within the ‘marketplace’ of our staff in the cafeteria as well as having sight-lines further into the warehouse operation.


“The new facility is an exemplar of how you can create a really exciting form of architecture in a functional industry build, and that speaks volumes to what is the Hellmann brand and the Hellmann Family ethos — we are showing the way forward in quality of facilities and workplace.”

Praising owners Jost and Klaus Hellmann for seeing the value in good design and showing the faith to “let us get on with running the business”, Mr McCagney also emphasises the huge commitment this investment shows in the local market.


“A unique fourth-generation company that is about to move into the fifth, Hellmann has been operating in New Zealand for close to 30 years now. We’ve been proudly working with a number of our customers for a long period of that time and this facility will ensure we are positioned to continue to replicate our past successes going forward.

“This is a truly world-class, landmark development and in another 20 years’ time I believe it will still stand out as a magnificent, flexible, ecological and efficient facility. Hellmann has made a clear statement to those servicing the New Zealand logistics industry that if you want to be in this business, then you need to invest — because here is the new standard.”


Hellmann was a project that challenged due to its manifold nature. Logistics aside, one that attested UFL’s ability to do it all, a one-stop-shop.

All furniture was sourced from Italy, Spain and Australia and local manufacturers.

20151022_hellmann_0118Photos by Jeremy Toth

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Designing The Designers

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Following on from the blog last week about Sancal who’ve recently completed a stunning renovation of their office, we thought the timing perfect to share our own refurbishment here at UFL headquarters on Rosebank Rd. Hark back to May 2014 and enter designers John Lenihan and Ceili Murphy from Auckland based architectural firm, RCG.

Several reasons incited our need for a change; the current office was an awkward size and we required a larger, more efficient space for our expanding team which was almost doubling in size. A contemporary environment that functioned well was vital, as was a beautiful space which aptly represented not only our own established brand but also that of the agencies we exclusively represent here in New Zealand, all of whom are Italian and Spanish furniture manufacturers and purveyors of cutting-edge design.

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We wanted to showcase our own J-Series workstation. The system originated as a table, then a barleaner. The design has proved so popular that we decided to rework it as a workstation. The J-Series can be customised in terms of size, finishes and cable management to suit even the most discerning of clients.

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Key designer pieces that feature in the space include the piece-de-resistance, Link Chain lamp, a customised light that our friends at LZF made especially for our project. We get constant admiration for this piece, and it is the first thing that visitors see as they enter the showroom.

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Our meeting table and chairs are both by Andreu World, the table is the Reverse, and the chairs are Smart. We are in love with our sleek Arper Catifa 46 chairs, which sport black shells on black swivel bases, a style which never fades. The two framed artworks are Losanges Rug by Nanimarquina, and an Anna Kidman photograph.

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Photos by Anna Kidman

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