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After a momentous earthquake rocked Hawke's Bay in 1931 and all but flattened Napier, the city was rebuilt in a glorious contemporary style. Architects drew from Art Deco, Stripped Classical and Spanish Mission designs to give the city a unique identity.
The famous Art Deco Weekend
Napier is now a must-visit destination for any Art Deco fan. The seaside resort is crammed full of dazzling buildings that celebrate the genre, from the symmetrical Masonic Hotel to the ornate National Tobacco Company Building. The Art Deco Trust on Tennyson Street is a great place to start when you arrive in the city and guided walks are available every day.
The famous Art Deco Weekend takes place in February. The city becomes a Mecca for anyone who loves the style and is a buzz of vintage cars, dancing girls, jazz bands and fancy dress.
Napier’s magic is that whilst in many ways it looks like it could be a set from The Great Gatsby film, it remains a modern, vibrant, working and exciting city.
See more pictures of Napier’s Art Deco buildings on our Pinterest page.
Below you can read a brief account of the festival from our clients Eileen and Paul Varetto.
"An Inclusive friendly weekend"
On Paul C’s advice we timed our visit to coincide with the Festival weekend — a not so serious celebration of the Art Deco style. Paul C managed to get us a friendly homestay cottage at a very busy time and so, as nearly everyone seems to dress the part, we decided to enter into the spirit of things as you can see. Whilst having a delicious meal at the Masonic Hotel on the front we watched the vintage cars arrive on Friday night and soaked up the atmosphere. It was such an all inclusive friendly weekend and I have to say it cost us very little as the main events were free — in fact I think it cost a feather boa and a pair of braces! Eileen & Paul Varetto