Kirkadie and Stains department store, known affectionately to shoppers as “Kirks” is a Wellington institution. The business was established in 1863 by John Kirkcaldie, a Scotsman who had served his apprenticeship as a draper, and Robert Stains, an Englishman who had worked in the retail trade in London. The two enterprising young men had met in Sydney then travelled to the new settlement of Wellington. The current building forms three floors of retail store, two car-parking floors and has two 14-storey office towers above. The historic facade of the original building was retained and refurbished during the rebuilding.
The Christmas Shop was now open and I dragged Robin along to see all those Christmassy delights. Over the years the Christmas Shop has outgrown it’s original home and is now situated at the adjacent Harbour City Centre. An escalator ride took us right into Christmas wonderland. The huge Christmas trees were decorated in coloured themes and styles. Could I take photos, I asked the staff. (I didn’t want to be accused of retail espionage). Certainly, was the reply.
Shelves were brimming with glittering decorations of all colours. Christmas red and green, gold and silver,and an amazing range of other hues, Christmas comes in any colour imaginable. Kiwi themed decorations such as bungy jumping sheep and kiwis were available for those who would want such a thing. Much nicer kiwi icons were also available such as pohutakawa blossom (known as the New Zealand Christmas Tree) decorations and carved wooden motifs.
There was so much to see that I plan another trip in to the Christmas Shop, I think I’ll go on my own next time. To be honest, I love all things Christmassy but I don’t think Robin feels quite the same way!!
Isn’t Christmas wonderful