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A girl’s best friend

A 59.60-carat pink diamond (the Pink Star) last month fetched a world record $71.2 million. Pink may not be your colour choice, but if you’re looking for diamonds there are plenty out there in all sorts of colours. Here are some tips from Metropol.



Diamonds are still the first choice for many engagement, wedding and eternity rings along with necklaces, earrings and most other jewellery.

They come in all shapes, sizes and many colours including the traditional sparkling white.

During the last 10 years or so, coloured or fancy diamonds have become increasingly sought after. Think champagne-coloured, yellow, blue, green and purple even. And with synthetic diamonds also now readily available and many people unable to tell the difference, the colour range is every shade of the rainbow and many spectrums in between too.

Stick to the four Cs when choosing your diamond and you will not go wrong.

Cut, colour, clarity and carat weight will guide you through making your choice.

The cut is a key factor in a diamond’s appearance, adding to its brilliance and sparkle.

Diamond weights are expressed in carats. One carat equals 0.2 grams.

Colour is measured in alphabetical order beginning with D and descending to Z, where more colour is present. Fancy coloured diamonds are an exception to the rule because they are rare.

All diamonds contain imperfections, most of which are too small to be seen by the unaided eye. The fewer noticeable flaws, the higher the value and clarity.


Trailblazing women sought

The search for New Zealand’s most empowering, hard-working and inspiring wāhine has begun, with nominations now open for the 2021 Women of Influence Awards.



The awards recognise women who are driving change, excelling in their field and leading by example, from community through to international level.

Presented by Stuff and Westpac NZ, the Women of Influence Awards feature 10 categories across business, philanthropy, innovation, diversity and more.

This year’s programme includes two new categories: Environment and Primary Industries.

Nominations close at midnight on August 16 and will be assessed by a high-calibre judging panel led by former Governor-General Dame Silvia Cartwright, with one new member, tech expert Te Aroha Grace. The winners will be crowned at the annual gala dinner in Auckland on October 21.

The popular Women of Influence Speaker Series returns in July and August. Held in Christchurch (August 12) as well as Tauranga, Auckland and Wellington, the series will give audiences the chance to hear from a range of influential New Zealanders in a relaxed and interactive format.

Last year’s Awards winners included well-known New Zealanders such as science communicator Siouxsie Wiles, and international performer and choreographer Parris Goebel.

The programme also celebrates the work of grassroots figures such as domestic violence campaigner Jackie Clark (2018 Supreme winner) and environmentalist Annika Andresen (2019 Young Leader winner).

The new Environment Award was introduced to recognise women who are fighting climate change or protecting our natural environment. Westpac NZ Chief Executive David McLean says he is encouraged by the ingenuity of environmental work being undertaken, from a community through to corporate level.

“There is extraordinary work happening around New Zealand to create a cleaner and more sustainable environment.

This award is about acknowledging the people spearheading this work, and encouraging businesses, communities, and individuals to join us in making bold commitments to a cleaner and healthier New Zealand,” Mr McLean says.

To nominate a woman of influence or for more information about the 2021 Women of Influence Awards and the nomination process, as well as this year’s Speaker Series,

Follow Women of Influence on Facebook and Instagram for programme news and updates.


Vegetarian-friendly cities around the world

Cuisine is often a determining feature in travel. Examples include Tuscany in Italy to sample acquacotta, torta di ceci, olives and fettunta; France’s Champagne region for chaource and langres cheeses, truffles, les biscuits roses de Reims and bouchons de Champagne au chocolat.



Gastronomic vegetarian dishes are becoming more available and more sophisticated, and areas becoming known for their specialties. Now there is the Vegetarian Cities Index 2021 to help. The index assesses the affordability and quality of each city’s vegetarian offerings, providing insight into those best prepared to attract vegetarians.

Nestpick used available data to rank the best cities for vegetarians.

“With more people wanting to reduce their meat consumption, cities must cater to these needs with diverse vegetarian offerings if they want to attract young talent, particularly Millennials, Gen Z, and the even younger generations to come,” comments Omer Kucukdere, Founder and CEO at Nestpick.

“We hope that this index can inspire vegetarians looking to move abroad to pick the right city for their needs, or even offer travel destination ideas for those searching for the best plant-based gastronomic spots.

Visit the website


Don’t waste that waste

Several ways exist to dispose of household food waste, but few of them are as convenient as Breville’s FoodCycler®. Metropol’s gadget guru Ian Knott puts the clever product through its paces.



Not everybody has the space for, or time to nurture, a worm farm or compost bin to dispose of food scraps. And we all know how quickly the green organics bin can fill up after a couple of hours gardening, leaving no room for leftovers. Noisy and smelly waste disposal units aren’t everybody’s preferred option either.

So what other options are there to reduce the volume of household food scraps? Enter the FoodCycler®, from Breville.

The FoodCycler® slots on to the bench of any spacious kitchen, or into the laundry or garage if you are strapped for space and turns food waste into odourless EcoChips™ in as little as four hours. These dehydrated chips can then be dug directly into the garden for a terrific sustainable compost.

The unit’s bucket holds 2L of food waste and can take pretty much anything you throw into it – fruit, vegetables, bread, meat, chicken bones, egg shells etc. The unit then dehydrates, then pulverises and cools the waste into chips that amount about an 80 percent reduction in volume.

You may think that the process sounds like a noisy one – but the FoodCycler® is extremely quiet, not to mention energy efficient, with the built-in filters eliminating any odours.

The only odour we experienced when using the FoodCycler® was a faint smell of freshly baked biscuits when opening the lid after the process had finished.

Cleaning the bucket is simple – pop it in the dishwasher, or a wipe-out with warm, soapy water usually gets it ready for the next use.

The resulting EcoChips™ can then be dug directly into the garden or into pot plants.

Just be wary of digging it in properly to discourage pests or your dog from eating them – they are, after all, just jerky snacks made from leftovers!



A great way to reduce and reuse your food waste.

Quiet, economic and odourless.

Frees up your organics bin


Pricey initial outlay ($599.95)

May encourage dogs digging in the garden (I’m looking at you labradors!)


Handle it


Updating a look may be as simple as switching old handles for new. Handles (or door hardware) come in all shapes, sizes and materials, but choosing the right style is important. Door handles and hinges help give the structure a complete look in the desired style, so define what look you want then handle it. Here are some tips from Metropol.

• Graphite nickel (gunmetal)
handles – elegant, natural,
and at the same time
unusually austere.
• Long outstretched handles –
the longer, the better.
• Hampton style handles – rounded with a vintage nib.
• Double-textured handles – for example, brushed nickel with chrome.
• Exquisite plating – brass, bronze,
vintage pewter, and gilding.


From the Editor: 13 May 2021

Hello Christchurch and Metropol readers. I am excited to have taken the editorial reins of such a well-loved iconic lifestyle magazine and have already started exploring this beautiful vibrant city and its wider environs.



I am especially looking forward to meeting those who call Christchurch home, and discovering what makes it so special for each one of you.

This issue looks at those seeking to escape the city for a scenic or adventurous holiday, maybe soaking in Hanmer’s hot pools, sliding down the slopes at Mt Hutt, or hitting a mountain trail to get in some biking.

Of course, now the Trans-Tasman bubble has opened, overseas travel is another option, but we will save our ideas on that until the next issue.

Earlier this week TVNZ’s The Apprentice Aotearoa burst into life on our screens with none-other than local businessman Mike Pero in the CEO hotseat. Metropol caught up with him for a chat about his new role, and just how tough it is.

Also in this issue we talked to The Breeze Breakfast Show host Hilary Muir about life, love and making waves, check out the latest in health, beauty and fashion, and showcase all our usual sections. Enjoy your read!

Lynda Papesch


From the Editor: 29 April 2021

For 23 years, Metropol has been telling Canterbury’s stories; tales of success, resilience, grit and community. Taking on the role of editor was certainly a daunting task. One I can wholeheartedly say I have poured myself into, alongside a dedicated team of writers, designers, photographers, office staff and sales superstars.



It is no easy feat creating a circa-100 page magazine every fortnight, but one thing is certain: There is never a shortage of inspiring locals and local businesses to profile on those pages.

When I took up this role, I never planned for a new opportunity to knock down my door just 10 months later. Yet, after sending 18 issues to print, it’s my time to say goodbye.

I am beyond grateful for the chance to tell Canterbury’s stories under this much-loved masthead, and to work with the incredible group of people who put so much effort in behind the scenes to bring your fortnightly reading to life.

Feedback from readers has been a highlight of my time here, and for my final issue I have tried to embody all the things Metropol has long strived for. So, I am proud to present this magazine bursting from cover to cover with so many of the people, places and businesses who make Canterbury the rich and vibrant place it is.

The magazine is now in the extremely capable and experienced hands of Lynda Papesch, who I know will continue to bring you the captivating content synonymous with the Metropol name.


From the Editor: 15 April 2021

As we begin to descend into something resembling pre-pandemic times, all the opportunities to gather with and celebrate those we love, seem even more momentous.



Every year, Metropol publishes its bridal issue which showcases the array of local wedding vendors who can pull together your Canterbury nuptials, as well as highlighting the global trends influencing modern-day marriages.

After the highly disrupted wedding season that was, the tentative promise of normality on the horizon may bring some peace of mind to engaged couples currently planning their big days. And if you fall into this group of loved-up readers, then this issue is for you.

This issue includes everything you need to know: Venues, event styling ideas, bride and groom fashion is covered off, as are catering, cakes, rings and ways to preserve the memories.

And, because a big day is not a big day without those specially chosen guests, there is lots of reading for you, too.

Like most things in our world, the way we think about love and relationships has changed in the last unforgettable year since our previous bridal issue was published.

Covid-19 has made us think about what is most important to us, and of course – aside from our health – it is our loved ones. And what is a wedding if not a day to celebrate love, with your most loved ones?


Just boot it!

Ask any self-proclaimed fashion follower to name their most cherished wardrobe item and it’s highly likely the answer will be “boots”, followed by a detailed description of the cut, colour and style of the favourite pair and why they’re so revered.


Camilla & Marc Jane Combat Boot


If this year’s autumn through winter trends are anything to go by, 2021 is shaping up to be the Year of the Boot, and no matter your preference – on-the-knee, below-the-knee, mid-calf or Chelsea style – there’s a boot with your name on it.

With the rule book thrown out the window, boots this year are all about attitude, yet there’s no compromising on comfort.

Grunge is back, and it’s drop-dead cool in colours such as bone, butter, chocolate and black, and in styles such as the pull-on ankle or below-the-knee lace-up with inside zips. Lug soles are ideal for serious striding.

White is white-hot this winter, for boots both long and short, and it’s coming corset-laced, buckled, gem-studded, patented and socked. Boots in off-cream, neutral, sepia and birch provide off-white alternatives that marry the sensational with the subtle.

Cowboy, or western, boots never go out of style and they’re everywhere this year, in both knee and ankle versions; name any colour and you’ll find it.

Animal print fetishists can flaunt the look in crocodile, snake, leopard, tiger and zebra, and with heels ranging from lugs, flats and Cubans through to kittens, stacks and stilettos, it’s promising to be fun times out and aboot in the concrete jungle this winter.


A golden escape

As the leaves turn golden from green and the temperatures start to drop, we begin to think about weekends away in cosy accommodation where there’s rainy day activities and welcoming hospitality. So naturally, Hanmer Springs comes to mind. Here are Metropol’s picks of what to do on our northern doorstep.


Hanmer screams autumn. The tree-heavy town centre turns into a kaleidoscope of fiery reds and gorgeous yellows – which makes for picturesque walks and fantastic photos. If you time it right, you might even be treated to an early-winter dusting of snow on the surrounding mountains.

It almost goes without saying that a soak in Hanmer’s thermal pools is perfect on a cloudy cool day, but it wouldn’t be an article on what to do in Hanmer in autumn without mentioning this delightful activity. For an even dreamier experience, head to the adjacent day spa.

Visit one of Hanmer’s local gastropubs for a warming meal. Take your pick of the loved local offerings to enjoy pub fare classics reimagined for modern paletes using fresh local ingredients – with delicious drinks menus to accompany.