Galbraiths Alehouse

Keith & Andrea Galbraith


Landscapes Construction


Stone work








Galbraiths Alehouse

Richard from Neville Design Studio


Neville Design Studio

North Harbour Stonemasons

Clayton Tutty Construction


An English beer garden in the CBD

Galbraith's Alehouse represents authenticity and innovation. One of New Zealand's first craft beer brewery's and longest serving pubs, Keith always felt there was more to explore beyond the walls of the building.

After completing a landscaping project at their home in Herne Bay, Keith Galbraith approached us with a unique opportunity to convert an unused space into a functional addition to an Auckland Institution.

Keith had a clear vision to convert the 'monoculture' grass area at the rear of the pub into a lush planted English-style Beer Garden, but it quickly became clear this wasn't going to be a project we could handle all on our own.

The Challenge

A challenging site in terms of the shape, orientation and slope it was immediately clear that an exceptional design was needed to make sense of the awkward angles and gradients. Beyond these spatial challenges, the most immediate problem was the sites' relationship with WaterCare and their neighbouring infrastructure.

The new design needed to be permeable, stay fully above ground due to shallow running services and remain accessible for subsurface access in future.

It was a no-brainer to introduce Richard from Neville Design Studio to manage these constraints and most importantly design a unique space, paying homage to the 'pubs' British colonial roots.

The Solution

After introducing Richard and Keith we stepped away for a month or so while they refined their ideas into a detailed concept design. When the plan came through, it would be an understatement to say that we were impressed and excited to implement.

Richard cleverly solved all of the aforementioned spatial problems by anchoring the site with bluestone curb steps, which orientate the site toward the main seating area and help 'hide' the existing angles. Faux terracotta brick walls with minimal footings/posts avoid the subsurface services and emulate classic English materiality.

The rest of the site is soft and permeable with white chip pathways, a café seated patio, lush fescue grass and diverse native edible & perennial planting. The plant design takes into account the shade patterns of the site and shifts with the seasons - always providing something new for patrons to explore

The Finish

The quality of the outcome is demonstrated by the way this garden has been received by the Auckland community. In the January issue of Landscape Architecture Aotearoa the project was described as 'A design that transforms an underused 'in-between space' into a rich and dynamic beer garden at Galbraith's Alehouse in Mount Eden, Auckland.' Credit to our wonderful friends and clients Keith and Andrea Galbraith for embracing the process and Richard Neville for his extraordinary design and and management input. We hope to see you there for a beer on Friday :)

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