Sunny Margaret Stoddart Retirement Village has marked its 30th anniversary in style.
The sunny Riccarton village was a pioneering concept when it first opened in April 1993, and it looked just as stunning today with its beautiful gardens and sunny townhouses tucked away in a quiet street not far from Hagley Park.
New Zealand CEO Cheyne Chalmers celebrated with the residents, unveiling a commemorative plaque with acting manager Maya Daniel and raising a toast to another 30 years of the village.
“Margaret Stoddart is a special place that has a significant place in the history of Ryman, and I think in the history of villages in New Zealand.
“Margaret Stoddart was Ryman’s first purpose-built retirement village and the first we named after a significant person – Margaret Stoddart, the Canterbury artist.
The Margaret Stoddart team with Chief Executive Officer - NZ Cheyne Chalmers.
The village was a trend setter, designed around a care centre with beautiful courtyards and gardens with plenty of light.
Ryman cofounder Kevin Hickman designed the village from start to finish and the care centre was built in the shape of a figure eight – making it easy to work in, convenient and functional for staff and residents alike.
“Christchurch hadn’t seen anything like it,’’ Cheyne said.
“The townhouses were spacious and light with lots of glass. The design has influenced every other village we’ve designed since then – another 40 in fact!’’
Cheyne took time to praise the other two factors that go into making a successful village – wonderful residents and a compassionate team.
Margaret Stoddart has some of the longest-serving team members in Ryman and the village had been a source of comfort and a haven for thousands of residents and their families over 30 years.
She singled out Anita Chapman, Beck Little, Hilary Westley,
Marianita Paelez, Trish Tallott, Caro Swanson, Kerri Martin,
Lisa Humphries and Sonia Cusito for all their work.
“As a company we’re incredibly proud of the contribution Margaret Stoddart has made to so many lives and will continue to make for the next 30 years.
Cheyne also gave a shout out to Nicki Brown, Margaret Stoddart’s manager, who is on a break after filling in as a relief manager in the wake of Cyclone Gabrielle.