Our Awards programme showcases and celebrates outstanding New Zealand Architecture. NZIA also offer Student Design Awards to acknowledge design excellence in students of architecture.
Why have awards?
Architecture is a special discipline which demands creativity,
specialised technical knowledge, an ability to listen to people's
dreams and needs, and the capacity to turn these into reality on
either a large or small scale.
The New Zealand Architecture Awards programme celebrates architects
who have demonstrated that they have achieved the highest standards
for (and with) their clients.
The purpose of the awards at all levels is to:
- Promote excellence in design and to advance the profession of
- Raise public awareness of the value of good sustainable
- Encourage and promote environmentally-responsible practices and
solutions for the enhancement of the built environment
- Raise the standing of architects within the community and
encourage informed public debate on architectural and urban design
New Zealand Architecture Awards
The annual New Zealand Architecture Awards play a vital role in
our commitment to raise the profile of Architecture and Architects'
services by showcasing and celebrating outstanding
architecture. Since 1990, Resene Paints Limited has been the
proud sponsor and Awards partner of the NZIA. The Awards
programme has three levels of achievement: Local , New Zealand, and
the New Zealand Architecture Medal.
Level One: Local Architecture Awards
The Local Architecture Awards honour quality new architecture at
a community level. They are run by the eight branches of the New
Zealand Institute of Architects, entries close early August
and winners are celebrated at eight Local Awards functions
throughout the country from October to December
Each year over 300 entries are received and about 100 of these are
shortlisted for the New Zealand Awards.
Winning projects receive a Local Architecture Award. Projects may
also receive a Resene Colour Award to recognise the powerful impact
of colour in design decisions.
Level Two: New Zealand Architecture Awards
The New Zealand Architecture Awards honour the best architecture
produced in New Zealand during the programme year, with entries
shortlisted from the Local Architecture Award winners announced in
the last quarter of the previous calendar year.
The awards provide a snapshot of the best of New Zealand
architecture each year and showcase the work of NZIA Practices.
Judging panels represent the different geographical regions, and
consider entries in the following categories:
- Public Architecture
- Residential Architecture - House
- Residential Architecture - Multiple Housing
- Commercial Architecture
- Planning and Urban Design
- Interior Architecture
- Small Project Architecture
- Sustainable Architecture
- International Architecture
Winning projects receive a New Zealand Architecture Award
presented in May at the annual 'New Zealand Architecture Awards
Level Three: The New Zealand Architecture Medal
This is the third and highest level of achievement in the annual
three-tier New Zealand Architecture Awards programme. It recognises
exceptional New Zealand architecture and is awarded after rigorous
assessment by an expert judging panel including an international
The Medal recognises New Zealand's very best architecture, from
within any category and is announced and presented in May at the
annual 'New Zealand Architecture Awards Gala Dinner
held in Auckland, Wellington or Christchurch.
Other New Zealand Architecture Awards
The New Zealand Architecture Award for Enduring
Awarded for buildings whose design has stood the test of
The New Zealand Institute of Architects' Gold
The highest honour bestowed by the New Zealand Institute of
Architects. The Gold Medal is awarded to an individual for an
outstanding contribution to the practice of architecture,
demonstrated through the production of a consistently high-quality
body of work over a period of time.
The New Zealand Architecture Awards are open to NZIA Architect
members who work in NZIA Practices. NZIA Architects who wish to
enter a project but do not work within an NZIA Practice can apply
in writing to the New Zealand Architecture Awards
Advisory Group, to be granted entry. This accommodates situations
that cannot be foreseen. Contact NZIA for details.
The awards judges assess each project in terms of the
- The relationship of the building to its site, context and
- The degree of consistency and completeness in expressing the
relationship between concept, form, and structure
- Light, colour, texture and spatial qualities
- Structure, construction, materials and issues of durability and
- Environmental performance
- User satisfaction, value to the client and acceptability of
solutions to the brief
- Contribution to the advancement of architecture as a discipline
and the enhancement of the human spirit.
For enquiries contact:
NZIA Awards Secretariat
Ph: +64 7 981 5857