Business Central December 2023

| 75 ‘Clever made Beautiful’ Kitchen design and joinery is a big part of SMJ’s business. JOINERY SMJ T T Kim Newth With a 30-year track record of producing award-winning joinery in Taupō, SMJ is sought-after in the local market for new homes and renovation projects through to unique one-off pieces. SMJ’s owners, Stu and Sarah Martin, bring complementary skills to their business and foster a positive workplace culture based on good communication and respect. “I’ve been in the joinery business since I left school at 17,”says Stu. “I’m also a certified and experienced kitchen designer. Sarah is great with social media marketing and accounts. As well, she recently completed a foundation design course with the National Kitchen and Bathroom Association (NKBA) and is really engaged with materials, products and textures.” With their suite of design, manufacturing and installation capabilities, SMJ provides clients with a full end-to-end professional service. Stu is a Platinum Member of the Designers of NKBA - a mark of his extensive design experience – and is also a Registered Master Joiner. While kitchen design and joinery are a core focus, SMJ is fully equipped for other joinery projects like laundries, offices, wardrobes, built-in furniture and one-off pieces such as entertainment units/cabinets. Their full-time team of qualified tradesmen is led by Shaun, SMJ’s operations manager. Stu is the face of the business on every new design project while also working closely with the joinery team. “People know my name – it’s what our reputation is built on. We haven’t diluted that by hiring a kitchen designer. I’m right in there from the start.” As Stu observes, word of mouth is what drives a company’s reputation with their own success built on good relationships with clients. “We get a lot of repeat business and find that our clients often recommend us to other people too because they know we will do exactly what they want and will provide a great process.” Stu describes Taupō as a competitive market, but SMJ is not interested in offering the cheapest service. Rather, they respond to specific projects requiring a bespoke response. Exciting for the whole SMJ team this year was to see one of their long standing build partners, Beechtree Building Ltd, win a regional House of the Year Award in the New Home $1m to $1.5m category, along with a gold award. SMJ designed, made and installed joinery for the home’s downstairs kitchen and scullery, an upstairs kitchen and laundry and also completed stairwork. “It was a really bespoke project, using some traditional elements within an integrated modern design.” Another notable project, also completed in conjunction with Beechtree Building, saw SMJ design a gorgeous kitchen for clients in Whakaipo Bay, Taupō. This project was featured by Stuff earlier this year as a Homed Kitchen of the Week. “It was a cool rural project. The final details included natural granite and stainless steel to create a contemporary modern kitchen.” As well as having strong connections with professional builders like Beechtree, SMJ works closely with key suppliers such as Glass Art NZ and Pacific Stone. In the local market, Stu observes that demand for stone benchtops and porcelain benchtops has been growing strongly. Also topping the list of preferences for many this year are beautiful soft touch acrylics and handle-less cabinetry that give a more flush, elegantly simple look. GLASS TO COMPLIMENT YOUR KITCHEN & BATHROOM 0800 93 77 66 “People know my name – it’s what our reputation is built on. We haven’t diluted that by hiring a kitchen designer. I’m right in there from the start.”