Ronald McDonald House


From the Resene Total Colour Awards gallery of entries

Resene Total Colour Awards 2016
Ronald McDonald House Grafton

Ronald McDonald House approached Sojo Design to be the lead designer for their Grafton building project involving a huge makeover and building to accommodate the growing number of families from out of Auckland that are in need of somewhere to stay while their children receive treatment.

These families go through one of the toughest journeys in life, and as a family being able to stay together, fully supported and loved, on the hospital grounds is paramount. These apartments can also accommodate extended family and grandparents when required.

The accommodation includes three floors providing four new studios, to accommodate short stays for family members, 10 new apartments to accommodate up to six family members for longer stays, and an area allocated to staff. The lower level huge open plan living space was broken into different areas and zones, providing somewhere families can relax and watch TV, meet other friends and families, enjoy a quiet space to read, relax or play with their child. This area also includes a business centre for adults, a fun playroom full of colour, a consultation room where families are briefed when they are checked in, a separate office for staff, and a huge deck for outdoor living with sofas, lots of seating, potted herbs, fruit and flowers. Throughout these spaces neutral Resene Black White was specified so colour could be introduced through furnishings and accessories.

Ronald McDonald HouseGrafton-inside
Ronald McDonald HouseGrafton-detail
Ronald McDonald HouseGrafton-detail
Ronald McDonald HouseGrafton-inside
Ronald McDonald HouseGrafton-detail
Ronald McDonald HouseGrafton-detail

For the studios and apartments, the brief was to introduce some colour, make it feel homely but be practical. To achieve this the backdrop has been kept neutral with Resene Half Thorndon Cream. The colour has been added through the front doors, helping children to easily identify their space, and then taken into the interior of each apartment, starting with the headboard and continued through into fabrics.

Given the nature of the environment, a public building and the exposure to many diseases and illnesses, the rooms on occasions have to be completely sterilised so specification of all products was an involved process from the walls through to paint work and fabrics to ensure they could withstand the rigorous cleaning requirements.

The inspiration for the colour scheme started with paint. Using all the Resene paint charts acquired over 15 years, hours were spent choosing combinations of colours that would make people of all ages smile and feel happy. Six colours were needed and each needed to be cohesive and really complement each other, as the layout of the apartments and studios on each level means all the doors are visible as you walk down the hallway. There were also service doors, lift doors etc that also played a key role in this layout and colour palette. The final palette of Resene Mexican Red, Resene Explorer, Resene Flourish, Resene Ming, Resene Moulin Rouge and Resene Quarter Foundry works well with the Resene Half Thorndon Cream walls.

In the downstairs open plan living space, Andrew J Steel created a magical interactive piece of artwork using donated Resene paints specifically created with the children in mind, which has resulted in many a smile since.

Architectural specifier: Avery Team Architects Ltd
Building contractor: Russell Gordan Contracting
Client: Ronald McDonald House
Interior designer: Julie Rees
Painting contractor: L & K Painting Ltd

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