Sue McLean

Sue McLean


Creation NZ Ltd
Designers & Project Managers


09 376 5955


Sue 021 344 249 or Colin 021 757 196



Garden: Upland Rd, Remuera

In 2005 the owners of this historic Upland Rd house were living overseas with their family of five. They briefed their architect to open the restricted family room to a new terrace accessing the large tired garden which they wanted re-designed ready for their return to NZ.

Having worked with Colin and Sue before on projects connecting architecture and garden design, the architect called them in. A key decision involved removing an existing swimming pool and building a new pool which connected with the family room. The challenges of a major drop and multiple access points to significant parts of the garden were met by the architects, the McLeans and their hard landscape designer Ross Leong.

The garden brief was to respect the character of the property while designing extensive new areas for recreation and developing new plantings to blend with significant trees which would be retained. All the new elements: terrace, pool, extensive lawns, gardens, water feature, garden walls and paths, sculpture, garden lighting and sweeping granite drive are now seamlessly absorbed into the lush planting.

A final stage has been the development of an edible garden to replace a derelict orchard not visible from the house. Low bluestone walls wrap around a spectacular formal potager garden which produces in abundance, including kilos of honey from the thriving bee hive.

Sue & Colin McLean have been designing and installing gardens for a wide range of city and rural clients since 1988.

Their business is a small collaborative practice dedicated to offering an attentive and personal commitment to every project, be it an inner city courtyard, expansive residential garden or rural lifestyle development.

“We bring vision, passion, and sensitivity to the process of achieving our clients’ dreams and needs.

From swimming pools and water features, stone, decorative tiling and sculpture to the final flourish of lawns and distinctive, lush planting, we guarantee a seamless result. We have a depth of experience in designing, managing consents and project managing the building of all the elements which combine to ensure that each garden is a unique sanctuary.

Whether they imitate nature on exposed sites, soothe the spirit in city courtyards or stimulate the senses in large family properties, our gardens are loved and enduring.”

Projects have been featured on television and regularly appear in garden and architectural design publications including the recently published Contemporary Gardens of New Zealand. Creation NZ is an accredited member of Landscaping NZ and has won Gold at the Ellerslie International Flower Show where Sue has subsequently judged. She is a past chairperson of the Garden Design Society of NZ and a current committee member. 

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