Ockham's flash new website - style, substance (and the odd #dadjoke to keep you on your toes)

On Valentine's Day 2022, to the delight of lovestruck black turtleneck wearers across the globe, we launched our new website. We hope it'll give our readers as solid and elegant and enjoyable an experience as our buildings do.

We love making beautiful things here at Ockham and our flash new website is no exception. We partnered with award-winning web designers Cactuslab to create a new, easy-to-use site that’s also easy on the eye.

Warren Jones, Ockham’s IT Tsar, is particularly proud that the new site has a distinctly Kiwi flavour. “New Zealand company Cactuslab was always our first choice to revamp the website,” Warren says. “They’ve created amazing sites like Stqry and the ferociously popular film-lover’s social network, Letterboxd. They’ve supported Ockham from the beginning, having built our original website.”

In good company…

The avowedly Aotearoa emphasis continued to the smallest detail. “We’ve also three Kiwi typefaces,” Warren continues. “Feijoa and National 2 from Klim Type Foundry, and Moniker created by Alistair McCready at Monolith.

“There were a couple of reasons for this. Firstly, we were keen to support Kiwi businesses and, secondly, we needed support for macrons. Our previous website featured a macron-averse font, meaning a default font would sometimes replace the correct one when those characters were used. Te reo Māori is an important part of our culture, and one of the official languages of New Zealand, so it was essential we got this right, especially as we have a partnership with Marutūahu that we treasure.”

The new site allows Ockham to shine a spotlight on that partnership and other relationships that were buried and hard to find in the old site. “I like that we’ve got the space to highlight our partnerships,” says Warren. “Each one has its own page now — from our cornerstone partnership, the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards, to our sponsorship of the One Tree Hill College 1st XV. We are very proud of these associations and can at last do them justice with the new site.”

“It was a pleasure to photograph the buildings. I really appreciate the attention to texture and detail, the play of light and the integration with the trees and landscaping. These buildings are exactly what Auckland needs.”

Patrick Reynolds

Picture perfect

Beautiful, large pictures and videos are a standout feature of our new online presence. Our previous website was created almost a decade ago, a distant epoch when C&C Music Factory commanded dance floors and internet speeds were significantly slower than they are today. This had compelled us to use smaller images due to file-transfer concerns. For this update, we’ve taken advantage of improved image-compression and delivery technology and faster internet, allowing us to include more high-quality photos at larger sizes.

“This website is designed to be image-led,” says Cactuslab’s Rochelle Ivanson. “We’ve created a site where you can upload pictures in the highest resolution and then, behind the scenes, we’re able to deliver an optimised version of each image depending on the visitor’s device. So whether you’re loading the site on a desktop browser, an iPad or iPhone, you're getting a full, rich experience.

The site’s content-management system has also been modernised. “We've given Ockham’s crack digital team a far more flexible set of tools so they can quickly and easily compile complex layouts from a predetermined set of components.”

To take full advantage of the website’s capabilities, Ockham commissioned renowned architectural photographer Patrick Reynolds to take stunning new pictures of our projects.

“It was a pleasure to photograph the buildings,” Patrick says. “I really appreciate the attention to texture and detail, the play of light and the integration with the trees and landscaping. These buildings are exactly what Auckland needs. Modal, for example, replaced one single house. It just shows how we could easily accommodate everybody who needs homes in New Zealand without ruining any more farmland or wilderness.”

Friendly words of advice - and some fancy new features

There’s plenty of style, but the new site still has substance. We’ve built a Help, Guidance and Advice section for first home-buyers or people who have never bought buildings off the plans before, offering useful tips to help our visitors make .

Warren adds that a lot of care was taken to make the Plans and Pricing section of the website easy to navigate. “We’ve made it so that you can dive right in and see your apartment — where on the floor it’s located, and an external 3D view of exactly which apartment you’re buying. So you’ll have an idea of the outlook from your window. Previously, there was just a 2D view that didn’t provide that perspective.”

So what’s Warren’s favourite feature? “Definitely the map,” he says, in a flash. “It’s something we’ve never done before. When you’re checking out a new development, you can see on the map where all of our other existing sites and projects are and access them immediately. As we’re building more and more, you can see more of our ‘Ockham Nation’ dots around Auckland.”