Duncan Aitken & Thea Hewitt, New Zealand

Expert self-assemblers in New Zealand proved distance is no boundary for Solardome Industries.

Duncan Aitken and Thea Hewitt were looking for an enclosed growing space that would stand up to the testing conditions in Christchurch, New Zealand.

And despite being 12,000 miles away from our HQ, they saw the benefits that Solardome’s self-assembly offering would bring to their budding food forest.

The project

glasshouse in New ZealandAs part of their large-scale permaculture project, Duncan and Thea were looking for a high-quality, durable structure where they could look after their plants – no matter the weather – and decided our Solardome® Retreat was up to the task.

“We needed a dedicated space for growing all year round,” said Duncan.

The service from Solardome was second to none.

“We get strong winds and earthquakes, so we had to provision for that”, he added.

They also relished the opportunity to assemble the 6.3m diameter geodesic glasshouse – but knew the Solardome team were on hand in case any issues arose.

“We had great technical support from Solardome when constructing the dome, with prompt and clear replies,” Duncan exclaimed.

“We were also grateful for the spare panes of glass that came in the well-packed crates as we ended up using one after a small mishap during the build,” he recalled.

The test of time

Dome at sunsetDuncan and Thea had always wanted a long-lasting structure to allow their food forest to thrive, and were impressed with the high-spec materials that Solardome had to offer.

“Unlike traditional glasshouses or plastic polytunnels, the aluminium and tempered glass in the geodesic dome will better stand the test of time,” said Duncan.

“It’s especially useful when we are growing seedlings during the colder months,” he added.

On hand, on the other side of the world

Despite the potential time zone challenges between New Zealand and the UK, Duncan and Thea were thrilled with the customer service they received.

Duncan explained: “Despite being physically as far away as possible, the communication and service from Solardome was second to none.”


  • To see more of our geodesic domes that are slightly closer to home, check out our worldwide dome map.
  • If you own a Solardome® geodesic dome, we’d love to hear from you! Email your pictures to marketing@solardome.co.uk or share them via our social media channels, using the hashtag #SolardomeClub.

At a glance

Location Christchurch, New Zealand
View on map
The challenge To provide a robust structure to safely house plants for growing all year round.
The solution Solardome® Retreat
Dome specification Diameter – 6.27m / 20’07”
Height – 3.47m / 11’05”
Area – 28.5m²

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