Special Topic: Heritage -Dunedin


17 October 2016

I’m so excited to share about our fieldtrip! 🙂 But before that I’ll tell you something about my hometown, Dunedin. I’ve been in New Zealand for almost 8 years and I lived in Dunedin for most of those years!


The “Heritage City of New Zealand”
is the second largest city in the South Island of New Zealand. It is located at the head of a large harbour in the Otago Peninsula. Since the arrival of the first Scottish settlers in 1848, Dunedin has been the forefront of education and culture in the New Zealand setting. The University of Otago is the major industry of the city with its Medical School and Dental School, drawing students all over New Zealand, the Pacific and Asia (Dunedingenealogy, 2016).

It is a centre of learning, libraries, museums, and galleries. Dunedin became a dominant financial hub for at least a century, from the time gold was discovered in Otago. The city is rich with Victorian and Edwardian architecture. It is also home to the Royal Albatross and the rare yellow-eyed penguins!

So allow me take you on a tour around our city, through my photos! This will show you how beautiful and rich of culture and heritage our town is. All the photos below are taken by me! 🙂






Now that you’ve seen some of our amazing attractions, astonishingly well-preserved architectures, beautiful commissioned street arts created by local and international artists, events that draw people from all over New Zealand and beaches that are not just breathtaking but also full of stories and history, I’ll now tell you about our fieldtrip at the “Pride of the South”, Speight’s Brewery.


I’ve done almost all of the tours around Dunedin like the Cadbury World Chocolate Factory Tour, Larnach Castle Tour, Monarch Wildlife Tour, Taeri Gorge Railway Tour, Otago Museum Tour and many others. But the Speight’s Brewery Tour is probably one of the most famous ones in Dunedin that I haven’t been to. And this changed when our “Sustainable Tourism Practices” class went on a fieldtrip at the brewery last Monday, 17 October 2016.

The Speight’s Brewery Tour is an award winning interactive and informative guided tour through a historic working brewery. A tour not only perfect for beer lovers but also for history buffs and those with curious minds seeking to discover a few secrets from the brewers! So here are some of the things I discovered and learned from the tour!

Since 1876, Speight’s Brewery has stood on the same site in Dunedin’s Rattray St. It was founded by James Speight, Charles Greenslade and William Dawson and is now owned by the Japanese controlled holding company, Lion Nathan. Speight’s is one of the few gravity-fed breweries left in the world. From small beginnings, the Speight’s brewery and its brand have become icons of the south -famous for its promotional branding “A Real Southern Man” and “The Pride of the South” (Speights, 2016).

One of the essential raw ingredients for brewing is clean, fresh, water. Speight’s is fed by its own bore of natural spring beneath the site. They’ve been using the mineral rich water for their famous brews, for over 100 years. The spring water is pumped from the bore and stored in “Copper” vessels, each holding 60,000 litres. It is one of only two breweries in the world to use kauri fermentation gyles.

The raw materials they use in the brewery are malted barley, sugar, hops, yeast and water. The barley they use are grown throughout the South Island and the Manawatu plains in the North Island. Their specialty malts, such as crystal, amber, black, caramalt and wheat malt are New Zealand grown and/or brought in from Australia and the UK. The Prime NZ hops they use to give the essential bitterness and aroma, the hallmarks of a fine beer, are grown in the Nelson District.

Speight’s brewery offers a wide range of beverages from their famous Speight’s Gold Medal Ale and Speight’s Old Dark to their Speight’s Craft Range of beer; including Speight’s Distinction Ale, Speight’s Summit and Speight’s Triple Hop Pilsner. They also make a cider. In 2009, their low-carb beer called Speight’s Traverse was released to the market.

A brief look at the past 130 years of Speight’s

1876 – Speight’s is born. James Speight, Charles Greenslade and William Dawson hand in their notices to Well Park Brewery to establish their own brewery.
1879Speight’s Strong Ale highly commended at Sydney International Exhibition
1880 – Wins two gold medals at the Melbourne Exhibition. Speight’s Ale renamed to Speight’s Gold Medal Ale.
1887 – Becomes the biggest brewery in New Zealand, exporting to Australia, Fiji and Tahiti. Legendary founder, James Speight passes away.
1907 – Strachan’s Brewery taken over by Speight’s
1913 – Norah McGhie becomes Speight’s first full-time female employee.
1923 – One of the founders, William Dawson dies.
1940 – The Great Fire. Malthouses on western side of Rattray Street destroyed
1960 – The Dunedin landmark, Speight’s Brewery, 1960.
1977 – Sponsors Rugby. Dunedin Senior Rugby Competition becomes Speight’s Championship.
1984 – Speight’s cans are launched
1992Speight’s Old Dark launched
1994Speight’s Distinction Ale launched
1997 – The Speight’s Heritage Centre developed within the Dunedin Brewery site
1999 – The first Speight’s Ale House was developed in Dunedin attached to the brewery building
2001Speight’s Distinction Ale was rebranded and Speight’s Pale Ale is brewed for the first time since 1949 as part of the Speight’s Legacy Series
2002Speight’s Pilsner and Speight’s Porter are added to the Speight’s Legacy Series which is renamed the Speight’s Craft Range
2005 – A limited release of Speight’s Chocolate Ale and Speight’s Summer Harvest are released
2006 – The Otago Rugby Team becomes Speight’s Otago
2007 – The Great Delivery. Speight’s taked a pub to London as part of the Great Beer Delivery Campaign
2008Speight’s Summit Golden Lager launched
2012Speight’s Triple Hop Pilsner was introduced, an addition to the Speight’s Craft Range
2014Speight’s Mid Ale and Speight’s Ginger Beer was added to the Speight’s Range
2015Speight’s Summit Citrus is added to the Speight’s Summit Range

So if you live in Dunedin or will be visiting soon, I definitely encourage you to do the Speight’s Brewery Tour! They operate 362 days per year! It’s a 90-minute tour around the working brewery and includes tasting, sampling and appreciation session of six Speight’s beers! Don’t worry they have special rates for children, students, seniors and sometimes even for large groups! If you’re still unsure whether to go or not, here are some photos I took during our fieldtrip! Enjoy! 🙂


19 October 2016

Wednesday, back again in class, we talked about what we learned from the fieldtrip! Its story, how the company got bigger over time while their workforce is getting smaller because of technology changing how they operate and do things! We also talked and shared our thoughts about how we enjoyed our tour guide. We all agreed how well it was tailored to us clients (students), and the history and story presented created a unique experience. But we thought that the pace of the tour could still be improved by giving everyone a little bit more time to take photos and explore the area. Overall, it was a great tour filled with information, history and heritage!

After that, we shared our own personal traditions in our family and country. Some of us bought items that are important to us and our heritage. “Heritage” can be defined as “something inherited at birth, such as personal characteristics, status and possessions”, it can also be “anything that has been transmitted from the past or handed down by tradition”, or “evidence of the past, such as historical sites, buildings, and the unspoilt natural environment, considered collectively as the inheritance property of the present-day society” (Collins, 2016).

In our discussion, I shared two things; one about a special tradition in our family and “Santacruzan” an event that happens every year during the month of May in my home country, the Philippines.

tree.pngComing from a Catholic country, I grew up celebrating Christmas in a very special way. Back in the Philippines, the entire “BER” months (September, October, November, December) is Christmas Season! People start decorating their trees starting September 1! Ofcourse my family is one of them! But there’s this tradition that family’s been practicing noone knows how long. We put a star on top of our Christmas tree to symbolize the Star of Bethlehem – this “star” announced the birth of Jesus to the three Wise Men. We put the star together on top of the tree because it is believed that whoever puts the star will be granted a prayer! I know it’s cheesy but it is one of the things that we do as a family that I always look forward to. Merry Christmas! That photo was taken Christmas 2015! 🙂

Before our class ended, we did two activities! We created our own Dunedin “Street Art” 🙂


The Vogel Street Warehouse Precinct was once a bustling area of wealth and industry. It’s buildings date back to the 1880s, housing some of Dunedin’s and even New Zealand’s largest companies. For this week’s activity, we were asked to visit and take a selfie with one of the landmarks in the street. I chose the 77 Vogel Street Building because it is the most visible of all the buildings in the precinct. It also won a Heritage Re-Use Award in 2014!


[WATCH] Emotional Wedding Haka Moves Maori Bride to Tears, New Zealand (Maori Tradition)
[WATCH] The Deal Hunter | Dunedin Food Stories -Dunedin NZ (I’m feature here!)


Collins. (2016). Heritage. Retrieved from http://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/heritage
Dunedingenealogy. (2016). Welcome to the Heritage City of New Zealand. Retrieved from http://www.dunedingenealogy.org.nz/p/dunedin.html
Speights. (2016). About Speight’s. Retrieved from http://www.speights.co.nz/About-Speights


6 Comments Add yours

  1. jbohschke says:

    Woooow, I simply love this post. Had a look at the Videos you linked as well. Very nice how you added pictures about the architecture, events, and attractions! And also enjoyed reading the story about your special way of celebrating christmas. Very nice illustration 🙂


    1. Thank you Juliana! I miss celebrating Christmas back home! Really happy that you’ll get to experience it this year! Enjoy the Philippines! You’ll have so much fun! 😀


  2. Janina says:

    Amazing job Paolo! Very detailed, excellent visuals and sweet personal anecdotes. Great that you have used the opportunities to go on tours around here. What did you think about the ‘Taeri Gorge Railway Tour’? Thumbs up for A+ 😉


    1. Thank you Janina! I enjoyed the Taeri Gorge Railway tour! Definitely one of the must-dos in Dunedin! Do it if you still have time! I want to do their Seaside tour next! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  3. hillarypjenkins says:

    Congratulation on a great job of selling Dunedin and its heritage features. Your generosity in sharing your own cultural customs and traditions is really appreciated.


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