Cleaver & Co is one of a series of dining establishments that Ignite’s specialist hospitality team has designed for Lion Breweries. The combination of superb slow-cooked BBQ-style meat, great beer and an interior fitout referencing the markets of yesteryear has proved a winning formula.



Various, December 2017- June 2019


Sylvia Park-Auckland; Entertainment Exchange-Christchurch; Bayfair Shopping Centre-Tauranga


Hospitality . Interior Design and Fitout


Cleaver & Co’s menu includes succulent ribs, brisket and lamb shoulder which is slow cooked to perfection for up to 14 hours in a specially imported smoker. Along with mouth-watering meals, a fine selection of tap beer, wine and handcrafted cocktails are also offered. Ignite’s interior design ensures diners are immersed in the unique Cleaver & Co brand experience from the moment they walk through the door.


Ignite was charged by Lion to manage the fit-out of its restaurants at The Brickworks in New Lynn and at the NorthWest retail hub in Massey. Based on the success of the interior concept, the client then asked Ignite to play an integral role in developing new Cleaver & Co brand standards. These are showcased at its third outlet in The Grove at Sylvia Park.

While the two original West Auckland locations emphasised authentic BBQ meat preparation, the brief for the Sylvia Park site was to expand upon the original concept, referencing the hospitality culture and urban markets of old times. The restaurant resembles an old, industrial building. An eclectic bar is the new centerpiece, adding to the raw, grungy feel.

Ignite’s interior design cleverly belies the fact that each location is developed on a new site. Materials such as distressed plastered brick evoke the feeling that each Cleaver & Co is situated within a much older building that has a previous history of industrial use. This intentionally aged effect is further enhanced by references to traditional butchery of days gone by.

The design for Cleaver & Co brand brings these elements together to create the impression of a bar in an old market place. A place to get together with friends and enjoy some drinks, accompanied by delicious food. There are shared high tables, small nooks and high seating to encourage hospitality and interaction.


Cleaver & Co is a key destination in Sylvia Park’s new dining precinct, The Grove. Seating 200 patrons, it is a showcase of the new brand identity and design vision. The outlet shares a kitchen with neighboring restaurant The Little District, which is run by the same operator.

The exterior is framed with a brick façade and brick pillars, which have been plastered and then distressed. Between the columns, full height steel mesh used to house signage is used in place of glass. The brick continues inside, and an eye-catching street art mural features behind the bar.

The key focal point at Cleaver & Co Sylvia Park is the bar. The front of the bar features detailed steel work with mesh insets, which is also used for the shelving behind this space.

In place of a balustrade, the concrete stairs to the mezzanine level are enclosed with a steel mesh extending to the full six-meter ceiling height. This creates a lighter and more open feeling than a traditional balustrade, while continuing the steel theme. Inside the stairs, a striking powder-coated pressed tin wall highlights the expansive ceiling height.

Vintage furniture, sliding barn doors and light fixtures are used throughout the restaurant, along with reclaimed timber table tops and joinery. A stunning feature wall has been achieved by aging wallpaper, a process that was closely monitored by the Ignite design team to achieve the perfect look.

Another full height wall features charred timber, created by coating timber with a fire retardant, and scorching until it achieved the desired appearance. This was a new technique employed specifically for the Cleaver & Co Sylvia Park project. Once again, this was closely supervised by the Ignite design team to ensure the finished product delivered on the concept originally presented to the client.

Cleaver & Co Sylvia Park illustrates Ignite’s expertise in delivering quality food and beverage fit outs, and has built on the existing relationship with Lion.