My Weekend: Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamond Flowers


The Golden Dawn in Ponsonby. Picture / Babiche Martens

Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamond Flowers is busy preparing for the biggest day of the year in the bloom business. "I love wrapping romantic bouquets for all my lovely romantic customers," says Houghton of Valentine's Day.

Houghton's sought-after bouquets often feature in fashion shoots and events, with each pretty posy arranged in her Ponsonby flower studio. On the weekends, the florist prefers to start with a coffee from Good One before hitting the beach with a good book and surfboard. 

Lucy Houghton from Lu Diamond Flowers. Picture / Babiche Martens

Drinking ... To be honest, I spend a lot of time in my sunny back deck, I have a lush green yard, which is where I love to kick back and have a drink or two with friends. If I do venture out I usually will pop into Golden Dawn for a sunny afternoon beer. It's an easy place to relax and catch up while listening to good tunes.

Dining ... This is more me! I love to eat out - I'm no fancy-pants and like to mix it up. Ponsonby Central are doing a great job with ace service. The pork bun from The Blue Breeze Inn makes my heart sing, and you can't beat the beef and pickle burger from Burger Burger. There is an upstairs Chinese joint on Ponsonby Rd across from the fire station that does a super-tasty prawn, pork and egg dumpling and Kung Pao chicken. Nishiki is always a hit with a huge menu selection; I always get the eggplant, cheese and soy dish - it's a bizarre sweet and savoury treat. Plus Wok'n Noodle in Mt Eden has the entertaining Lee behind the counter, serving up my favourite Panang curry for only $14.

Relaxing ... I took up surfing about a year ago, which I find is a great way to unwind and relax. I'm quite fond of my hammock for afternoon daydreaming. Road trips while listening to Mac DeMarco makes me feel relaxed and happy.

Shopping ... Flotsam and Jetsam have rad stuff plus useful things like my new broom. I tend not to do a lot of clothes shopping as my boyfriend is in the rag trade so I'm lucky to get pretty samples by RVCA. However it's convenient that Ruby andCommoners are next door to each other on Ponsonby Rd, as they are my go-to stores for a shop. Commoners have great everyday basics that I can dress up when I have to and Ruby always do cute jumpsuits with bright fun prints.

Anticipating ... This Friday I'm off to Silo Park's outdoor cinema. I'm hoping theLucky Taco Truck will be there for my pre-movie snack. I'm also pretty excited about getting some more camping trips under my belt before the summer ends.

Trying ... I've yet to step into Lonely's new store, which looks stunning from the outside. There is a bush trek out in Waitakere Ranges that leads you through ancient kauri trees and waterfalls that's on the list of things to do.

Exploring ... I love heading north for a day or the weekend. We are spoiled for choice when it comes to beaches near Auckland City; if you go far enough Matakana has a great pub to stop off at. The Puhoi cheese factory is amazing for a variety of cheeses to stock up in your fridge.

Discovering ... Opoutere Beach in the Coromandel has a small campground tucked away between a pine forest and the beach. It's been my favourite place to swim, read and cook basic meals on my boyfriend's dad's gas cooker from the 1970s. It's also a 10-minute drive from Whangamata if you need supplies or a change of scenery.

Saturday evenings ... At my house with a big group of friends, food and drink flowing while listening to music before we head out to a gig at the Kings Arms for a boogie.

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