There has been a childcare centre based at the villa at 26 Brixton Road, Manly for around 30 years, which has given the place a mellow and homely feel.
The new broom that has swept through over summer belongs to Jessie May, owner of Precious Pipis Childcare. She and her team have been working hard since she purchased the centre late last year, removing interior walls to open up the space, painting and redecorating, creating a fresh and friendly look.
It has been a whirlwind for Jessie, with a lot of changes to be made in a short time – the centre reopened as Precious Pipis on January 7.
Existing staff have remained, along with some new faces.
Jessie is a qualified, registered Early Childhood teacher, who opened her first Precious Pipis centre in Waimauku in 2015.
Her parents ran childcare centres and Jessie helped out there as soon as she was old enough. As well as teaching, she has experience in property development and says she put the two things together to create the right look and feel, as well as the quality education, that Precious Pipis Childcare centres offer.
There is a focus on sustainability, with repurposed materials used where possible and a vegetable garden and worm farm planned.
The centre will also be a new drop off point for the charity Warming Hearts NZ, which invites people to donate pre-loved baby clothing and knitwear which goes to families in need throughout Auckland.
Jessie says her philosophy is about providing a home away from home, providing endless opportunities for the preschoolers to explore and have hands-on experiences, including cooking and walks in the community.
The mother of three young girls grew up visiting the family bach in Manly and remembers cycling past the Brixton Road centre many years ago with her father, on the way to get the Sunday paper from Manly Village. Her interest in purchasing it started with a quick look over the fence last November and before she knew it, the deal was done.
Jessie says having her own children helps her set a high standard.
“Every parent wants the very best for their children, and that’s what has driven the quality care we offer here,” she says.
Precious Pipis has an Open Day on Saturday, February 9, 9am-11am.