About Us


No one knows the Manawatu quite like we do. We’ve been around since the 1960s and in that time, we’ve earned our stripes by creating a range of stunning architecture in both the commercial and residential space.

We believe our work speaks for itself. Look at any one of our projects and you’ll see the style, creativity, quality, and commitment to detail.


We listen. Then we create.

It’s important to us that we really understand what you need. So, we listen to your ideas and dreams before we put pen to paper. Only then do we put our creative hats on. Our job is to take what’s in your head and craft it into a project that when finished is absolutely what you were looking for.


An honest day’s work.

We were brought up with this mantra from our folks and it’s something we believe in. We work hard, and we work with integrity and honesty. We trust our clients and we value your input. Together, we can create something magical. But hey, this is the real world, we also deliver on budget and on time.


Chapple Architecture – arguably Manawatu’s best known and valued architectural firms – began its journey back in the swinging 60s.

David Chapple joined with fellow architect Jack Cantlon to form Cantlon & Chapple Architects in 1969. Initially competitors, they joined forces and together were able to tackle much larger projects. A local firm now had the experience and resources to ease out their big-city competitors operating in the Manawatu.

The firm thrived, and in 1983 David took over the business when Jack retired. Susie Elms worked alongside David for 20 years before buying the business herself in 2006.

Susie now leads a team known for their skill and range of ability. Susie has an enviable knowledge of the construction industry and is talented in interior design and colours. Susie worked with David on significant commercial projects including The Science Centre, Te Manawa, and the Downtown Complex.

Pictured above: David, Susie, and Ian Athfield with a model of the Science Centre in 1991. The photo, by Graeme Brown, featured in the Manawatu Standard.

"We found Susie easy to work with, - she listened to our ideas and with guidance, implemented them. Her plans were comprehensive and accurate and our builders,  Award Builders, found them easy and accurate to work from. She quoted for our job and the plans were completed inside the quoted amount. 

Susie is obliging, perky, enthusiastic, and fun to work with. She is competent at her job.

We love our new home and would have no hesitation in recommending Susie, or in using her again."

Janet Parkes