The centrepiece of the marae is a magnificent whare whakairo (carved meeting house) ‘Ngākau Māhaki’, which was built and designed by Te Arawa master carver Dr Lyonel Grant. Opened in March 2009, Ngākau Māhaki was the first whare whakairo in nearly a century that has been created using traditional architectural approaches. Before this, ‘Puukenga’, which opened in 1993, served as marae, wharekai, classroom space and administrative centre. The wharekai ‘Manaaki’ opened in November 2012 and completed the marae complex. Manaaki has been designed to fit into the environment and to link the wharenui and Puukenga.

To us, the marae not only connects everyone together, it also demonstrates Mātaranga māori in various areas. 

Te Noho Kotahitanga Marae Taurahere Hohepa Renata explores the design and architecture of Unitec’s whare, Ngākau Māhaki with architecture students.

Watch the 360° video of Te Noho Kotahitanga marae.


Unitec’s marae is a central hub for campus and community life. We regularly host events, workshops, lectures, wānanga and social events. For bookings please use our marae booking form.


At Unitec we welcome all new students and guests with a pōwhiri, a traditional Māori welcome ceremony. Watch this step-by-step guide to help you understand the protocols of our pōwhiri, and enjoy this very special experience.