Divine Inspiration

Mal Corboy Design

There is a good chance that when Mal Corboy designs a kitchen for his clients he’ll be invited back for dinner.

The award winning designer with 25 years experience said many of his clients have become good friends – and it’s not just because he’s brilliant at his job, but that great design takes time.

And when a designer takes the time to get to know their clients and understand their needs, they naturally form a strong relationship that extends well beyond the kitchen table. “It’s all about the passion of something within – it’s not forced.”


It is a well known fact that Mal Corboy has become a brand name of kitchen in New Zealand and this is something he admits to being enormously proud of. Nowadays he offers a full range of interior design for clients, out of pure frustration that his exceptional standards in the kitchen weren’t being followed through into other areas of the home.

There was certainly an element of tension involved in working with other designers, particularly when you have such high standards, so it made sense to evolve. “The areas that people want right are their kitchen and bathroom because they bring the heart and soul into their home.”


But good things take time and Mal, who started out as a cabinet maker in Perth in the 1970s, was also once a train driver – now with 56 design awards to his name.

His clients have included Master chefs, both privately and commercially, and his work can be found worldwide, including in Los Angeles and Trinidad. “Most kiwis are design savvy and know what they like. My design style is I have a good sense of proportion and balance.”

So what does he love most about designing? “The look on the client’s face once it all comes together. “The vision that comes through on the plans through to the installation – the reward of seeing that and how it has enhanced their life.”