Patterson House (Former)

85 Arney Road, Remuera, Auckland

  • Patterson House (Former). Image courtesy of
    Copyright: Google Maps 2011.
  • Patterson House (Former). Image courtesy of
    Copyright: Google Maps 2011.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 2 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 2633 Date Entered 26th November 1981


Extent of List Entry

Extent includes the land described as Lot 1 DP 42237 (CT NA1316/7) North Auckland Land District, and the buildings and structures known as Patterson House (Former) thereon.

City/District Council

Auckland Council (Auckland City Council)


Auckland Council

Legal description

Lot 1 DP 42237 (CT NA1316/7), North Auckland Land District


Erected in the fashionable suburb of Remuera in 1923, Patterson House (Former) is architecturally and historically significant for being designed by the notable Auckland architect Daniel Boys Patterson (c.1880-1962) and subsequently occupied as his own family home. Incorporating both English Cottage and American Bungalow characteristics, the large two-storey building reflects an architectural transition in the way that houses were used, which was linked with a greater informality in family life - including in elite residences such as this. During the quarter-century that Patterson occupied the house, he was responsible for designing a large number of buildings in Auckland and the wider region. These encompassed significant commercial structures, such as a network of branches for the Auckland Savings Bank; religious buildings including St Mark’s Memorial Church at Te Aroha; and other notable landmarks such as the Auckland Central Fire Station.

Remuera has been associated with the settlement of rich and successful Aucklanders since the middle of the nineteenth century. From about 1900, the palatial houses of the wealthiest settlers of the 1800s made room for the smaller, but often grander townhouses of the city’s commercial and professional élite. Patterson purchased his Arney Road property in 1922, when he was already an established architect. The site had previously had a house on it, owned by the notable boatbuilder, Robert Logan junior, which Patterson evidently removed. In the early 1900s, Arney Road was considered to be ‘the most elegant residential thoroughfare in Remuera’.

Patterson’s design for his new residence incorporated a distinctive ‘English Cottage’ exterior with Australian blue gum weatherboards and timber joinery. While it contained small fully divided casement windows such as those found in English Cottage design, it also featured casements with fanlights, more characteristic of the California Bungalow style. Designed as a timber residence of two storeys with basement, the building was entered at the fulcrum of two short wings, which opened into a generous hall and staircase. From the hall was a large living room, and dining room, both with bay windows, and a children’s playroom. Also on the ground floor was a kitchen and washhouse, a maid’s bedroom, and verandah. On the first floor, the main bedroom had a bay window, large dressing room and sleeping balcony. Also on this floor were four other bedrooms, a large landing and a bathroom. The entire basement consisted of a ‘workshop’ according to the original plans.

Patterson and his family, including wife Elsie, lived at the house for 25 years. Two sons, also architects, served in the Second World War (1939-1945) with one dying in Eritrea in 1940. In 1948, the property was purchased by Vivian D’Arcy Blackburn, a medical practitioner. The residence was split into three self-contained flats in 1953, and the back portion of the section sold. Under new ownership in the 1970s, the house was reinstated as a family home, with internal and external alterations largely within the existing envelope of the building, although bay windows, external doors, and a large timber deck with carport were also added. In the 1990s a one-storey attached garage and laundry were erected. Further rearrangement of interior spaces and the extension of the basement occurred in the 2000s.

In 2015, the house remained in use as a private residence.


Construction Professionalsopen/close

Patterson, Daniel Boys

Patterson (1880-1962) was born and trained in England. He immigrated to New Zealand about 1910, and became a member of the New Zealand Institute of Architects in 1914. He was senior partner in the firm of D B Patterson, Lewis and Sutcliffe, which was responsible for churches, hotels and commercial buildings throughout the Auckland province, the largest being the Mater Misericordiae Hospital. He died 7 May 1962 aged 82.

Additional informationopen/close

Construction Dates

Original Construction
1923 -

Construction of earlier timber residence

Demolition or relocation of c.1880s timber residence

1953 -
Conversion into three flats, involving both the removal and addition of windows and partitions, and basement alteration to create a bedroom.

1976 -
House reinstated to a family home, with the addition of bay windows and external doors.

1976 -
Large timber deck with carport beneath.

1996 -
Single-storey attached garage and laundry.

2002 -
Rearrangement of interior spaces and extension of basement.

Completion Date

3rd December 2015

Report Written By

Elizabeth Cox

Information Sources

Carlyon and Morrow, 2011

Carlyon, Jenny, and Diana Morrow, A Fine Prospect: A History of Remuera, Meadowbank and St Johns, Auckland, 2011.

Macdonald, 1984

Macdonald, Winifred, Recollections 1850-1920: A Sketch History of Early Remeura, Auckland, 1984.

Other Information

Please note that entry on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rarangi Korero identifies only the heritage values of the property concerned, and should not be construed as advice on the state of the property, or as a comment of its soundness or safety, including in regard to earthquake risk, safety in the event of fire, or insanitary conditions.

A fully referenced upgrade report is available on request from the Northern Region Office of Heritage New Zealand.