Remuera, a suburb rich in history.
Remuera is one of Auckland’s oldest and most celebrated suburbs. An inner-city area known for its magnificent properties, wide leafy streets and long-term residents who are largely well off and professional. There’s a charm to the place - a depth of history and a warm, refined air that comes from being classed as ‘luxury residential’. But it hasn’t always been this way. In fact, if you google its history, the first thing that pops up is this: ‘Remuera Road began as a muddy cart track to Tamaki.’
So, from humble beginnings, great things have grown!
In order to dig deeper, we spoke to Rose Hu, who is a senior salesperson at Barfoot & Thompson’s Remuera branch, and resident for more than 20 years. Familiar with the environment, schools, the culture and history of the area and local customs, Remuera holds a very special place in Rose’s heart. Here’s what she had to say.
“The pronunciation of Remuera is a bit convoluted. The locals pronounce it as Remu-wera. Which is actually its original name.
Long before the Europeans landed in New Zealand, this region was favoured by Māori tribes for its mild weather and geographic advantage, in particular the sunny, picturesque and fertile northern slopes close to the harbour. From around 1000 AD, the Māori began to settle here and cultivate the land. Then at around 1400 AD, as the population increased, the local Māori developed more advanced planting technology and accumulated wealth, which caused other tribes outside the area to covet and initiate a few land battles.
Māori tribes in Remuera (1870)
In 1840, Sir John Logan Campbell, who was the father of Auckland, and back then an ambitious young man, made the first ascent to the peak of Mt. Hobson on the Northern Slopes of Remuera. He later wrote in his memoirs that "the vista was unparalleled". He tried to buy the Northern Slopes from the local Māori, however, fully aware of the value and appeal of the land, they came back with a resounding “No”.
Spectacular view from Mt Hobson
That same year, on 6 February 1840, another significant event happened: the Māori and the British government signed the Treaty of Waitangi, which made New Zealand a British colony.
Following on from this, more and more European immigrants came to New Zealand, and they started to settle in Remuera. The houses built here at the time were all large and beautiful. This was an area for the wealthy, and so these houses were built with big yards to accommodate carriages or horses, and they were designed to appeal to the refined taste of the landowners of the time.
Today, in order to protect the historical features of Remuera, some ancient buildings on Bassett Rd, Arney Rd, Portland Rd and Seaview Rd have been listed as tangible cultural heritage objects, which means they cannot be removed or demolished. As a result, many beautiful houses built in the Edwardian era have been preserved here.
It’s true to say that Remuera’s unique cultural environment is shaped by history and time.”
There are many heritage homes in Remuera