Australis House and the AH Nathan Building, 42 Customs Street.
Australis House and the AH Nathan Building, 42 Customs Street East
AH Nathan House is notable for the different coloured bricks used in its construction. It was erected in 1903 for merchants and importing agent AH Nathan & Company, and designed by architects Wilson and Moodie. David Nathan had set up as a merchant in 1840 in Kororareka in the Bay of Islands; his nephews Arthur and Louis came from England to manage the new business in Auckland. The company eventually became the retailing giant LD Nathan. Neighbouring Australis House was built in 1904, designed by architects Mitchell & Watt. The refurbishment of the buildings, led by architects Peddle Thorp, combined them into a single entity known as Australis Nathan, a process that involved decorating what was once the rear of the buildings to create new ‘fronts’ for them facing Takutai Square.