Masonic House and Bucklands Building, 30-32 Customs Street East and 34-36 Customs Street East
Masonic House was occupied in 1885 by John Buchanan, a wholesale grocer and tea, coffee and spice merchant, and Brown, Barrett & Co, coffee and spice merchants who roasted their beans in a two-storey annex at the back of the building. The neighbouring Bucklands Building has a facade that matches the Masonic Building, but was built later. Masonic House was purchased in 1952 and renamed by the Masonic Institute and Club. An arcade linking Customs and Galway Streets was built in 1973. Both buildings were refurbished as part of The Hotel Britomart project, which included the creation of a new laneway connecting Customs Street East and Galway Streets. The laneway is named Tuawhiti Lane, a name gifted by Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei: ‘Tua’ means ‘the other side’ and ‘Whiti’ means ‘to cross over’; it is also a word used to describe food of succulence and good quality, a nod towards the fare served at kingi, the restaurant in the lane.