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This is one of Akaroa’s oldest surviving commercial buildings. It became an hotel in 1871 and still accommodates visitors to the town.

Category: Commercial Buildings
Date: 1860/1865
Street Address: 50 Rue Lavaud
HPT registered? Yes
District Plan Listed? Yes

Antonio Rodrigues, born on the Portuguese island of Madeira, came to Akaroa in 1858. In 1860 he built the first part of the building now known as Chez la Mer and ran a butchery and bakery business in it.

After letting his business, he ran the Criterion Hotel (see Turenne Dairy) for a few years, before taking his own premises over again. These he eventually extended and improved for the 1871 opening of the Madeira Hotel, which he ran until his death in 1905. A new Madeira Hotel was built next door to the old in 1907. The old building was retained.

A plain weatherboard building with dormers and sash windows, it is a fine example of early colonial architecture in New Zealand.


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