Architecture April - Dux de Lux

13 April 2022

Student Union building, Canterbury College / Dux de Lux

For Architecture April this week, we are celebrating an Ōtautahi favourite. The iconic original Dux de Lux building in the Arts Centre has been in the news recently with the announcement of plans for ‘The people’s pub’ to be restored.

In its early life, the building on the corner of Hereford and Montreal Streets was a private residence named Llanmaes. Crafted in 1883 by architect Francis William Petre, who went on to design the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Christchurch, it is an example of English Domestic Revival architectural style, popular during that time. In 1926, Llanmaes was purchased by Canterbury College and became the home of the Student Association in 1929. Sitting next to the striking stone Gothic buildings on the edge of the campus, the Student Union building, with its recognisable timber and brick exterior, became the heart of Canterbury College for many students. By 1946 the house was not big enough to meet demands and was proposed to be demolished. Thankfully it was saved and became a bar, music venue and restaurant when the Dux opened in 1978, until structural damage from the 2011 earthquake forced its closure.

Search Kā Kohika or contact Macmillan Brown Library for more drawings, information or images on this building. Macmillan Brown Library also holds a wealth of resources from various collections on local architecture and University buildings.

Learning by Design online exhibition about the original town site of the University of Canterbury features further information about the Student Union building and other fascinating information on the Arts Centre.

Image references:


Macmillan Brown Library - Te Puna Rakahau o Macmillan Brown

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