The previous home of the Rotorua RSA is almost unrecognisable as it gets set to reopen after a 12-month $2.7 million transformation.

The site has been redeveloped by Pukeroa Oruawhata Holdings, who bought the building at auction in 2015. Since then, it has been transformed to provide "A Grade" office accommodation, including ensuring it is fully compliant with current earthquake standards.

Now called Haupapa House, the building contains three different tenancy spaces, which includes space for a cafe.

Pukeroa Oruawhata chairman Malcolm Short said the group worked closely with the RSA to buy the building.


"The building was in need some of some attention when we bought it and Darryl Church from Darryl Church Architecture, has certainly risen to the challenge."

Pukeroa Oruawhata director and commercial lawyer David Tapsell said increasing the amount of top quality office space in Rotorua was a key component of attracting and retaining new business to the city.

"If we are to be a vibrant and attractive destination to live and play, we need to be providing great places to work in - our investment here certainly achieves that."

Mr Short said the building's name acknowledged an important historical link to the city.

Located close to Rotorua Lakes Council and Rotorua Police Station, Haupapa House is now a stark contrast to the original white concrete panelled building, with vertical timber slats and floor to ceiling glass windows framed by solar protection fins.

Mr Short said much of the building's internal character had been preserved with the building's high studs and exposed trusses retained.

The first floor, of 400m2, has been leased to one of the Bay of Plenty's leading law firms, Holland Beckett Law (Hobec).

The ground floor offers tenants 356m2 and 382m2 spaces, which can also be combined as one tenancy of 738m2. The site also incorporates off-street parking for 12 vehicles.

Pukeroa Oruawhata Trust owns more than 40ha within the CBD, including the Rotorua Central and Trade Central developments, and the Lakefront.

Owned by Ngati Whakaue shareholders, Pukeroa Oruawhata has an asset base worth more than $225 million.