Olveston Historic Home

Galleries and museum key icon.
Galleries and museum key icon.

Monday9:30 am – 5:00 pm.

Tuesday9:30 am – 5:00 pm.

Wednesday9:30 am – 5:00 pm.

Thursday9:30 am – 5:00 pm.

Friday9:30 am – 5:00 pm.

Saturday9:30 am – 5:00 pm.

Sunday9:30 am – 5:00 pm.

42 Royal Terrace, Dunedin North, Dunedin

03 477 3320

Dorothy Theomin lived at Olveston until her death in 1966 when, much to the surprise of the Dunedin Council, this wealthy heiress gifted her enormous house and all of its contents to the City of Dunedin. Originally built for her father, David Theomin (an avid collector and philanthropist), the Theomin family set about extensively furnishing their home with art, furniture and curios from the opulent Edwardian era.

When you step inside Dorothy's inner-city mansion, you will find it just as she left it; a time-warp to a decadent existence; a glimpse into a lifestyle long gone and one that can never be recreated. There are eighteen rooms to explore, all brimming with fine artworks and furniture, objects of fascination and ancient artefacts from around the world. Every wall in the house, save the kitchen, is filled with art, with works by the likes of Goldie, Frances Hodgkins and William Russel Flint.

This is not a cold and dreary museum, but a world alive with all of the eccentricities of a family home. As you pass through each room you will also learn the rich and interesting history of the Theomins, from the Great Hall with its one-of-a-kind hessian wallpaper to the Moroccan card room.

Next time you feel like escaping reality for an afternoon, take a guided tour across the threshold and down the rabbit hole of Olveston Historic Home. It's a truly fantastic experience.

Words by Abigail Egden & Photography by Naomi Haussmann & Olveston Historic Home

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42 Royal Terrace, Dunedin North, Dunedin

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