Posts Tagged ‘abandoned buildings’

Abandoned Buildings in New Zealand – Hokitika Former Government Offices

abandoned building new zealand

abandoned building new zealand

When I first booked my flights to Christchurch, little did I know what the South Island of New Zealand would have in store. After travelling over the North Island, and seeing some incredible abandoned buildings that just didn’t want to allow me to explore them, today, in the small town of Hokitika, the South Island of New Zealand showed me that there is far more in this part of the world than just glaciers and mountains.

There are many historical buildings in Christchurch, which I visited in the days leading up to my adventure in Hokatika. Unfortunately, this list of historical buildings in Christchurch that collapsed was extensive.  Such heritage buildings  as the Durham Street Methodist Church, the Stone Chamber of the Canterbury Provincial Council Buildings, the Oxford Terrace Baptist Church, and the Sevicke Jones building in Cathedral Square – all fully collapsed during the destructive Christchurch earthquake.

Other listed buildings partially collapsed in Christchurch, and made for eerie viewing. These included the famous  Christchurch Cathedral, the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, and Holy Trinity Avonside.

The Christchurch earthquake may have been recent, but the history of this featured abandoned building began over one hundred years ago. On the 7th May, 1908, the then Prime Minister of New Zealand, Sir J.C Ward, travelled to Hokitika and laid the foundation stone. I can only assume, from some of the evidence and signage still in place, that the building was used as government offices.

Founded in the mid 1800′s, the small town of Hokitika was the centre of the West coast gold rush in New Zealand. Buildings of this size seem out-of-place in a town like Hokitika, as the population is currently only about 3000 residents. However, in 1866, the town was one of New Zealand’s most populous centers, and there remains many striking examples of fine architecture, reminding visitors that Hokitika is a town with a glorious past.

Located on Sewell Street, the building itself consists of two main levels, with a central corridor from one end to the other. There is a grand entrance and staircase at the center of the building. Most of the rooms are small and office-like, however, there are grand rooms at the end of each wing of the building.

The building showed all the signs of the era it was constructed in, such as high quality carpentry, and ornate plaster work. The peeling paint provided a wonderful patina, and combined with the dappled light entering the premises, everything was right for a good dose of exploration as well as photography.

Fortunately, a local resident, “John” that I bumped into whilst poking around on-site, had access to the building, and was more than happy to allow me entrance. He unlocked a couple of doors, and left me to my own devices.

Being in a relatively remote location, the building was remarkably intact. The windows weren’t broken, and apart from some scratchings dating back to the 1960′s, no graffiti was present. It was an “honest” abandoned building. John advised me that the building has been vacant for “oh, quite a long time now”.

Currently for sale, the future of this grand building is up in the air. I could think of many uses for such a structure, and I’m sure one day a new owner will give it the attention it deserves.

I will soon be leaving New Zealand, to continue my exploration of abandoned buildings around the world. If you haven’t already joined, please feel free to follow along by entering your email address over on the side of the page.

Enjoy.

Dr Hank Snaffler Jr.

 

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Abandoned Building Tour of The World – Commences Tomorrow

Abandoned Building

Hello abandoned building lovers. Dr Hank Snaffler Jr. here, and after a long absence on this site, I have some incredible news for you all. Firstly, I would just like to say “hello” to all of the Abandoned Journey readers! Even without any new posts for some time, this site continues to get many visits.

And now, the big news.

Tomorrow, I will be leaving for a ten year journey around the globe. I will be visiting many abandoned buildings, and of course taking photos and writing about them all right here. Finally, the stars have aligned, and I am able to pursue my passions – spending a year doing nothing but travelling and exploring.

From Asia, to Europe, the America’s, and even Africa.

Abandoned building exploration is hugely popular. There are many sites on the internet, but I hope to make Abandoned Journey the most interesting of all.  I would be extremely happy if you followed along with my journey, and I would be more than happy to answer any questions you have about abandoned buildings and urbex.

 

Yours,

Dr Hank Snaffler Jr.

  

 

 

Abandoned Skyscraper – “Sathorn Unique” – Fifty Levels of Awesome Abandoned Building

Abandoned Skyscraper - Sathorn Unique, Bangkok

Bangkok, Thailand. Just fourteen years ago, the Sathorn Unique skyscraper was being built, destined to become one of the city’s fanciest residential addresses. Now, it is an  abandoned building. Never completed, it remains as yet another “ghost tower” of Bangkok.

A tangle of trees and vines are beginning to take over the lighter parts of this monolith, such as the four storey archways and romanesque feature columns. Amazingly, this building is located in the central area of one of the worlds largest cities. These towers were built during the mid nineties, when the Thai economy was booming. In 1997, the Asian Financial Crisis changed all that.

Developers stricken with debt were unable to finish many projects. In the case of Sathorn Unique, the main concrete structure made it all the way to the top. The apartment fit-outs had begun in earnest, with wooden floor boards installed and polished. Connected bathtubs, wardrobes, and electrics show just how close this one was to completion.

At ground floor, two escalators have been installed, climbing to nowhere in particular, the remnants of protective plastic still clinging onto their stainless steel sides.  With an amazing location close to the Chao Praya river that snakes it’s way through the center of Bangkok, it’s easy to see how this abandoned building would have been luxury living at it’s finest.

After a tip off from some of the locals, a small climb got me into the lobby area. Inside, a man had set up a shrine, and was providing offerings to his God. Children who were playing around the outer area of the building had clearly been warned of the dangers inside.

Although they were smiling, they were clearly fearful of the building, perhaps due to the ghost stories and other tales of fear their elders had instilled in them. For good reason too – this is a particularly dangerous site, with plenty of opportunities to take a 40+ level fall through one of the many unsealed shafts that exist, often in total darkness. Throw in a pack of wild dogs, some quite unusual smells and sounds, I quickly realised this abandoned building was not to be taken lightly.

From the brochure: (conveniently,  there was various sales materials still floating around the building):

Sathorn Unique Tower is our first residential project in downtown Bangkok. The tower is 49 storey with the total of 659 residential units and 54 retails, located only less than 200 meters from BTS : Taksin station. Sathorn Unique Tower is also located at the edge of old commercial town of Charernkrung meets the new international business zone of Silom-Sathorn roads. It sits on the a horse-shoe blend which is considered as the best place for overlook at the Bangkok’s grand cityscape and the charm of the Chaopraya river.

Bangkok probably has more abandoned buildings and modern day ruins than any other major city on earth. In the 14 years since the Asian Financial Crisis, the Thai economy has recovered, and many new gleaming skyscrapers have been built. Still, there remains a number of the abandoned ghost towers like Sathorn Unique. Earlier this same day, I scaled another forty storey building, an abandoned complex of three near-identical towers, with another abandoned building next door for good measure! Story and photos, coming soon.

I wouldn’t recommend visting the inside of this abandoned tower.  Truly, it is an incredibly dark and dangerous site. There are many holes for you to fall down a very, very, long way. Not to mention, the locals insist it is haunted (they were really quite insistent!). Of course, trespassing is illegal. However, it is an incredibly easy building to get to, and take a look around.

Information for “Sathorn” Unique Abandoned Skyscraper, Bangkok:

Getting there : Take the train to BTS Saphan Tak. The tower is located close to the cross road between Sathon Tai and Charoen Krung. Look up, you won’t miss it. Check the google map on this page…the pin is right on top of this abandoned skyscraper building.

 

PS, I used a very cheap camera to take these photos. There is a secret though – if you want to take photos like a pro, a better camera won’t help. Your instruction manual won’t help. No matter what camera you have – you need to learn how to get out of auto . This is my secret weapon to taking amazing photos – in no time at all. I 100% recommend checking this out, right now (before the price rise).

 

 

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Abanoned Skyscraper Building Bangkok - Sathorn Unique

Abandoned Skyscraper - Sathorn Unique, Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Abanoned Skyscraper Building Bangkok - Sathorn Unique

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Building Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Sathorn Unique - Abandoned Skyscraper Bangkok

Abandoned Building Bangkok - Sathorn Unique Skyscraper

Graffiti Bangkok

Abanoned Skyscraper Building Bangkok - Sathorn Unique

Abanoned Skyscraper Building Bangkok - Sathorn Unique