including Otahuhu and Middlemore

Suburb Specialists

Papatoetoe is an old, established suburb situated on the narrowest point between Auckland’s two large harbours. It’s a comparatively gracious area by South Auckland standards, where the names of the “old” families are still proudly recalled, and the carving up of their once extensive estates is lamented. Otahuhu is home to Middlemore Hospital, and is very close to Auckland Airport. Otahuhu was one of the first Auckland suburbs to implement a mainstreet revitalisation project. It has been successful, although some of the shops and parts of the street are starting to look somewhat shabby again. This is a bustling streetscape that people actually use. It feels like an active community. Another area that gets a lot of use (even at 10am on weekdays) is the Star Hotel, an infamous pub on Great South Road. Anyone who’s lived in the area has a story to tell about what they’ve seen in the Star, or spilling out of its front doors!

Who Lives There?

This area is so multicultural that one professional’s clientele spans 28 languages! A Sikh temple is situated to serve the area and so is a Muslim mosque. European-stock Kiwis are moving in too, because of its comparative affordability. The most notable influx recently has been from Indian families.

Typical Homes

Some of the city’s most affordable California bungalows and character villas are in Otahuhu. There are also lots of 1960s sausage-block flats, but very little in-fill housing. Cheap housing has always been in demand here. Papatoetoe homes have fared better although many have now been subdivided or cross-leased, where protected trees allow. More infill housing is anticipated once the stormwater system upgrade has been completed. Papatoetoe also has street after street of 1960s and 1970s brick and tile houses, most with a camellia bush in the front garden. There is also a good deal of refurbishment activity going on by owner occupiers and investors alike.

Population Profile


Aged Under 15 Years 25.25%
Aged Over 65 Years 9.13%
European 27.86%
Maori 14.55%
Pacific Peoples 30.03%
Asian 29.01%