Java Coffee House

Also known as: Now occupied by ‘ascolour’ clothing store, part of the Soul Quarter / Stranges Lane block.

Location: 219 High Street, Central Christchurch

Current Status: Demolished post-earthquake, replaced by commercial buildings

Active as a live music venue: 1990’s – 2000’s

Bar Manager: –



Capacity: –

All-Ages: Yes

Open-plan two-story Cafe on a (previously) busy corner in central Christchurch – Java was a quirky place with a colorful interior, good coffee and food. When Cafe’s were starting to explode in the late 90’s, Java was one of the places to be for young people in Christchurch.

As a result they pumped a lot of good music and put on the occasional live show, with a handful of musicians working behind the counter over the years. Java was also heavily tied to local dance music, promoting locals raves alongside the original Cosmic Corner (which was just down High Street).

Java Coffee House Interior - [Late 1990s]
Java Coffee House Interior

Strange was a draper.
Strange’s complex was in
business 1860s-1930s. The
corner building was built in
1900 to an Italianate design
by architectural firm
Armson, Collins &
Harman. Some original
features on the façade
survived into the 21st
Absentee owners in the
1930s meant the firm was
not run properly and the
business was closed.
It was a category 1 building
with the New Zealand
Historic Places Trust.
Demolished after the
earthquakes of 2010/2011.

Christchurch City Libraries

The Cafe was heavily damaged in the February 2011 Earthquake and eventually demolished, now replaced by a commercial building next to Strangers Lane.


1900: Corner building is built for William Strange (and is known as ‘Stranges Building’, becomes ‘Welkut Clothing’ at some point.

1990s: Java Coffeee House Opens.

2011: Damaged in the Canterbury Earthquakes, Demolished in July 2011.

Contact Details


Java Coffee House [Facebook]


Christchurch Venue Map

Note: This is a work in progress and will have additional content added both in the Map (i.e. venue images) or in the body of this post (i.e. a list of the venues in questioned, grouped by status etc).

Feel free to comment, give suggestions etc – this was put together as part of thebigcity’s on-going Venues archive.