Edson’s Buildings at 270 Queen Street was designed in 1885 by architect Edward Bartley and incorporated a purpose-built photographic gallery. The first tenant was the renowned Auckland photographer Josiah Martin, who was followed successively by Edward Arnold, John Alfred Slack, and Robinson & Yates, before Charles Hemus took over in 1896. Entry to the studio was via a street-level display area. Customers then ascended a staircase to a salon on the first floor. The studio proper was on the floor above, complete with glass roof to provide natural lighting.