The Rising Sun hotel was built on what had been the garden of Dr. Augustus Florance in 1865 by Frank Innes, who had arrived at Lyttelton aboard the Sebastopol two years earlier.
Situated in the Christchurch suburb of St Albans and more infamously known as the Rising Hell, the much altered and extended hotel became the Caledonian in 1878. As such it continued to enjoy something of a louche reputation until closing in late 2007.
The extensive site was undergoing evaluation by archaeologists from the University of Otago when the dig was raided during the night of the 26th of March, 2009. Artefacts and layers of information critical to archaeological analysis were destroyed as the looters picked over the site, upon which it's reported that sixty town-houses are to be built.