Designed by pre-eminent architect R.A. Lawson and built in the 1880s, The Argoed has enjoyed a fascinating history. The first recorded lessee of the property is George Hill Wilson Mackisak. About the turn of the 19th century The Argoed, which once stood on the 10-acre block of land set aside for a cattle market, served as the vicarage of St Mary's Anglican Church, Mornington, and housed the Rev'd Charles Stuart Bowden and his family.
About 1900 The Argoed became the home of James Alexander Roberts, son of a former Dunedin mayor and benefactor to the city, Sir John Roberts, and his family. James Roberts' wife was Welsh; hence the name "Argoed". This is a fitting description ("by a wood") of the residence which borders the Dunedin Town Belt with every room looking out onto trees within and beyond the property.
In 1980 The Argoed was purchased by Dunedin Barrister & Solicitor, Bruce Aitken, and his wife, Wendy, a Registered Dietitian then in practice at the Mornington Health Centre. Bruce, Wendy and their four children lived at The Argoed until 1995, when they moved to the Master's Lodge at Knox College, where Bruce served as the Master.
In 2013, following Bruce's retirement as Master of Knox, Wendy and Bruce returned to their much loved home with a view to establishing a small Bed & Breakfast business, which would enable them to continue to host interesting people.
In 2002, the front of the house was temporarily transformed for the filming of a scene of film Sylvia, a biopic about the turbulent relationship between poets Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes. The Dunedin location for this film included St Paul's Cathedral, Knox College, the University of Otago as well as The Argoed. The Argoed was the picturesque setting for the engagement party and included performances by the stars Gwyneth Paltrow, Daniel Craig and Blythe Danner