Designed and built in 1883 by William Mason, New Zealand's first government architect and later Dunedin's first mayor, he planned to use the 128 hectare property as a retirement farm but failing health prompted its sale to the Aitken family who operated the guest house for the next 50 years.
From the late 19th century to the beginning of the second world war, tourism was a growth industry in and around Glenorchy, by 1884 increasing number of wealthy adventure seekers were taking the two hour horse and buggy trip from Glenorchy to visit Paradise and Diamond Lake. Paradise competed vigorously with Glenorchy Hotels and the Arcadia guest house next door to host these early "eco tourists'.
The Aitkens's ceased operating Paradise House in 1943 when it was sold to the Veint family from Queenstown. The Veints continued to operate Paradise House as a guest house until 1949, when it was bought by the Miller family with whom it remained until David's death in 1998.
The property is now owned and operated by the Paradise Trust.