By just learning the year the houses and buildings were built and seeing these houses still standing today is already a proof they survived more than a century. Now I understand how state of Victoria able to preserve these houses. Though there are some units that already demolished and we cannot see them today, there are still building and houses that survives, a truly treasure that should be kept and maintain.
Another Saturday of June 2013, I did a walking experiment while living in Melbourne. That time the one that I did was taking the stroll of what they called Melbourne Walks – Elegant Enclave. The word it used is quite intriguing because it used ‘Elegant’ which pretty much sure that it also connotes with wealth and luxury.
From the people who I had met and made friends in Melbourne, they told me that East Melbourne is part of Melbourne where rich and wealthy people lives. And with that said I became curious in this part of the city and after the walk, I can say that there is evidence of what my friends are telling me, and its historically.
I brought the map brochure that I got from Visitors Centre at Federation Square as my guidance to see and discover the ‘Elegant Enclave’. I started my discovery after passing Fitzroy Gardens and Clarendon Street.
Hepburn Terrace (No 199–209 George Street)
Not far from the corner of Clarendon Street and George Street, I found Hepburn Terrace – a six two-storey terraced houses. These houses were built in 1855, 1867 and 1872.
Along George Street, there are many mansions that can be found here according to the map and to be honest, I myself got confused which one was really mentioned in the map. So spare me if not all photos of the buildings in the map was not here as I am not able to capture them all.
1920s Post Office (No. 24 George Street)
Former post office built in 1920s and stands at 24 George Street. This building seems to be the youngest building that I am including in this post, even though this one is more than 80 years old.
Georgian Court (No. 21 George Street)
Built as apartment in 1860, currently the building becomes Georgian Court Bed & Breakfast. The building survived for more than 150 years now. Quite impressive historically. Another discovery for this building is, it was city base home of famous Australian operatic soprano named Dame Nellie Melba (Melba was pseudonym from Melbourne).
No 49 George Street
The building was once home of Melbourne’s first surveyor, Robert Russell in 1865.
Queen Bess Row (corner Simpson and Hotham Streets)
It’s a three four storey houses of red brick with sandstone dressings and the first fully developed example building built in the Queen Anne Revival style. The building initially became The East Melbourne Trained Nurses’ Home and private hospital from 1890 until 1894. Then, it become apartment – first apartment block in Melbourne.
In 1920’s, the building were known as the following: Rubra Flats (72), Angus McArthur’s boarding house (74), and Cregh Flats (76). In 1936 No. 74 was known as Tudor Guest House.
In 1989, the building stop as boarding house and were sold in three separate houses in 1990.
Dorset Terrace (No 114 – 120 Hotham Street)
Four terrace houses erected in 1883 with front doors unusually placed diagonally to the gates. This is notable terrace in the boom classical style.
Cairns Memorial Presbyterian Church
Presbyterian church built in 1895 but due to fire happened in 1988 where the shell of the building are the only remains, it was converted into luxury apartments.
Opera House – Opera Box Style Balcony (No 138 Powlett Street)
Because of opera-box style balcony, the building has been called as Opera House which was built in 1868.
Terrace House (No 130 Powlett Street)
Tuck-pointed terrace built in 1867 for Stephen Trythall, headmaster of Trinity Public School, corner Victoria Pde.& Hoddle St. – later National School.
Crathre House (No 118 Gipps Street)
The building was built in 1874 and has busy history over a century since then and along with it, the name Crathie became Crathre with no particular reason but due to confusion or misunderstanding.
1898-1902 – the Bungalow house function as family home at first, then become a lodging house
1902-1904 – Sir John Monash and his wife become residents of the house
1904-1914 – it become boarding and lodging house again.
1924-1933 – called as Crathie House Private Hospital
1933-1969 – the building become apartments
1969-1980 – it was intended to demolished but it provoked a storm of protest from the National Trust, the East Melbourne and residents where the campaign against it was successful
Nepean Terrace (No 128 – 132 Gipps Street)
A terrace of three two-storey houses in Regency style and built in 1863. While searching about the history of the building, there is one thing that caught my attention. One of the history owner of the residence was Frederick Baker, known professionally as Federici, singer by profession whom died in Princess Theatre in March 1888 after the stage act due to heart attack.
Townhouse (No 179 Gipps Street)
They described it as
“A fine two-storeyed house in the Italianate manner with delicate stucco detailing and well proportioned openings”
and was built in 1861. The building was the townhouse of Constance Stone, who became Australia’s first woman doctor in 1890.
Little Parndon (No 159 Gipps Street)
This building was built for the Austrian born, landscape painter, Eugene von Guerard in 1862 who was prominent artist and teacher in the late 1800s. Based from history, it is uncertain who named the house ‘Little Parndon’ but the name was in use by 1937. The original Little Parndon was a village in Essex, now incorporated in the town of Harlow.
No. 155 Gipps Street
This building built in 1863 and artist-author Norman Lindsay (who wrote The Magic Pudding) courted first wife Kate Parkinson in the 1890s.
Canterbury Terrace (No 82 – 112 Powlett Street)
A row of 16 terrace houses of five bays built in 1878, it is Melbourne’s longest terrace, with 16 homes. While reading its history, the one below got my interest.
“Local belief is that one of the houses held the lodgings of Brian Fitzgerald, the main character and early murder suspect in the best-selling book, Mystery of a Hansom Cab, written by Fergus Hume in 1886. The house is described only as being in Powlett Street near the Cairns Memorial Church.”
House (No. 85 Powlett Street)
It was home to Peter Lalor, who led miners in the Eureka Stockade uprising at Ballarat in 1854 and became Speaker in the Victorian Parliament, an interesting facts to learn.
The Gothic House (No. 157 Hotham Street)
An 1861 bluestone home dubbed The Gothic House. It was designed by architect Joseph Reed (who designed Melbourne Town Hall, State Library and Royal Exhibition Building) for deputy surveyor-general Clement Hodgkinson (who designed the Fitzroy and Treasury gardens).
Fairhall (No. 154 Hotham Street)
The house was built in 1860 and an elegant townhouse at the same year. One of the owner was William Robert Johnston, antique dealer and collector. He changed the name of the house to the more euphonious Fairhall. It is now now the home of The Johnston Collection.
Cyprus Terrace (No. 158 – 164 Hotham Street)
Built in 1867-68 and was designed to look like two grand houses but is actually four homes.
Bishopscourt is the official residence of the Anglican Archbishop of Melbourne. It is used as the residence for all of Melbourne’s Anglican diocesan bishops and archbishops. From 1874 to 1876, it was used as Victoria’s Government House.
Below are the other buildings that I were able to capture some photos but not included in map. Here’s some information of it.
Mosspennoch (No 22-40 Clarendon Street)
The building become heritage building as the architect of this is the same who design Royal Arcade – Charles Webb (please see my post about Royal Arcade here).
Janet Terrace (92-96 Hotham Street)
Named after Janet Clarke, second wife of Sir William John Clarke. His father, ‘Big’ Clarke was allegedly the father of William Maloney. William Maloney was a medical doctor who became Australian Labor Party member of the Australian House of Representatives for 36 years.
Magnolia Court (No 101 Powlett Street)
A two storey, freestanding house with a modern extension to the southern side built in 1861. Now a boutique hotel.
It was Ormiston Ladies College. In the early 1900s, Magnolia Court was home to those involved in Melbourne’s theatre and the early days of the Australian Ballet.
In 1951 the property was re-named Magnolia Court after the impressive magnolia tree that once graced the front garden.
No 10-14 Powlett Street-Group
Three similar terrace type houses of 1886 with elaborate architectural treatment which includes a pedimented gablet in the balcony roof and ornamental iron brackets of unusual design.
Historical research information are mostly came from East Melbourne Historical Society and Victorian Heritage Database
1. Plan to visit East Melbourne or wanted to do the Melbourne – Elegant Enclave ?
Please visit Visitors Centre at Federation Square and pick the Elegant Enclave Walk or download the walking map tour here.
2. The walk is free and can be done at your leisure time
3. Public Transportation Ticket – Use Myki (Melbourne Ticketing System), please check here for more details.
To Visitors Centre at Federation Square:
Use tramTracker Apps or even just Google Maps (use directions) and there are tram routes available
Route: 1, 3/3a, 5, 6, 8, 16, 64, 67, 72 –> get off at Stop 13 – Flinders Street
Route 19, 59 –> get off at Stop 4 – Federation Square
Ride from any station and get off at Flinders Street Station
To East Melbourne:
From Townhall/Collins Street
Route: 112, 109 –> get off at Stop 16 – Wellington Street
Route: 48 –> get off at Stop 11 – Jolimont Station
From Swantons Street and Flinders Street
Route: 75 –> get off at Stop 11 – Jolimont Station
Take either South Morang Line or Hurstbridge Line and get off at Jolimont Station
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