Melbourne’s OTT ‘mock mansions’ chasing millions
Melbourne’s blue-chip markets are flush with elaborate European-style mansions seeking buyers with millions to spend.
The OTT suburban palaces in postcodes like Canterbury, Kew, Balwyn and Toorak are largely luring offshore buyers and “new money” with luxurious fit-outs, huge proportions, and next-level features including cinemas, bars, pools and massive garages.
But a buyer’s advocate who specialises in Melbourne’s top end has warned the multimillion-dollar properties aren’t necessarily all they’re cracked up to be.
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“What tends to happen is mock mansions date quickly,” David Morrell of Morrell and Koren said.
“And some of these palatial mansions are in pretty ordinary positions.
“We try to avoid the European ones — they’re not as good an investment (as an) old mansion that was built in the ‘20s because they don’t build those anymore.”
Mr Morrell said the opulent builds had a habit of offending locals in suburbs like Toorak, by dramatically changing streetscapes.
Some of them were also priced too high as vendors tried to hook cashed-up Chinese nationals, causing them to linger on the market, he said.
CoreLogic records show a six-bedroom “Victorian-inspired masterpiece” at 125 Mont Albert Rd, Canterbury — which is seeking a potentially record-breaking $16-$17.5 million — has been for sale for more than 300 days.
The same goes for a French provincial residence at 3 Torresdale Rd. That property’s $9.3-$9.8 million price tag includes a theatre room with 2000 star lights, a five-car garage with a turntable, and a self-cleaning pool.
But agents listing opulent European-style homes say they’re masterpieces that are often painstakingly designed by big-name architects and built over several years, using the highest quality materials.
A three-storey Canterbury mansion with a putting green and pool at 3 Hopetoun Ave took three years to construct after being drawn up by renowned architect Phillip Mannerheim. It’s now asking $13-$13.58 million.
“The builders cost three to four times the average tradesmen because of the superior workmanship,” Noel Jones Balwyn’s Dean Sun previously told the Herald Sun.
A Buckingham Palace-lookalike at 29 Stanley Grove, which is aiming for a changing of the guard at $7.8-$8.2 million, was built over two years due to its intricate detail.
A premium Sackville Ward position is a major drawcard for a “chateau-inspired” residence asking $7.2-$7.8 million at 32 Alfred St, Kew. It counts a soundproof cinema, a sauna and an indoor pool among its features.
And a lavish interior by the renowned David Hicks is a selling point for the $8.3-$8.8 million European-influenced home of Glenn Eagles, of award-winning building company Glenneagles Homes, at 19 Denham Place.
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EUROPEAN-INSPIRED MANSIONS ON THE MARKET
125 Mont Albert Rd, Canterbury
6 bed, 7 bath, 6 car
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3 Hopetoun Ave, Canterbury
6 bed, 6 bath, 8 car
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3 Torresdale Rd, Toorak
4 bed, 4 bath, 5 car
19 Denham Place, Toorak
4 bed, 5 bath, 4 car
13 Wimba St, Kew
5 bed, 6 bath, 8 car
9 Stradbroke Ave, Toorak
5 bed, 4 bath, 5 car
29 Stanley Grove, Canterbury
5 bed, 5 bath, 6 car
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32 Alfred St, Kew
5 bed, 6 bath, 6 car