Warwick listed in tightly held Centennial Park

Warwick listed in tightly held Centennial Park
Warwick listed in tightly held Centennial Park

The tightly held homes of Centennial Park have long featured among Sydney's top homes.

Indeed ever since Federation, the vantage point overlooking the park has been a desired location.

The best is found on Martin and Lang roads, that directly face the public parklands proclaimed by governor Lachlan Macquarie in 1811.

The two streets hold 18 of Centennial Park's top 20 house sales. There have been six homes that have broken through the $10 million barrier, the first in 2006.

Last year it was the tech-billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes and his wife Annie who secured a $16.5 million record for Braelin, set on a 2149 square metre Lang Road parcel which had cost $12 million in 2015.

The single storey 1918-era mansion, which sold to the philanthropic couple, Brian and Gene Sherman through The Agency agent Ben Collier, was designed by architect Donald Esplin for lord mayor of Sydney, Sir Allen Taylor.

The family of the Atlassian co-founder were off to Double Bay with $100 million Fairwater in their sights. 

Historic Crossways, which ranks as one of the finest Federation Arts & Crafts homes in Australia, holds second place.

The art collector Naomi Triguboff Travers bought the 1800 square metre holding on Martin Road from the Zavattaros family who paid $10 million in 2006.

It was designed by B.J. Waterhouse of Waterhouse & Lake in 1908 for surgeon Dr Gordon Craig. 

Now set in Paul Bangay gardens, the property was renovated in the 1990s by architect Espie Dods for then owners, former McGuigan Wines director James Smiley and his wife, Jane.

Murralla, the Martin Road home, holds third place on the property podium. It fetched $12 million in 2015 having been the longtime home of Justice Deirdre O’Connor, the former Australian Industrial Relations Commission president, and barrister Michael Joseph.

The restored Queen Anne mansion, which sits on 2,300 square metres with championship all-weather tennis court with night lights, a pool and two-storey stables, was built after the building block's 486 pound sale pursuant to the 1905 Centennary Park Sale Conveyancing Act.

It was best known as the home of the late celebrity-maker Harry M Miller who paid $220,000 in 1973 and sold in 1979 for $567,000 to the gynaecologist Dr Robert Diamond and his wife, Elaine. In 1977 Miller hosted Prince Charles for Christmas drinks.

Harry M Miller joined writer Patrick White and other local residents in Jack Mundey's green ban protests to save Centennial Park in the early 1970s after the state government announced plans to bulldoze many of the private houses and concrete Centennial and Moore parks to provide an envisaged Olympic venue in a bid to host the envisaged games.

Muralla was the inspiration for the central family home location of the Patrick White book The Eye of the Storm.

The property was offered as a $6000 a week rental late last year.

Sibylla, the six bedroom Lang Road house, is currently for rent at $6000 per week. It was a rental too during the ownership of Elizabeth Dangar, the late doyenne of Australian market research, who named the house after her daughter.

She had transform the Federation into a modern version of an Italian Renaissance villa. In 2000 her koi carp died during a short-term $25,000 a week rental by director George Lucas, who had been filming Star Wars: Episode II at the nearby Fox Studios.

Centennial Park's popularity for overseas celebrity visitors saw the legendary Culture Club singe Boy George, on 2017 assignment as judge of The Voice Australia, rent the Leckie's Lactura for somewhere near $7,000 a week.

There are the three current significant trophy homes for sale.

Warwick, the modernised Federation which resonates charm, has been listed for sale through Ben Collier. The Martin Road home was once owned by the University of NSW as its residence for its Vice-Chancellor.

Walsholme, another parkside home comes with rooftop tower and terrace with wet bar. The Lang Road home with 12-foot pressed metal ceilings has been listed through Ballard Property.

Centennial House, modernised by architects Tobias Partners, has been listed for sale through Sothebys. There's been a $2.1 million spend on the Martin Road home since it last traded for $8 million in 2009. With Palladian symmetry, they sought to create a contemporary dwelling that would sit comfortably among its more traditional neighbours.

This article first appeared in The Weekend Australian. 

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of Australia's most respected property journalists, having been at the top of the game since the early 1980s. Jonathan co-founded the property industry website Property Observer and has written for national and international publications.

Trophy Listing Centennial Park

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