The middle-ring suburb of Glen Iris has all the attributes that Melbourne’s middle class seek – tree-lined streets, excellent transport links to the city by rail and trams combined with easy freeway access and a plethora of coveted private schools in the vicinity.
What it doesn’t have in abundance are new contemporary apartment developments sought by downsizers and young professionals in the area.
A stately new apartment building, Grace, on the freshly rezoned section of Malvern Road, is aimed at these buyers, and offers spacious apartments only 10 kilometres from the CBD.
The route 72 tram runs along Malvern Road outside the front door, and Gardiner train station is 600 metres away.
“This development is very cutting-edge.”
The development is on a residential section of Malvern Road only 750 metres from the Harold Holt Swim Centre and not far from the Gardiners Creek bike and walking track.
Developed by H&F Property from a design by Conrad Architects, the project consists of only 46 apartments over four levels, with two levels of basement car parking.
An architectural focal point of the development is the central atrium, which will be draped with creepers to create a vertical garden.
Grace offers 35 two-bedroom apartments with either one or two bathrooms, nine one-bedroom apartments and two three-bedroom apartments.
The two upper levels will have city views on the west and north sides and views of the Dandenongs from the north and east corners.
Inside the apartments, the larger-than-average living rooms feature floor-to-ceiling windows and a choice of cool or warm colour schemes. Kitchens come with Miele appliances, and the bathrooms have marble or timber finishes as options.
“This development is very cutting-edge, and what I really like about the architecture are the floor-to-ceiling glass panels, which mean the apartments have gots loads of natural light,” says Marshall White’s director of project marketing Leonard Teplin.
The one-bedroom apartments are sized from 51 to 56 square metres internally with another 13 to 52 square metres outdoors for between $450,000 and $500,000.
Two-bedroom apartments range in size from 57 to 85 square metres internally with additional outdoor spaces of eight to 110 square metres, with prices from $500,000 to $800,000.
At the top end, the two three-bedroom apartments are 88 or 89 square metres internally with 50 or 51 square metres of outdoor areas and sell for $800,000 and $1 million.
All apartments have at least one car park and a storage cage, with the larger two-bedroom and the two three-bedroom apartments including a second car space.
Construction is expected to be completed by the middle of next year.
The project is being marketed by Marshall White. Floor plans can be viewed at their office at 1111 High Street, Armadale, by appointment, phone 9832 1194.
Case study: Amazed by Grace
Anjali Sohani bought her two-bedroom apartment at the Grace development on Malvern Road in Glen Iris to start a property portfolio, but now her daughter has set her sights on it.
“I’ve said as long as you pay me rent,” jokes the 46-year-old banker from Keysborough. “I think it is really awesome and this is my first investment property, which is really exciting,” she says.
Sohani loves the suburb of Glen Iris and the project’s close proximity to shops, cafes, good schools and the tram line on its doorstep and the freeway nearby.
“I drove around and there are not a lot of brand-new apartments in that area and I think I’ve made a good investment, so I’m happy,” she says.
“It looks really beautiful, so I don’t know if I’m going to be able to let someone else live in it as I feel like I want to live in it myself,” she says.
Village feel in North Melbourne
North Melbourne offers all the benefits of being close to the CBD but with its own local perks such as the nearby Queen Victoria Market and easy access to parks on the city’s edge.
A new development at North Melbourne offers a low-rise alternative to city high-rises for those who like their apartment living a little closer to the ground.
Assembly is a project on a triangular site bounded by Courtney, Capel and Queensberry streets in North Melbourne by developer Cbus Property with a design by architects Woods Bagot.
It’s within walking distance of many of the city’s major hospitals, close to the University of Melbourne and RMIT and within the sought-after University High School zone.
The project consists of 138 apartments in four separate buildings only four levels high. The buildings are clad in metal hues around a central courtyard featuring jacaranda trees with laneways in between.
Inside, the apartments have an industrial aesthetic with exposed concrete walls and timber floors.
Assembly boasts four communal rooftop terraces with an interesting angular design seemingly carved into the roof line of each building.
Sixty-seven two-bedroom apartments have internal sizes ranging from 67 to 90 square metres with either one or two bathrooms. They are selling from $610,000 to $955,000.
The 71 one-bedroom apartments are sized from 43 to 67 square metres and are priced from $380,000 to $685,000.
Outdoor areas add another four to 60 square metres of space to the apartments. All come with a storage space in the two-level basement carpark (no stackers) with 138 car parks.
There are 33 apartments left. The project is being marketed by Colliers International, phone 1300 735 067.