They can command price premiums more than 50 per cent over neighbouring streets – and prospective buyers can wait years for the opportunity to buy into them
We take a look at some of Melbourne’s most admired and expensive roads.
1. Monomeath Avenue, Canterbury
No suburb epitomises Melbourne’s “leafy east” moreso than Canterbury.
In fact, agents joke, it’s difficult to find a street in Canterbury which doesn’t exude charm.
Most are wide, welcoming and dotted with hundred year old trees, and Federation homes built on large blocks with established gardens.
Canterbury’s “Golden Mile” as it has come to be known, stretches from Burke Road to Balwyn Road, off Mont Albert Road and, in order of exclusivity, includes Monomeath, Victoria, Alexandra and Wentworth avenues.
Like many Melburnians, Fletchers Real Estate Canterbury managing director Tim Fletcher believes Monomeath Avenue is the best street in the State.
He estimates it costs c$2 million to buy into the address.
Most houses occupy large blocks (c2000 square metres) and include tennis courts and pools.
One dwelling presently for sale – that of advertising guru Anthony Podesta – has been loosely valued at c$8m which would set a suburban record.
Other identities to call Monomeath Avenue home include former opposition leader Andrew Peacock and ex-NAB managing director Frank Cicutto.
It was reported in 2002, Kylie Minogue spent $2.43m to buy her parents an unrenovated home in the street.
2. Alfred Crescent, North Fitzroy
Every Alfred Crescent resident shares Edinburgh Gardens as a front yard.
The semi-circle road in North Fitzroy accommodates some of the suburb’s oldest and most imposing Victorian and Edwardian, dotted between restored terraces.
Almost all built around the turn of the century, agents say.
Most were constructed to take advantage of parkland aspect.
Those at the northern end have views of the city, too.
Because of Edinburgh Gardens – which at 24 hectares is one of munipality’s biggest parks – Alfred Cr land values are amongst the highest of any in inner-city road, Chambers Real Estate managing director Mario Costanzo said.
“Values…are between 10 and 20pc higher than the next most expensive streets in North Fitzroy, which include Falconer, Rowe and McKean,” he added.
“[They] are affected by the fact there is also very little turnover.
“People who buy don’t usually sell unless there are unforeseen circumstances.
He said land values in now average about $4,000 per sqm. Entry level two-bedroom apartments, of which there are only a handful, would trade for c$400,000.
Mr Costanzo said several larger homes along Alfred Cr would achieve more than $3m if they were listed today.
3. St Vincent Place, Albert Park
Like the roads surrounding Edinburgh Gardens, Albert Park’s St Vincent Gardens precinct is also believed to have been designed by prominent 1850s surveyor and topographer Clement Hodgkinson.
The rectangle shaped street wrapping the park is given two names – St Vincent Place North and St Vincent Place South, divided by St Vincent Street.
Homes on parkfront roads command higher more those elsewhere in the suburb, even ones closer to the beach, agents say.
St Vincent Pl dwellings include single and double storey terraces and detached houses.
Heritage Victoria has protected the entire land, gardens, buildings and works, describing the pocket as one of the state’s best examples of “premier square” developments.
Premier square is a design style used in many parts of London – outside of Albert Park, local examples include Lincoln, Argyle, Macarthur and Murchison Square gardens in Carlton.
Hocking Stuart Albert Park director Michael Coen said interest for homes in St Vincent Pl has always been strong with buyers lining up no matter how bleak the economic backdrop.
According to the agent, entry level one bedroom apartment command more than $400,000 while most of the double storey terraces achieve c$3m.
Beaconsfield Parade would rank second to St Vincent Pl as the most expensive street in the suburb, he added.
According to REIV, the last freestanding house sold in the parkside street was in 2005, when a six bedroom at 32a traded for $5.2m.
Mr Coen expects detached homes would achieve at least $6m today.
4. Seacombe Grove, Brighton
The majority of people who drive through Brighton could be forgiven for thinking the Esplanade, with its imposing homes overlooking Port Phillip Bay, could be the suburb’s best.
However local agents reiterate, Brighton’s best homes are hidden, in streets off the suburb’s “Golden Mile” – which starts at Head St to the north and end at the Royal Brighton Yacht Club.
Kay & Burton Brighton’s Stewart Lopez said Seacombe Grove – a T-shaped street between St Kilda Street and the Seacombe Grove Beach – would rank as the suburb’s best.
Some dwellings have direct access to the waterfront with the biggest – that of Crazy John founder John Ilhan – measuring more than 100 square internally and occupying two blocks.
Other roads ranked as amongst Brighton’s best are St Ninians Rd, Moule Ave and Glyndon Ave.
Mr Lopez said the property values have been increasing at a far greater pace than metropolitan Melbourne – with the Golden Mile precinct a clear star performer.
Earlier this year, it was reported two apartments in St Ninians Rd, to be integrated, sold to the Gianarelli family for c$11m-plus.
The suburb’s most expensive home sale took place in 2006, when St Kilda Football Club president Rod Butterss offloaded a gothic inspired mansion at #39 for $11.2m.
5. St Georges Road or Albany Road, Toorak?
The answer as to which is Toorak’s best streets depends on what side of the fence you sit. Or at least what side of Toorak Road.
Marshall White director John Bongiorno says while Albany Road houses some of Toorak’s highest profile residents, the street is not without its fair share of more understated “AAA-quality” contenders.
In particular he said, St Georges, Clendon, Lansell, Irving and Hopetoun roads are considered the precinct’s most revered.
Unlike all of them however, Albany rarely has a home languish on the market – with the most common buyer, it would seem, the neighbours.
The most recent sale was Coomaroo, at 63A, which was acquired by developer and neighbour Len Warson for $8.4m last year.
The street’s highest priced sale was in March 2007, when US Businessman Bob Edgell and his wife Fena, a member of the Indonesian royal, sold their seven bedroom mansion at #49 for c$15m.
Mr Edgell built the home in 2004 after paying neighbour, the wealthy Baillieu family, $5m for a 3434 sqm slice of their land adjoining his c2500 square metre parcel.
The 2850 sqm home he built contains five entertaining rooms, a gold-class cinema, pool, tennis court, putting green and croquet lawn.
Good Guys boss Andrew Muir holds the Toorak record after forking out $17.75m for the Orrong Road estate of Steve Vizard.
Mr Muir topped the watermark set when Toll Holdings boss Paul Little, paid c$16 million for Clendon Road’s Coonac.