Pine Hill, aka Stanley Melbourne Bruce's Mediterranean Frankston Manor, listed for mortgagee auction
Pine Hill, the 1926 Frankston home of Prime Minister Stanley Melbourne Bruce, has been listed for mortgagee tender.
Bruce, who had the ignominy of being the only Australian prime minister until John Howard to lose his own seat at election, built the house at a £20,000 cost.
Pine Hill, aka Bruce Manor, was designed by the Sydney firm of architects Prevost Synnot and Rewald, in association with Robert Bell Hamilton as a Mediterranean-inspired residence with paved courtyards, Cordova patterned roof tiles, a Juliet balcony and timber panelled interiors.
"It's a near complete example of the Mediterranean style – which, when built on this scale, was considered glamorous and exotic in the '20s and '30s," its Harcourts Frankston listing agent Aaron Froling says.
"Today it is still extra impressive," he adds.
It has been listed in conjunction with Hocking Stuart agent Adrian Foster, who are taking tenders until September 25. More than $900,000 is estimated by some market observers with $200,000 plus potentially needing to be spent on its refurbishment.
It comes with spacious rooms, high ceilings – many timber lined – and open fireplaces.
Wrapped around a central piazza, its ground floor includes an impressive entry leading to an open living room incorporating substantial formal and informal living areas.
There are between seven and 10 bedrooms and a library/study along with several bathrooms.
The property had out buildings used periodically as hostel accommodation for the aged.
Its sold at $895,000 in 2002, but its curtiliage has been reduced from 6,000 square metres to about 4,500 square metres, with 10-apartment subdivision that has been sold over the past three months.
The house also has an important association with The Lodge in Canberra, which was constructed in 1926; both were built in a similar architectural style and both were first lived in by the Bruces.
Bruce was prime minister of Australia from 1923 to 1929 as the Depression hit.
It's been listed by Korda Mentha.
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