Location Spotlight: Malvern, Victoria

Posted 4 years ago

Australia is a country with a rich history; even though the country was only established in 1788, most of the cities that have been developed throughout the country are advanced and comparable to other mega-cities in other countries that are established at an earlier date. It is interesting to be able to look back to see how the cities were developed, its progression and what the city have become now.

Malvern Victoria is an example of this great development, an area that was first settled in 1835, it’s located 8 kilometres south-east of Melbourne’s CBD and has experienced rapid advancement over time.

A Brief History of Malvern

One of the first settlers of Malvern was John Gardiner, a banker and a pastoralist who was one of the earliest additions to British settlement of Melbourne and Australia. He settled in a small hamlet between the Yarra River and Kooyongkoot Creek, named “Gardiners Creek,” fell apart when the gold rush happened. What is now Toorak Road was once Gardiners Creek Road and it ran from South Yarra to the junction of Gardiners Creek and then onto the Gardiner Homestead, now Scotch College.

Malvern was named after the English barrister Charles Bruce Graeme Skinner in 1853. Skinner purchased 84 acres of land west of Glenferrie Road where he subdivided the land. He then built a hotel which he named the Malvern Hill Hotel, and the land surrounding it became known as Malvern Hill Estate after Malvern Hills in England, where Skinner’s ancestors originated from.

Some other notable instances in the timeline of Malvern are:

  • Malvern Post Office was opened on 1st of January 1860, on Glenferrie Road right near Malvern Road.
  • The area surrounding the post office was renamed Malvern North in 1892 because a new post office on the same road, but closer to Wattletree Road, replaced the Malvern Railway Station office.
  • In 1886, Shire Hall, which later became the Town Hall, was built on the corner of Glenferrie Road and High Street.
  • On 30th of May 1910, Prahran and Malvern Tramways Trust ran their first car out of the Malvern depot. 

Stonington Mansion

In 1890, John Wagner, a partner in Cobb and Co coaches, built a house on the property that he had purchased four years prior. He named the house the Stonington Mansion. Stonington was the name of the town in Connecticut where his wife Mary was from.

The Stonington Mansion is a heritage site listed on the Victorian Heritage Register. Wagner lived in this mansion until he died in 1901 when the mansion became the vice-regal residence for seven State Governors until 1931. Then it became St. Margaret’s School from 1931 to 1938. During WWII, the Red Cross used the house as a convalescent hospital before it returned to an educational focus by becoming Toorak Teacher’s College in 1957. In 1973, it became the State College of Victoria, then Victoria College in 1981. It was then merged with Deakin University in 1992.

The mansion and surrounding grounds are now being redeveloped by EBG Developments in Melbourne, and the grounds and terraces will be filled with modern luxury apartments. 

Malvern Attractions

Malvern Central and Glenferrie Road has become an entertainment hub filled with boutiques, restaurants and many historical attractions. 

Malvern Gardens in Spring Road is also another example of the many beautiful Victorian-style parks and gardens established within the city.  The former Malvern Town Hall has now become the Stonnington city centre, and it is beautifully built with a Second Empire style where the City of Stonnington’s corporate headquarters.

Within the area, there are also multiple buildings that are registered on the Victorian Heritage Register. Some of the main architectural heritage buildings include Stonington Mansion, the Malvern tram depot, the railway station and the former ES&A bank. Other buildings that are also worth noting are St Joseph’s Parish Church and De La Salle College tower.

EBG Developments is currently working on creating luxury apartments and residences in Malvern. Contact us if you’re looking to buy a modern apartment in an inner city suburb of Melbourne, which holds a lot of character and history.