Melbourne's inner east keeps the apartment light burning bright

Fueled by an investor-driven market, the CBD and Southbank ruled the apartment sales market over recent years. That was then, but now the mantle rests with Melbourne's inner eastern suburbs, where developers have jumped upon a recurring project format which gives their project the greatest chance of success.

Low-rise developments with spacious apartments designed for the owner-occupier. Simple really?

Simple or otherwise, the proliferation of low-rise three to five level apartment buildings in suburbs such as Hawthorn, Malvern and Glen Iris demonstrates the strong consumer uptake of projects which shy away from smaller, investor-driven apartment formats. 21 Riversdale Road is the most recent example of the strength of the inner east apartment market.

Agent Marshall White Projects has just revealed they signed off on $12 million in sales during a single day for the luxury residential project in Hawthorn which features 22 oversized apartments. This high mark was achieved one month prior to the project’s public launch and before any sales or marketing material was made available.

The $32 million project is being developed by Moda, whilst Ewert Leaf undertook the design; the practice has made a habit of creating highly successful low-rise apartment schemes in Melbourne's southern and eastern suburbs for some time now.

Director of Marshall White Projects, Leonard Teplin denotes 21 Riversdale Road's features which are apparent across many of the current batch of apartment projects in Melbourne's east - oversized, light-filled apartments with high-quality finishes, designed to attract the owner occupiers and the ability customise floor plans to create larger apartments.

95% of the early purchasers were local downsizers from either Stonnington and Boroondara.

21 Riversdale Road's open plan living space. Image: Marshall White Projects

Commentary by Leonard Teplin

The success of a project is dependent on its ability to understand the needs of the market and deliver a product that not only meets, but exceeds those needs.

21 Riversdale Road is a prime example of what happens when developers get it right – when you create a quality project and invest the time and resources early on, the development speaks for itself and you end up spending less on sales and marketing down the track.

Projects located within Melbourne’s wealth belt affords the benefits of connectivity and proximity to lifestyle amenities, while also offering the quiet leafy streets that are favoured by the downsizer market.

The format for success

Assessment of the Urban Melbourne Project Database shows the strength on the low-rise luxury apartment market through the inner eastern suburbs.

Adding locales such as Camberwell, Hawthorn East, Kew, Malvern East and Toorak to the aforementioned suburbs Hawthorn, Malvern and Glen Iris reveals a clear cut penchant for low-rise apartment projects. Across these 8 suburbs, 136 apartment projects are in various stages of development, and of those only 27% have six or more levels.

Restrictive planning controls coupled with the target market's appetite of low-rise luxury living across Stonnington and Boroondara in particular is plain to see.

A sample of current apartment project in Melbourne's inner east


Keanan O'Carroll's picture

great article :)

Back to top
johnproctor's picture

95% of the early purchasers were local downsizers from either Stonnington and Boroondara.

95% of the early purchasers were local downsizers who, if they hadn't been buying into the development would have objected to it as over development.

Back to top

Development & Planning

Thursday, October 19, 2017 - 12:00
Gravity Tower, the first tower to start construction, top out and reach completion with residents now calling it home has been completed in the Montague precinct in Fishermans Bend. Developed by Blue Earth Group, designed by Plus Architecture and constructed by Hamilton Marino builders, Gravity Tower is well and truly a tower of the pre-Andrews government planning regime.

Policy, Culture & Opinion

Monday, October 9, 2017 - 12:00
Spring Street on Sunday unveiled its package of rental reforms that will see a variety of changes to the Residential Tenancies Act (1997). The state government has branded the reforms 'Rent Fair Victoria' and set up a website outlining the changes.

Visual Melbourne

Friday, August 25, 2017 - 07:00
The former site of John Batman's home, Batman's Hill is entering the final stages of its redevelopment. Collins Square's final tower has begun its skyward ascent, as has Lendlease's Melbourne Quarter Commercial and Residential precinct already. Melbourne Quarter's first stage is at construction and involves a new 12-storey home for consultancy firm Arup along with a skypark.


Sustainability & Environment

Tuesday, October 10, 2017 - 05:00
City of Melbourne intentions for a reimagined University Square are now available for viewing. The significant piece of public space at 190-192 Pelham Street is in line to receive a total makeover, bringing the green landscape into a 21st century.