Mulgoa trophy home Glenleigh listed

Mulgoa trophy home Glenleigh listed
Mulgoa trophy home Glenleigh listed

The richly decorated 1890's home, Glenleigh, positioned on the banks of the Nepean River at Mulgoa, has been mostly hidden for the past three decades from the outside world.

But its intact glory will soon captivate potential buyers after the having been listed for sale.

It was a Scottish Baronial-style country retreat built for the Edinburgh-born shipping merchant, and Ranelagh, Darling Point resident, James Ewan.

It was built with ballast bricks, constructed in triple brick on sandstone so the house would be around for several hundred years.

It last traded when bought by the Grotto family for $1.05 million in 1984.

Collier's agents Richard Royle and Deborah Cullen are seeking expressions of interest, reluctant to suggest a price given they want private home owners to compete with major housing subdivision companies.

The Mulgoa Road, Regentville property has only been occupied by a handful of owners since first sold in 1917, three years after Ewan's widow, Marion, mother of eight, died.

It was the Layt turf farming family who had heritage architects Clive Lucas and Ian Stapleton undertake its restoration in the late 1970s retaining the design by the eminent architect W.W Wardell.

For almost four decades it was owned by interpreter Dr Charles Monticone, who Shirley Hazzard immortalised in her novel, The Transit of Venus. During the years it has been an Aboriginal girls' mission, ostrich farm and Queenwood School World War II retreat. 

The property features impressive Belgium marble fireplaces and Lyon & Cottier stain glass windows, one with the Celsus (1st century AD) maxim, Cito, tuto et jucunde (quickly, safely and pleasantly. 

There's also some of the finest surviving painted interior ceiling frezies in any house in Australia after two Italian artists were brought out to Sydney.

Stag, partridges, eel, hare and game birds feature stencilled on the dining room ceiling. Imagery of musicians and opera singers in the music room and writers decorate the library. Mozart, Haydn and Mendlessohn gaze down from garlanded, gold-leafed frames; while Shakespeare, Milton, Scott and Burns suggest Ewan's literary taste.

The kitchen still retains the original set of servants bells for each room, the smaller the bell the less important the room.

The bell tone alerted the servants as to which room he or she had to attend.

The estate comes with a tennis court with pavilion, and two separate cottages on its 34 hectare parcel, one of the largest private homes in the Sydney basin.

The old horse stables/coach house has been converted in to a wholesale plant nursery which grows Bucks, Conifer's and Gardenia as an approved supplier to Bunnings.

Mulgoa's Fern Hill, another richman's colonial Georgian estate, ranks as the suburb's last big opportunity which was sold in a complicated 2012 acquisition by the entreprenuer Simon Tripp and his wife, Brenda with a housing subdivision intended. 

It was Irish stonemasons who worked on the Greek Revival temple-style sandstone Fern Hill residence built for Edward Cox, the sixth and youngest son of pioneer William Cox, who oversaw the building of the first road over the Blue Mountains in 1814.

Joel Robinson

Joel Robinson

Joel Robinson is a property journalist based in Sydney. Joel has been writing about the residential real estate market for the last five years, specializing in market trends and the economics and finance behind buying and selling real estate.



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