Return of the luxury penthouse

Return of the luxury penthouse
Mark BaljakOctober 2, 2014

Some pizazz has re-entered the top end of the Melbourne apartment market with a handful of penthouse offerings jostling to take centre stage. Far from the investor-driven stock of Melbourne's CBD towers, two current projects are showing their wares in the pedigree stakes.

Perhaps a sign of South Yarra's still exceptional pulling power, the two current projects are located within the locality maintaining differing but spectacular penthouses on offer for.

Washington Street

Return of the luxury penthouse
Looking to set a new benchmark. Image courtesy Orchard Piper

Jolson Architecture have conceived a fresh project for developer Orchard Piper titled Washington Street. Six oversize dwellings will be located within the three level complex, including a 'super penthouse' expected to fetch in excess of $15 million. A breakdown of internal area size speaks toward the luxury status of Washington Street.

Dual ground floor residences range between 589sqm and 648sqm, including large external terrace/gardens in excess 200sqm. Three first floor abodes average 260sqm of internal living while the 'super penthouse' is precisely that: 570sqm of internal space complimented by a 372sqm external terrace. A total of 942sqm ranks Washington Street's penthouse as one of the largest penthouse apartments available in Melbourne.

Luxury to us is about making the most of the intangibles, such as light, proportion and aspect, not just the combination of the most expensive items available. We achieve a greater outcome by focusing on creating value through relentless and obsessive design.

Saving money through value management is a fruitless task when compared to the benefit of a truly design led outcome. It’s very rare to find a site where you can completely take the brakes of your design team. Washington Street is a true expression of the collaborative talents we have employed on this project.

Luke McKie, Orchard Piper
Return of the luxury penthouse
An extended bedroom goes toward Washington Street's grandeur. Image courtesy Orchard Piper

Yarra House

On a smaller land plot yet with height and never-to-be-built-out views to burn, the under construction Yarra House aims to bring dual penthouses to the South Yarra's Forrest Hill precinct. Designed by Scott Walker of Hassell Studio, the ‘North East Penthouse’ and ‘North West Penthouse’ together act as the crowning glory for the 26 level tower.

Refined stone benchtops, bespoke ensuites, fireplaces, floor-to-ceiling glazing, extensive walk-in robes, designated studies, kitchen walk-in pantries and entertaining space are included in the either three or four-bedroom residences, depending upon the buyers preference. At up to $3.995 million the penthouses represent a departure from the norm in Forrest Hill.

Return of the luxury penthouse
The best of Yarra House. Image courtesy Michael Yates & Co

Closer to the CBD a number of other prestige penthouse apartments and developments have appeared on the radar. highlighted what will likely be Melbourne's most exclusive development at 502 Albert Street, East Melbourne with its massive sky homes, each of which could be considered a penthouse in its own right.

That a handful of luxury penthouses have been released to market loosely around the same time tends to suggest that the top end of the apartment market is still quite healthy with perceived underlying demand; the proof is in the penthouse (so to speak).

Mark Baljak

Mark Baljak was a co-founder of He passed away on Thursday 8th of November 2018 after a battle with cancer. He was 37. Mark was a keen traveller, having visited all six permanently-inhabited continents and had a love of craft beer. One of his biggest passions was observing the change that has occurred in Melbourne over the past two decades. In that time he built an enormous library of photos, all taken by him, which tracked the progress of construction on building sites from across metropolitan Melbourne.

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