Iconic Ballamac House in Coogee Set for Transformation into Luxury Apartments

Ballamac House
Photo Credit: Central Element

Sydney-based property developer Central Element has been granted development approval to restore and redevelop the historic Ballamac House in Coogee into a collection of eight luxury apartments. 



The landmark property, nestled in the north headland, has long been considered as one of the area’s most esteemed addresses. The redevelopment project aims to fuse historical elegance with contemporary luxury, marking a new era for the 1860s icon.

Ballamac House, located at 39 Arcadia Street, has stood as a premier example of Coogee’s rich heritage for over a century. Previously converted into a strata title in the 1970s, the building’s storied history includes stints as a private residence, hotel, and infirmary, with various Australian luminaries. Even British royalty have graced its halls.

The project under DA/388/2022 encompasses the conservation of external and internal walls, fireplaces, mantel pieces, and decorative ceilings. A wrap-around verandah will be meticulously reconstructed, paying homage to the luxury of estate living from a bygone era.

The restoration will include the conversion of the heritage Victorian house into two of the eight oceanfront residences, with the additional six apartments housed in a new building to the east, affording stunning ocean views. Spanning nearly 1,500 square metres and rising to almost 15 metres in height across four stories, the development’s architectural grandeur is set to match its historical significance.

Ballamac House in Coogee
Photo Credit: DA/388/2022

Each of the eight residences, boasting three bedrooms, will command captivating ocean views from Coogee’s northern headland. The rooftop and penthouse apartments, spanning two levels, will offer an exceptional vantage point, with the penthouse featuring lavish interiors and panoramic vistas that stretch from Gordons Bay to Wylie’s Baths. 

The penthouse’s luxurious design includes multiple ensuites, a study, a flexible-use second living room, and an expansive wrap-around terrace for seamless indoor-outdoor living.

Central Element’s Managing Director, Nathan Chivas, expressed enthusiasm for the partnership with renowned architectural firm Tonkin Zulaikha Greer (TZG), responsible for designing the eight luxury apartments. TZG, a seasoned collaborator with Central Element on heritage projects, will ensure the restoration retains the property’s original charm.  

“We are thrilled to partner with TZG Architects and Jane Irwin Landscape Architecture to bring the 1860s icon back to its original excellence,” Mr Chivas affirmed, highlighting the dedication to preserving Ballamac House’s legacy. 

Award-winning Jane Irwin Landscape Architecture will craft the property’s exterior spaces, adhering to the site’s historical context and panoramic views. The landscaping will incorporate original sandstone elements alongside native species, enhancing the property’s character while creating a tranquil communal outdoor area with gardens and a magnesium pool for future residents to enjoy. 



With construction anticipated to commence in late 2023, the redevelopment of Ballamac House is poised to redefine luxury living in Coogee, blending heritage charm with modern elegance to create a distinctive oceanfront residential offering.

Randwick Local Planning Panel approved DA/388/2022 in July 2023 and has been referred to the Heritage Planner. 

Published 31-Aug-2023