The Brighton Beach Bathing Boxes are an iconic landmark in Melbourne. The run of 82 timber framed, weatherboard huts with corrugated iron roofs are uniform aside from the vibrant paint work on the exterior.
The original boxes were built in the Victorian era in the 1800’s to provide modesty to beach goers, they were used as changing huts for ladies. At the time, residents of the Bayside municipality would put their name down on a waiting list to acquire a box and pay around $11,000.
Today, these bathing boxes are typically passed down through generations and kept in the family, however occasionally they are sold on the market. According to local real estate agent Hocking Stuart, there is usually significant interstate and international interest when one of the boxes go on the market, but the Bayside City Council have legislated that only a Bayside rate payer is eligible to own one of these exclusive huts.
In 1999, the first box was sold at auction by Hocking Stuart Brighton’s John Clarkson. The box was sold for $58,000.
Today, the price to own one of these landmarks has increased somewhat. Last weekend saw a new sales record created. Box 44 was reportedly sold for $307,000 according to Hocking Stuart.
Image from: realestate.com.au
The Director of Hodges Real Estate says that whilst the Beach Boxes are very exclusive and luxurious purchases, they are also smart investments – “Why buy and expensive boat which depreciates when you can buy a ‘limited edition’ Brighton Beach Box with long term proven investment track record that never goes backwards in value?”
Fun facts about the beach boxes:
- Owners are prohibited from renting or subletting out their bathing box
- These boxes are strictly prohibited from being used as accommodation, and have no running water or electricity connected
- There are strict guidelines regarding how the external of the box is decorated, they must not be used as advertising or be painted in any colours that are affiliated with a brand