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Published On: Mon, Dec 4th, 2017

Five things you didn’t know about Manly, Brisbane

It might not be home to a rugby league team or a ferry like its namesake, but the Brisbane suburb of Manly has many strings to its waterfront bow.

About 19 kilometres east of the Brisbane CBD, the seaside suburb of Manly is a place locals have known and loved for years – and interstate migrants are falling for the locale, too, it seems.

Many of the new residents have previously had a connection with Manly via its boat harbour – which is the largest in the southern hemisphere with more than 3000 dry standings and wet berths.

Fun fact: Manly Boat Harbour is the biggest in the southern hemisphere.

Fun fact: Manly Boat Harbour is the biggest in the southern hemisphere. Photo: Tammy Law

Water-loving migrants are starting to sail in now, according to Belle Property’s Renee Brace, because of the suburb’s location as well as its more affordable property prices compared to Sydney and Melbourne.

In fact, Ms Brace and her family made the move about eight years ago from Sydney for exactly the same reasons.

“I moved up here with a six-year-old and a nine-year-old, smaller blocks than what I was used to in Sydney, but you’ve got all this parkland so you just spend all your time down there,” she said.

Brisbane's bayside secret is out: The waterfront walk snaking along the edge of the bay goes for kilometres.

Brisbane’s bayside secret is out: The waterfront walk snaking along the edge of the bay goes for kilometres. Photo: Tammy Law

“It caters to families and, of course, the yachting and sailing community. But it’s a buzz. It’s a weekend destination. Lots of people come down here just to be on the foreshore.”

Wandering down Cambridge Parade on a quiet (and drizzly) Wednesday afternoon, the weekend buzz isn’t anywhere to be seen, but there are plenty of changes afoot.

Amongst the stalwarts of the Manly Hotel and Celtic Corner Bar & Bistro are trendy offerings such as the Blue Bottle Bar + Kitchen, Love Juice Superfood Bar and even an oyster bar called Shucked, which recently opened its doors near the well-known Fish Cafe.

Picturesque Cambridge Parade, Manly, hosts cute restaurants and beautiful coffee shops.

Picturesque Cambridge Parade, Manly, hosts cute restaurants and beautiful coffee shops. Photo: Tammy Law

During her time in Manly – and especially over the past two years – Ms Brace has witnessed these changes, as well as an increasing number of renovations, taking place.

“We just have a younger generation, too – whether they are executives or people with small kids – they just want to be able to walk to the village,” she said.

“It’s a very variable (market) area, so you might have a $1.3 million house next to a $500,000 house, just depending on what stage it’s at and whether it’s been renovated or it’s new.

The hilly streets of Manly have stunning views of the bay and over to South Stradbroke Island.

The hilly streets of Manly have stunning views of the bay and over to South Stradbroke Island. Photo: Tammy Law

“We are seeing quite a bit of change with some of the older places that have been lifted, renovated and modernised.”

Real Estate Institute of Queensland Eastern Suburbs Zone Chair Peter Barrett said Manly’s median house price had grown significantly over the past five years as buyers learnt of the suburb’s myriad attractions.

“It’s a very family-friendly suburb and the population has grown almost 25 per cent in the past decade, from 3046 in 2006 to more than 4000 in 2016, which is driving price growth,” he said.

“The area has been the recent focus for developers and some exciting projects are on the horizon here and in neighbouring Wynnum, including an eight-screen cinema and retail complex.

“This area has been earmarked for significant growth in the South East Queensland Regional plan, with height limits extended to eight storeys, plus this bayside suburb is within easy commuting distance of the Brisbane CBD.”

So it appears that Manly is on the cusp of change – although not all long-term locals are reportedly keen to see it transform.

However, with a median price far below other southern city’s seaside suburbs, it’s hard not to see the area gentrify more in the years ahead.

And those pesky southern buyers are already staking their claim on the suburb.

“We had one recently that sold prior to auction, and it was the first open, and the gentleman had been there 10 minutes and he put in a cracking offer and just went, ‘I want it’.

“The competition is definitely there. People are ready to buy and are ready to roll straight away,” she said.

Local buyers best take note that if they snooze beside the seaside, they might just lose out on owning a piece of the Manly pie while its median price is still on the “right side” of $1 million.

5 things you didn’t know about Manly

1) It’s home to the largest boat harbour facility in the southern hemisphere.

2) The Manly Railway Station was opened in 1889 and provides rail services to Brisbane and Cleveland.

3) In 1882 land was sold by auction for the “Manly Beach Estate”, apparently named after Manly in Sydney.

4) Manly State School opened in 1910 and is so popular, parents have been known to camp overnight to secure a place.

5) A heritage-listed beach house at 150 Kingsley Terrace was built as a holiday home by politician Michael Gannon in about 1888.

Originally Published: www.domain.com.au

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