In a further sign of Australia's booming property market, the record for the most expensive home is set to be broken when a Victorian mansion changes hands.
If the home sells for its guide price of up to £55million, it will nearly double the previous high of £28million.
Known as ‘Elaine’, the estate in Sydney has not been on the market since 1891.
The mansion has been home to four generations of the Fairfax family, Australia’s famous media dynasty.
The home sweeps down to a secluded harbour pool and beach on Point Piper, one of Sydney’s most affluent suburbs.
Built in 1863, the stunning property features a ballroom, as well as seven bedrooms, seven bathrooms, stables and a grass tennis court.
The gardens have played host to some of the city's most glittering and important private events.
And with 6,980 square metres of land that can be built upon, prospective buyers have been advised they could cash in on a development of luxury new apartments.
"Standing on that site is truly an amazing experience," said Clayton Andrews, senior vice president of Christie's International Real Estate, which is marketing the home.
"This is a spectacular historic mansion and the most significant residential listing ever to come on the Australian market. The harbour-front setting, and the knowledge that the scope is there to create something even more outstanding in the future, is really very exciting."
The Australian property market has been booming in recent years, in part fuelled by an economy flourishing from mineral exports, but also from Asian buyers looking for a safe haven for their cash.
As a result, Sydney has become one of the most expensive cities in the world to buy property. A square foot of residential space now costs an average £1,390, according to Knight Frank – though it’s still significantly cheaper than London at £2,690 a sq ft.
But if you’re looking for a home that stands to be a good investment the address is important, says Adam Ross of Savills Residential Australia.
"The house must be in a prestigious area that will be well known and envied by others. Addresses such as Point Piper, Double Bay, Rose Bay, Vaucluse, Darling Point, Bellevue Hill, Hunters Hill and Palm Beach are all considered to be addresses that will appeal. Properties that also have a view of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House are also high on the list,” he commented.
"The market picked up significantly throughout 2013 with particular emphasis on the Sydney residential market. If you look at the top 20 sales in Sydney in 2013, five of the sales exceeded $20m [£10.1m]. In 2012 there was only one sale over $20m.
"A contributing factor to the level of prices now being achieved is that not many of these big ticket homes are coming to the market, they are being tightly held, therefore when they do come up for sale they are able to command big prices."
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