Hillview Garages & Precincts | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

Culture and heritage


Hillview Garages & Precincts

Item details

Name of item: Hillview Garages & Precincts
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Residential buildings (private)
Category: Other - Residential Buildings (private)
Primary address: 1334-1340 Pacific Highway, Turramurra, NSW 2074
County: Cumberland
Local govt. area: Ku-Ring-Gai
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
1334-1340 Pacific HighwayTurramurraKu-Ring-Gai CumberlandPrimary Address


Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
Department of Planning and InfrastructureState Government 

Statement of significance:

The Hillview Group, including the original cottage, the c.1913 guesthouse, the garages, and the various landscape elements, are an excellent and rare example of a grand private boarding house, built on the Upper North shore following the opening of the railway. The prominent hilltop setting of the house and the spectacular views over the harbour, add to the significance of the property. The garages are a significant element of the Hillview Group, having maintained their setting in relationship to the main house. They are indicative of the grand stature of the place and the aspirations of its wealthy owner.
Date significance updated: 04 Mar 99
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Designer/Maker: Unknown
Builder/Maker: Unknown
Construction years: 1890-1913
Physical description: 1913 Guesthouse: Federation Queen Anne style building, of face brick with a terra cotta tiled roof. The elevations are asymmetrically arranged with projecting timber verandahs and bay windows. It has a grand front entrance with substantial stone columns, stone quoining and arch. The building is well detailed and constructed of high quality materials and finishes throughout. There is a c.1926 two storey addition to the eastern side of the building, which facilitated its conversion to flats. Although not of the same quality as the original construction, the addition does not detract from the overall architectural integrity of the place.

Cottage: A Late Victorian brick cottage, probably built on speculation c.1890. The building has had a number of additions, mostly at the turn of the century and the overall character of the building is of the Federation rather than Victorian era. The house features unusual terra cotta block wings and it appears that the main facade may originally have featured the same material. A rear wing was added in 1915 and in 1926 the building was converted into four flats. Substantial internal alterations were made in 1996.

Garages: the building consists of six garages with a three bedroom residence above. The style is reminiscent of a coach house with large central doors balanced by lower openings on both sides. The garages retain the following original details: timber roller shutters to the two northern garages; arched timber, ledged, braced and sheeted doors to the two central garages; a mechanic's pit; two unusual cast iron and tile chimney pieces in the flat above; quality joinery including awning windows that sit under the eaves; early gas lighting filaments in the garages. The original spatial arrangement of the residence has been retained, although the opening between the two main living spaces has been infilled.

Front Fence: impressive sandstone wall, of random rubble construction with rubble faced pillars. There are iron gates to the entrance.

Grounds: Significant mature plantings remain, including a rose garden area with formal lawn.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
The buildings used for the hospital are in good condition overall. The garages appear to be vacant, and have cracks developing in the wall around the central balcony.
Date condition updated:12 Jan 99
Modifications and dates: 1915, 1926, 1996
Further information: Garages - general maintenance is required as cracking and mortar failure is evident; present roller doors are unsympathetic to the building.
Buildings - ensure that the hospital use does not affect any remaining significant interior features.
Grounds - the overall landscape needs attention to integrate the entire property, and better reflect the former use and layout of the property.
Current use: Hospital (eastern portion), residence (garages)
Former use: Residence, health resort, boarding house


Historical notes: The original cottage appears to have been built c.1890 to take advantage of the land boom expected to follow the opening of the railway line. The site was close to the Eastern Road Station (later Turramurra Station) and enjoyed spectacular views. Both owners of the property, Ian Auprince and E.S.W. Paul, realised the potential in the site and eventually developed the site as a grand boarding house and "health resort". From his original purchase of allotments of land in Section 3 of Boyd's Estate in 1893, Auprince extended the boundaries of the property twice with further purchases of land in 1899 and 1902. Paul purchased even more land in 1907 and 1913, thus creating the large estate that Hillview occupied until the 1960s. From at least as early as 1902, the property was used as a health resort/boarding house and was known as "Hill View". It was probably at this time that Auprince made the first additions to the original cottage, building the eastern and western terra cotta block wings. The boarding house was reputedly a quality establishment and the property was self supporting with vegetable gardens, orchard, poultry and even a cow. In 1905 Auprince leased the property to Miss Murray who ran the boarding house for some years. She was still running the property when Auprince sold it to Paul in 1907. Between 1913 and 1927 Paul made various improvements to the property, including the construction of the grand two storey guesthouse behind the original cottage, in 1913. Its orientation to the south took advantage of the spectacular views and the guest house offerred all manner of conveniences including a library, dining room, breakfast room, morning room and conservatory. At the same time, substantial terracing of the site was undertaken including the building of a croquet lawn adjacent to the guesthouse and the provision of a carriage loop encircling the two guesthouse buildings and providing a grand entrance. By 1915 the six car garage had been constructed on the lately acquired western alotments. Further additions were made to the guest house group, including the construction of a rear wing to the back of the cottage, linking the earlier eastern and western wings. Although the property was operated as a guest house, Paul was a permanent resident occupying the best rooms facing the view. Between 1924 and 1926 Paul converted the property into eight flats. Kitchens and bathrooms were added to the existing buildings with a two storey addition constructed on the western side of the main guest house. The cottage was converted into four flats, the main house into three flats and an eight flat conversion was constructed above the garages. Despite the change of use, the property continued to be well maintained with permanent staff employed as housekeepers, gardeners and a caretaker/chaffeur. Further improvements were made including extensive terracing and landscaping of the south-eastern portion of the site and the construction of a new tennis court. A new stone wall was constructed along the front boundary of the property which incorporated the substantial wrought iron gates brought out from England. Most of Paul's improvements remain intact today. Following Paul's death, subdivision of the estate was approved in 1955, although the first sale of land did not occur until 1963-4. The lot containing the garages was rezoned for "county road" purposes, with the DMR planning to construct a road through the site. In 1974 following disputes between the owners and the local council concerning zoning and development issues, the Cumberland County Council purchased the eastern portion of the estate (containing the original cottage and the guest house). After a series of short term tenancies, the council leased the property to the Hornsby Ku-Ring-Gai Hospital who redeveloped it as the Hillview Community Health Resource and Information Centre. In 1980 this portion of the site was purchased by the hospital. The remaining portion, containing the garages, remained in the joint ownership of the DMR and the Department of Urban Affairs and Planning.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Accommodation-Activities associated with the provision of accommodation, and particular types of accommodation – does not include architectural styles – use the theme of Creative Endeavour for such activities. (none)-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The Hillview Group has historical significance as an example of an early 20th century guest house and health resort. Many such boarding houses proliferated on the Upper North Shore at the turn of the century, but few have survived with the degree of intactness exhibited by this property. The garages are amongst the most intact elements of the property and are of particular importance for their demonstration of the scale and vision on which the property was predicated. The site is of further significance for its association with Mr Paul, a former managing director of Schweppes Ltd, and a notable Sydney business man.
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The Hillview Group has aesthetic significance as a particularly fine example of a turn of the century boarding house in the Queen Ann style. The setting of the guest house, atop the hill and commanding extensive veiws, is of particular significance. The garages are also of high aesthetic significance for the competence of their design and execution and the high quality of the finishes. The garages indicate a grander than usual concept for a service building of this period and perhaps more than any other element express the aspirations of its wealthy owner.
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The Hillview Group has social significance through its strong association with the great boarding house era of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries and in particular its use as a "health resort", a popular notion amongst city dwellers at this time. It has further social significance for its association with Mr Paul, a prominent Sydney businessman. The garages have particular social significance for their association with Mr Paul, as they were purpose designed to house his chaffeur driven Rolls Royce and demonstrate clearly his social aspirations.
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
The Hillview Group has technical/research significance for its demonstration of turn of the century building techniques. It is of particular significance for the use of terra cotta blocks as an external construction material, a highly unusual choice. The garages are of particular significance for their high quality construction and specifically for the mechanic's pit in the floor. Its presence is highly unusual, if not unique, in a private garage of this period.
SHR Criteria f)
The group is of relative rarity for its degree of intactness and its ability to demonstrate a particular phase of Sydney life which has long since gone.
SHR Criteria g)
The group is an excellent representative example of a turn of the century boarding house/health resort built by and for wealthy North Shore socialites.
Integrity/Intactness: The site is considered to be highly intact and all the buildings have retained a high degree of integrity.
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Recommended management:

Continue with existing arrangements; see comments.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register 349002816 Dec 98   

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
s.170 Register DUAP1999 Paul Davies Pty Ltd  Yes

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: State Government
Database number: 3490028

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