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A Glamorous 1970s Holgar & Holgar Home Hits The Market

On The Market

Architects Holgar & Holgar, founded by husband and wife John and Helen Holgar, were responsible for some of Melbourne’s most glamorous mid-to-late 20th century Australian homes. 

Often complete with marble flooring, gold-plated fittings and lavish chandeliers, their opulent Hollywood-inspired designs represented a reawakening of luxurious living in post-war Australia. 

One of the duo’s homes, 48 Edward Street, Elsternwick, has recently hit the market. Featuring a recent renovation by Flack Studio, the 1970s property brings together the original iconic curvilinear exterior with a rich, contemporary interior.

It’s the ultimate family (or party) house!

28th January, 2022

Architects Holgar & Holgar, founded by husband and wife John and Helen Holgar, were responsible for some of Melbourne’s most glamorous mid-to-late 20th century Australian homes – one of which is on the market! Photo – Arc Studio Ink

The home contains four bedrooms and three bathrooms over two-storeys, before a north-facing backyard. Photo – Arc Studio Ink

The purpose-built music studio. Photo – Arc Studio Ink

The floor plan has easily adapted to the current owners’ ever-changing family needs. Photo – Arc Studio Ink

The ultimate family (or party) house! Photo – Arc Studio Ink

The property has a fully self-contained guest apartment, in addition to the main house. Photo – Arc Studio Ink

Amelia Barnes
Friday 28th January 2022

‘We knew from the moment we walked through the door that this home was special.’ – Dean Cherny

A  classic Holgar & Holgar home by architects John Holgar (1922-2006) and Helen Holgar (1923-2012) is ‘palatial in every sense’ according to architectural historian Simon Reeves. After emigrating to Australia, the Polish-born couple designed numerous Australian homes together from the 1960s to the early ‘90s in their ‘flagrant luxury’ style, one of which is currently for sale

Beyond a signature curvilinear facade lies four bedrooms and three bathrooms over two-storeys, before a north-facing backyard. 

Current owners Dean Cherny, DJ and retail tech entrepreneur (founder of Marketing Melodies, storePlay, and SocialQ), and family first came across the house 13 years ago, and couldn’t pass up the opportunity to own such an iconic 1970s design.

‘Technically we were just ‘researching’ when we stumbled across the listing, but we knew from the moment we walked through the door that this home was special. We both love mid-century design and were familiar with the architectural pedigree of Holgar & Holgar,’ says Dean. ‘Acutely aware that homes like this are hard to come by, we transitioned from research to purchase within 24 hours of viewing!’

Since then, the home’s flexible floor plan has easily adapted to the couple and their children’s ever-changing needs. Its generous proportions are also highly conducive to entertaining, as many guests can attest to!

‘Let’s just say that more than a couple of friends who came to visit us remembered attending one of the legendary parties hosted by the former owner of our home!’ says Dean. ‘The house is definitely made for entertaining – maybe it has something to do with the disco ball in the living room?! And yes, we will be leaving that in the house for the next owners of this home.’

More recently, Flack Studio were engaged to update the kitchen and bathrooms. ‘We knew David [Flack]’s love for mid-century architecture combined with his creative ingenuity would yield a design outcome that was sympathetic to the era without compromising on luxury and function,’ says Dean. ‘During the day it is light and inviting, and thanks to David’s clever lighting plan, we are able to transform the kitchen into a moody bar-like space in the evening.’ 

Last but not least, this property comes with the added benefit of two very attractive modern-day luxuries: a fully self-contained guest apartment, and a purpose-built music studio. 

‘The guest apartment has its own street entrance and can be completely sealed off from the main house,’ says Dean. The reality of the last two years has seen this space become the most epic home office one could dream of.’ 

48 Edward Street, Elsternwick VIC is listed with Bill Stavrakis and Daniel Ashton at Biggin & Scott Elsternwick, and will go to auction on Saturday February 19 at noon. Check out the full listing here.

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