Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Man-Cave

The Den, the Shed, the Cubby. Call it what you want, over the last few years we have see the popularity of these "havens of manliness" grow and grow. Once upon a time these venues of virilaty went by the name of the shed or the garage, a place where men could be men and pursue their passions. Some men will claim that it is a place for them to take some time out from the "ol ball-and-chain", others will say that it is a place for him and his buddies, but really its just a place where boys can play with their toys.
And what toys some boys have! In this post is just a small collection of some fantastic Temples to Manliness!

The Sports Man-Cave
Sport is a way of life for a man. If you don't enjoy the competition and the smell of other sweaty men, then you are just not a man!

The Golf Man-Cave
There are many women out there who know curse the day their husband took up golf. It was the day they became known as a "golf widow" but with the Golf Man-Cave, the hubby will always be at home, slicing shots into computer generated woods and putting around the vacuum cleaner to win the Home-bound PGA!

The Nightclub Man-Cave
What man hasn't wanted to turn his humble garage into an asylum for alcohol? This man-cave is worth charging an entry fee for!

Serial Killer Man-Cave
When your man's obsession with guns spills over into a converted bunker, you'd have to wonder if he is really worth keeping. The big brass vault door is to keep him locked in there until he's run out of ammunition... about 4 weeks!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

"The Anchorage" - 44 Louisa Road, Birchgrove

Having written about the rich history of "Birch Grove House", Australia's second oldest home, in a previous blog, I thought I would talk about another home still standing in Louisa Road that sits literally across the street from where the old Birch Grove House once stood. 44 Louisa Road - The Anchorage.

Standing to be what some claim as the tallest home on the Balmain peninsula, "The Anchorage" at 44 Louisa Road, Birchgrove was built in 1896 by John Gibson. Gibson was the inaugural occupant of the home and was, according to the State Library of NSW, the chief Engineer of the Cockatoo Island Dockyard. Previously known as "Fitzroy Villa" and built in the Italianate style, The Anchorage, has a unique feature - a Widow's Walk situated at the top of the flat roof, towering over the homes of Louisa Road.

Back in the early days of Birchgrove, there used to be a coal mine situated in the spot where Birchgrove Public School now stands. This was the first coal mine in Australia and once the coal was brought to the surface, it was placed on to railed trolleys that ran to a nearby wharf and shipped away. The Widow's Walk (or Captain's Walk) at 44 Louisa Road, played an important role in providing an over watch look out for the shipping lanes to and from the coal mine, as well as, a clear line of sight to Gibson's Dockyards at Cockatoo Island.

While the original architectural plans for the home still survive at the State Library of NSW in linen and paper, the home has recently been restored to its former charm but with modern amenities. Currently up for sale with Kate Lorden of Sarah Lorden Real Estate, the home is five levels of large rooms, all with spectacular waterfront views. It has its own private jetty, pool and the Widow's Walk is perfect for entertaining or watching the boats sail by.

You are invited to view the home at its first open house this Saturday 11th June 2011 between 12.00 - 12.45pm. It is an amazing piece of Australian heritage in Birchgrove's most exclusive street.