Hitting the magical heights

Wandana. (Pictures: Supplied)

Carole Levy

Neighbours who met up when camping outside the land sales office before the first sales release are now chatting over fences in Villawood’s stunning hilltop estate, Wandana, writes CAROLE LEVY.

This delightful parcel of land has panoramic views across Geelong and Corio Bay to the You Yangs and Melbourne, as well as across the Bellarine, Surf Coast and out to Bass Strait. Turn west, and sunsets do their thing as light glides down over Mount Moriac and the undulating Barrabools.

As Villawood executive director Rory Costelloe says, “Whichever way you turn, you’re on a winner at Villawood Properties’ premium ‘Life at its Peak’ project.”

Now, Wandana’s exclusive southern aspect, Zenith, is coming to market, with every expectation these lots will be snapped up as quickly as earlier releases.

Wandana’s more than just a well-elevated part of the world. It’s a place that’s been part of Geelong’s psyche for well over a century – certainly since printer John Cochrane Brownhill gave Geelong a public park there in 1907, known at the time as Panamora Heights.

His offspring maintained a lengthy media association with Geelong; two sons editing the Geelong Advertiser – one of them, Walter Randolph, also authoring the definitive 1955 doorstopper, The History of Geelong and Corio Bay. Also a World War I hero, Walter was mentioned in despatches and was a recipient of the Meritorious Service Medal.

The Brownhills are recalled in Brownhill Drive, in the first stage of Villawood’s Wandana.

It’s fitting but no surprise that another long-time Geelong tribe had championed the Brownhill cause: the Fagg family, with Barry Fagg at the helm, armed with a weighty catalogue of historical information.

The Fagg’s are part of a four-way venture to develop Wandana, which Villawood brought to market in October 2017 to such buyer inquiry that the first tranche of lots had to be publicly auctioned to keep the punters happy.

No surprise, either, that these first lots drew an average half million dollars each. The best lots in town were always going to attract fierce interest, including a 20-bid battle for one block.

Two hundred people turned out for the event, by the way. As Villawood executive director Rory Costelloe said at the time, it was “setting a new benchmark for greenfield sites in Geelong”.

Wandana’s popularity has been propelled by its affordable premium profile. Established homes in the hills and slopes of neighbouring Highton regularly fetch million-dollar prices on the market.

Wandana, for the same price or less, offers a top-notch location and custom homes that don’t need upgrading or renovating.

“This is significantly cheaper than the surrounding houses yet in a prime location,” Mr Costelloe says.

“Buyers who want to live in a great area like Wandana – with magical views – realise the value of their house and land package is far more affordable than buying an established house.

“And designing and building your own dream home is better than buying a pre-loved home, and having to renovate it to meet your own needs.”

Geelong’s best luxury builders – the likes of Derbyshire, Malishev and others – have found a new place for their clients to call home at Wandana.

All up, Wandana features 195 diverse lots, ranging from 350-1267 square metres.

Villawood gives sales priority, with a $20,000 price saving, to care industry workers to help ensure that police, nurses, firefighters, teachers, health staff and others are able to buy in the community where they work.

Zenith, the final 25 per cent of Wandana, offers the very best of the estate, facing onto Drewan Park which is presently receiving an $800,000 upgrade.

The window of opportunity to be a part of this geographic treat with its bay-to-ocean views is closing. And as they say, when it’s gone it’s gone.

So, if you’re interested, it’s time to pick up the decision-making process. And if you are of two minds, Rory Costelloe offers a persuasive argument:

“Wandana is stunning and the buyer interest we’ve had reflects this. These are the only blocks like this in Geelong with the opportunity to build on.”

Wandana Sales Office, corner Barrabool Road and City View Drive, Wandana Heights. Inquiries: 1300 030 904 or www.villawoodproperties.com.au. Open for private appointments – call Yash on 0425 600 511.