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Maroubra: Come for the sprawling beach, stay for the family friendly neighbourhood

ASSA | 2020-11-30 21:17:34

There’s one question buyers have stopped asking veteran agent Veronica Perez when they’re looking at homes in Maroubra.

“I remember the days when I’d do an open house and people would always ask me about the Bra Boys,” Perez says, referring to the tattooed surf gang of the 1990s.

Just as tatts have lost their bad-boy image, Maroubra has shed its seedy reputation to emerge as a respectable, family friendly neighbourhood, offering a beautiful beach, sprawling parklands, picturesque coastal paths and a wide range of shops, cafes and restaurants.

Maroubra Beach. Photo: Vaida Savickaite

“Maroubra has one of the largest beaches along the eastern suburbs coastline,” says Perez, principal at PRD Perez Real Estate. “It’s close to the airport, fairly close to the city and now we’ve got the light rail at Kingsford, so it’s really accessible.”

Buyers can snap up Federation-era bungalows, but not as many as in Coogee or Bondi. Many homes that started life in the inter-war period have been rendered and extended so they’re almost unrecognisable from their former selves. Brick and brick-veneer houses dating from the 1960s and 1970s are more common.

Near the beachfront, daggy 1970s blocks are being transformed into stylish coastal digs. Sprayed-on popcorn-textured ceilings are easy to fix, Perez says. 

Maroubra Plaza. Photo: Vaida Savickaite

“For the owner, it costs about $7000 but it completely changes the look of the apartment. Put in timber floors, render the block and all of a sudden that 1970s look is gone.”

Maroubra is 10 kilometres south of the Sydney CBD. The bus from Anzac Parade to Martin Place takes about 35 minutes. There’s a cluster of shops, cafes and restaurants by the beach and another at South Maroubra. Pacific Square offers a bigger range of supermarkets and specialty stores while Westfield Eastgardens is also within easy reach.

Mons Ave. Photo: Vaida Savickaite

The suburb is home to two public primary schools, two Catholic primary schools, an independent French school and the Greek Orthodox St Spyridon senior campus.

Perez has noticed more buyers heading from the inner west in search of a relaxed coastal lifestyle. The neighbourhood offers more bang for your buck than beachy enclaves closer to the city.

Surfers love Maroubra for its consistent reef break. There’s a proud surf lifesaving club culture and the southern end of the beach, with its shallow rock pools, is a toddler haven. Divers come for the abundant aquatic life and two shipwrecks. The Malabar headland walk showcases some of the most spectacular coastal views in the east. 

Maroubra Beach. Photo: Vaida Savickaite

Osnat Almog moved to Maroubra in 2005, opening The Art Studio – an oceanfront art school and gallery space – in 2017.

“Over the past decade, I have witnessed the neighbourhood’s transformation into a vibrant and creative area to live in,” Almog says. “I absolutely love the Mahon rock pool, which is just across the road, and the most beautiful beach and coastal walk around the headland.”

Top home in the area

A few blocks from Heffron Park, this Federation semi offers bright, contemporary interiors and an easy-care yard with a covered timber deck and pool. A second lounge, which is set up with a built-in study space, would easily work as a fourth bedroom.

Raine & Horne Double Bay takes the home to auction with a guide of $2 million to $2.1 million.