Open House Melbourne - Como House @ Sunday, August 03, 2014

Open House Melbourne (OHM) is an event held in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia that showcases many of the city's buildings to the public. This annual event is held on the last weekend in July since 2008. They provide the public a free and rare opportunity to discover a hidden wealth of architectural, engineering and historic buildings nestled around the city. 

Well known buildings not usually open to the public are open for free public tours. 

There will be long lines at the most popular places, close to the city.

Where we went. 

Open House Weekend, unfortunately I didn't know about it months ago and enter competitions/ballots (random chance) to get into places that aren't normally open e.g. The Ballroom at Flinders! 

Wasn't feeling great so we just went to Como House in South Yarra, it was busy so I didn't get pictures of the kitchen, and then got distracted so I completely forgot. 

Built in 1847, it has been revised and added to a few times.

 A Sitting Room - There were many of these.

Another sitting area, and dinning? Surely not set up for a family of 11? 
Though in the end there were three left.

The New Ballroom - Why I didn't ask le beau to dance idk. The room to right was the boys' room with a pool table and paddles (canoe?) and other manly things in there. There was a box piano. A what? It's a cross between a harpsicord and harp, with the harp lying on the side inside the box. Le beau recognized it while I only knew what it was by reading the 'Do not play this unless you are Mozart sign'. :P

Upstairs we go!

Door on the left leads up to the tower, unfortunately it's closed cause it's not safe to go up there. First room on the right was Freddy's Room (Freddy is a boy, only now do people also use it as a girl's name, like Charlie). I would like to add some painting to these room, as it did look a bit empty, with potential.  

Susan's Room - If you look very closely (no not in the picture) she's engraved her name on the window with her mother's diamond ring. As it's stronger than glass. And then her brother engraved something under her name. You have to be there to see it though.

One bathroom for a family of 11, how did they survive?

The balcony only accessible from the master bedroom, I'm starting to think all the chairs at this place match! We think the bed might be a single but wider. Missing modern beds which are huge. Someone suggested people were small back then.

Check out this amazing wardrobe. Behind it you can see the room divider, this room and the bedroom next to it, together was the ballroom for the 3rd family, the Browns. The 4th and final, the Armytages decided to create one downstairs (perhaps so that guests were less likely to go exploring which looking for the bathroom).

Should one panel be green instead of blue? 
The fours colours are the basic house colours.

The Crest - We think it's something with a rodent like face, arms and seas monster/tree legs.

To the right of the master bedroom is Laura's room, she was one of the 3 sisters to last live in the house. In the last years she lived in the room, and didn't leave it.

A room that seems like it should have been a hallway, was the nanny's, later governess's and then finally Laura's nurse. It was in-between the master bedroom and children's down the hallway (not the door in the picture) behind me was a hallway (picture below) that lead to the children's rooms. 

Info about the House + People - I wonder what happened to the family in the end. By now most would be dead (old age) but I would like to read more about their adventures, and what happened in the end. e.g. In the 'Young Victoria' and 'BBC Tudors' after the end there's info on what happened next, the kids they had, what they went on to me (or rule). 

Self-guided tours, I suppose if there's lots of signs with ok it would be good. Not in this case but the house was still pretty and there were tour guides floating around.  We'll be back for a full tour, though won't get pictures again. I'm suprized by who good the pictures are, especially as it is dark inside.

While we were there, there was a kid's party going on. Oh wow, I knew people rented places/things for kid's parties but have never seen it. I love styling them. These parties cost thousands and are a compretition with other parents really. Got to outdo yourself and everyone each year. I prefer just to spend that 5k or so redecorating or something. 

Upcoming tour dates... 

  • Saturday 23 August between 10:30am - 3pm
  • Wednesday 10 September at 2:00 and 3:30pm
  • Saturday 13 September between 10:30am - 3pm
  • Wednesday 5 November at 2:00 and 3:30pm
  • Wednesday 10 December at 2:00 and 3:30pm
  • Saturday 13 December between 10:30am - 3pm

Ticket prices and more info can be found here.

Have you been to Como House? Did you go to Open House Weekend?

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