Rippon Lea is a large nineteenth century mansion surrounded by 7 hectares of Victorian pleasure gardens. It is listed on the National Heritage Register because it is one of the finest examples of an original suburban estate in Australia.
Rippon Lea is open to the public all year and has events, exhibitions and offers wedding and venue hire.
In 1868 Marion and Frederick Sargood purchased 11.3 hectares of scrubland in Elsternwick and began building a mansion and Victorian gardens as a lifetime’s work.
Sargood was knighted in 1890 and when he died in 1903, Lady Sargood sold the property to the Premier of Victoria, Sir Thomas Bent. When Bent died in 1909, Rippon Lea’s next owner Benjamin Nathan moved in with his family in 1910. Nathan’s daughter, Mrs Louisa Jones inherited the property in 1935. Louisa and her family loved entertaining and Rippon Lea, after its redecoration in 1938, became the scene of lavish balls, parties, family weddings, and musical performances.During the 1960s and early 1970s Louisa, with her children’s support, fought a compulsory acquisition order to give four acres of Rippon Lea’s pleasure grounds to the adjoining Australian Broadcasting Commission. The fight was won and upon her death in 1972, Rippon Lea passed to the care of the National Trust.
The property is also significant for the extensive nineteenth century basement kitchen complex, the range of bathrooms illustrative of the different periods of ownership, the comprehensive 1930’s entertainment complex and intact dining room interior, the stables complex, surviving ironwork in the conservatory, port cochère and elsewhere and elaborate water reticulation system.
For the latest details of things to do at Rippon Lea visit the Rippon Lea Website.
Please note that ahead of your upcoming visit to Rippon Lea Estate, the bathrooms located around the Pool are under maintenance. Please use the bathrooms located at the Gatehouse on your way into the property or the portable bathrooms located on the lawn. Thank you for your understanding.
Super 70s Exhibition – Friday 27 July to Sunday 4 November
Celebrate one of the most eclectic fashion decades at Rippon Lea from Friday 27 July to Sunday 4 November. Super 70s looks at what Melburnians wore during this iconic decade, whether rocking out to Sherbet at Festival Hall, social gatherings in South Yarra or partying in a student share house in Carlton.
Please note – This exhibition is presented inside Rippon Lea mansion. During this time the internal furniture and fixtures may have been removed, adjusted or replaced to accommodate the exhibition pieces. Regular tours of the mansion won’t be offered during the exhibition period and will only re-commence after all original furniture and fixtures have been re-installed and once the exhibition has ended. Garden tours are still available. Please click here for more information.
Heritage Apple Trees for sale at Rippon Lea
While our Heritage Apple sale event won’t be occurring this year, our fabulous gardening team would be delighted to assist you with purchasing your very own apple tree on site at Rippon Lea. Click here to view the varieties available as of 21 February 2018, and call 9523 6095 to make a booking to collect your purchase from our gardeners.