Point of Difference
Oliver's Hill earliest mansion.
Renovated by Walter Burley Griffin.
Yamala was one of the earliest mansions built on Oliver’s Hill. It was purchased in 1876 by Sir John Madden (1844-1918) who later became Chief Justice of Victoria, and was appointed Lieutenant Governor in 1899; however at Yamala Madden raised cows, and pursued his hobbies of carpentry and house painting, allowing him to play the role of a country squire.
In the 1920s, the Griffins designed renovations for Yamala, whose then-owner also had business interests in Melbourne’s Capitol Theatre, which shares the distinctive architectural stamp of these architects. Some garden landscaping, a concrete pergola and the gateway entrance to Yamala Drive – a striking (re-cast) example of their work – are the only portions of the building modifications to survive later subdivision.
The 1920s playground ‘Frivolity Park’, where Frankston Pier joins the shore, also featured a series of little pavilions built to a Griffin design. Sadly, these have since been demolished.