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Elwood was originally swampland; installation of the Elwood Canal turned it into a habitable area. Elwood was initially planned out around the two central geographic features of Elster Creek (now Elwood Canal), and promontory at Point Ormond, once known as Little Red Bluff.
Fever brought the first large group of settlers to Elwood, when the desperate immigrant ship Glen Huntley landed at Point Ormond in 1840, flying the fever flag and initiating Victoria’s first quarantine station and St Kilda’s first graveyard.
Originally a working middle class suburb in the early part of the 20th century, Elwood has overseen waves of gentrification and is now one of Melbourne's most sought after bayside addresses. Large period houses, many from the 1920s and 30s with art deco touches, along with proximity to beach and foreshore, have made the area very attractive.
Despite its history of adversity, a modern suburb now thrives by the bay in one of Melbourne’s most prized locations. Café life in the Elwood village seems a long way from the flood, fire and fever of earlier days. Coloured lorikeets flock to the green corridors of shady trees, a native forest has been planted on the foreshore and the once despised canal area is undergoing rejuvenation as a haven for walkers and cyclists.
Elwood is known for its mix of Victorian mansions, Edwardian cottages and interwar apartment buildings. Infill development in recent decades has changed the character of the suburb, however some examples still remain. La Tourelle flats, 47A Brighton Road, corner of Dickens Street, is one of the many large blocks of interwar flats in the area, around Brighton Road.
You will fall in love with Elwood’s leafy charm, village feel and gentle pace. It has so much to offer – great bars and cafés, picturesque beach, city views and outdoors lifestyle. Point Ormond is a focal point with its sweeping views back to the city and of the bay – you may even be lucky and see a dolphin or seal. This is the spot to enjoy one of Melbourne’s best sunsets. If you are feeling energetic hire a bike and cycle the Bayside Trail, or let your journey take in the kite flying and parachutes landing in Point Ormond reserve or make your way up the Canal and then through inner Elwood to explore Elwood’s Village.
The main shopping precinct in Elwood is Ormond Road. Starting with the very groovy Turtle Café on the corner of Glen Huntly and Ormond Roads, Elwood Village haphazardly sprawls along, a health food shop here, a kite shop there, treasures from Morocco at Alafia, hand-knitted teddy bears at Red Dog. There's something for everyone at Elwood Village and the strong sense of community has been retained, the locals even starting their own Community Bank when the last of the major branches shut its doors.
Bus Routes 246 & 600For timetables & information or to plan your journey visit http://www.ptv.vic.gov.au/