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Flat Life: St Kilda Hill and the History of Flats in Melbourne


This walking tour presents St Kilda Hill as Melbourne’s experimental building laboratory through its century-long development of medium and high density modes of urban dwelling. The tour strings together a sequence of flat types, ranging from some of our earliest experiments in semi-serviced 'bachelor's' apartments, purpose-built walk-ups, sub-divided mansions, ‘60s six-packs and European high-rises, through to the glitziest of contemporary developments. We’ll look at the socio-economic forces that drove them, the social milieux they generated and the architectural styles and imagery that characterised them.

Walking tour will be given by David Brand, architect. David offers a unique perspective of this cultural landscape. He has lived in its midst for the last 40 years. His professional involvement in it as an architect started with the City of St Kilda’s 20th-century Architecture Heritage Study of 1991, which led to local activism to save various iconic landmarks like the Espy Hotel, before three terms as its local city Councillor and many years teaching architectural history and post-grad architectural design—much of it focused on local sites of urban contention.  

This is a two-hour walking tour up and around St Kilda Hill, and is moderately paced with a limited group size. The tour is presented purely from the street view, without entering the buildings themselves. Coffee in Acland St is a possibility for those interested in continuing the discussion.

Image: (1) Letterboxes of St Kilda. Photo: David Brand.

Important Details

Time & Date

Thursday 8 February

Non-members: $65 + booking fee
Members: $55 + booking fee

- This walking tour includes moderate activity covering approximately 3km, with some areas of uneven ground are requires a basic level of walking fitness. Covered and comfortable shoes are essential.
- This tour is not fully wheelchair accessible. Please contact us to discuss any accessibility needs. 
- This tour will conclude at the corner of The Esplanade and Robe Street, St Kilda.


Partially wheelchair accessible


16 years and above


St Kilda Station, 60 Fitzroy St, St Kilda VIC 3182

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