POINT PIPER SUBURB SPOTLIGHT
Point Piper is a small, Harbourside eastern suburb of Sydney. Point Piper is located 6 kilometres east of the Sydney’s CBD. The suburb of Point Piper sits on Sydney harbour, beside the suburbs of Rose Bay, Bellevue Hill and Double Bay.
Point Piper is home to some of the most expensive and exclusive homes in Australia. There are only eleven streets in Point Piper; the main road is Wolseley road. The price per sqm of real estate in Point Piper is one of the most expensive in the world, with property writer Cindy Martin calculating in 2002 that the total value of the properties on the 1km waterfront section of Wolseley Road was at $720 million.
A small suburb of only a few streets, Point Piper is home to the Scots College rowing shed – (off Wolseley road), Royal Motor Yacht Club (21 Wunulla Road) and Royal Prince Edward Yacht Club. Seven Shillings beach is one of Sydney’s most disputed beaches. while, as a general rule, private beaches do not exist in this country, an unusual legal compromise limits public access to “below the mean high water mark during daylight hours”.
Point Piper's European history began as part of a 76ha land grant by Governor Macquarie to Captain John Piper in 1820. Piper had control of customs and all Harbour matters, a lucrative position which enabled him to vastly increase the size of his land holding and build the finest house, then, in Sydney on the point. He named it Henrietta villa, after the second name of Gov Macquarie's wife, Elizabeth, and it quickly became the most prestigious social venue in town. However, the flamboyant and extravagant lifestyle exceeded even his resources and he was soon deeply in debt.
In 1827 it became apparent that he had embezzled 13,000 pounds from the customs revenues which together with other debts amounted to millions in modern value. The mortified Piper made a curiously grand suicide attempt, having himself rowed out into the harbour, and to the strains of his naval band, jumping overboard. He survived to retire to a more modest rural life."