LABASSA: House of Dreams



ISBN: 9781743797006 Category:

Vicki Shuttleworth


Labassa, with its Euro-Germanic motifs was the most opulent and highly decorated mansion built during the 1880s Land Boom. Most of Australia’s historic mansions are now long gone but Labassa’s unique ambience survives with its historic decoration.

The story of Labassa is traced from modest villa, to mansion, to 20th century run-down flats. Finally, in 1980, the National Trust rescued the property with an 11th hour purchase.

The 700-plus people who once lived there, included millionaires, movie stars, war heroes and refugees. In the 1960s a generation of artists turned it into a bohemian enclave. The timely role played by many of these residents in the mansion’s miraculous survival is revealed through their personal stories vividly featured in this lavishly designed publication.

Additional information

Weight 943 g
Dimensions 20.7 x 26.2 cm
Publisher name Bloomings Books Pty Ltd
Publication date 20 January 2021
Number of pages 192
Format Hardback
Contributors Foreword by Barry Owen Jones AC
Dimensions 20.7 x 26.2 cm
Weight 943 g


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Vicki Shuttleworth spent ten years researching and writing for the journal Labassa Lives, which chronicles stories by and about the various owners, architects, artisans and residents of Labassa.

Labassa: House of Dreams is Vicki's first major published book. She is a member of the Friends of Labassa group and a volunteer for the National Trust of Australia (Victoria).

Barry Owen Jones AC FAA is on the National Trust's list of Australian Living Treasures and is a brilliant polymath, writer, teacher, lawyer, social activist, quiz champion and former State and Federal Minister.

He campaigned against the death penalty throughout the 1960s, most particularly against the execution of Ronald Ryan.