Ophir Guesthouse

Address:13 Cooper Grove
Suburb:Sorrento

This Guest House was built out of the local limestone, with red brick quoining and window detailing, in the early 20th century. It represents a distinctive building type that became associated with Sorrento. On this larger scale Whitehall Guesthouse, close to the ocean beach, survives today. The typology was also used in smaller scale houses, a number of which remain in Ocean Beach Road, and commercial premises on Ocean Beach Road. During summer seasons such guesthouses were in high demand. The fancy dress ball held at the Ophir in 1914 gives a taste of the times and holds an echo of the life in this high-class seaside resort. Such entertainment, dancing and music were also a hallmark of the journey to and from Melbourne on the paddle steamers which transported the thousands of visitors in the high season.