Ascot: A Look Back in Time at One of Brisbane’s Premier Suburbs

Ascot has long been regarded as one of the best places to live in Brisbane, with its affluent neighbourhood and property values maintaining their strong growth. Take a look at its evolution into the blue-chip suburb that it is today.

With a tightly held collection of desirable and beautiful houses, Ascot is known for its picturesque tree-lined streets, hilly residential areas with lovely views of Brisbane, racecourses, and upmarket lifestyle precinct. 

Early Ascot

Historically, Ascot was occupied by the Aboriginal Turrbal group, described by explorer John Oxley as “the strongest and best-made muscular men I have seen in any country.”

The Turrbals built hunting grounds near the Brisbane River and established private ownership of specific sections of the area.

Wealthy settlers started moving into Ascot in the mid-1800s, following the clearing of lands and building of basic roads. Pastoralist James Sutherland bought a large portion of land in the area, which was later established as Sutherland Avenue, one of the highly sought-after locations in the suburb.

This section consists of 15 magnificent houses, including the heritage-listed house, Windmere. The Victorian-style house with its iron-lace verandahs is one of the finest examples of Queensland’s colonial architecture. 

The Racecourses

In the 1860s, the Eagle Farm Racecourse was established in Ascot in support of horse racing, one of the earliest sports in Brisbane. Up until the 1920s, racing stables were a frequent sight around the suburb.

Eagle Farm Racecourse
Photo Credit: State Library of Queensland
Tinkledell wins a race 1930
Photo Credit: State Library of Queensland

The Doomben Racecourse opened several years later in the 1930s and, like the Eagle Farm Racecourse, became a prominent racecourse in South East Queensland and was well-attended by the region’s most affluent families.

Happy quartet at the races 1932
Photo Credit: State Library of Queensland

Doomben was originally a property of The Crown until 1915, when it was bought and turned into a sustainable racing track.

Presentation of the Tattersall's Cup in 1933
Photo Credit: State Library of Queensland

During World War II, the racecourses were primarily converted into Camp Ascot for the Allied troops. Several buildings and homes in the suburbs were also occupied by the U.S. forces, including the Ascot spy house, Nyrambla, where the Central Bureau intercepted and decoded Japanese transmissions. 

Today, the Brisbane Racing Club, formed in 2009, manages the racecourses and preserves the history of thoroughbred horse racing in Queensland.

Urban Growth in Ascot

The establishment of both racecourses spurred the growth of Ascot with the opening of railways and tram services that fostered the development of the residential areas, schools, and shopping strips. 

Aerial view of the residences
Photo Credit: State Library of Queensland

The Ascot Railway, built in the late 1880s, provided convenience for punters and racing aficionados who used to arrive via horse and buggy, shuttlecock boat, or cross river.

After World War I, the Ascot Railway Station was expanded with a second larger building and a pedestrian subway. It was electrified in the 1980s. Today, most of its antiquated features remain but it has been unstaffed and suspended since 1993. 

Ascot Railway in the 1880s
Photo Credit: State Library of Queensland

The Ascot State School opened in the 1920s on Pringle Street, following the dramatic reforms made in the Queensland Education system. Six years prior, Ascot locals determined a need to establish a state school but World War I disrupted its construction until 1919. 

When it finally opened, Ascot State School had an initial batch of 124 students, who were not just taught academics but also developed their aesthetic tastes, gardening skills, and sports abilities.

Chateau Nous

One of the significant homes to be built during Ascot’s astounding urban growth was Chateau Nous along Rupert Trc, which served as an early example of Functionalist domestic architecture in Brisbane.

 Chateau Nous, Russel Tce
Photo Credit: Queensland Heritage Listing

The house was built for Brisbane dentist George Stewart and his wife Eileen and was considered as ultra-modern during its time as it featured an electric dumb waiter and a line of electric kitchen appliances. 

Racecourse Road in Ascot
Photo Credit: Brisbane City Library

Today, Racecourse Road has become the prime location for the village shops and restaurants that also serve Hamilton locals. It boasts of over 130 businesses.

The tram that once ran down the centre of the street stopped service in the 1960s. Today, Ascot is serviced by four transport stops and TransLink’s CityCat terminal in Bretts Wharf. 

Brisbane Racing Club To Feature Exciting Events For Spring Racing Carnival 2021

Are you ready for Brisbane Racing Club’s Spring Racing Carnival 2021? Racing, entertainment, fashion and fun will all come together at the Spring Racing Carnival 2021 in Ascot, promising six days of live local races, all-day entertainment, and interstate action on super screens around the course.

Read: 5 Interesting Activities To Do At The TradeCoast Central Heritage Park Interpretive Centre

The Spring Racing Carnival kicked off with the XXXX Queensland Cup Raceday on 9 October 2021 at the Eagle Farm Racecourse, where guests were entertained with performances from Stafford Brothers, two of Brisbane’s most acclaimed DJs.

If you missed the starting event, check out the five remaining race days happening until 6 November.

Super Saturday RaceDay

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

16 October 2021 | Eagle Farm Racecourse

Interstate feature races the Caulfield Cup and TAB Everest will be accompanied by a stellar racecard at Eagle Farm Racecourse. Then there’s the Oscar Salons Fashions on the Field, pop-up bars and food stalls trackside to make Super Saturday RaceDay one to remember.

Oscar Oscar Salons Ladies RaceDay

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

23 October 2021 | Doomben Racecourse

Watch the Cox Plate as it happens, with the screens on course showing the legendary race live. Accompanying the interstate action is a thrilling race card at Doomben.

Moët & Chandon Derby RaceDay

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

30 October 2021 | Eagle Farm Racecourse

The height of luxury is showcased on Moet & Chandon Derby RaceDay, one of the most prestigious days of spring racing shown live on the screens around the course. The racing action continues on course at Eagle Farm with an exciting race card. The thrill from the track and screens spill out onto the grounds with monochromatic fashion, incredible gastronomy, and vibrant entertainment to get the heart racing.

Canadian Club Melbourne Cup RaceDay

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

2 November 2021 | Eagle Farm Racecourse

Eagle Farm will be on the largest screen in the Southern Hemisphere as the $8 million Lexus Melbourne Cup is shown around the course. The glamour doesn’t stop there with plenty of entertainment, Oscar Oscar Salons Fashions on the Field, pop-up bars and eateries trackside to make this a Melbourne Cup RaceDay to remember.

Teddy Bears Picnic Family RaceDay

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

6 November 2021 | Eagle Farm Racecourse

This reinvigorated raceday will host exciting family friendly experiences on and off the track. Enjoy an array of jumping castles proudly provided by AstroJump, seasonal culinary delights and a family themed Fashions On The Field that emulates the style and excitement of this raceday.

To buy your tickets and for more details on the upcoming events, visit BRC’s website or follow them on Facebook

Bernborough Ascot in Doomben Racecourse Gets Green Star Rating

Bernborough Ascot in Doomben Racecourse has received its first 6 Star Green Star Communities rating from the Green Building Council of Australia in recognition of its sustainable and eco-friendly development. 

The $270 million Leadlease retirement facility, featuring strategic and sustainable designs from Marchese Partners, completed its first stage in October 2020 and has been seen as a benchmark for green community living in Brisbane.

Bernborough Ascot has been envisioned in a well-positioned section of the Doomben Racecourse, which will take advantage of the cool air and natural ventilation of the environment. Before the construction, the developers had to carefully relocate and preserve a 140-tonne weeping fig tree.

Photo Credit: Facebook

Upon the completion of the project, this residential site will have “300 large luxury independent living apartments and penthouse-style homes.” Some parts of the dwellings are already open to residents. 

Photo Credit: Facebook

The buildings will feature a number of connected walkways and green spaces or communal gardens, with carefully selected plants, that will be immensely enjoyed by its residents. The facility’s main energy supply will come from solar panels and its water sources feature have been engineered to lessen the needless consumption of potable water.

Green Building Council of Australia CEO Davina Rooney commended the developers behind Bernborough Ascot for achieving such a feat and it certifies the retirement facility’s topnotch standards. 

Bernborough Ascot is part of Brisbane Racing Club’s master plan to turn the Doomben and Eagle Farm racecourse into an integrated community. To learn more about this development, visit the official site. 

Brisbane’s First ‘Momo Fest’ Dumpling Event from Melbourne Coming to Ascot

Momo Fest, Melbourne’s popular dumpling festival, is set to roll into Brisbane’s food scene for the very first time this year. Lovers of food wrapped in dough made of thin sheets of flour and water may expect to sample 30 different varieties once the festival drops in Ascot. 

Brisbane locals may finally experience the flavourful taste and goodness of this unique festival that Melbourne folks have enjoyed for the last three years. Set for Sunday, the 12th of April, Momo Fest in Ascot will take place at the Doomben Racecourse from 1:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. 

The announcement comes early as the event recently opened slots for interested stall holders, festival sponsors, and media partners. 

Photo Credit: Momo Fest/Facebook

A delicacy that comes from the regions of Nepal, Tibet and Northeast India, momo is similar to the Chinese jiaozi, Japanese Gyoza and Korean mandu. Traditionally, momo is prepared with simple ground meat filling packed with region’s spices and herbs, and then steamed to lock in its flavours. 

Photo Credit: Momo Fest/Facebook

More elaborate momos have emerged over the years as style and taste changed. Some momos are filled with paneer cheese, tofu, vegetables, milk solids and sugar, as well as and other interesting combinations. 

Aside from the dumpling feast, Momo Fest is also going to feature live music, multicultural performances, workshops, competitions and entertainment for the kids. It doesn’t cost a lot to check out what’s in this food fest as the entry fee is only $2 and kids under the age of 12 can come in for free.  

Get Ready for Ascot’s Most Adorable Event for July: Teddy Bear’s Picnic

Fun activities await kids and their furry friends this Saturday, 28 July 2018 at the Teddy Bears’ Picnic at the Races.

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

Hosted by Brisbane Racing Club, Teddy Bear’s Picnic will be supporting Variety – the Children’s Charity of Queensland and is set to fill the Doomben Racecourse with adorable teddy bears, colourful picnic blankets, rides, games, and entertainment for the children to enjoy.

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

The event’s kid-friendly activities include a Kids Disco, face painting, jumping castle, petting zoo, build-a-bear workshop, and more. Kids can also get a chance to enter into the Fashions on the Field with their best-dressed bears.

Gates open at 10:30 a.m. and rides will be operating from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with children’s ticketing available for purchase on the day. Fashion on the Field registration starts at 10:30 a.m. and by 1:45 p.m. dancing starts at the Kids Disco.

Photo credit: Brisbane Racing Club/Facebook

Rates for admission per person are as follows:

  • General Admission from $15.00
  • Giddy Up Club Marquee from $5.00
  • Giddy Up Club Membership $20.00 provides access for one child and two adults.
  • Big Ted Group Package from $25.00
  • Little Ted Group Package from $25.00
  • Teddy Bear’s Picnic Family Picnic Pass from $85.00
  • Tapas in the 10,000 from $55.00
  • Champions Bar Courtyard from $90.00
  • Private Suites per person from $75.00

For more information, visit the event’s official website or Facebook page.

Buy your tickets.


Glamorous Girls’ Day Out in Ascot to Benefit Gynaecological Cancer Research

Call the girlfriends, doll up, and get ready for a day of catching up and unwinding over bottles of Champagne, all for a good cause.

Sofitel’s Girls’ Day Out is happening at the Doomben Racecourse in Ascot on the 24th of February 2018. For every General Admission ticket, organisers will donate $5 to the Cherish Women’s Cancer Foundation.

The glamorous girls’ event is not exclusive for the gals. There will also be lots of gentlemen invited to make the socializing more inclusive.

Credit: brisbane Racing Club Facebook

Girls should better be sure that they dress up to the occasion because after all, they are the star of the show! This year, Sofitel partners with Dress Hire AU for the Fashions on the Field competition.

Dress Hire AU has been the go to destination for Aussie women wanting to wear the most fashionable designer pieces since 2015.

Choose the best outfit – floaty florals and feminine designs complete with the perfect headpiece – from Dress Hire AU. Strut your stuff at the main stage because the best dressed gal will win as much as $500 Dress Hire AU voucher. Click here to know the mechanics of the competition.

Credit: Brisbane Racing Club Facebook

Indeed, the day is going to be crazy. But for those who opt to give themselves a little peace and quiet with the company of the girlfriends or ‘THE’ boyfriends, there are many VIP options to choose from. Even the men would enjoy the different exclusive packages available. Click here to view all options.

Gynaecological Cancer Research

Cherish Women’s Cancer Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation based in Brisbane. The organisation generates funding for research and clinical trials to treat women with gynaecological cancer.

There are 5000 women in Australia diagnosed with the disease and according to the institution these women are almost forgotten because the society does not give much attention to their treatment.

By supporting the Sofitel’s Day Out at the Doomben Racecourse, women can bring a difference to the lives of their fellow women suffering with gynaecological cancer.

To know more about the event and to purchase tickets, please click here.

Hunt for Bargains, Help Save the Environment at ‘Closet Cleanout’ in Ascot

“Closet Cleanout” at the Eagle Farm Markets at Doomben Racecourse offers the perfect opportunity for shoppers to snatch a huge bargain. Drop by on the 28th of January between 7:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and choose from their preloved branded apparel and vintage clothing, shoes, and accessories, all up for grabs at great prices that won’t burn a hole in your wallets.

Credit: Eagle Farm Markets at Doomben Racecourse Facebook

There are many compassionate reasons and benefits why participating in rummage sales such as the “Closet Cleanout” is being encouraged. The platform can drive the local economy, save the environment, promote ethical issues, and personally help save money for shoppers.

Shoppers can save as much as 50 to 80 percent when buying second-hand items, particularly when buying branded apparel that are otherwise at double or triple prices at the mall. Vintage clothing and high-end labels, which are otherwise expensive for the common buyers, will finally be affordable. Shopping budgets can be maximised with the excess money being put towards other necessities.

Buying at rummage sales can also benefit the local economy as the community’s money stay within the community. Local entrepreneurs will thrive while local buyers get the most bang out of their buck.

When shoppers patronise second-hand apparel, they also help with the global objective of making the environment greener. When people buy second-hand items, they reduce their carbon footprint because it lessens the demand for new items from the factories. Saving old clothes and other possessions from being thrown away also promotes recycling.

Become a stallholder!

Those who are keen to be on the other side of the table can sell and take the “Closet Cleanout” as an opportunity for the perfect Spring closet cleaning of old wardrobes. Earn from unused clothes that are otherwise stored uselessly inside the cabinets. Those old favourites will find new owners that will love them just as the same. For those who are interested to take advantage of the event as a stallholder, please click here.

The “Closet Cleanout” will be held at the Doomben Racecourse at 75 Hampden St, Ascot

Experience Australia Day Race at Doomben Racecourse in Ascot

Brisbane Racing Club will make everyone experience the thrill of live racing at Doomben Racecourse on Australia Day on the 26th of January. Gates will open at 10:30 a.m. and everyone is welcome to dress comfortably as they enjoy exquisite food and drinks and live entertainment. General admission is free but different packages corresponding to one’s proximity to the track are available.

Credit: Brisbane Racing Club Facebook

Those who will purchase the Great Aussie Group Package for $15 per person will enjoy the race on the trackside with reserved seating positions at the Champions Bar Courtyard.

For $45 per person, on the other hand, BRC Members have closer access to the Winning Post as they take up seats at the Falvelon Bar. The same seats are available for non-BRC Members for $52.50 per person. The location allows anyone to both view the horses before the race as they make their way to the track and get a closer look of the winning horses after the race. Those who will opt for this package will have the opportunity to enjoy tapas-style lunch delivered straight to their reserved tables.

Couples, meanwhile, are given the option to have a picnic at the track for $45 per couple. The package includes a delicious picnic hamper for two. Menu options are available here. The hamper already includes disposable crockery, cutlery, and napkins.

Couples are advised to bring a picnic blanket. In any case that they suddenly decided to have seats at the bar, they would have to additionally pay the tickets for whichever locations they choose.

Lastly, starting at $75 per person, one can enjoy a prime spot at the Private Suites where there are premiere facilities as well as self-service terminals for that optimum racing day experience. The package already includes the Private Suite Deal Menu which consists of welcome meal, lunch, and afternoon snack. There are different options to upgrade these meals and other beverages, with additional charges. The complete menu options can be viewed here.

For complete information on packages and bookings, please click here.