What is significant? Muyunata, 26 Kensington Road, South Yarra designed by Arthur W. Plaisted and constructed in 1936, is significant. The significant attributes are the Old English style form, materials and detailing of the flats as designed by Plaisted.
Later alterations and additions are not significant.
How is it significant? Muyunata is of local architectural and aesthetic significance to the City of Stonnington.
Why is it significant? Architecturally and aesthetically, Muyanata Flats is a good example of the flat designs of architect Arthur Plaisted, who is known for his mastery of many different styles in his inter-war designs and is particularly noted as a pre-eminent designer of Old English style flats. The flats are distinguished by the attention to detail and unusual use of rough, rustic finishes to add authenticity to the Medieval design. (Criteria D, E & H)
Muyanata Flats (now Kensington Mews), 26 Kensington Road, South Yarra, is a two-storey building set well back behind a front garden and a low apricot-brick wall.
The building is roughly S-shaped in plan, with a complex gabled roof covered in brown and red Marseille tiles. The walls and tall corbelled chimneys are of apricot brick with a scattering of overburnt clinkers. The clinkers protrude from the walls, giving a rustic feel. This is continued in the purposely bumpy rendered surfaces to the entrance tower and half-timbered elements, the irregular forms of the timbers, and rough boarding at the apex of the front gable.
The facade comprises a long projecting gable on the north side, which is asymmetrical due to a massive chimney on the north side. Set back from it is a transverse gabled wing which terminates in a major and a minor gable facing the street. All three gables facing the street have no eaves. Along the sides, there is a corbelled and dog-tooth brick cornice, which shows Moderne influence. The major gable is partially half-timbered. At the inner corner between the two wings is a two-storey round tower with a witch's hat roof, which gives the building a French Medieval feel. The roof is clad in terracotta shingles, and is tops with a lovely copper cap with a ram's horn finial. The entrance to the building is via an arched opening in the base of the tower, with the original arched doorway inside. Above it are French doors to a balcony with a simple balustrade. To the side of the tower is a jettied window bay that is half-timbered. There is another entrance near the south side of the facade, which is a simple rectangular entrance, also below a balcony.
Most of the windows are tripartite, with a central picture window and three-over-three horizontal-pane sidelights. But there are also small, diamond panes windows.