Miharo is a single storey elaborately decorated stuccoed brick villa of Victorian filigree style. Miharo was constructed in stages, and grew from being a brick house of two rooms in 1855-56 to its current form of ten rooms which dates from 1890-91. The decorative verandah, facade and conservatory which give the Miharo its present appearance, date from additions of 1890 for soap manufacturer John MacLeod designed by Melbourne architects Beswicke and Coote.
Miharo is of aesthetic, architectural and historical significance to the State of Victoria.
Miharo is of aesthetic importance for the outstanding jewel-like decoration of the leaded and coloured glass domed roof conservatory, for the filigree facade with its paired cast iron columns, lace brackets, valance and handrail brackets, and the central decorative timber gable to the verandah, and for the fine display of pressed metal ceilings. Miharo is important as an extraordinary example of the work of Melbourne architects, Beswicke and Coote, and is the only known Geelong example of their work.
Miharo is important for its association with the Australian industrialist John MacLeod, who established a soap factory on the Barwon River at Marnock Vale in 1886. The factory was well known for its "Magic Soap" brand, and also produced "Heart and Arrow", "Pink Borax" and "Blanketta" soaps. The head office and warehouse were located in Market Street, Melbourne and there was a branch factory at Glebe Point in Sydney. The soap was also exported to China and Ceylon. Miharo was transformed to its present form during John MacLeod's period of occupancy.
General Exemptions:General exemptions apply to all places and objects included in the Victorian Heritage Register (VHR). General exemptions have been designed to allow everyday activities, maintenance and changes to your property, which don’t harm its cultural heritage significance, to proceed without the need to obtain approvals under the Heritage Act 2017.Specific exemptions may also apply to your registered place or object. If applicable, these are listed below. Specific exemptions are tailored to the conservation and management needs of an individual registered place or object and set out works and activities that are exempt from the requirements of a permit. Specific exemptions prevail if they conflict with general exemptions. Find out more about heritage permit exemptions here.