The Quaint Lakeside Town North of Sydney Set to Boom With Boomers

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Once a sleepy logging village, the up-and-coming town of Morisset is being transformed into a tourism and lifestyle mecca, amid a billion-dollar housing and infrastructure boom.

Savvy downsizers and empty nesters are seeing the attraction of the little-known area on the edge of Lake Macquarie, between Sydney and Newcastle, with significant private and government investment etching Morisset as a vibrant, sought-after destination.

New residents and visitors are descending on the Lake Macquarie region, drawn by exciting development, dining and retail additions, including the luxe $8 million 350-seat, pop-up restaurant, 8 at Trinity, and newly approved $600 million hotel, restaurants and function space at Trinity Point Marina.

Stellar tourism, cultural and event space, Cedar Mill, is underway at the former golf course site, and now Ingenia Lifestyle is launching a new over-55s residential community at Morisset.

Morisset is situated on the western foreshore of Lake Macquarie.

Area on the up

Identified by Lake Macquarie Council as one of the key growth areas in the region, Morisset attracted $59 million worth of development approvals in the 2022-2023 financial year.

Lake Macquarie Mayor Kay Fraser says with Morisset’s capacity for new housing, proximity to the M1 and major developments like the Cedar Mill precinct already in the works, the city’s south-west is a key growth area in New South Wales.

“There is incredible potential in this part of our city, and it is good to see developers and investors realising this,” she says.

Australian Bureau of Statistics Census data shows more than 213,000 people called the region home in 2021 – with numbers up by 16,000 in the past five years.

Morisset’s population is also growing, with interest in the area projected to see the town’s population more than triple in the next 20 years, positioning it as a regionally significant centre.

Embracing the lake lifestyle: where relaxation meets waterfront charm.

PropTrack Senior Economist Paul Ryan says Morisset’s central position between Sydney and Newcastle makes it desirable for buyers looking to make a lifestyle change.

“We have seen lots of demand in that area. The Lake Macquarie and Northern Central Coast region has seen strength since the pandemic,” Ryan says.

“It’s been a big beneficiary of lifestyle demand as well as relative affordability for space, and we are seeing a lot of rental growth. For houses, rents have grown 5% over the past year.

“Obviously Newcastle and the Central Coast have both performed very well, and Morisset sits in between those locations, so it has seen a lot of the benefits of that growth over the past five years in that region.

“All the development underway tells us that the region is growing… and that’s all very positive for the region going forward.”

Morisset’s median house price is $720,000 for the year to November, with the median price for units at $485,000, PropTrack data shows.

Connecting with nature and transport

Perched on the edge of Lake Macquarie, Morisset is a gateway to a plethora of recreation options that showcase the very best of nature.

Hike, bike or camp at Watagans National Park.

From water pursuits on the lake to hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing and kayaking at Watagans National Park, the region provides a raft of opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors and connect with nature.

“Morisset is one of NSWs best kept secrets. It sits at the southernmost point of Lake Macquarie, which is one of Australia’s largest inland saltwater lakes,” says Ingenia Head of Development NSW & Victoria, Michael Rabey.

He says the area’s transport links are attractive for potential new residents and would help secure its future growth and prosperity.

Travel from Morisset is a cinch with easy connectivity via the M1 Pacific Motorway and train access.

Ryan adds that Morisset is “not a big hustle and bustle place” so it appeals to downsizers, empty nesters, and those seeking to prioritise quality of lifestyle.

“It’s close to a lot of amenity, but is a bit quieter with the national parks, the lake itself and not far from the beach up to Belmont or Dudley or south to the Central Coast.”

Emerging cultural and culinary epicentre

Already home to some of the most impressive cultural and culinary delights, the offerings in Morisset are set to get even better.

As well as the acclaimed 8 at Trinity restaurant, the upcoming Cedar Mill development will provide a signature tourism, cultural and event space in the heart of Morisset.

The 188-berth Trinity Marina, which offers a spot for residents to anchor their vessels and take lunch overlooking the lake, is about to undergo a $600 million development, including a new hotel, restaurants, function centre and wellness space.

“There is an existing marina and facilities there, but they are really upgrading that to be a world-class marina with hotels and everything that goes with that,” Rabey says.

“The Cedar Mill entertainment precinct, which is adjacent to our site, is set up to be a facility like the Hollywood Bowl – an amazing facility to attract world-class performances.”

Upcoming opportunity for boomers

With an already active retiree community, downsizers with their sights on Morisset could benefit further with Ingenia Lifestyle’s new masterplanned community coming in 2024.

“We are providing a 600-home over 55s residential community, which will be home to about 1000 people, recognised as one of Australia’s largest masterplanned over 55s communities,” Rabey says.

“The expansive and distinctive Morisset site has inspired us to redefine the standards of over 55s living.  We’ve been able to innovate our internal community layout, resulting in the creation of distinct precincts and villages with a lively lakeside hub at the heart of the community.”

He adds that dedicated spaces – like the wellness, social and sporting precincts and facilities – will evolve over the lifetime of the project, “offering residents a truly exceptional living experience into the future”.

Curated with green corridors and lakeside paths, the homes have been designed for relaxation and low-maintenance living, with exceptional communal and social spaces.

Michael Rabey onsite at Morisset in December 2023.

“In fact every home in the community has been intentionally situated within a 300-metre radius of a social gathering space. This design aims to foster and encourage social interaction among neighbours, creating a vibrant and connected community experience,” Rabey says.

“We’ve taken great pride in crafting an extensive array of home designs, ensuring diversity and choice. Recognising that this future Morisset community will draw residents from various locations across Australia, our team has ensured our homes will cater to individual preferences and lifestyles.”

Ingenia will unveil their visionary Morisset masterplan in early 2024 with completion of first homes at Morisset expected in mid-year.

For more information about Ingenia Lifestyle at Morisset, visit the website. 


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