Studley Park Boathouse

Studley Park Boathouse

The iconic Studley Park boathouse will re-open with a new dining, drinking & entertainment hub on the banks of the Yarra River.

Established in 1863, Studley Park boathouse has served Melbourne residents for over 160 years and is the oldest public boathouse on the Yarra.

Nestled along the picturesque shoreline of the Yarra, our boathouse offers three distinct dining spaces, each with its unique offering, to cater to every mood and occasion.

Whether it's a casual morning coffee and freshly baked pastry at the boathouse caf©, The Perch, or if you're after a vibrant atmosphere paired with panoramic views, The Deck awaits you. It's the perfect setting to unwind with mates and enjoy a mid-week woodfire pizza, accompanied by a perfectly paired Victorian glass of red.

For all those long-awaited family or friend gatherings, we invite you to our modern dining space, The Conservatory. We offer an Australian produce-led, seasonal menu, along with signature cocktails expertly crafted with a unique blend of flavours, or you can opt for timeless classics that never go out of style.

For more info on our menu, weekly events & most importantly, bookings - head to

The new Studley Park Boathouse reopened on 31 August 2023. Scroll down for a review by

Boat Hire

Open from 9am - 4pm 7 days a week.

Studley Park Boathouse boasts as impressive fleet of rowboats, canoes & kayaks which are all available for hire everyday of the year except Christmas Day.

A great way to spend the afternoon with the family is to hire a rowboat & take a leisurely row along the Yarra River. If you're after a little more exercise why not hire a canoe or kayak & put those muscles to the test.

Boat Hire Details & Pricing (PDF)

2023 Review

This article by Michael Harden is from the October 24, 2023 issue of The Age Digital Edition. To subscribe, visit "".

Venues such as Studley Park Boathouse are susceptible to '' captive audience syndrome'' , the phenomenon where restaurants in remarkable settings can get away with serving any old slop because people will show up regardless.

Some might argue that Studley Park, with its heavenly Aussie bush setting on the Yarra, has indeed suffered from that syndrome in the past. But following a recent renovation of the historical boathouse (160 years old and serving refreshments since 1898) and with a new operator on board, it has emerged with a spring in its step and a menu chock-full of mostly wellexecuted crowd-pleasers .

Let's not get ahead of ourselves, though. This new version of the Boathouse is still very much location-centric and is certainly not striving to become a destination for food adventurers. The dial is firmly - and wisely - set to comfort. With its menu of burgers, steak and schnitzels, it's about welcoming everyone. But with an all-Victorian wine list and a kitchen that favours local producers whenever possible, the comfort has a goal and a philosophy, acknowledging a storied venue's place in a state that produces more than its fair share of excellent food and wine. Take the Boathouse's version of fish and chips ($33), for example. It's a generous serving of local rockling in a batter so light and crisp that it borders on tempura, but with a faint hint of vinegar in the background. It comes with good, well-seasoned fries, a salad of cos lettuce and house-pickled onion, and an excellent rich and lemony tartare, made fresh each day. Whether you're sitting in one of the enclosed dining areas (the elevated conservatory affords the best views through its walls of windows) or outside on one of the numerous decks, it's hard to imagine a dish better suited to the Boathouse's Anglo origins. It may help that the executive chef, Christian Abbott, is originally from England and so gets the Victoriana of it all. He delivers food that sits well with the whole '' messing about in boats'' thing.

But although the desserts include the very good Tipsy Trifle ($16) - adapted from Abbott's mother's recipe but given a twist with an excellent fig-leaf custard, cherries and a whack of Bailey's - the offer is not all about England's greatest hits.

This is most obvious with the main post-renovation menu addition: pizza with a fermented sourdough crust that's cooked in a state-of-the-art rotating wood-fired oven.

Toppings are from the distinctly Italian '' less is more'' school, like the San Daniele prosciutto, sugo, sundried tomato, mozzarella and rocket number ($26). The crust arrived nicely bubbled and a little charred and, though perhaps needing a touch more heat, was a pretty good rendition of Melbourne pizza now.

Vegetarians are looked after here with charred pumpkin ($24) and margherita ($22) toppings, as they are on the rest of the menu, which includes a plant-based burger ($28) and gnocchi with asparagus, peas and ricotta salata ($30).

Fried salt-and-pepper calamari ($18) was as tender and as crisp as you could want and the caesar salad ($25) was a ripper - halved boiled eggs at just the right sticky-soft consistency, heavy on the crisp bacon, the whole thing finished with freshly shaved parmesan. Fans of tarte tatin ($16) won't want to miss this one, particularly as it is cleverly and deliciously teamed with macadamia ice-cream .

Service leans towards efficiency over polish - a necessity in a venue that can clock between 1200 and 2000 meals a day - but the young staff handle it well and cheerily, whether you're doing the table service thing inside or the order-atthe-counter outdoors experience.

There is a restaurant group element to the current Studley Park Boathouse story. It's part of the Australian Venue Co. behemoth, whose portfolio includes The Esplanade in St Kilda and the Sarah Sands in Brunswick, but there's no mass-produced vibe here. The menu, the service and the drinks list are modest and well tailored to this most lovely of settings, the audience not so much captive as captivated.

❊ Address ❊

 ⊜  1 Boathouse Road, Kew 3101 View Map
 ✆ Telephone: (03) 9853 1828
1 Boathouse Road,KewVictoria(03) 9853 1828

❊ Web Links ❊

Studley Park Boathouse

❊ Also See.. ❊

Yarra Bend Park

Disclaimer: Check with the venue (web links) before making plans, travelling or buying tickets.

Accessibility: Contact the venue for accessibility information. review

Published on 01 September 2023

Now Open: Studley Park Boathouse Is Back After a $5.8 Million Revamp

After a 10-month transformation, the Yarra River’s oldest public boathouse returns with a new restaurant, cafe and bar. Plus there's boats for hire, live music every weekend, a pizzeria and a gelato cart, just in time for spring.

Studley Park Boathouse has been one of Melbourne’s most popular riverside destinations since its establishment in 1863. Now, after serving guests for 160 years, the heritage-listed site is entering a new era. Plans for a major revamp have been in development since its acquisition in 2020 by the Australian Venue Co (behind Melbourne bars and restaurants such as The Espy, Morris House and Prince Alfred Hotel). After closing to the public towards the end of last year, a transformative, $5.8 million renovation commenced last November.

Ten months later, the boathouse is back and ready for visitors again. Upstairs is the Conservatory dining room, with river views and sunlight pouring in through its floor-to-ceiling windows. Downstairs, you’ll find the Pavilion bar, which opens onto a large outdoor dining area and the new, multi-level waterfront deck. Meanwhile The Perch, the boathouse’s new cafe, will be serving daily takeaway and weekend brunch. There’s also a woodfired pizzeria and a pop-up gelato cart appended to the main building.

The interiors’ white timber and rattan furniture make the boathouse feel modern but inviting. Outside, the exterior has swapped out the distinctive burgundy roof for a shade of light grey, while the weatherboard walls have been repainted a fresh white with green detailing, allowing the building to blend in with the nearby eucalyptus trees and natural parkland.

The approachable menu has a range of small plates, classic dishes, salads and woodfired pizzas, which will be available throughout the entire venue. Expect old favourites like a hand-crumbed chicken schnitzel topped with parmesan, capers and peppercorns. There’s also a salmon fillet with pickled fennel, orange, lemon and dill, and a battered local rockling with house salad and fries. Pizza choices include margherita, meatball with pickled onion and blue cheese, and a chicken and pesto with Meredith goat’s cheese and pine nuts.

The fully Victorian wine list prioritises wines produced within 100 kilometres of Studley Park. There are 16 drops available by the glass, as well as the new Boathouse Paddle, which offers five 50-mil pours accompanied by a virtual guided tour led by head of wine Matt Skinner, accessible through a QR code.

There are plenty of activities to enjoy outside too. Kayaks and canoes are available for hire, and for those wanting to enjoy both a boat ride and a beverage, there’s the “Row-sé” package, which includes a boat hire with a glass of rosé, followed by a woodfired pizza and gelato for dessert upon your return to the boathouse. Family activities are a big focus: there’s a program offering guided tours for kids, as well as gardening and pizza-making workshops. You can also look forward to live music from Friday to Sunday.


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Studley Park Boathouse