Bulwarra Seaside Apartments, Terrigal

History & Purpose

Bulwarra operates a low cost, not-for-profit resort for the Defence community, offering basic but comfortable self-contained, family accommodation. It places a particular emphasis on those members who have recently returned from overseas duty or are scheduled to deploy and their families and is not open to the general public. It is governed by an unpaid Board of Directors and is managed by an on-site management team.

Bulwarra Co-op Ltd (Bulwarra) was registered as a cooperative on 28 February 1969. The cooperative was created to manage three cottages and land purchased in Terrigal during the preceding couple of years using soldiers’ funds held by the 3rd Training Battalion (3TB), which was then located at Singleton, Liverpool Area Headquarters, Ingleburn and Eastern Command Personnel Depot, Marrickville.

The cottages provided holiday or short-term rest facilities for the staff at each of those military locations. The first manager of the collective asset was a warrant officer from 3TB, who coordinated the bookings and would occasionally reside at one of the garages to oversee the use of the three cottages.

In 1968 the block of land on which the Bulwarra apartments now stand became available for purchase. Prior to that date there had been a guest house situated on the sloping block where the children’s playground is now located. It burnt down thereby making the land available for redevelopment.

A group of farsighted officers from Headquarters Eastern Command, Victoria Barracks, Singleton and Liverpool Area Headquarters successfully applied for a loan from the Army Amenities Fund, administered by Army Headquarters in Canberra, to purchase the land and build a facility which would provide free accommodation for servicemen returning to Sydney from South Vietnam for their R & R (rest and recuperation) break. Five of these officers became the first members of the Board of Directors of Bulwarra.

Construction commenced on the main building in 1970. At the time it was the largest construction project undertaken in Terrigal, other than the Florida Hotel which had been built in the mid-1960s. The design was done by the Chief Engineers’ staff on Headquarter Eastern Command and oversight of the construction was provided by that group. The building work was finished in early 1971 and the facility was opened on 4 March 1971. The 25 metre pool was very generously donated by the RSL.


Bulwarra is a 2 minute walk to the popular Terrigal surf beach and a 5 minute walk to Terrigal’s wide range of quality shops, restaurants and cafes which suit all tastes and budgets.

Terrigal is approximately 90 minutes drive north of Sydney. The closest railway station is Gosford Train Station (about 20 minutes by car), and a regular bus network operates between Terrigal and Gosford station.

The closest major shopping centre is a 10 minute drive (Erina Fair), which has a Hoyts cinema, ice skating rink and a Fitness First gym. Erina Fair is also accessible by regular bus service.

The climate on the Central Coast is mild throughout the year.