The Sunshine Castle.
The Sunshine Castle.

Old doll house turned castle set for heritage listing

A MEDIEVAL castle originally built to house dolls is set to be recognised as an icon of the region, after almost 50 years of operation.

Sunshine Castle at David Low Way, Bli Bli, is among a number of sites set to be added as local heritage places, as part of a planning scheme amendment put forward by Sunshine Coast Council.

The castle was built in 1972, originally to house fairytale dioramas and dolls, and attracted one million visitors in its first three years trading as Fairytale Castle.

Its new tower was opened to the public in 1980.

Other buildings set for inclusion as local heritage places included the former Buderim Ginger Factory shed on Burnett St, Buderim Cemetery, Dick Caplick Park and The Old Bakery at Eumundi, the Gneering Shipwreck at Goat Island in the Maroochy River and the Third Maleny Butter Factory, on Coral St, Maleny.

The Maleny Hotel. Photo: John McCutcheon / Sunshine Coast Daily
The Maleny Hotel. Photo: John McCutcheon / Sunshine Coast Daily

Popular watering holes The Maleny Hotel on Bunya St and the Surfair International Hotel on David Low Way, Marcoola, were also proposed as new local heritage places.

Mount Coolum National Park has also been proposed, as has the Agnes Shipwreck, at the mouth of the Maroochy River.

Currimundi Lake Conservation Park and the University of the Sunshine Coast library building were also among the list of proposed inclusions.

A number of sites were proposed to be removed or partially removed from the planning scheme as part of the amendments.

Sunshine Castle at Bli Bli.
Sunshine Castle at Bli Bli.

Eudlo State School, Beerwah Railway Station and Bli Bli State School were among the local heritage places set to be removed from the planning scheme.

The Big Pineapple was also set to have its local heritage place boundary removed, but the existing State heritage place boundary would remain.

Should the Sunshine Castle be listed as a local heritage place?

This poll ended on 22 September 2019.

Current Results

Yes, it's iconic.


No way.


I'm not sure.


This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

A council spokesman said a key aspect of the proposed amendment was the "inclusion of a greater number of places that represent post-World War II heritage, coastal urban settings and leading contemporary architecture of outstanding quality".

"The proposed amendment reaffirms the need to continue to protect heritage places and character areas through the planning scheme by identifying new and modified local heritage places, character areas, character buildings and local plan elements, while removing some existing local heritage places from the planning scheme (this includes sites where the heritage fabric no longer exists)," the spokesman said.

Local heritage places are typically single sites identified by council to have cultural heritage significant, while character areas are main street commercial areas or residential neighbourhoods where there is a historically-based built character.

Submissions can be made to council on the proposed amendments before September 16.

No uniforms, no visit hours: Facility will ‘bee’ different

Premium Content No uniforms, no visit hours: Facility will ‘bee’ different

This new aged care facility will have a “non-clinical approach”

Three women hurt in two-car crash on Bruxner Highway

Premium Content Three women hurt in two-car crash on Bruxner Highway

Emergency services are at the scene of a crash at Loftville

5 myths about The Northern Star we want to bust

5 myths about The Northern Star we want to bust

OPINION: Our journos have been covering news that matters on the Northern Rivers...