Three Heathcote brothers say it will be hard to let go of the chapel they renovated at the former St Aidan's orphanage.
Shaun, Liam and Thomas McCarthy purchased the site in late 2015 and took about a year to renovate the property into the loft-style apartment it is today.
"I remember driving past it when we were younger," Shaun McCarthy said. "I wouldn't say I knew a lot about it, but I was definitely intrigued when I heard they were turning it into an apartment complex."
The building on St Aidan's Road, Kennington operated as an orphanage from 1905 to 1981. A Bendigo construction company started redeveloping the site into apartments in the early 2000s.
Mr McCarthy said the brothers were always intrigued by the site's potential.
"We actually went up there because we were interested in one of the other apartments," he said. "But then this one went back on the market and the real estate agent said do you want to look?
"The minute we walked in there we thought it was amazing. We knew we wanted to buy it straight away."
Two of the brothers - Liam and Shaun - were practising carpenters who had done renovations in the past. Shaun McCarthy said their experience proved to be vital.
"It was essentially a derelict shell," he said. "There was no ceiling whatsoever and you could see through the apartment because there was a section of floor missing.
"Essentially there was nothing that we didn't have to redo or renovate."
Shaun McCarthy had been living in the apartment for the past two years and said it would be hard to give it up.
"Originally, we bought and renovated it as an investment," Mr McCarthy said. "We didn't expect we would fall in love with it. It's been harder than we thought to sell it."
Shaun's brother Liam McCarthy said the trio's bond only became stronger during the renovation.
"In the building process, you see it all happen in front of your eyes," he said. "So when you bring people in and they're wowed by it, you're a bit immune.
"You work so hard for it to change and when we finished the place, it wasn't like wow. It was just relief.
"But when you look back, it will be hard to let go because so much hard work went into it."
More information about the St Aidan's Road property can be found in the new Domain lift out in Friday's Bendigo Advertiser.
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