Hollywell, a Gold Coast suburb, faces east on to the Broadwater and is 10 km north of Southport. It was named after a property of about 50 ha facing the Broadwater, originally scrub land purchased by Joseph Proud in 1890. Proud's home in England was named Hollywell and he served a long term as Councillor and Mayor of Southport. His house was demolished in 1960.
In 1958 the Pacific Gardens estate at Hollywell - 650 allotments - was unsuccessfully marketed. In 1987 a canal estate was proposed, probably as a follow-on from neighbouring Runaway Bay, and the suburb's canal estate proceeded with considerable local controversy. Apart from a smaller similar development on Broadwater, the rest of Hollywell is conventionally subdivided land. The Pine Ridge environmental park occupies a large area that could otherwise have fallen under development. Probably the sole remaining undeveloped site, at Bayview Street and Columbus Drive, was planned as a gated community of apartments and private recreation facilities (2008-09).
Hollywell is between Paradise Point and Runaway Bay. Together, these comprise the Gold Coast's 'North Shore', protected by South Stradbroke Island and relatively cut off from frenetic Surfers Paradise. Most housing is separate houses and townhouses. Shopping is found between Bayview Road and the Runaway Bay marina and further south at Runaway Bay Shopping Village.
Hollywell's census populations have been:
The median age of residents in 2006 was 46 years, compared with 37 for Australia.