Located within Melbourne’s CBD, this building forms part of a larger historically significant streetscape protected by heritage planning controls. The building was originally constructed in the late 1800s and for more than a century has been home to enterprises seeking to make the most of this busy and bustling Russell Street location.
This substantial refurbishment has totally transformed the functionality of the building without compromising the building fabric, which is protected by the heritage control. Both the Russell Street and rear laneway façades, with their beautiful arched windows, remain as pristine examples of late 19th century architecture, whilst the interior of the building has been totally transformed into a modern five-storey restaurant and office space with roof-top deck.
Internally, the design retains rustic red brick walls and preserves remnants of old copper piping. Cut metal beams, bluestone stairs, old wall vents and lintel beams are featured as a historical record of the original internal configuration. Modern tiled and timber surfaces, exposed air-conditioning ducts, overhead tracked lighting and warehouse-style pendulum lights combine with the retained historical details to provide a warm and comfortable modern dining space within a renewed yet historical setting.
The outcome of this project exemplifies how a new lease-of-life can be breathed into our historically significant buildings through thoughtful, intelligent and creative design.