Top workplace picks from Open House Melbourne
Melbourne doesn’t stay static for very long, which is why Open House Melbourne is still the best bet to peek into some of the city’s most progressive and contemporary spaces. Innovative workplace design is always going places, and this year we visited a strong set of spaces that are changing the way they do business for the better. Here’s our list of the best global-leading spaces to whet your appetite.
By Annie Reid
Arup Melbourne, Docklands
Innovative, experimentative and game changing – Arup’s new Melbourne workplace sets a benchmark for collaborative workplace design. Taking out three floors that’s resulted in five levels as part of One Melbourne Quarter, the company champions biophilic design drawing in greenery from top to bottom, as well as sustainable features such as indoor and outdoor spaces and the use of eWater, plus wellbeing and connectivity principles. Impressively, it offers a true activity-based approach with creative spaces such as a lighting lab, sound lab, maker space and an experiential lab. Designed by HASSELL in partnership with Arup, it showcases the company’s technical and engineering prowess while also giving staff brilliant amenities including a café operated by social enterprise STREAT.
Sky Park, Docklands
It’s big and it’s brand new, accessed via a chunky spiral staircase hovering opposite Southern Cross Station. What’s great about Lendlease’s elevated 1000sq m park is that it’s now open to the public and provides a valuable green resource where previously there was simply hot air. Even better, it’s set to double in size in the future. With lawns, lounges, a glass box meeting room and multi-level plantings including fully established trees, Sky Park is a beautifully landscaped space that will not only provide outdoor space for workers at Melbourne Place and the public, but also birdlife that will call it home amidst the canopies.
Flack Studio, Fitzroy
Nestled within gritty Fitzroy and steeped in history lies the former Pittard’s Electroplating building, now home to the playful and eclectic interior architects, Flack Studio. The exterior is well-preserved with its cream brick façade and steel framed windows, but the interior has been well and truly ‘flackified’ – in director David Flack and his partner and studio manager, Mark Robinson’s parlance. Known for using a kaleidoscope of colour, customisation and materiality, the interiors feature lush colours and plush finishes, complete with green marble powder rooms, a Persian Travertine wall and a ‘pleasure wall’ of ever-evolving design inspiration and samples. It’s a brand statement, a hothouse of design inspiration, and we’re big fans.
Denton Corker Marshall Studio, Melbourne
Architect Denton Corker Marshall now calls Collins Place home, their studio set within the classic modernist tower curated by world-renowned architect IM Pei. Designed to stimulate creativity and drawing inspiration from the practice’s award-winning projects, the workspace reflects the ethos of the Denton Corker Marshall brand: simple, raw and minimalist.
It’s designed over a single level, allowing for high connectivity, flexibility and sun-drenched workspaces and it’s aesthetic is understated industrial, emphasised through exposed ceilings, sleek concrete joinery and the minimisation of corporate clutter and distraction. In amongst the minimalism is a piece of sculpture – a bench seat that appears as a molten mass of metal. A standout feature for us this year.
Mirvac, 664 Collins Street, Melbourne
Perfectly positioned at the junction of the CBD and the Docklands, 664 Collins Street is a Mirvac-designed, unique commercial building perched on top of Melbourne’s major transport hub. Raised above platforms 13-16 of Southern Cross Station, the landmark office tower spans 200m, traversing the length of rail between Collins Street and Bourke Road. 664 Collins Street has created its own destination district within the Docklands Precinct, setting a new benchmark for superb craftmanship, design efficiencies and commercial innovation.
The elegant façade of 664 Collins Street actively engages with the surrounding urban fabric, with the design delivering above and beyond the specification required for an A grade office building. Rising 12 storeys at its apex, the building has achieved a 5-Star Green Star and 5-star NABERS certification, also boasting one of the largest rooftop solar arrays in Melbourne.