12th Annual Open House Melbourne Weekend Program Launched

OHM Urban Tactility - photo by Tania DavidgeThe annual Open House Melbourne Weekend Program has been launched at the The Ian Potter Southbank Centre at the University of Melbourne’s Southbank Campus – a new highlight in this year’s program and the new home of the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.

Now in its 12th year, the full weekend program of over 200 tours and events is now live to explore – with 73 new sites on offer and an expanded foot print into Melton, Narre Warren, Box Hill and Werribee – along with nine new buildings to see in Williamstown, Spotswood, Newport and Altona thanks to new precinct partner, City of Hobson’s Bay.

The program also celebrates Open House Melbourne’s month of architecture throughout July with events such as keynote exhibition Urban Tactility – a playful and sensory installation of tactile indicators for people with low vision or blindness by OoPLA architects and new inclusivity and access partner Cushman & Wakefield, being on show at Immigration Museum from 22 July 2019.

With Melbourne currently undergoing radical growth and transformation, the Weekend offers a range of tours that delve deep into the changing fabric of the city. The West Gate Tunnel Project on Saturday 27 July will explore the northern portal construction site; or join the Metro Tunnel Team on Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 July for a walking tour of the construction site for the new Parkville Station.

For another perspective on what makes the city tick, tours will take place at some of Melbourne’s most iconic and delicious dining institutions including the stunning new renovations at St Kilda’s Hotel Esplanade and Prince Hotel.

On Sunday 28 July, the European Open House Tour will take visitors through Siglo, Melbourne Supper Club, Spring Street Grocer and The European with a look at what design aspects make these venues so ‘quintessentially Melbourne’.

Just before the Weekend on Tuesday 23 July, join Phillip Schemnitz, the architect behind some of Melbourne’s most-loved drinking destinations – Cookie, Toff, Magic: Behind Hospitality Icons – and hear about the 13-year-long architect-client collaboration that shaped these venues.

For mid-century design buffs, two buildings by Australia’s most influential architect Robin Boyd will open. To celebrate Robin Boyd’s 100th anniversary of birth, visitors can tour mid-century gem Boyd House II, the architect’s greatest domestic architectural experiment and St George’s Anglican Church in East Ivanhoe, one of two Australian churches designed by the architect.

Over the weekend, view some of the most iconic objects from the Australian Performing Arts Collection not normally open to the public at Arts Centre Melbourne; checkout the City of Melbourne’s Art and Heritage Collection that features council regalia, historic photos, public-art maquettes, city gifts, contemporary art, Moomba and 1956 Olympic memorabilia, and surprising oddities including a wooden banana gifted by the Mayor of Coffs Harbour.

Explore your inner child at ArtPlay with a whole lot of ping pong balls in the creative play installation, Ping Pong WoW; go behind the scenes of the ABC Southbank building; or checkout Bunjil Place – the City of Casey’s home of arts and entertainment and one of the most ambitious projects undertaken by a local government.

A large part of the program remains free and with no bookings necessary. For pre-booked tours though, the first release will go live on Friday 12 July at 8.30am until booked out. The second release will go live on Friday 19 July at 8.30am until booked out – a small booking fee of $5 applies. Mark these dates in your calendar if you don’t want to miss out, as these tours book-out within hours.

If you want to get your hands on one of the ever-popular printed programs, the Open House Melbourne 2019 Printed Program is available to purchase at all Readings locations – or you can order the printed program online.

Open House Melbourne is an independent organisation that fosters public appreciation for architecture and public engagement in design in the built environment. OHM exists because they believe a more engaged public will result in better design outcomes for our buildings, our streets and our cities.

The 2019 Open House Melbourne Weekend takes place Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 July. For more information and program of events, visit: www.openhousemelbourne.org for details.

Image: Urban Tactility – photo by Tania Davidge

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