Buchan throws open studio doors for Open House Melbourne

July 25, 2017

For the second year running, the Buchan Group will welcome Melburnians into its studio in the historic Mail Exchange Building as part of Open House Melbourne.

Visitors will have the opportunity to journey from the building’s magnificent façade and up the heritage listed staircase before taking a peek behind the sheer entrance curtains into creative design life in the industrial chic studio.

The Mail Exchange originally opened in 1917 to relieve the congestion at the nearby Melbourne GPO on the corner of Elizabeth and Bourke Street. As one of Melbourne’s earliest examples of Classical Revival Architecture, it’s proving a very apt and inspiring home for Buchan’s world renowned designers to shape the buildings of the future.

“Last year’s tours of our studio booked out very quickly, and we are delighted to once again open our doors to the public and offer a glimpse behind the scenes where the design magic happens,” said Principal Grant Withers.

“Visitors will have the chance to wander through the old and the new, exploring the history of the Mail Exchange and our contemporary studio fit out designed to inspire collaboration and conversation.”

The huge open plan space will feature a hub of activity to engage and delight our visitors.  3D models and virtual reality technology will take guests on an immersive journey of the spaces and buildings we have designed, and projections of the studio’s fit out evolution, our history, work and relevance, including projects by our alliance partner Nikken Sekkei, will get to the heart of who we are.  The floor to ceiling whiteboard and ping pong table will give a symbolic taste of the team engagement and energy that drives Buchan to create!

Guided tours of the Mail Exchange’s historical staircase and Buchan’s studio will take place on Sunday 30th July between 10am and 3pm.

For more information visit the Open House Melbourne website.

Buchan’s Shanghai team celebrates move to new studio

July 19, 2017

The Buchan Group’s Shanghai team has opened the doors to their new home on the twenty seventh floor of Shanghai’s prestigious InterContinental Business Centre in the heart of Jing An’s commercial and business hub.

The new studio was officially opened at a recent launch party by the Austrade Senior Trade Commissioner and Deputy Consul-General (Commercial) Richard Coote.

Following formalities guests headed downstairs to the entrancing garden terrace to get the party in full swing and enjoy a gourmet Australian Chinese bbq.

“We were thrilled to be able to celebrate the occasion with our clients, friends and colleagues including Mr Bob Xu of Austrade and Buchan’s valued alliance partners Nikken Sekkei,” said Eddie Cassidy, head of the China business.

“It was a great night and we were mesmerized by the beauty of the downstairs space and the potential of our new facilities.”

The new studio presents a fresh new canvas for our Shanghai designers.  Inspired by Buchan’s Melbourne studio with a contemporary, light filled open plan space, the studio offers a new base to promote Buchan’s expertise and international portfolio of design led projects to Chinese companies and international developers.

“The move marks an exciting new chapter for the Shanghai team with the new space designed to maximise collaboration with each other and with our clients,” said Eddie.

“We very much look forward to our future here.”

Five Star Luxury, Momi Bay, Fiji

July 10, 2017

The first guests at Fiji’s new Momi Bay Resort have started to check-in following the completion of the AUD$90 million five-star luxury development designed by The Buchan Group.

Located at Momi Bay, 45 minutes from Fiji’s Nadi International Airport, the 250-room resort is centred on a 21 hectare lagoon.  It features 92 free-standing beachside bures, 22 overwater bures and 136 rooms in the hotel’s main accommodation buildings.

The Marriott-operated resort was designed by Buchan for the Fiji National Provident Fund (FNPF), and responds to a growing demand for luxury overwater bures in Fiji.

Buchan Group Gold Coast-based Director Brett Saville said the team drew on their extensive tourism expertise across the Pacific to develop a complementary design for the new hotel.

“It was crucial for Buchan to develop a design that was sensitive to the resort’s picturesque setting and attuned to the resort’s unique point of difference,” Mr Saville said.

“The team made sure to incorporate the initial work undertaken on site before the hotel’s construction ceased after the GFC, ensuring consistency and cost efficiency across all elements of the resort.

“We also sourced local materials wherever possible including rock from the site, traditional timbers and woven ceiling panels to ensure the resort looks authentic yet contemporary. 

“Each bure features large glass windows and an expansive balcony to maximise the spectacular views from each room and to provide unmatched accessibility to the lagoon and the beaches.

“Our strong attention to detail, while fulfilling the operator’s design guidelines, has resulted in a desirable destination which is sure to attract visitors from all corners of the globe.”

The resort also features expansive function rooms for weddings and events, marina facilities, three signature food and beverage outlets, as well as a range of recreational activities and services across the 42-hectare site. There is more space available for significant expansion.

Patterns of Natural Light at The Atrium, Greenwood Plaza

July 7, 2017

North Sydney has a new lunchtime destination, the Atrium. The casual dining food court has undergone extensive renovations to the tune of $9 million and is now open inside Greenwood Plaza.

Buchan’s initial design concept was inspired by the stoma cell, incorporating discrete, varied zones to offer relief and contrast from the pace and rigid structure of the North Sydney business district.

The design approach was driven by the fast-paced demographic of the broad clientele. It was imperative to ensure the space responded to the varied target market to redefine Greenwood as an engaging and inspiring space through integration of a rich interplay of finishes and textures.

Introducing a material palette that reflects the sophistication of the demographic of The Atrium while recognising younger professionals and students as regular patrons was a consideration throughout the design process.

Design elements and finishes inspired by the patterns in nature were selected and applied in an eclectic way. Natural light, and the way nature plays with this light, was a particular inspiration for the design solution.  Through randomising and repeating the patterns playfully, an intriguing, uplifting and unique space was created at Greenwood Plaza.


July 5, 2017

The Buchan Group’s design for Launceston Airport Terminal has won the Commercial Award in the 2017 Australian Institute of Architects Awards (Tasmanian Chapter).

The annual Tasmanian Architecture Awards recognise the finest accomplishments of Tasmanian architects. The Commercial Award honours the project judged to showcase excellence in design in the commercial sector.

Commenting on the win, project director and head of design at The Buchan Group, Grant Withers, said it was gratifying for the Buchan Group to be recognised for the quality of their design.

"The team is excited and honoured to receive this significant award as it highlights our commitment and proven track record in transforming commercial and retail environments.

“It is a very modest project and the design philosophy is simple – moving the terminal closer to the runway so that the public can feel the excitement of air travel. The floor-to-ceiling glass façade creates a big picture window to view the planes take-off and land, surrounded by the striking mountain ranges beyond.

“Our design merges the natural environment with modern retail principles to create a space where every nuance and aesthetic subtlety employed in the design is informed by its deep connection with the landscape and region to improve the visitor experience.”

The jury described the space as celebrating “the typically informal personal welcome that Launceston is proud of.”

Named award winners progress to the National Architecture Awards to be announced in Canberra on Thursday 2 November.

Connecting Rural and Urban Communities, The Hub at Hornby

July 4, 2017

Shopping Centre Investments Limited appointed The Buchan Group to provide design, documentation, building consenting, and construction monitoring for Christchurch’s Enviro-Mark Gold accredited shopping centre The Hub, Hornby in a $65M facelift
featuring a 6000m² anchor store, 70 specialty retail stores and a contemporary food court.

Transformation of The Hub begun in late 2012 after a land swap with the Christchurch City Council enabled the realignment of Chalmers Street and an increase of the centre footprint to 25,000m².

Buchan Senior Associate Daren Alderson said delivering a design that built up to the new road boundaries, maximising the site, enabled the team to create an aesthetically pleasing exterior and highly functional interior.

“We approached the road realignment as an opportunity to incorporate curved elements to the façade, creating a spectacular view for motorists entering and passing the centre,” he said.
“The section facing Carmen Road and Chalmers Street now takes on a visually interesting form, leading to the substantial composite aluminium clad northern entry with two building elements linking the road to the building now clad in perforated stainless steel.

Vertical metal and perforated stainless steel cladding, graphic panels on which the Centre has elected to install Maori artworks, a black aluminium ribbon feature, and stepped parapets give the building interest in scale and form. Internally, a distinctive black ceiling recess, mirrored on the floor in terrazite and surface mounted black lights run from the main north entrance to the far side of the food court, leading the eye along the retail front.

The new continuous concourse links the existing supermarket to the new anchor store, providing room for specialty stores, a new central food court, new amenities and parents’ room, and a new pedestrian entry from the expanded vehicle parking above.

A natural palette of grey, black and white was rolled out for the entire centre to integrate the new build and modernise the existing shopping space.

The Hub, Hornby centralises Christchurch’s southern rural and urban communities anchoring the adjacent bulky goods retail and trade supply precincts.