A South Melbourne pub has been given a new lease on life this week, with design firm Hassell helping transform the Cricket Club Hotel on Melbourne’s Clarendon Street into the Coppersmith, a 15-room boutique hotel, bar and bistro that brings respectful contemporary design to an historical landmark.
Hassell worked collaboratively with owners and developers Con and George Bagios to deliver on their vision for the revitalised hotel and hospitality destination that sees Chef Daniel Southern embark on a new venture.
The Bagios have nearly four decades of experience owning and operating hospitality and accommodation venues throughout Western Australia, and this restoration is their first Melbourne venture.
“We’ve always loved Melbourne and purchased the Cricket Club Hotel in 2006 with the idea of creating a classic small hotel, a neighbourhood hangout, part of the local lifestyle, a community, whilst offering the very best in service with experienced and engaging staff – we’re all about simple things done well,” George Bagios said.
Hassell rejuvenated the building’s architectural expression and designed its interior, focusing on creating a venue true to its colourful past. Features such as arched windows, painted existing brick walls and timber batten detailing echo the original design, along with luxurious touches through the use of copper, leather and wood in a restrained colour palette.
“Referencing the existing building fabric, we have reinterpreted the building’s Victorian features into a modern design within the interior spaces,” Hassell Principal Susan Standring, who led the design, said.
The boutique hotel’s name also draws on the history of the area; it sits on the corner of Thomson
St, named for Ebenezer Drummond Menzies Thomson, a coppersmith by trade and Mayor of South Melbourne in the early 1900s.
Hassell reinforced the Coppersmith’s local heritage by sourcing the selection of artisan furniture and fittings from local designers and craftspeople.
“All joinery throughout the Coppersmith is bespoke, with many of the accent details interpreting elements from the hotel’s past,” Standring said.
“Guests can look forward to highlights including custom lighting from nationally renowned designer
Ross Gardam, guestroom chairs from Living Edge and stools from Jardan.”
The result is a sophisticated and intimate urban retreat offering the comfort and amenity expected by contemporary guests and diners.
Downstairs, former Comme and Bistro Guillaume chef, Daniel Southern, has established himself in the Coppersmith’s bar and bistro, which continues to celebrate local and crafted products. The bar features 18 beer taps, while the wine list is the perfect accompaniment to Southern’s menu, which offers breakfast, lunch, dinner, light meals and snacks.
The timber-decked rooftop bar accommodates up to 40 cocktail guests and allows hotel guests and locals the opportunity to gaze out over the Melbourne skyline.
“The Coppersmith Hotel is about the locals,” Standring said. “We hope our considered design approach will see those that knew and loved the former Cricket Club embrace the Coppersmith, which will also cater to travellers who want an authentic South Melbourne experience.”
Photo by James.H.H.Morgan