Skyscrapers aren't what make Melbourne famous. Other than the iconic Arts Centre spire and the massive Eureka Tower, our skyline isn't defined by any particularly tall structures. You won't find the city's finest structures towards the edges of the grid, but rather tucked away on quiet side streets or tucked away in sprawling parks and gardens. Listed below are some of our favourite architectural masterpieces from and around Melbourne. We advise you to make a day of it after the lockdown is lifted then see how many we can see.
The Best Buildings In Melbourne
Flinders Street Station
Weddings Parties Anything, jump on it; the room at Flinders Street Station is still stunning, and its yellow dome is instantly recognisable as a symbol of Melbourne. Following an international Flinders Stn Design Competition held in 2011 by the Victorian Coalition Government, the entire station is slated for a substantial overhaul
RMIT Design Hub
Among Melbourne's most eye-catching structures is the RMIT Design Hub, which can be found at the crossroads of Swanston and Victoria streets. The structure is clad in 17,000 automated circular glass panels, which give excellent energy efficiency and can be rotated to accommodate the Melbourne weather forecast. The building is mostly used for design and postgraduate students at RMIT University, although it also features an exhibition area and a forecourt. The RMIT Design Hub is featured in the 2014 Australian film Predestination, has received a Greenstar Certification, and was awarded the Chicago Athenaeum's International Architecture Award in 2013.
InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto
The InterContinental Melbourne, located in the heart of the city at the end of fashionable Collins Street, is all about the grandeur. Everything about this hotel screams high end, from the neo-gothic architecture that dates back to the 1890s to the marble bathrooms in the plush rooms. The indoor pool has spectacular views of the city, but the best features are the dining and drinking options. Dine on cuisine crafted with local ingredients at the Alluvial restaurant, or stop by Mrs. D'ebros High Tea for some fresh made buttermilk scones as you take in the soaring arches of the atrium.
FAQs About Best Buildings In Melbourne
Residential amenities are also beginning to take shape, with fit-outs begun for the pool, gym, cinema, karaoke room and virtual golf rooms. Once complete, the project will comprise 1376 apartments and 257 luxury hotel suites, with Stage 1 anticipated for completion in 2021.
Fashioned from bluestone and sandstone, the three-storey building is a primary example of Australian Renaissance Revival architecture. The building originally served as the home of the Treasury Department but is now a museum with a number of permanent and rotating exhibitions.
Government House is certainly impressive, and it is a fine example of Victorian-era craftsmanship. 11. Supreme Court of Victoria This is a beautiful building representing the Renaissance Revival style. 12. Nicholas Building 13. Mission to Seafarers 14. Rialto Building 15. RMIT University Building 8 16. County Court of Victoria (Melbourne Law Courts)
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Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products. Includes a variety of protein foods such as seafood, lean meats and poultry, eggs, legumes, soy products, nuts, and seeds. Is low in added sugars, sodium, saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol.
Royal Exhibition Building & Carlton Gardens
The Royal Exhibition Building, one of Australia's most prestigious structures, was designed by Joseph Reed and finished in 1880. It was constructed in order to house the first official World's Fair in the Southern Continent and is therefore one of the world's oldest surviving display pavilions. The Great Hall itself is still standing, despite the fact that other parts of the edifice were destroyed by fire or bombing. The magnificent furnishings of the Grand Hall are as as striking in person as they are on photographs of the exterior of the structure. The National Gallery Building holds the distinction of being the very first structure to be designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Melbourne's Forum Theatre, formerly known as state Theatre, was constructed in 1929 as a "atmospheric theatre." The architects behind this plan hoped their creation would make customers feel as though they had been transported from a dull, boxy room to a lush European patio. In the case of the Forum, this meant integrating a number of statues in the style of classical antiquity, elegant balconies, alcoves decorated with gargoyles, and a cerulean blue ceiling with sprinkling lights that simulate the sparkling stars of a dusk sky. The building's exterior is designed in the Moorish Revival style, replete with minaret-like spires and a clock tower. After the 2017 Schmick renovation, the Forum's historic astronomical clock and magnificent mosaic tiles were revealed. The Forum is currently utilized as a theatre, movie theatre, and concert hall.
Old Melbourne Stock Exchange
There's a certain Gothic allure about the defunct stock market. Gargoyles, carved granite, and stained glass adorn the inside. The ANZ Gothic Bank, modelled after a mediaeval cathedral, was designed by architect William Wardell in the middle of the 1800s. In this sandstone structure, the ceilings are gilded as an ornament.
Clifton Hill McDonalds
While there are approximately 36,000 McDonald's locations around the world, just one can claim to have this level of style. The McDonald's on Clifton Hill is one of Victoria's most recognisable landmarks, and its cantilevered concrete terraces and rounded façade make it a prime example of jazz moderne architecture. Of course, contrary to popular belief, the location wasn't always a McDonald's. When it first opened in 1937 at the corner of Heidelberg Road and Kings Parade, it was known as the United Kingdom Hotel; however, it lost its licence to operate as a hotel in 1988. Due to the building's historical significance, the historical society mandated that McDonald's keep several of the building's most notable elements after the restaurant's purchase.
ANZ Gothic Bank
Visit this magnificent bank that has been around since the 1880s. This magnificent structure was constructed between 1883 and 1887 at the intersection of Collins and Queen streets. Originally named Verdon Chambers, this Melbourne landmark is now often referred to as the city's "Gothic Bank." The incredible Cole's Book Arcade was constructed in the late nineteenth century for the English, Scottish, and Australia Appointed Bank during the post-gold-rush period of 'Marvellous Melbourne,' when Melbourne saw a surge in prosperity that allowed for the construction of lavish new structures.
ES&A's headquarters and the home of the bank's general manager were located in the Gothic Bank. Definitely a desirable workplace benefit. George Verdon, the bank's general director at the time, oversaw construction, which may explain the expensive design. Formerly known as the Angel Inn, this location was purchased by ES&A for a mere £61. However, the grand structure's final price tag of £77,393 was nearly double the original estimate, due in large part to increases in the expenses of carpentry ($1,961), stonemasonry ($1,002), and furniture ($8,000) for the financial chamber and general manager's apartment. William Wardell, the architect, also created St. Patrick's Cathedral and Melbourne's Government House.
The L-shaped piece of land may bring the bank a significant profit if it were to be sold land directly next to and behind the Gothic Bank building in exchange for $65,000 to the Australian Stock Exchange. William Pitt's design is much more elaborate than Wardell's; it features gargoyles, stained glass, fluted columns, and a beautiful rose window at its peak. In 1921, ES&A purchased the property and connected it to the Stock Exchange, which had been severely impacted by the slump of the 1890s. As of right now, going back and forth between the two structures is a breeze.
The Venetian-Gothic style banking hall was adorned with several lavish details throughout its construction. The ceiling is intricately decorated, the doors are made of wood with relief carvings, the outside is carved from stone, and the wall art is gilded with 23-karat gold. Located in the historic Stock Exchange building, the Cathedral Room is a visual feast because to its high cathedral ceilings, towers of Bendigo granite, and stained-glass windows.
In 1912, a fire almost destroyed both the Cathedral Bank as well as the Stock Exchange before the alarm was sounded in time to rescue both buildings. General management for ES&A remained in the premises until 1933. In 1970, ANZ and ES&A combined, and the latter moved out of the Gothic Office tower and into the ANZ headquarters. ANZ erected a skyscraper in behind Gothic Bank in the 1990s; its golden ornamentation and pointed arches are an intentional nod to the style. Today, it serves as a fully operational ANZ bank and is often considered the finest financial institution in the area. The Principal Financial Museum, was opened there in 1985, chronicles the evolution of banking in Australia.
Manchester Unity Building
The Manchester Unity Building, despite being one of Melbourne's most recognisable Art Deco structures, is often overshadowed by its more well-known neighbours. The Manchester Union Independent Order as Oddfellows bought the land at the intersection of Swanston Street and Bennet Street in 1928. Delays caused by the Great Depression allowed construction to begin early in 1932, having designs inspired by Chicago's Tribune Tower. The design incorporates a buff-colored cladding, vertical ribbing, and a Gothic crown with many flying buttresses. The building has 12 stories, and its underground arcade may be reached through the first escalators in Melbourne.
333 Collins Street
The Commercial Bank for Australia constructed 333 Collins Street as a bank branch in the 1920s, although today it serves as a generic office building. It's a palatial structure in the Italian Baroque style that exudes wealth and status. Parts of the edifice date back more than a century, and it wasn't until 1990 that the entire structure, with its accessory tower, was finished.
From Collins Street, enter the foyer and gaze up to see the ornate gold-plated dome that houses the banking hall. Ironically, the structure was nearly demolished in the 1970s, but the Old Buildings Board stood firm and successfully pushed through legislation to safeguard Victoria's built environment.
On the crossroads of Elizabeth Street on Bourke Street Mall stands the historic General Post Office, a landmark of Melbourne's central business district. Construction on this structure began in 1859 and continued for the next fifty years in various forms. During this final phase of construction, the now-iconic clock tower was constructed in the years about 1887. The sorting hall was transformed into a public hall by American architect Norman Burley Griffin in the early 1920s, only to be modified again by John Smith Murdoch. For the most of the 20th century, this building housed a post office; however, in 1993, Australia Post opted to relocate its operations to more compact storefronts.
Before 2001, when it was leased to entrepreneurs with the intention of transforming it into a strip mall, many commercial designs were presented but never realised. The GPO's interior was destroyed by a fire in September 2001, and the building wasn't restored as a luxury shopping district until 2004. Melbourne's first H&M store has been located in the GPO since 2014. Not interested in the apparel and accessories? The building's remarkable 19th-century magnificence is worth a look nevertheless.
The National Gallery of Australia is housed in a stunning modernist structure on St. Kilda Road, and is often considered to be the country's oldest and most visited art museum. That honour is due to the consistently high quality of the gallery's permanent collection, the impressive quality of its visiting collections, and the wide variety of supplementary programmes it hosts for both locals and visitors. Even though it has only been open since the mid-1800s, the gallery's permanent collection already has works by Rembrandt, Bonnard, and Tiepolo. Yes, it is difficult to refrain from touching the water wall that greets all visitors toward the NGV upon admission. The gallery's main shows are often displayed on the ground floor, beneath the Great Hall's famous boiled-lolly-like stained glass roof.
The permanent collections and smaller temporary exhibits are located on the upper floors. Keep a tight eye on any juveniles planning an escape, as the huge chambers reminiscent of the colonial era are easy to get lost in. The 19th Century Gallery at the NGV is a must-see for anyone who plans on spending any amount of time in the museum. It is so called because of the way the paintings are arranged, and it features August Friedrich Schenck's "Anguish," one of the most powerful works in the exhibition. You may spend the entire day here, so plan on taking several breaks; the Tea Room serves high tea, cakes, and finger food, while the Garden Restaurant serves seasonal dishes.
State Library of Victoria
Explore the State Library, erected in the 1850s, for no cost at all, from the library's iconic dome to the museum's permanent collections to the Chess Hall. The Central Library of Virginia is a historical and cultural monument in Victoria, Australia, housing a vast collection of books as well as other historical exhibits and galleries. The library has been there since 1856, and its impressive exterior and spacious interior make it a focal point of Swanston Street. Six stories high, the La Trobe Reading Room's dome is a sight to behold. The Cowen Gallery is now displaying stunning artworks that explore Victoria's past. Exhibitions and artworks can also be seen in the north and south rotundas, as well as the Keith Murdoch gallery. The library provides all the amenities one needs to get work done, including high-speed internet access, print services, and comfortable seats. The State Library also collects and stores thousands of historical artefacts, maps, scripts, and newspapers in addition to its extensive book and art collection. Readers can also get their hands on digital content. And there is no cost for any of this. In addition, on sunny days, the grounds that surround the library become a popular place to relax. Cafes like Mr Tulk's and the Guild's are conveniently positioned nearby to provide guests with tasty snacks, while the Readings bookstore within the library provides a wealth of shopping opportunities.
Manchester Unity Building
The Manchester Unity House is a Gothic architectural gem in the middle of Melbourne's busy central business district. The structure, which opened in 1932, included Melbourne's first escalator. Elevator doors plated in copper stand out against the copper and marble decor of the foyer. The building's eleventh-floor boardroom has been renovated with great care, and may be seen by booking a tour of the property. The rooftop terrace, which used to house a busy café and tearoom, will also be revealed for the first time.
Melbourne Recital Centre
The Melbourne Recital Centre's whirling hardwood interior is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also functional. Its cutting-edge acoustics have earned it the moniker "the best place to hear" in the city. The fragile "present" within was carefully thought out, thus the honeycomb exoskeleton & bubble-like glass shell were created to seem like gift wrapping.
In 1924, architects Marion Mahony Gibson + Walter Burley Griffin created this theatre. This stunning example of Gothic cathedrals still intact today. Its elaborate design is an attempt to make the visitor feel as though they are inside a real, sparkling cave. Thousands of colourful lights are concealed within a geometric ceiling. RMIT and Six Points Architects just completed a five-year restoration of the Capitol that has brought it back to life.
Arts Centre Melbourne
The Arts Centre mixes the sharp, concrete curves of Harrison Hall with a glittering spire reminiscent of a ballerina's tutu. The partially underground structure houses several theatres and rehearsal spaces. John Truscott, who won an Oscar for his costume designs, was responsible for the luxurious gold and scarlet decor.
No iconic skyscrapers dominate the skyline in Melbourne. The city's most beautiful buildings are hidden away amid its many parks and gardens. Notable landmarks in Melbourne include the RMIT Design Hub, the InterContinental Melbourne, and Flinders Street Station. In 1929, construction began on what would eventually become known as the Forum Theatre (then known as the state Theatre). It's hard to imagine Victoria without the Clifton Hill McDonald's.
William Wardell created the ANZ Gothic Bank in the 1800s, and it was styled after a mediaeval cathedral. This majestic building stood at the corner of Collins and Queen streets from 1883 until 1887. This Melbourne landmark, once known as Verdon Chambers, is now often known as the "Gothic Bank" of the city. Towers of Bendigo granite and stained-glass windows make the Cathedral Room a visual feast. One of Melbourne's most recognisable landmarks, the Manchester Unity Building is a prime example of Art Deco architecture.
In the 1920s, the building at 333 Collins Street was erected as a branch of the Commercial Bank for Australia. Parts of the building are older than a century, but the entire construction, including the side tower, wasn't completed until 1990. Located on St. Kilda Road, the National Gallery of Australia is a beautiful modernist building. This structure served as a post office throughout the better part of the twentieth century. After a fire in 2001 gutted the GPO's interior, the building wasn't repaired until 2004.
In the 1850s, construction began on what is now Victoria's State Library. Numerous galleries and historical displays can be found within its walls in addition to its extensive book collection. Additionally, hundreds of artefacts, maps, texts, and newspapers from throughout history are collected and housed in the library's vaults. Also, all of information is offered at no charge. In the heart of Melbourne's financial sector stands the Gothic masterpiece that is the Manchester Unity House. The Melbourne Recital Centre has a swirling wooden interior that is both beautiful and practical. It took RMIT and Six Points Architects five years to restore the Capitol Theatre.
- Apart from the distinctive spire of the Arts Centre and the huge Eureka Tower, our city skyline is unremarkable in terms of height.
- The most beautiful buildings in a city are rarely found in their more central locations; instead, they tend to be found on quieter side streets or in larger parks and gardens.
- Festivities involving marriage Don't think twice about it; the Flinders Street Station room is still beautiful, and the station's yellow dome is an iconic symbol of Melbourne.
- The RMIT Design Hub has been recognised for its environmental friendliness by being given the Greenstar Certification and the International Architecture Award from the Chicago Athenaeum in 2013.
- Joseph Reed completed construction on the Royal Exhibition Building in 1880, making it one of Australia's most prominent buildings.
- Although much of the building was destroyed by fire or bombing, the Great Hall itself has survived.
- When compared to images of the façade of the building, the beautiful furnishings inside the Grand Hall are even more impressive in person.
- When UNESCO initially started designating buildings as World Heritage Sites, the National Gallery Building was the first one to get the honour.
- The Forum Theatre in Melbourne was originally called the State Theatre and was built in 1929 as a "atmospheric theatre."
- Currently, the Forum serves as a performing arts centre, movie theatre, and music venue.
- There are about 36,000 McDonald's restaurants around the world, yet only one can make this claim.
- The McDonald's on Clifton Hill is a well-known landmark in Victoria, and its cantilevered concrete terraces and rounded façade are outstanding examples of jazz moderne design.
- Come see this gorgeous bank that has been around since the 1880s.
- This majestic building stood at the corner of Collins and Queen streets from 1883 until 1887.
- This Melbourne landmark, once known as Verdon Chambers, is now commonly referred to as the "Gothic Bank" of the city.
- The Gothic Bank was the home of ES&A's general manager and served as the company's headquarters.
- It's possible that the high cost of building is attributable to George Verdon, the bank's general director at the time.
- This building, formerly known as the Angel Inn, was purchased by ES&A for a measly £61.
- The architect, William Wardell, also designed Melbourne's Government House and St. Patrick's Cathedral.
- If the bank sells the L-shaped plot of property to the Australian Stock Exchange for $65,000, it will be located adjacent to and behind the Gothic Bank building.
- Following the crash of the 1890s, ES&A bought the land in 1921 and linked it to the Stock Exchange.
- ANZ and ES&A merged in 1970, and ES&A employees relocated from the Gothic Office tower to the ANZ building.
- In the 1990s, ANZ built a skyscraper behind Gothic Bank, and the building's golden embellishments and pointed arches are no accident.
- Since its opening in 1985, the Principal Financial Museum has been documenting the development of the banking industry in Australia.
- Though it is one of Melbourne's most recognisable Art Deco buildings, the Manchester Unity Building is frequently overlooked by its more famous neighbours.
- In the early 1920s, American architect Norman Burley Griffin converted the sorting hall into a public hall, although John Smith Murdoch made more adjustments.
- In September of 2001, a fire completely gutted the General Post Office, and it wasn't until 2004 that the structure was renovated into a high-end shopping centre.
- In 2014, the GPO building in Melbourne became home to the chain's first Australian location.
- Even so, the building's stunning 19th-century splendour warrants a visit.
- Located on St. Kilda Road, the National Gallery of Australia is widely regarded as the oldest and most popular art museum in Australia. It is located in a magnificent modernist building.
- The gallery has been around since the middle of the 1800s, yet it already has masterpieces like Rembrandt, Bonnard, and Tiepolo in its permanent collection.
- For those who have time to spend at the NGV, the 19th Century Gallery is an absolute must.
- There is no admission fee to see anything in the State Library, which was built in the 1850s, including the museum's permanent collections and the Chess Hall.
- The Central Library of Virginia in Victoria, Australia is a significant cultural landmark with a massive book collection and historical displays.
- Since its opening in 1856, the library has been a prominent feature of Swanston Street thanks to its grand facade and enormous interior.
- The dome over the La Trobe Reading Room is six stories high and is a sight to behold.
- Aside from its vast book and art collection, the State Library also has thousands of historical artefacts, maps, scripts, and newspapers.
- In the heart of Melbourne's bustling CBD stands the Gothic-style Manchester Unity House.
- This building opened in 1932 and featured Melbourne's first escalator.
- It will also be the first time anyone has seen the rooftop terrace, which was once home to a popular café and tearoom.
- The Melbourne Recital Centre has a swirling wooden interior that is both beautiful and practical.
- It has been called "the best location to hear in the city" because to its state-of-the-art acoustics.
- This theatre was designed by architects Marion Mahony Gibson and Walter Burley Griffin in 1924.
- The Capitol has been brought back to life after a five-year restoration project led by RMIT and Six Points Architects.
- The Arts Centre combines Harrison Hall's angular, concrete curves with a shimmering tower reminiscent of a ballerina's tutu.