The Oxford Bar is a postcard from the neo-retro future. Fun, free and fabulous. Filled with nostalgia and created with state of the art product techniques, this exterior and interior refurbishment celebrates the exuberance and diversity the area is famous for in fresh ways.
An exterior upgrade ensures it's richly deserved landmark status is reclaimed in the city, completed with an urban garden cafe replacing the windswept terrace.
A house party at heart; the interior creates a homely space with modular booths and banquettes to easily circulate in comfort and enough pinch pints to provide opportunity for connection.
From the cheeky alpine scene in the smoking terrace to the hand-dyed orange macramé wall, the space is redolent in familiar yet contemporary icons to touch the heart and tickle the elbows for a street that's had many challenges enforced up on it.
New cladding, custom modular joinery, painting, graphics, custom lighting, furniture, signage, bespoke artwork, finishes.
Hidden away in an inauspicious suburban warehouse building, one doesn’t expect a contemporary quality food and beverage experience. An industrial speakeasy. An almost cave-like refuge to the glare of steel, brick and concrete baking away in the sun outside.
The Palate Hotel is the dreamchild of owner, Rod Salmon, who conceived of a casual food-focussed venue with quality and heart in the under-served western suburbs of Sydney. Unlike standard offerings of nearby pubs and takeaways, this neo-industrial gem is every bit as quality-driven as you’d find in the city, but with raw authenticity and inventive spirit.
Recycling here has been taken to a new level. In the spirit of Aussie ingenuity, most of the fitout - materials, equipment, furniture, finishes, hardware and fittings - have been rescued, repurposed, re-used or re-engineered. Beyond the box ticking of green regulations and environmentally responsible products, this development could actually have a negative carbon footprint.
A collaborative working pattern between client, designer, project manager, builder, trades, sculptors and suppliers produced all sorts of creative outcomes- each greater than the sum of its parts.
Photography by Alex Donnini Photography
1. Main Bar
2. Chef’s table
3. Cocktail lounge
4. Function table
5. Bar detail
6. Bistro/ Dining
8. Public Bar
9. Café / Bottleshop
11. Street Entry
Creating a smoking-compliant outdoor space within an existing building produced a result of more than 80% increase in turnover in the gaming space. The new skylights inverted the dynamic of the hotel and profits soared.
A traditional crasftsman aesthetic applied with modern finishes and spatial gymnastics has provided new environments within the turn of the century era hotel fabric. The refurbishment included a new gaming room, VIP entry, updated toilets, new bar servery, public bar, TAB and a function room.
1. New skylight
2. Gaming room 1
3. Gaming room 2
5. Foyer Visual
7. TAB Visual
8. Public Bar
9. Floor Plan
“To create a restaurant the market has never seen before that offers a unique customer experience each and every visit”,
Thus began a journey of discovery and adventure that the management, staff and customers have now eagerly embraced as their own destination of delight.
A feast for the senses, the interior is a multi-layered experience, made possible through collaboration with skilled artisans, manufacturers and the best craft-based expertise available. Exhaustive research, prototyping, and custom production produced unique and vibrant creations, where new worlds and old traditions collide.
Spectacular lighting, generous spaces, sumptuous seating, energy and character in a vibrant celebration of light, colour, space and drama, the Caloundra RSL has broken all expectations of customer numbers and repeat visits across day and night.
Finalist - Best Hospitality Interior, Interior Design Excellence Awards 2008
1. Café screen
2. Café seating
3. Alfresco - casual dining
4. Aura - fine dining
5. Viva - bistro dining
6. Viva – iridescent butterfly lighting
7. Outdoor terrace
8. Floor plan
Taking cues from a passionate Palm-springs style reverence of all things tropical seemed too appropriate to pass up. Set in the middle of Greater Sydney's geographical heartland of Parramatta, the location couldn't be less beachy; leaving the yearning for a pina colada and a bongo beat unmet.
With a celebration of the colours, patterns and outdoor fun that typifies a beach experience, the Cabana Lounge, patrons are provided an all-weather alternative. Architectural lines in the timber ceiling lanterns and oversized mosaics add resort-glamour with a party vibe.
1. View from external stairs
3. View from internal entry
4. Floor plan
Our brief: to create a vibrant attractive entry, add a cafe for day trade and provide a much needed outdoor solution for the gaming room. The entry, bar areas and gaming were re-shuffled and re-presented making the previous back-entry a new front door scooping new customers from the adjacent shopping centre.
A tropical garden experience brought the outdoors in echoing the perennially popular resort-style tropical garden at the rear of the venue. Infusing life and laughter into previously lonely spots and now visually accessible from front door to the garden, the venue has a new open inviting feel.
Daylight streams in from new directions, New customers are welcomed in and now can actually see what’s on offer. Cake and coffee with the crew turns onto a return visit for dinner with the family and vice versa. The new layout also enabled enhanced security, better market grouping in their own distinct areas, shared staffing in quiet times between café and bistro and people-spotting is maximized for friendly social interaction.
2. Cafe / Dining
3. Cafe Servery
5. Gaming Pavillion
6. External Entry
7. Floor Plan
"The customers love it. For the industry I'm in and the street I'm in, I know that no-one else can compare."
Gary Papadopoulos, Owner, Bada Bing Night Club
In the heart of the infamous Kings Cross strip in Sydney, Australia, the venue has set a new standard for entertain- ment. Intimate, rich and sparkling, Bada Bing celebrates the sassy in classy style.
It's first off the rank for Swerve Design’s archi-theatre range. It's all about putting patrons into the act. We’ve used principles from our event design work to create knock-out customer experiences in permanent venues.
Here, fun, flesh and fantasy swirl in a in a flattering flurry of visual tricks. Crystal-laced mirrors reflect customer and performer together in a sumptuous and passionate embrace through infinite, mysterious vistas beyond. A walk on the wild side in comfort and style - now that’s an experience to remember.
4. Bar Visual
5. Floor Plan
"The figures are sensational. Everyone likes it. We're getting customers we never though we would, especially a younger crowd here for a good night out... It's a design that's got something for everyone... We've had other hotel owners come from miles around to see what they've been told is "the best gaming room in the southern hemisphere"
Tim Briggs, Licensee, Lapstone Hotel
A contemporary classic with wide appeal. Swerve Design's take on a cosy mountain retreat with a modern Australian twist has given the historic highway inn new life, identity and positioning in the area.
New free-flowing open planning, dramatic ceiling heights, natural materials, expansive terraces and a warm welcoming atmosphere have transformed the ailing pub into a fresh, popular detination venue.
1. Gaming Room
2. Gaming Visual
James Bond elegance and mystery meets super yacht in this downtown Shenzhen jazz bar.
In the incredible energy and changing landscape of China's fastest growing region, this wholly new venue provides intimate spaces for a VIP-style experience while fully involved in the music and action.
4. Billiards room
5. Floor plan
Inspired by olympic stadium architecture, One World Sport celebrates the excitement and glory by recreating the atmosphere of the sporting events themselves. This brings to life the venue tagline "the next best thing to being at the game". Accommodating up to 5 separate events simultaneously, this multi-space venue offers everything from a quiet al fresco coffee to an international DJ frenzy.
A flexible layout allows a variety of spaces to be created according to the event staged. Acoustic operable walls, precision audio visual, and carefully located circulation, egress, servicing and levels provides maximum opportunity for use.
A reduced palette of concrete, timber, neutrals and steel gives not only a convincing stadium ambience, but durable and serviceable treatments to take the massive wear. Custom graphics with architectural and effects lighting deliver a further layer of drama and energy.
1. Public bar - ground floor
2. Arena nightclub
3. VIP area
4. Sports bar
6. Ground floor plan
7. First floor plan
With one of Sydney's finest surf beaches at its doorstep and a reputation and legend all of it's own, Northies has a place in every local's heart.
Swerve Design have been involved in the subtle reworking of various spaces over the course of 5 years, room by room to improve and update without upsetting the identity.
Part Hamptons, part resort, part winter garden, the spaces create chapters to host the stories for the next generations of grommets, groovers, surfers and babes.
2. Cocktail lounge
3. Gaming room
7. Floor plan
Continuing our 14 year old relationship with the multi-award-winningRose of Australia, we were invited back to re-imagine the top floor.
Flexible modular furniture and custom joinery pieces created a variety of configuration possibilities.
Décor selections pursued a contemporary raw authenticity with casual character, art and irreverence -qualities this inner urban local is famous for.
A close collaboration between client and designer ensured the personality of the client found expression in custom designed and curated pieces of distinction in a flexible and functional layout.
"An outstanding return on our investment"
Scott Leach, Licensee, Rose of Australia Hotel
President , Australian Hotels Association (NSW)
The brief: 3 words. Contemporary, comfortable and fun. An historic and socially sensitive landmark hotel, the solution required winning over the locals, heritage committee and passionate owners committed to making this forgotten gem shine once more. Our new layout and colourful play on familiar materials created a flexible and functional venue with charm and tradition.
We called it the “Living Room”. Warm, inviting and spacious, the slightly retro vibe appeased the old timers and new movers and shakers alike in a variety of spaces to meet up, be entertained, fed, watered and gossip in comfort and style.
Ensuring the venue maintained its fiercely loyal patronage, the refurbishment was staged over two years. The renovations became part of the fun - each visit meant a new conversation was to be had about the changes. Patrons were involved right from the start.
15 years later, we were invited back. The 2001 refurbishment outlasted standard fit out life-times by more than 3 times the expected, all while remaining intact to the original design and popularity to the day of demolition.
1. Cocktail lounge
2. Cocktail lounge visual
3. Cocktail lounge 2
4. Elbow lounge
5. Elbow lounge visual
6. Public bar
7. Facade upgrade
8. Facade visual
9. Ground floor plan
10. First floor plan
Inspired by the colours, cuisine and beauty of the Tasmanian landscape, the refurbished restaurant onboard the cruise vessel begins the island adventure as soon as passengers enjoy their first meal.
Accommodating 250 passengers at a time, 500 passengers in two sittings are able to be dine in comfort on the overnight voyage from Sydney to Devonport and return.
1. Ship exterior
3. Servery visual
5. Dining area 1
6. Servery detail
7. Floor plan
Originally a Greek island-hopping ferry, a new menu, different market and service style demanded a complete overhaul of front and back of house. A functional, durable and friendly space was realised with a fresh contemporary flavour showcasing the warmth, produce and hospitality of the apple isle.
Celebrating national wonders in an eco-tourism and entertainment experience for the whole family, this theme park in Hanoi, Vietnam is as much about hush as rush. A multi-faceted concept allows cultural and natural storytelling to be punctuated with thrills and spills. Contemplative landscape, traditional craft demonstrations and sculpture gardens give plenty of breathing space between the dark rides, roller coaster, kids adventure land and shows.
It’s part of an enormous development on a town-size scale with it’s own prestige suburbs, gardens and highways. The theme park provides a local meeting place, entertainment precinct, dining destination, local landmark, botanical gardens and cultural centre all in one.
Swerve Design in collaboration with LRSFX developed the masterplan, precinct zoning, and concept in conjunction with Laservision’s central volcano laser and light show experience.
1. Park map
3. Entry Concept
4. Entry Experience
6. Dining precinct
7. Night show
8. Dining hall
9. Performance space
10. Aerial photograph
A temple of rejuvenation
Set amongst the verdant high country near Chongqing in Sichuan province of China, the proposed Thai spa is designed to be the jewel in the crown of the Chongqing International Golf Club Hotel and villa complex.
Highly revered by the growing upper class of the region for the restorative and relaxing powers, thie Thai spa experience has been created to as indulgent and rewarding as a journey to the famous spa resorts of Thailand.
A celebration of water and the senses, lagoons, pools, waterfalls, and lily ponds abound in a world of discovery, contrasts, and personal revitilisation. The mind, body and spirit are lifted using state of the art equipment in an environment steeped in ancient ritual and power.
A twist on the traditional social spa experience in China, the Thai spa is a place where you can equally lose yourself and find high adventure. Solitary peace or share the experience with others. The choice is yours in a seamless journey between public and private, wet and dry, hot and cold, light and dark, active and relaxed.
The Thai spa offers an irresistible escape to a world of harmony and timeless healing.
1. Entry visual
2. Eternity spa visual
3. Eternity spa floor plan
4. Pavilion spa visual
5. Ground floor plan
6. First floor plan
For 35 years, Discovery Cube Orange County has made science education fun, memorable and impactful in Los Angeles. Magic Memories partners with Discovery Cube to an create an entry space experience to maximise engagement on arrival and sell a photobook souvenir for guests to take home and discover more post-visit.
An outer space themed green-screen studio complete with satellite-styled camera equipment took small groups of guests to another realm, whilst members and school-groups had their own personalised experience to keep the flow constant and fun.
Our custom-designed book and complementary ‘Smile Factory’ retail space connected with the museums values, mission and exhibits to encourage curious minds to explore more with activity-based learning.
Balancing stakeholder needs, strict building codes, curatorial objectives, and a busy event-calendar, our design and program delivered a plug-in solution that maximised opportunity and minimised disruption.
Produced by Magic Memories
Design, presentations, book & graphic art-direction, detailed documentation, design management and budgets by Stefan Elliott.
Book design & graphic design by Ji Hong
1. Entry view
2. Green studio
3. Satellite themed photographic equipment ‘skycam’
4. ‘Smile Factory’ view
5. ‘Smile Factory’ rendering
6 Fixed counter graphics
7. Salesboard graphics
8. Book cover
9. Book spread - eco pages
10. Book spread - sport pages
Magic Memories are an international success story for guest photography in attractions across the world.
Their Australian challenge - Design and install 4 different retail and display spaces for 3 different attraction brands across 2 cities with 1 system in the same month. Must withstand impacts by falling people, durable in damp and extreme temperatures, easily re-branded, adaptable for peak/off peak demands, and reconfigurable to any new layout later with simple tools.
Our customisation of an exhibition profile provided unique multi-capacity product display walls, graphic billboards, lighting, interactive displays and storage spaces with lockable doors. Custom POS joinery units concealed a variety of different equipment set-ups in a stand-alone pod. All movable. All built to stand the toughest of treatment. All delivered on time and under budget.
With money saved, we provided a hero feature for each site to further excite guests at the purchase point. E.g. The Sydney Aquarium received a giant inflatable octopus and The Sydney Tower Eye received an interactive totem and floor map which staff use to direct guests to the other nearby Merlin attractions further increasing sales from the audience. Win-win.
Sydney Tower Eye
1.-2. Entry & exit views
3. Floor Plan
5. Hero Totem interactive feature
6. Entry view
7. View within space
8. 3D visual
9. POS unit
10. Entry view
11. Graphic proof
12. Entry view
13. Exit view
14. Concept floor plan
15. Installation crew
OceanWorld at Manly, Sydney offered one of the largest underwater viewing tunnels, an up-close and personal Shark Dive Extreme experience and a spectacular Great Barrier Reef exhibit, but suffered from poor attendance and retail sales.
We stripped out the tired polystyrene cave entryway and took guests on a journey under the waves through our submarine portals and rippling water tunnel of light. New floor to ceiling graphic panels in the main aquarium chamber expanded the exhibits’ stories to create a theatre in the round effect.
A simplified colour palette reduced the retail space’s visual clutter, large scale graphics added drama and continuation of the portal features completed the submarine experience.
Produced by ARC3D
Client liaison, proposals, design, presentations, documentation & project management by Stefan Elliott.
Built by Intermain
1. Entry tunnel 3D visual
2. Entry tunnel view
3. Ticketing & retail space 3D visual
4. Ticketing & retail view
5. Entry tunnel plans
6. Aquarium graphics
As creative consultants to Wet’n’Wild Sydney, our role was to add an extra layer to the presentation and experience of the new water park.
Our art direction of the animated fly-through by maestros of animation, Impact Multimedia, launched the park to the media and to the market for pre-sales. Engaging and feauturing a rocking track written for the video piece, it also provided a valuable tool for the project team to work from.
As art-directors of large format graphics, we collaborated with branding specialists, Boxer & Co, who designed the park's most important large scale graphics – the entry and central wave pool. Fresh, vibrant and iconic, these graphics are a key part of the branding story that sets this park art from its international cousins.
With irreverent spirit, the mobile vendors deliver thirst quenching, hunger stopping treats to the masses all funkily delivered in a fresh take on the surfing kombi van. Custom built over golf carts and trailers by Kennovations, these targetted and fully kitted out vehicles make a fun event out of snacking.
1. Still from animated fly-through
2. Still from animated fly through
3. Entry Graphic – proposed Elevation
4. Entry Graphic – insitu
5. Wave Pool Graphic - context
6. Wave Pool graphic – close up
7. Mobile Vendors concept sketch
8. Mobile Merchandising Trailer
9. Mobile Vendor Caravan
General Electric's worldwide healthymagination campaign launched in Australia with this stand. Inspird by the new directions in GE, the design strikes a clean, personal and expressive presence whilst retaining the confidence and precision the medical products demand.
The stand was highly commended by the US head office and served as the example to lead the worldwide exhibition program.
Produced by Arc4D
1. Main view
2. Main visual
3. On stand
4. Display pod
5. Rear view
6. Hospitality suite
7. Branded coffee
Launching the “New dawn” campaign, our stand presents Hyundai’s vehicle range cleanly and serenely in a futuristic minimal setting.
Featuring an enormous cinematic projection screen above, ramped turntable, digital spec stands, totem tower, lightbox banner, reception counter and meeting areas, the exhibit space commanded attention from afar yet gave the vehicles their own space to shine.
Produced by Showcorp Technologies
Forbo’s exhibition space takes the audience on a narrated journey through their product range in a spectacular spiral of colour, contrast and texture.
Overcoming the principle drawback to exhibiting flooring - looking down - our clients were most impressed how every visitor reached out to touch the product on the walls.
Themes of continuity, coherence, and comprehensiveness, this forward-thinking and attention-grabbing space demonstrated Forbo have the flooring solution from front to back.
1. Hero view from entry
2. Within the spiral.
3. Left hand view.
4. Colour, contrast and texture
5. 3D rendering
6. The sketch where 3 arches became 1 spiral
7. Research sketches
8. Floor Plan
10. Joinery details
To cut through the competitors in adjacent stands, a warm hospitality style of presentation was employed to give personality and style to Stryker's cutting edge technology in implants.
With the grace and clean lines of a modernist hotel, the design serves to present Styryker's products with clarity and acuity. Cleverly constructed joinery pieces allow the display pods to integrate and connect just a as the actual products do in the body.
The stand components were designed for multiple uses and were reinstalled successfully and economically in various stand configurations for the next 2 years.
1. Main approach
2. Stand visual
3. Corner view
4. Display pod
5. Reinstall 1
6. Reinstall 2
Remarkable technology demands a remarkable space. Celebrating vision, light, convenience and choice, this modular stand demonstrated the adaptive powers of their product in a multi-sensory space.
Transitions lenses automatically adapt to different lighting conditions to allow the same pair of glasses to be reading glasses inside and automatically darken to become sunglasses outside.
Our design employed ceiling projection screens, a video installation, soundscape and a hospitality space that attracted, entranced, refreshed and communicated the technology with style and warmth.
All elements broke down for re-installation in various configurations over the 12 month campaign lifecycle.
Produced by Arc4D
Celebrating the 40th year of world-wide retail success story Westfield, our stage set and room decor provided a simple yet sophisticated backdrop for their night of nights.
Referencing a triumphant global cityscape, simple layering of projection panels allowed for varying lighting states and moods to complement, not overwhelm, the prominent guests and moments on stage.
Our stage production launched the World Energy Congress with a message of hope for the future. The story of the origins of energy in the universe and mankind's journey though harnessing and mastery of the achievements they made possible was brought to life through the feature set pieces, 3D projection, dancers, atmospherics and lighting.
Further historical and emotional developments were staged with world-class talent including acrobatics, aerialists, culminating in the vision for the future with gymnastics, incredible costuming and dazzling lasers.
1. Prime Minister, stage set & aerialist
2. Stage set visual - creation
3. Stage set visual - industrialisation
4. Stage set visual - future
5. Dancer & laser show - future
The gala opening ceremony of Sydney’s newest road tunnel created a ballroom, pre-function space and entry experience all choreographed around complicated construction and traffic schedules. Not to mention, no surface was level, no end walls and all power, services, AV, lighting and decor needed to be brought in and out.
Connecting Sydney’s Eastern beach-side suburbs, under the wild nightlife of Kings Cross to the city and west beyond, the Cross City Tunnel promised to reduce travel time, ease congestion and herald a new flow to the city.
Our design employed Sydney icons as static displays, character performances and animated projections to colour and animate the tunnel space.
Produced by Orchestrated Events
A collaboration between Swerve Design and Jarjoura Design activated the workspace with energy, flexibility and interactivity to reflect IQnovate's progressive culture and brand.
New partitions, feature reception space, joinery, graphics, furniture, lighting, finishes.
Young, spirited, exciting and passionate, Spanton Media's office space offered a hospitality environment to welcome guests and staff alike into their brand experience.
Leading the market in hospitality publications, their office space became part of the culture, their customer's products and the industry they represent.
New partitions, joinery, cladding, finishes, lighting, artwork.