185 Macquarie Street
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It doesn't get more exclusive than 185 Macquarie Street in Sydney, opposite the State Library, Parliament House and the Botanical Gardens with Renzo Piano, Norman Foster and the heritage Astor Apartments as neighbours - and that's before you get to the harbour views.
In what is surely the last re-development on historic Macquarie Street, developers Tower Holdings have commissioned a new 14 Storey building (designed by Crone Nation) which will house 42 apartments (interiors by Marchese + Partners) in a style which remains contemporary, but which also acknowledges the rich historical context. Retaining the scale of the original building, the lower eastern facade is clad in a European ravertine punctuated by glass balustrades, while the middle and upper facade has steel cladding. Stack-sliding glass doors and fine timber shutters add to the overall transparency and restrained sophistication of the building.
The apartments open themselves up to the view with the fully glazed eastern side dissolving the separation of inside and outside. The interior architects have taken 'chiaroscuro' as their theme to generate two basic palettes - the 'chiaro' emphasises light with tones of gold, honey and wheat with fine-grained elements of timber veneer and fabric wall panelling, while the 'scuro' is darker, with coffee, walnut and liquorice tones.
These palettes, combined with Spanish stone floors, fabric wall panelling and cut pile carpets create a degree of sensuality, which separates 185 Macquarie Street from more orthodox modernist interiors. The detailing - including 1950s-style rock fireplaces in the penthouses - helps connect the building to its 1960s predecessor, underlying an overall sense of connection with history and place.
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