Bennelong Restaurant @ Sydney Opera House
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Bennelong Restaurant @ Sydney Opera House

Tonkin Zulaikha Greer
Joern Utzon
Project Manager:
Profile Property Group
Fink Group
Interior Designer:
Dixon Research Studio
Brett Stevens

Bennelong Restaurant has been named “one of the world’s most beautiful restaurants” by Bloomberg

One of the most highly anticipated restaurant openings in 2015, Bennelong restaurant, in the iconic Sydney Opera House, re-opened some 18 months after Guillaume Brahimi's departure.

Under the helm of Quay's Peter Gilmore and The Fink Group, the space has undergone a thoughtful renovation by Tim Greer of TZG Architects. Greer has introduced a number of exciting new additions including white-cloth-free Marblo dining tables and Tom Dixon's spectacular new 'Melt' lamps that were launched at this year's Milan Design Week.

The cathedral-like space, which debuted earlier this month, comprises three tiers, each offering views of the harbor and skyline.

Bennelong now boasts five separate dining options

The 90-seat formal dining area on the lowest level features polymer-and-brass tables, while the upper floors include an elevated bar, lounge, and private-dining space.

Upstairs, in a space previously reserved for functions, is 'The Bar' a new offering designed for walk-ins to enjoy a casual pre-theatre aperitif and food within the iconic location.

In the centre of the three-tiered space is a brand new zone where diners can sit at a wide brass bar and watch chefs prepare the 'Cured and Cultured' menu, consisting of produce-driven plates of raw or cultured foods such as South Coast oysters, organic vegetable salads or Culatello (Prosciutto).

Alongside is 'The Table', a semi-private dining space that gives privacy to groups of six to 12 diners without blocking the building's spectacular views.

Melt Light fixtures by British designer Tom Dixon bathe the Opera House’s granite and steel in a golden glow.

The lighting strategy incorporates indirect diffused light and set out to re-imagine some of Utzon’s original lighting ideas.

The concrete sails had previously been lit by metal halide flood lights in big black cans at the base of each sail. The intent was to maxmise the views and allow the building’s structure and beauty to speak for itself.

By modifying the existing cans to include tiered track lighting with LED spots and a super narrow beam meant that the sails could be up lit to give them the definition and depth that was missing before.

The brass metal details and stacked felt adds warmth and richness to the space that is beautifully combined with the earthy tones in the carpet to create an intimate and comfortable ambience.

To compliment the materials and space the lighting designers' used two colour temperatures of light; a cooler white light to accentuate the whites of the chefs shirts and task areas and a warmer white for the table, skirtings and handrail lighting.

The Tom Dixon designed Melt fixtures adds minimal points of sparkle and pays homage to an earlier lighting design in the Opera house.

Carrying on the location’s former tradition, the restaurant offers pre- and post-theater dining options, as well as dinner service seven nights a week. 


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Tom Dixon

MELT COPPER, CHROME & GOLD With MELT, our experiments in the technologically advanced field of vacuum metallisation takes on a new twist. MELT Bronze is a distorted lighting globe born from our...

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An extraordinary site on Sydney Harbour at Bennelong Point, an ambitious state Premier (Joseph J Cahill), a visiting American architect (Eero Saarinen) and a young Dane’s billowy sketches (Joern Utzon) were the key factors which generated one of the world’s most important modern buildings. Designed at the vast scale of the harbour itself, its low edges contain... More

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