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Building & Design

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It’s always a grand experience venturing into High Country Victoria, Australia. With pleasantly forested undulating hills and dramatic alpine peaks making up some of the country’s highest, the region presents an opportunity for people to reconnect with nature and so reinvigorate the soul. Living and working within the area, Master Builder Steve Graves of leading firm Bright Alpine Builders, knows all too well how picturesque the region is. Inspired by the tall stands of mountain…

Architect Edwin Mintoff has been awarded one of the world’s most prestigious design awards: The European Prix Versailles Special Prize for the design of the Cugó Gran Macina Grand Harbour in Senglea, Malta; in the category of Exterior Hotel Design. The Prix Versailles World Architecture and Design Awards are compiled at the headquarters of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Paris, and encompasses several categories, with the winners being selected by…

Founder and owner Yew Kong Tham of Ginkgo Leaf, in Woollahra, NSW has a magnificent eye for detail. His store’s focus is to import only well-crafted, beautifully designed contemporary Japanese household items such as ceramics, porcelain, glassware, wood crafts, ironware, bath and bed textiles and other unique pieces that bring delight to their users. The store’s name originates from the beauty and uniqueness of the Ginkgo Biloba tree and its delicate, uniquely shaped leaves (pictured).…

Anna-Marie Wallace discovered a penchant for clay by accident one afternoon while visiting a community arts centre pottery shed to kill some time. Five years later her products dress the tables of some of Australia’s finest restaurants including Melbourne’s Lûmé, Igni, Fleet and D’Arenburg winery’s new Cube restaurant. Jock Zonfrillo, owner/chef of Restaurant Orana, Adelaide, was the first to order Anna’s unglazed ceramics; her signature ovoid vessels were developed for food service four years ago…

Based in High Country Victoria, Bright Alpine Builders – a multi HIA-Award-winning company – delivers high quality custom-built homes and commercial buildings under the keenly focused eye of Master Builder Steve Graves. Continuity is a huge part of the company’s build philosophy. According to Steve, each and every build begins with one very simple, yet firm, step. ‘I like to put one foreman and his team and equipment on a new custom home build on…

Design Hotels represents and markets a hand-selected collection of privately owned and operated hotels in hundreds of destinations around the globe. Each is a wholly unique creative expression crafted by individual teams of experienced hoteliers, architects and interior designers. We’ve been seriously impressed by what we’ve seen and experienced while visiting Design Hotels’ many properties locally and around the world, including: Mira Moon Hotel Hong Kong, Limes Hotel Brisbane and Hotel Omm, Barcelona. The Cugó…

You might recall the recent story of an inner-urban developer failing to deliver on their green wall apartment exterior plans: providing owners with a bunch of pot plants as opposed to the lush, cascading waterfall of greenery that its building facade digital mockups so keenly promoted. It appeared that buyers had been royally fleeced and the well-advertised ‘designer sanctuary’ once completed finally proved nothing more than yet another bland pile of high rise concrete nothingness.…

Ceramicist, artist, chocolatier or architect? You be the judge. Melbourne artist Ryan Foote travels Australia and the world producing and exhibiting everything from masterful ceramics to designer chocolates, the latter taking on unusual geometric shapes, similar to his all-white porcelain plates. Celebrated both in art galleries and restaurants, his bubble-glazed plates and platters resemble brilliant underwater worlds in blue, or a roiling red solar mass of flares and sunspots. He was recently commissioned by the…

A great grey rain cloud passes over the deep red sand. Fingers of sunlight burst through the receding front flooding the sand dunes with golden light. Tiny blue wrens and wagtails dart about catching flying insects emerging from the wet spinifex. ‘It looks like something from the red centre,’ says Barry Iddles. The man who is known as Melbourne’s caterer to high society is looking from a window onto a manicured landscape on the outskirts…

A unique collaboration between Steve Graves of Bright Alpine Builders and Mark Gleeson of MG Design and Building has led to Chrismont Wine’s new Cellar Door, Restaurant and Larder in Victoria’s King Valley winning the coveted National Building Design of the Year Award 2016. Announced at the National Association of Building Designers Awards dinner in Queensland on Saturday, 1 October, the project also received awards for Best New/Alteration/Addition Commercial Design, and Best Non-Residential Interior Design. …

Steve Graves greets his carpenters with a few short words and a nod as he quietly steps over the threshold entering a near-completed Victorian weatherboard cottage renovation and extension in Abbotsford, Victoria. This modest property is a departure from usual work for the veteran High Country, HIA-award-winning custom home builder. The quaint yet impeccably restored front elevation of the small allotment is less than imposing but its interior construction detail and use of fine materials…