Transforming this 1939 art deco, heritage building into a contemporary-design hotel calls for an intricate balance of old and new.

The architecture of 339 Pitt Street in Sydney’s city centre, constructed in 1939, is a heritage building in the international style of the art deco period that once served as the offices of the Sydney Metropolitan Water Sewerage and Drainage (M.W.S.& D.) Board. The hotel conversion, designed by Woods Bagot, will highlight and restore the building’s heritage features, while repurposing the space as a contemporary design hotel, with rooftop restaurant, bar and pool.

Converted from empty office space, hotel rooms over six floors feature luxurious interiors, creating an authentic, sophisticated and engaging experience for guests. Heritage features of the site, such as original scagliola columns, are celebrated while complementary finishes and materials have been added to create an elegant, modern feel.

The upper levels are very utilitarian so Woods Bagot’s challenge was to make these spaces more residential, achieved by introducing carpets along the corridors, and wallpaper on the walls. On the heritage level, where tiled walls had to be retained, the addition of reverse-clad timber panelling and carpet runners on the existing terrazzo floors achieves a quiet balance between young and old.

The rooftop terrace is the new insertion of the hotel. Communicated through modern furniture and material concept, it will be the final layer of this multi-tiered project, where the design takes a ‘looking back to look forward’ approach to create an authentic experience for guests.



ARCHITECT | Woods Bagot.
BRIEF | Restore the building’s heritage features, while repurposing the space as a contemporary-design hotel.
BUILD TIME | Scheduled for completion in 2015.
FEATURES | Original art deco-style interior finishes; hotel rooms over six floors with luxurious interiors; rooftop restaurant, bar and pool.
LOCATION | 399 Pitt Street, Sydney.


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