One of Australia’s premier event venues, Sydney Masonic Centre has unveiled plans for capital works that amount to the single biggest investment in the centre’s forty-year history.
On Tuesday, General Manager Paul Davison announced renovation plans that will increase event spaces and delegate capacities whilst paying respect to the architecture and spirit of the landmark building.
“This is the most exciting update to the iconic Sydney Masonic Centre in its forty-year history. Interior styles and palettes have been carefully designed to blend harmoniously with the Brutalist architecture of the original building while adding to the sophistication and grandeur of its monumental interiors,” he said.
“As Sydney’s original purpose-built conferencing venue, the transformation will ensure that SMC remains at the forefront of the business events sector and retains its place as a landmark building amongst Sydney’s cityscape.”
Internationally renowned architectural solutions group Incorp has conceived interiors that evolve the original design and enhance SMC’s facilities. The renovations add two new flexible event spaces on Level 4, capable of hosting 140 guests each, with refurbishments to adjoining meeting rooms and break-out areas on the same level.
Incorp’s approach makes the most of natural light with portal style windows framing Sydney’s south. Operable walls allow for flexible room configurations. With direct access from the ground floor, leading audio-visual services, superior technology and dedicated kitchen facilities and catering, the update creates a further ‘conference centre within the Centre’ that provides clients and delegates with brand-new contemporary event spaces in the heart of Sydney’s CBD.
The materials and palette of the original structure carries through the interior design plans. Off-form concrete finishes will be used internally to reference the exterior treatment. Curved timber battened walls will echo the concrete curves of the built form. Timber textures will continue throughout with oak framed glazing and bespoke oak furnishings. Complex geometries of the sculptural lighting grid in the Banquet Hall will find fresh expression in geometric wall-panelling and fixtures. This considered design aesthetic brings the mid-20th century Brutalist style into a luxurious 21st century experience.
Building on impressive sustainability credentials, SMC is also installing a new state of the art environmentally friendly air-conditioning and building management system throughout the venue that allows each room to be independently controlled, saving energy and reducing waste. SMC’s advanced architectural lighting solution provides one-touch control for an impressive array of lighting states to suit different event styles.
Other new features include new digital wayfinding and a ‘Digital Concierge’ that offers in-house support and connection to dedicated event managers. As previous winners of the NSW Business Chamber Awards for Excellence in Sustainability for the Sydney City region and as a member of the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage’s Sustainability Advantage program, these initiatives reinforce SMC’s industry leadership in and commitment to sustainability.
“SMC has long been renowned for exceptional customer service and the exciting upgrades will deliver a five-star architectural venue experience to match,” said Davison.
SMC will close from Monday 17 December for the renovations and is scheduled to re-open in May 2019. The SMC’s sales and event teams are available during the closure to help with new enquiries and confirmed bookings. New bookings for 2019 events held between May and the end of July will benefit from 2018 pricing.