Open House Melbourne

Open House Melbourne
Image courtesy: Kevin Anslow

Since 2008, Open House Melbourne has seen some of Melbourne’s most iconic buildings and private structures open their usually closed doors to the general public.

This unique festival, held annually on a wintry weekend in July (30 and 31 July 2016), has a simple objective; to give ordinary people the chance to explore and wander through extraordinary buildings. Open House Melbourne aims to educate and connect people with good design and architecture. It is a free event, bringing the CBD to life with likeminded individuals interested in architecture, landscapes, infrastructure and urban design. At any one of the designated 143 sites across Melbourne, one can explore at their own leisurely pace the interiors of buildings, most of which are normally off limits to the public, resulting in a feeling of freedom as you wander through a usually quiet building with a rich history.

There are some truly fabulous buildings featuring this year with a focus on the West. From iconic Melbourne buildings including the National Gallery of Victoria, Luna Park and Melbourne Central, to modern corporate wonders Medibank and Birkenstock HQ, there are a huge range of sites. Churches, studios, government buildings, theatres, community centres and some stunning residential sites are also included. You can view breathtakingly built architecture studios such as Harmer Achitecture Studio and Plus Architecture Studio or delve into history at the Jewish Museum of Australia or the Hawthorn Tram Depot; the choice is all yours.

The accessibility of this award-winning event is a key feature; keeping the event free ensures anyone can get involved and explore Melbourne. This event also promotes innovation and liveability. There are a number of talks and special guided tours in partnership with organisations such as the Australia Institute of Architects, the Planning Institute of Australia, Parlour, the Robin Boyd Foundation, MPavilion, DIS.Course and Nite Art.

Whilst you're wandering the city this weekend, pick up a program at Federation Square or outside the Melbourne Town Hall on Swanston Street. For more information, a full list and description of the buildings featured, (not to mention a map), and a details on the Open House speaker series, visit the website www.openhousemelbourne.org

This event is a must for anyone remotely interested in architecture and design. Check out Open House Melbourne on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.