Feature Focus: The London, Port Melbourne

Feature Focus

The London
92 Beach Street
Port Melbourne

Dream Team

Developer: TAB Developments
Architect & Interior Designer: Ewert Leaf
Builder: Camillo

In this feature, we walk you through the behind the scenes of constructing The London – at a glance. From the cheers, to the challenges. It’s what didn’t make the press releases, but equally deserves to be shared.

The London is located on the site of the former London Hotel, opposite the beach and Station Pier. First built in 1861 by prominent Irish hotelier Thomas Monahan, the London Hotel occupied a prime corner location on Port Melbourne’s waterfront for well over a century. Its interiors reflected the history of Port Phillip Bay as a gateway to Melbourne, and it has been become an elusive to acquire beachside property in the heart of one of Melbourne’s most desirable bayside locations.

The Inspiration

The London is a true waterfront location, with uninterrupted views of Port Phillip Bay. Meticulously designed by award-winning architects of Ewert Leaf, the residences are a collection of 13 bespoke builds, each with their different finishes, fixtures, and design detailing. This approach represents 13 unique re-imaginations of this historic and prestigious site, drawing from the inspiration of a relaxed bayside context; with clean lines, expansive balconies and a well-articulated corner informing the architecture.

The Cheers

We’re proud to be an integral part of transforming this prime waterfront location into a warm welcome to both locals and tourists alike, becoming a destination for all.

Combining fine execution with careful attention to detail, this project highlights all that deserves to be highlighted:

The orientation of the apartment dwellings harnesses the natural environment, including natural light, passive solar gain, and of course, the expansive views.

The palette of finishes pays homage to the surrounding architecture, combining brickwork, raw concrete, charcoal metalwork, and timber soffits.

The interior spaces are treated as an extension of the façade, merging natural textures with luxury finishes and details.

The Challenges

Solidifying the foundations, so to speak, was a challenge we faced at the commencement of the development. Concerns about the viability of the design – in particular, the basement retention and foundation design – were raised, which led to initiating a process of redesign. This redesign processed then exposed the true complexity of constructing a two-level basement, 50m from the waters of Port Phillip Bay and 6m under sea level. To get technical, the adjacent subsoils were highly permeable, and the two 7 level apartment buildings constructed on the adjacent boundaries were founded on raft slabs on ground (flash back to the forensic engineer reviewing the Protection works package for the basement calling the design “optimistic engineering at best”). The ECI design process resulted in a highly complex basement retention design which – fun fact – cost more than the whole structure itself.

Through our team’s competency and preparedness, and by partnering with strategic subcontractors, we confidently forged ahead and undertook the task. It took almost a year to construct, but we couldn’t be prouder that we delivered.

The Outcome

We delivered a state-of-the-art modern reimagining of what it means to live in one of the most iconic locations of Port Melbourne.

The completed project comprised of 13 luxury apartments with uninterrupted views of Port Phillip Bay, across seven levels of residential space, with the upper 4 levels being single apartment floors.

Within the mixed-use development, apartment dwellers and guests alike can enjoy two levels of restaurants, a large function venue, and two levels of basement car parking.

The London heralds a new era for its former site, rebuilt and reimagined as an engaging, inventive, and iconic experience for all.

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