From the Architects

Since privatisation of Essendon Airport in 2001, Essendon Fields has been transforming Essendon Airport into a vibrant business and aviation hub. The Australian Events Centre and adjoining Hyatt Place hotel is the most exciting project to date.


Chris Cowan, Essendon Fields CEO, says “The $60m project delivers Melbourne’s North-West an international first class hotel and state-of-the-art Events Centre. The hotel is an exciting addition to Essendon Fields and will service a growing need for airport travellers and local businesses. The Events Centre will provide event planners with a venue of unprecedented facilities, space and technology for this area,”

“This will be the only facility with this capacity in the region and it will further strengthen the unique amenity offering at Essendon Fields for the growing list of businesses and workers choosing Essendon Fields as their home,”

Concept designs for the project were developed by Jestico + Whiles (London) with design development and documentation produced by local architects Bruce Henderson.

“It was important that the architecture of The Australian Events Centre and Hyatt Place reflected the history of the site and made a major statement on the Tullamarine Freeway as the first major building enroute to the CBD from Melbourne Airport and grand new entrance to Essendon Fields,” added Chris.


In bringing the project to life, Graham Morrison, Bruce Henderson Director said “The 166 room tower expresses a magical built form composition enhancing the aviation history of Essendon Fields with gold clad north and south wings delicately attached to a robust and solid spine,”

“The wings display the rhythm of motion associated with flight while the layered shrouds of stainless steel and lapped panels reflect the delicate construction techniques of historical aircraft manufacture. The shrouds of gold aluminium panels will allow a constant display of changing colour, glow and reflection throughout the day offering a unique experience for visitors,” added Graham.

Essendon Fields Development Director, Damian Dalgleish explains “The Australian Events Centre has been designed with a flexible configuration enabling capacity for one large space of 1,700m² or four smaller configurations ranging from 64m² to 995m². Rooms are easily divided with decorative operatable walls and with more than 72 configurations available enabling functions with a maximum capacity of up 1,300 guests there aren’t many events that can’t be catered for,” said Damian.

“Other architectural features of The Australian Events Centre includes high ceilings which give a wonderful sense of space, an all-weather Atrium which is ideal for major indoor/outdoor exhibitions and events. The space can cater for 14 x 3m² exhibition booths, up to 200 seated guests or up to 310 guests cocktail style. Facing north, The Atrium includes a retractable roof which provides gorgeous sunlight all day,” added Damian.

“Three Oak Pavilion is stunning outdoor space. Set within beautifully landscaped gardens, the striking structure has been constructed from old recycled wharf timber and includes a patterned glass roof and stunning water wall back drop. It’s the perfect space for a relaxed cocktail function or backdrop for the exchanging of vows,” concluded Damian.

The Hyatt Place is on track to open early 2017 and will provide visitors with an experience that is simple, stylish and straight forward.

"The hotel lobby will provide a lasting first impression with high quality Italian natural stone flooring, darked stained decorative screens flowing drapes and high quality fittings and fixtures,” said Graham.

“Hotel guests will also have access to an adjoining a restaurant and bar. Mr McCracken will boast subtle timber finishes and structures, natural timber grained concrete columns, decorative zinc panelled walls and doors, natural Italian stone floor finishes and a feature fireplace. An open kitchen will provide a stunning back drop for diners,” concluded Graham.

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