8 Brisbane event spaces that just got a facelift
Sometimes you just need a new ‘do.
These long-standing – some even iconic – institutions in Brisbane have undergone incredible renovations recently, so we thought we’d poke our head in to check out how the function-space facelifts have panned out.
The vision behind the ThinkLab River Studio at Brisbane Powerhouse is to stimulate creativity in a space designed to foster momentum and encourage design thinking. Inside you’ll discover a heap of features that encourage collaboration. A particular favourite is the acoustic lighting fitouts, which are designed to minimise the echo within the room. There are also spatial screens, collaborative furniture and moveable thought boards all designed to encourage businesses to unlock their creative potential.
ThinkLab isn’t limited to collaborative functions though. The space overlooks the Brisbane River and is flooded with natural light, creating a warm and industrial-style space making it an option for corporate functions looking to use a contemporary venue.
Behind those glorious Corinthian columns, you’ll find Customs House’s newest offering. What once was the Queen’s Warehouse, the River Room – complete with direct access to the waterfront terrace – is an elegant addition to the venue. Look up and you’ll spot the icing on the cake: the dazzling geometric ceiling made up of triangular bronze panels that add a contemporary feel to the classic setting.
To celebrate 30 years in our city, the Hilton embarked on a $4 million upgrade that saw the level five function rooms stripped down to their bare bones and replaced with a bigger, bolder and better offering. The highlight, of course, is the beautifully renovated Grand Ballroom, where particular attention was paid to preserving and improving the room’s acoustics to meet the needs of a 21st-century function thanks to a sound, lighting and audio visual technology upgrade.
Standing proudly on the highest point of the CBD, Hotel Grand Chancellor has officially opened its doors to a $17 million purpose-built conference centre with the capacity to hold up to 560 delegates theatre-style. Each function room has been designed to take advantage of the natural light and picturesque scenery that Roma Street Parkland provides. The new design is modern and sleek, and the state-of-the-art audio visual equipment is managed by Scene Change.
With more than 1000sqm across 11 function rooms – including two ballrooms – the renovations have also expanded the hotel lobby and number of guest rooms.
Mercure North Quay’s renovations have been designed to represent Brisbane. In the lobby, it’s all about Brisbane’s friendly reputation which has seen the layout transformed complete with a tropical garden centrepiece has breathed new life into the space. If you’ve ever wanted to walk on water, this is your chance: on Level 2, fresh carpet has been laid that gives an illusion of standing on water. In the Mercure Ballroom, it’s now springtime year-round where jacaranda-patterned carpet has been laid and new panelling has added a touch of warmth to the space.
The room refurbishments have improved and modernised the functionality of the spaces, making them feel as much like a home away from home as possible. During your next stay, take note of the bed headboards that feature a striking black and white image of the Brisbane River, designed by local artist Kelly Fielding.
While we know Brisbane has some incredible laneways, the Mercure has taken it to the next level and created its own private laneway. Chelsea Lane has a retro-industrial design feel and the menus curated especially for this space are nutritious and delicious (yay) but also carbon neutral.
A meeting place for sport-lovers for the past 50 years, the Queensland Cricketers' Club is undergoing a multi-million-dollar refurbishment set to make the most of all the iconic venue has to offer. The uninterrupted views of the Gabba will remain the focal point, with the two currently separate function rooms set to be transformed into one open-plan space. Upon completion, the club will be able to host up to 550 people across what can be partitioned into three rooms.
As one of Brisbane’s longest-standing hotels, the Royal on the Park has unveiled its latest facelift with experiences of both the past and present at its core. Having hosted its fair share of global superstars since opening its doors in 1969 (Elton John, Mick Jagger… we could name drop for a while here), the hotel’s widely renowned features have been guarded. When you step inside you will be immediately transported to the Gatsby era as you take in the wood timber panelling, the formality of the arrival experience and the elegance of the lobby and foyer.
Turning 20 warrants a celebration for anyone, and Rydges South Bank celebrated with a $30 million transformation that saw all the hotel rooms redesigned and refurbished, complete with an Apple TV in every room. You can make the most of this thanks to the $1 million technology upgrade that now provides guests with a speedy and up-to-date experience across the accommodation and function spaces. "Intertouch" has also been introduced to meet the growing bring-your-own-device trend, however we’ve been assured that personal service and attention will not be neglected.
Planning an event in Brisbane? Check out the Brisbane Event Planner for more information on Brisbane venues, accommodation and services, all in one place.