A glamorous 52-level apartment building will rise from the site of the former headquarters of the Crazy John empire in City Road near Kings Way, with completion due in 2016.
Capped by platinum-coloured blades and featuring one of Australia’s largest vertical gardens, Platinum will comprise 435 apartments with an opulent hotel-style lobby, ground-level café and restaurant, and recreational facilities on the 52nd-level.
Crazy John founder John Ilhan is reported to have said in 2004 that he planned to redevelop his head office site with a 34-level office and apartment tower in the shape of a giant mobile phone, complete with ‘send’ and ‘end’ buttons and a rooftop antenna.
Ilhan’s widow Patricia sold the site in 2008 and Platinum developer, the Salvo Property Group, plans to contribute $1000 to the Ilhan Foundation for each apartment sold in June, July and August.
Salvo held a private competition to select a project architect, which was won by Squillace Architects with a design capitalising on the site’s location and views of Port Phillip Bay, Albert Park and Melbourne city. Squillace director Vince Squillace says the building has been designed to complement the Melbourne cityscape when viewed from a distance, with inspiration drawn from textures and forms found in some of Melbourne’s more remarkable towers.
“Our design contributes to the street and will create social activity in the area which, together with the vertical garden, will soften what is currently a harsh urban environment,” he says.
Salvo Property Group sales and marketing director Christina Salvo says Platinum will begin the ‘greening of Southbank’ and become an iconic building for Melbourne.
“We wanted the communal areas of Platinum to feel like you are walking into your own private hotel. Residents will enter a rich, warm lobby, addressed by a concierge and flanked on either side by a café or restaurant.”
Residential lift lobbies on all floors will continue the deluxe ambience using wallpapers, bronze mirrors and designer lighting. As well as the ground-level concierge, café and restaurant with room service, Platinum’s five-star facilities encompass a 52nd-level sky lounge with function room and bar, indoor pool and spa, and fully equipped gym. Rising from the third level, the seven-storey vertical garden will both conceal and naturally ventilate parking for 265 cars and storage units.
Squillace says the apartments have been designed with a choice of light and dark schemes offering a blank canvas for occupants to furnish and style. The 435 apartments are predominantly in two-bedroom layouts, with about 4 per cent three-bedroom and several four-bedroom and penthouse apartments.
The two-bedroom apartments have an average internal area of 66 square metres with balconies of between eight and 10 square metres and a starting price of $438,000. The three-bedroom apartments have an average internal area of 97 square metres with penthouses up to 328 square metres.
More than 300 apartments will include two or more bathrooms. Upper-level apartments will include more protective winter gardens, with balconies on the lower levels.
The contemporary styling of the apartments includes stone benchtops, glass splashbacks and Miele appliances in kitchens, wool carpets in bedrooms and living areas, tiling in kitchens and bathrooms, aluminium skirtings, semi-frameless shower screens in bathrooms and European laundries.
Platinum will have a six-star first-rate energy rating with sustainable features including rainwater harvesting for the vertical garden, solar hot water for common areas, LED downlights throughout, high-performance glazing, light wells and natural ventilation through the car park. The development’s four high-speed lifts will generate electricity on downward journeys and the car park will include two share cars for residents.
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