Club Blakehurst:

12 Merriman Street, Blakehurst NSW
(02) 9546 4731 or www.clubblakehurst.com.au

Club Blakehurst in New South Wales succumbed to fire in 2007, but its spirit did not. While the club was being rebuilt by Tony Owen Partners, the bowlers kept bowling and the club adjusted its focus towards families. venue talked to Greg Payne, who had been the chairman for 10 years prior to it burning down, and things are looking up. “An electrical fault took the whole thing down, but now it’s back on its feet. It was very stressful, but it’s been going really well since reopening. There’s been a shift towards families and everyone’s come back.”

The adjoining restaurant Zippo’s is also back up and running, with 2007 being a particular bittersweet year for chef Chrys Xipolitas who had just married his sweetheart when the club went up in smoke. Architect Tony Owen Partners has reinstated the unique diamond shaped parabolic roof that was the signature of the original building, eventually settling on a branching ‘L-system’ for the coffered roof to get more light into the upper floor than the low ceilings had previously allowed for. Upstairs the large open plan space centres on a white circular bar, and takes advantage of the panoramic views.

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