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Remaking Sydney’s Iconic Golf House

Tucked away in Surry Hills, Sharpie’s Golf House has stood as a last vestige of the Sydney suburb’s industrial legacy. Now, PTI Architecture collaborates with fashion designer Collette Dinnigan to turn Golf House into a modern luxury residence.

From 1964, Sharpie’s Golf House was lit up in neon, with the iconic Golf House Sign featuring the silhouette of a man wielding a golf club and hitting a hole in one, over and over again. This sign has since been moved to the Powerhouse museum, after neon lighting went out of fashion and the upkeep became too costly to maintain. Peter Israel, the principal architect of PTI Architecture muses that, “The Golf House Sign is part of the history of the site, and the site itself has an affection and connection to most Sydney-siders who have lived in the city for a long time.”


“I think that there is something aspirational in the message – the idea of a person continually hitting a hole in one – which is both pleasurable as well as confidence boosting,” Israel continues, “Keeping this in mind, we have worked to create a building that is also confident and has a sense of exuberance to it.”


The planned residence is designed to show off an elegant copper facade, referencing the suburb’s industrial past with a liberal use of timber and brick. PTI Architecture have planned to also include a major artwork on the ground floor of the complex celebrating the iconic Golf House sign. The development’s 45 apartments place a heavy focus on open-plan living, with Australian fashion designer Collette Dinnigan infusing her distinctive sense of style into the interiors, and the top of the residence has been reserved for a rooftop garden intended for entertaining and relaxation.


Dinnigan has been involved in the Golf House project from inception to development, transitioning seamlessly from fashion to interior design. Israel notes that, “Though any truly creative and talented person can cross over from fashion into interiors, I think it is a quite different discipline, with different constraints and technical requirements, so it is for someone with a genuine interest and love for interiors. Collette is such a person, and this is not her first project, she has a detailed and sophisticated approach to her interior design work. This comes naturally with her already strong feel for colour and form.”


“In designing the project, we really wanted to create something that would add further impetus to the growth of the street life and vibe of Surry Hills, which is already the part of Sydney that has the most heart and soul, and the most vibrant and exciting street and café life,” says Israel, “We also focused on creating a “home” within the midst of the city.  Such a place needs to be a place that people can relax and be re-charged after a hectic day, as well as being a place that is highly pleasurable. It’s so important to live a productive and happy life in our modern and often frantic world, and I think having a home is a vital foundational element to achieving that.”

The Golf House

Photography by Felix Forest.




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