MILQ Apartments wins top Australian residential gong at Asia Pacific Property Awards

MILQ Apartments in North Melbourne have been announced as the winner of the The 5 Star Award for Best Residential Development Australia, at the Asia Pacific Property Awards in Bangkok recently.

Architecturally designed and delivered by Plus Architecture and developed by Prince Developments, this boutique apartment building in the bustling suburb of North Melbourne features 40 one and two bedroom residences.

Mismatched rectangular shaped blocks slice up the exterior of the four-storey development creating intrigue and resulting in a visual setback on the third and fourth storeys to match the two-storey façade that lines the street.

“Thank you to Plus Architecture for producing such a bold, elegant design that caught the eye of the judges,” said Peter Mitrevski, Managing Director of Prince Developments.

“The project provided all the elements of a winning submission, from location, architecture and functionality.”

“MILQ tells a compelling story of urbanisation from the early 1900’s, to modern day architectural integration and gentrification.”

The building draws its name from the adjacent Bulla Dairy building, referencing and paying homage to the site’s strong industrial Victorian heritage.

“The materiality of the façade offers this typically industrial area a contemporary twist,” said Ian Briggs, Director of Plus Architecture.

“We incorporated the use of timber on the balconies, to create a modernist palette and enhance the sense of warmth and openness against the cool concrete façade.”

“Here at Plus we strive to design beautiful buildings that enhance their neighbourhoods, so it’s an honour to be recognised with this award.”

Plus Architecture also designed MILQ’s interiors, which reference the industrial heritage of North Melbourne in a modern, timeless way. Apartments are kept light, bright and sympathetic to the building’s exterior, with timber floors throughout, creating a natural, open setting.

Glass brick apartment entry lights are an attractive play on the building’s modern entrance. Apartment fixtures add an additional layer to the industrial aesthetic with gunmetal coloured tapware, metallic and timber veneer finishes, bath and freestanding bedroom joinery, while a modern warehouse inspired palette and the use of stone splashbacks provide a seamless and contemporary contextual finish.

In the final stages of construction, MILQ Apartments are slated for completion in the next few months.

For more than 20 years, the Asia Pacific Property Awards have celebrated the highest levels of achievement by companies operating in all sectors of the property and real estate industry. An Asia Pacific Property Award is a world-renowned mark of excellence.

MILQ Apartments wins 5 Star Award for Best Residential Development Australia at the Asia Pacific Property Awards

$24.7 Million Aqueous Development Kicks Off In Port Melbourne

Work has commenced on Prince Development’s $24.7 million Aqueous residential development in Port Melbourne.

The apartment tower will feature five studio, 14 one-bedroom, 16 two-bedroom and six premium apartments across six levels, and basement parking.

Managing Director of Prince Developments, Peter Mitrevski, said the project has experienced strong pre-sales success.

“The apartment mix on offer has attracted both owner-occupiers as well as investors. Over 90% of the development has sold with only three apartments remaining,” he said.

Prices start from $365,000 for a studio apartments, $475,000 for a one-bedroom apartment and $595,000 for a two-bedroom apartment. The premium ‘penthouse style’ apartments start from $965,000 to $995,000.

Designed by Rothelowman, the building’s design was inspired by the site’s coastal location on Port Phillip Bay and close proximity to the beach.

Rothelowman Principle, Shane Rothe said these elements can be seen through the use of natural precast concrete panels, which provide framed views of the surroundings and capture the best qualities of the site.

“The facade has depth thanks to carefully placed voids enabling internal spaces and surfaces to be revealed, while permitting light and ventilation as well as protection from the elements,” Mr Rothe said. “This allows privacy to tenants while encouraging activation to the street frontage.”

Construction is scheduled for completion in October 2014.


MILQ – 33 Arden Street, North Melbourne

LGA: Melbourne
Architect: Plus Architecture
Building Type: Low-rise
Number of Buildings: 1
Roof Height(s) – metres: 15.4
Project Status: Registration and Sales
Floor count: 4
Suburb: North Melbourne
Developer: Prince Developments
Number of Dwellings: 40
Site Area: 908.00 square metres
Nearby Public Transport: Tram 57
Bike Spaces: 8
Car Spaces: 41

Construction commences on Aqueous Port Melbourne

One of Port Melbourne’s newest developments, Aqueous, is 90% sold as construction kicks off.

The $24.7 million development by Prince Developments on Nott Street will feature 41 apartments across six levels. Architecturally designed by ROTHELOWMAN, inspiration has been drawn from the Port Melbourne area and the inherent connection to the beach and the movement of water.

“The façade has depth thanks to carefully placed voids enabling internal spaces and surfaces to be revealed, while permitting light and ventilation as well as protection from the elements,” says ROTHELOWMAN principal Shane Rothe. “This allows privacy to tenants while encouraging activation to the street frontage,” says Rothe. Peter Mitrevski managing director of Prince Developments says Aqueous has attracted a mix of both owner-occupiers and investors.

Aqueous offered a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments as well as penthouse style apartments. One two-bedroom apartment remains for $750,000 and is 85 square metres in total. Two one-bedroom apartments remain, priced from $475,000 and range in size from 53 square metres to 60 square metres. Aqueous has a scheduled completion date of October 2014.


Port Melbourne Style

Over the last fifteen years, somewhat sleepy and neglected Port Melbourne has transformed itself into one of Melbourne’s premier suburbs. 

The steady infiltration of apartment living kicked off with Beacon Cove and the likes of the converted Sandridge Bay Towers, and has shown few signs of abating ever since. In close proximity the the CBD and holding waterfront views, the area seemed destined to become a high-end residential enclave.

On the back of this, a number of exceptionally designed apartment buildings call Port Melbourne home. Even those of a lower ilk are still far superior to apartment developments found in other parts of Melbourne (hello Preston).

To that end, developers and architects alike clammer to make their mark in Port Melbourne as the freedom of architectural expression, and prices for that matter, are generally higher than elsewhere in Melbourne.

This is purely the author’s opinion, but Armada Port Melbourne is the area’s premier development for aesthetics.

Seen below left, the apartment block was designed by Plus Architecture for developer Buxton Group.

Completed during 2012, Buxton Group’s website describes the development as being sympathetic to its surrounds; make of that what you will, but it’s just a well balanced, incredibly well designed building.

As for current developments, Aqueous Apartments (below right) finds itself under construction.

Concocted by Rothe Lowman for developer Prince Developments, the buildings will carry a unique facade upon completion and continue the evolving Port Melbourne style which generally encompasses 3 level podiums and tower/high-rise setback thereafter.

Housing affordability issues aside, if ever there were a real world example of how to fill in brownfields sites right across Melbourne’s metropolitan area, Port Melbourne is the poster-child.

Overall the striking twin towers that are HMAS Port Melbourne are the area’s tallest structures, comfortably rising above all others as the suburb’s dominant landmark.

Yet what if Port Melbourne were to go truly high-rise either past or future? Would its charm and liveability lessen as a result?

I can’t answer that with any authority, but I can say emphatically that the diversity of design and a near uniform building height suburb-wide as a result of maintaining relatively stringent height controls makes it a great place to meander on a sun-drenched day. The sight lines to the CBD’s skyline aren’t half bad either.

Port Melbourne, like a number of other Melbourne suburbs, does have immense liveability, amenity and heritage aspects to boot.

Whereas some are blatantly against urban development, I’d contend that Port Melbourne is the benchmark for urban apartment design.

Certain areas of Melbourne do lend themselves to highrise towers yet I see Port Melbourne as the clear cut leader in terms of urban development versus design quality versus public and resident amenity. That they’ve managed to achieve this with predominantly mid-rise apartment buildings is commendable.

Conversely readers may be interested to note the Kennett-led government of the day had drawn up plans to transform Port Melbourne into a satellite high-rise suburb similar to Southbank’s expansion plans for the time.

Taken from the Herald Sun and dated 3rd March 1999, the above graphic shows vast areas of Port Melbourne set aside for substantial change. The Gateway to the Bay policy as it was dubbed would have led to Port Melbourne becoming an “International water-transport gateway with new piers and recreation facilities and a high-rise extension of the city and Southbank.”

This article was originally published on Urban Melbourne.