News Hospitality

Back to back: Rohrig wins prestigious Master Builders Award two years running

9 December 2022

Rohrig has won a prestigious Master Builders NSW Excellence in Construction Award for the second year in a row, taking out the Hospitality Buildings Refurbishment ($10-15 million) category for the General Gordon Hotel refurbishment.

The heritage-listed General Gordon Hotel, built in 1932 in the Inner West Sydney suburb of Sydenham, was in serious need of a makeover after sustaining severe fire damage in 2018. We were engaged to completely demolish the interior and restore the hotel to its former glory both inside and out.

The design and construct refurbishment of this iconic hotel was an especially challenging one, involving meticulous restoration of the badly damaged two-storey heritage façade and an all-new interior fit-out. The Rohrig team found innovative solutions to access issues, partial shutdowns, and extensive damage, achieving an exceptional outcome for the client in just 70 weeks from start to finish.

The build process involved four new bars, lounge areas, external signage, commercial kitchen, eight rooms of accommodation, and an inviting sun-filled terrace with retractable roof. We worked closely with Anthony Vavayis Architecture from the outset to take this historic hotel into the future, completely redesigning the two-storey building while retaining its stunning heritage façade.

“We were lucky enough to have a really great architect onboard, Anthony Vavayis, and we were engaged early on in the piece as a Design and Construct. We worked closely with him and closely with our own design team to work with the existing heritage face, then we rebuilt everything inside that,” Rohrig Construction Manager, David Campbell said.

Extensive engineering was required to ensure the new structure could be contained within the existing façade, involving collaboration between architects, contractors, consultants and the Rohrig team. We also restored various culturally significant heritage elements including columns, balconies, and tiles to ensure strict heritage compliance.

“With this one in particular, we kept the heritage façade and built everything inside. But we had a very good site team, very good structural engineer, and our design team and we were able to work with the façade,” Mr Campbell explained.

The client was able to see and feel the proposed design using Rohrig’s life-size mock-up service, allowing them to fine tune the design for their needs. This process ensured the major redesign was exactly what the client had in mind for their dream hotel.

“We were able to involve our mock-up process and we actually mocked up every bar and kitchen in there. This meant that when we handed over, the operations of the venue were perfect and they traded well from the outset,” Mr Campbell said.

This project was an outstanding success, made possible through collaboration between all parties to manage the evolving scope of the build.

“We are proud to have been recognised by the Master Builders Association NSW, for the second year in a row. It’s a huge honour. The General Gordon Hotel was a challenging yet rewarding project and one that really highlighted the Rohrig Difference,” Rohrig Managing Director, Glenn Rohrig said.

Rohrig is proud to have left its mark on the truly iconic General Gordon Hotel, now and into the future.

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