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The Stokehouse, Melbourne

Pascale Gomes-McNabb delivers seaside chic in spades, says Annie Reid.

The Stokehouse, Melbourne


October 14th, 2010

Architect designer Pascale Gomes-McNabb has glamorously uplifted iconic restaurant The Stokehouse, with an upstairs renovation.

Regulars needn’t worry, the trademark views and sexy sophistication are still the raison d’etre, but now the beachside institution sparkles more than ever.

the stokehouse pascale gomes-mcnabb

“We wanted to bring the sunshine into the space and liven it up. To create a place where people could while away a few hours in a sexy environment,” Gomes-McNabb says.

The most striking element is the brushed brass, which forms the long bar, two custom-made light fittings and stair screen.

“I’ve never worked with brass before, but I love how it has that sexy quality.”

the stokehouse pascale gomes-mcnabb

With a light colour palette, the interior also draws on sand, sky and water references, which take centre stage as the views disappear each night.

Adding warmth are the engineered American oak floorboards, lined and smoked to create an uneven look against the mauve and white-striped, original lined ceilings.

Hanging mirrors of gold and silver reflect more sparkle, while a clever one-way mirror allows peeks into the extended kitchen.

And Stokey fans will love that the outdoor cocktail deck is back, with new, imported furniture for that just-breezed-in-off-the-beach-for-a-cocktail look.
Despite the many drawings and musings on design, only a few structural changes were made, with the project taking about seven months.

Owner Frank van Haandel – a silent owner in Gomes-McNabb’s Cutler & Co – has the last word. The bright orange awnings adjoining the outdoor deck are a nod towards his Dutch heritage.

The Stokehouse


the stokehouse pascale gomes-mcnabb



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