/design intent “Activate a disused building on the CBD fringe, transforming it into a new social hub on the water.”
Embargo resides on the former Ku Du Tah site, which is one of the best locations for waterside hospitality on the city fringe. The brief called to convert the existing Embargo container bar (designed originally by our studio, which travelled around the city) into a potentially 12-month static drink and food concept for this site. In addition, we were asked to bring together six-to-eight food offerings from well-known food trucks and venues, making the most of the site on a budget.
We retained the Ku Du Tah infrastructure and tables by reskinning them & lighting up the front bar. Fixed booths were removed, new materials were injected and the previously unused alfresco was opened up with a Varsity Bar pop-up.
Currently the space reaches out to the river and patrons sit almost on the water. Furniture is luminous and fresh, while fixed exterior elements were modified and added to for planting and seating areas, such as the panelled bench seating & suspended lighting.
The new Embargo embraces the potential of a previously inward-looking site, turning the venue into a buzzing environment, connecting visitors with the river and becoming a new haunt for the Sunday Session.