A cold, concrete shell was transformed into Hurricane’s Grill—a big, brash, friendly eating destination. This is the industrial look done right. By Frank Leggett
“We first became involved with Hurricane’s Management when we designed one of the group’s restaurants on the Gold Coast,” says Rachel Luchetti, co-founder of architecture and interior design firm Luchetti Krelle. “We had a good working partnership with owners Tony and Pauline Teixeira and this led to their second project in Narellan.”
While Hurricane’s Grill is a chain, it’s open to different looks. Its logo remains the same but the design is tailored for the demographic. “The Narellan site was an empty shell in a new development,” says Luchetti. “It had a very industrial look, which the client liked. In fact, that was just about the only prerequisite in the brief.
“The cavernous space had six metre high ceilings so an industrial look was an honest interpretation. We wanted the look to be raw and stripped back but very welcoming.”
Against the bare walls of unfinished concrete, they added plush banquettes and smooth, white tiling to refine the look. The bar was a major focus. The ‘Strike’ stools for Arrmet (left) have proved to be so popular, their image is often shared by customers on Pinterest.
The kitchen is open and all the activity and fire in there makes it mesmerising to watch. Over the dining area, the ‘Mesh’ lighting for Luceplan from JSB Lighting are large and dramatic. They fill the volume and hang elegantly in the double-height space.
“Hurricane’s Grill caters for a lot of big groups and they needed flexibility in their floorplan,” says Luchetti. “We added booths—just because everyone loves booths—and there was still plenty of space on the main restaurant floor for tables and chairs.”
As it can be quite daunting to be the first person to arrive in a big empty space, Luchetti used screening to make the scale more manageable. It also creates a nice sense of discovery when diners walk through the venue.
“One of my pet hates is reverberation in restaurants and bars,” says Luchetti. “Without realising it, you become annoyed and frustrated because you’re not keeping up with conversation. There are so many bare concrete walls in Hurricane’s Grill that noise could have been a real issue. We solved the problem by covering the entire ceiling with an amazing spray insulation called Envirospray. It changed the acoustics of the space for the better.”
Upon entering, the first thing that greets guests is a suspended concrete maître d’ desk. It lets them know this place is a little different. Hurricane’s Grill is a meat-focused restaurant with ribs as its signature dish, so it also smells fantastic when guests first enter. “It’s a welcoming, happy place to eat and drink,” says Luchetti. “They get a lot of return customers.”
Luchetti Krelle, 56 Cooper Street, Surry Hills NSW 2010. Tel: 02 9699 342; luchettikrelle.com