The outside and inside merge and deliver spaces that change with the passing of day, night and the seasons.
In 1962 a mix of rugby leagues diehards from the Balmain Junior League gathered at a Rydalmere hotel, and shared a dream. This dream was finally realized in 1970 when the Club was granted a licence and the doors could ‘officially’ be declared open. Since then the club has grown to where they have over 35,000 members today.
A relationship formed between Paynter Dixon and the Ryde Eastwood Leagues Club in 1994 when they undertook its most significant expansion to date. In 2007 Paynter Dixon invited Group GSA to prepare a masterplan for the further refurbishment and expansion of the Ryde Eastwood Leagues Club. This plan gave the club a vision and framework which has enabled them to reinvigorate their premises, expand to provide new amenities that will diversify their business and to reposition their existing assets in the marketplace.
The masterplan redevelopment includes amenities such as accommodation and entertainment facilities which are not currently part of the clubs premises. In 2010, the Paynter Dixon and Group GSA design and construction team completed the fourth and most recent phase of this works.
“The project is successful because the whole team is working closely to produce a great outcome. A thoughtful and considered staging plan has been critical to enable the effective implementation of the works over multiple stages” noted Lindsay Verdon of Paynter Dixon.
The bespoke design has given the club a look and feel which is a standout for Ryde Eastwood Leagues and the industry. The interior and exterior spaces are spectacularly hand crafted displaying an elegance, warmth and richness. Unique design features, an anomalous palette of finishes and inventive layouts epitomize this
exceptionally creative design solution.
One of the challenges the team had to conquer was how to add 3 alfresco spaces on this constrained site, land locked site. The solution the design team evolved was simple and ingenious. Two of the three spaces feature transparent relocatable external walls. This gives the Club the flexibility to grow or shrink the size of the terrace areas depending on the use required, the prevailing season or weather
conditions. This feature is a first in the Club industry.
“There is quite a uniqueness about this design. It is exciting to see the changes the new spaces have made to the club. Creating new concepts that enhance the members experience, deliver income to the bottom line and look good, means we have delivered a successful design.” comments Mark Thebridge from Group GSA.
The new design has taken full advantage of the double height gaming lounge space. This lounge interacts in a unique juxtaposition with the alfresco gaming area. A perimeter two storey timber framed glass wall allows a seamless connection between these two areas. A modest separation through a sleeve of unroofed space enables each area to take an uncommon advantage of outlook over the other area.
Above the alfresco area is an expansive reflective mesh screen which is doused with subtle feature lighting. It delivers striking visual relief as it changes through its daytime and night time personality. This external screen is complimented by an over scaled metallic shimmer screen feature that delicately falls from the ceiling in the gaming lounge.
Haron Robson‘s involvement included the design of the general lighting and power installation, including emergency lighting, intelligent dimming, smoke detection & emergency evacuation systems, data cabling, audio visual and power services.
Within the Alfresco Gaming Lounge, Haron Robson specified recessed low-voltage downlighting and wall-mounted decorative luminaires.
Within the Bar and Lounge Areas, the recessed downlights were complemented with feature lighting to joinery, and the feature lighting was extended into the new Amenities area.
The use of a digital lighting control system was universally implemented. The Board and Management of the Club stressed from the outset the importance of providing an energy efficient building with the ability to intelligently manage the lighting. This was a critical component of the design.
Within the internal space, the metallic shimmer screen forms a dramatic focal point above the double-height gaming area. Delicate in appearance, it is created with the use of thousands of small metal beads falling in strands from the ceiling. Unlit, the screen is translucent, a subtle way-finder for guests. Once lit, however, the screen appears almost opaque, with the downlights creating a wash of light reflecting from the beads.
At the narrow end of the light beam this solid-wall effect is most pronounced, with the peach dichroic filters creating a warm light which reflects off the metallic elements. As the light wash gradually fades toward the lower end of the screen, the opacity fades with it, the shimmer screen seemingly falling from the ceiling and disappearing right before your eyes.
Outside, the reflective mesh screens also make use of feature lighting, with surface-mounted colour-changing Pro Shop LED strip luminaires mounted behind, as well as surface-mounted 70W warm white metal halide uplighters providing a sparkle effect to the front façade. Controlled by DMX, the strip luminaires have the ability to create a variety of effects, including chasing and colour mixing, so the backlit screens can change appearance from one day to the next, or from night to day. Back inside the club, the feature lighting is extended to the banquette seating in the lounge area , the feature wall and the cashier booths.
The LED uplighters recessed into the back of the banquette seating highlight the detail of the screens behind. The interior feature wall makes use of recessed fluorescent luminaires with opal diffusers, mounted vertically and spaced randomly across the wall. Combined with the light-wash provided by the dimmable fluorescent downlights, this wall is a dramatic partner to the wide staircase beside the cashier booths. The architectural elements above the cashier booths are similarly treated with feature lighting, with surface-mounted uplighters catching even the most subtle of detail.