Project Team

design: Paul Kelly Design
builder: Chillie Group
joinery: Beckton
av: InSound
music: Nightlife


timber ceiling: Supawood
carpet: Whitecliffe Imports
furniture: Hughes Commercial,
Robert Plumb
fireplaces: Real Flame
lighting: Space Furniture,
Euroluce, ECC
Artedomus, Classic Tiles

The Oaks Hotel in Neutral Bay is known across the land, especially in the Hotel circles, as it has always been seen as a leader in the Hotel dood and beverage marketplace. When the Hotel started ‘cook your own steak’ in the 1970’s, the industry was turned on its head, and to this day when the Oaks changes its business model, the whole country comes for a look.

The new Interior of the Oaks Bar and Grill Dining room is a classic interior that is focussed on the family values of the hotel and builds strength on the ideology on strength of a hotel brand. The interior is approachable and uses materials that the customer can relate to, rich and warm timber wall cladding, soft steel framing, glass used for privacy, ribbed leather banquette seating, bold and dynamic Tartan carpet and lighting that is easy to relate to.

The space has been split into 3 sections, dividing the room into intimate dining and beverage sections, each with its own aspect and group dynamic.

Customers are surrounded by a sense of traditional design styles and values that have been mixed in with contemporary acoustics and delicate and soft intelligent lighting.

The interior experience is a relaxed original concept, and is the real perceived ideal of what the Oaks should be. We want customers to feel a connection with the new space, as the new interior has the ability to wipe the previous memory as we have given the customer what they needed.

Just like the opening of a classic department store, the Oaks interior reaches out to the depths of the old school charm everyone loves.
The butcher concept at the Oaks, brings the customer into the phase of a restaurant that they don’t normally get engaged with, then offering a glimpse into the kitchen and the art of the preparation of their individually crafted meal.

Tartan Carpet

For the floorcovering, Whitecliffe Imports closely with paul kelly design to engineer & manufacture the high quality, bespoke, agnella woven axminster carpet, made with a blended 80% british wool/ 20% nylon yarn, with a density of 7×10. Agnella carpet features include- its fast track ability, excellent appearance retention, and low cost maintenance.

Whitecliffe Imports


he audio visual requirements for the Bar & Grill, as well as the 1936 Bar and function rooms, was taken care of by InSound who decided upon a JBL solution with Crown CTS amplifiers.

“Previously this area of the venue was serviced by JBL Contractor speakers but the owners wanted a really high quality sound, the best they could get – but at moderate levels,” explained Bruce Ensor, managing director of InSound. “We’ve installed sixteen JBL AC18/26 compact 2-way speakers and four JBL AC16 ultra compact speakers plus four of the new JBL ASB6112 passive sub woofers which are hidden in the seating. It gives us mass coverage of the whole place and as to the sound quality – well the owners have a smile on their faces so it must be pretty good! I certainly think it is.”

A Soundweb London BSS BLU-160 network signal processor is controlled via a computer in the office so that each individual pair of speakers can be set to different volume levels, different treble or bass. Staff can control the system via iPads. Eventually the entire hotel will run on BLU-Link.

The 1936 Bar was also given a new sound system as their existing JBL system attracted that much of a crowd, it eventually wasn’t powerful enough!

“We upgraded all of the speakers and the amplification and it’s performing very, very well,” commented Bruce. “We’ve gone from one subwoofer with a 12” driver to two JBL ASB6118 subwoofers with 18” drivers.

We moved the existing JBL speakers down the end of the room where the seating is situated and then installed four JBL AM5212 speakers to service the area that gets turned into a dance floor. A couple of Crown CTS amplifiers power the system. On Friday and Saturday nights it is packed.”

The upstairs function room has eight JBL AC18/26 Compact Loudspeakers and two JBL ASB6112 Passive Sub Woofers with Soundweb London BSS BLU-120 Signal Processing and Crown CTS amplifiers.

JBL ASB6112 Subwoofer

The ASB6112 is a high power, lightweight front-loaded vented subwoofer enclosure housing JBL’s 2263H Differential Drive® dual coil dual gap 12″ woofer. This woofer features neodymium magnet and ultra robust cone for extra long life.


The Garden Pavilion is a new addition to the function spaces available at the Oaks Hotel in Neutral Bay. The space draws inspiration from Victorian Greenhouse Conservatoires incorporating elements such as the abundance of natural light and exotic plantation on display.

The new space is surrounded by white timber framed glass doors with the ability to open up to the view of the famous ‘Oak Tree’. When fully closed, the white timber glass doors emulate that of a greenhouse conservatory.

The interior is divided into 2 spaces. To the front of the space is the main dining / function area and to the rear is the bar area.

Modo Sconce – 3 Globes

By Jason Miller for Roll & Hill, the Modo range is inspired by off-the-shelf parts like those found at inexpensive lighting stores. The spoke-and-hub system allows Modo to be configured in dozens of different ways. But unlike the off-the shelf parts, Modo parts are painstakingly engineered and custom CNC-milled from solid aluminium to create a luxurious lighting range.

Space Furniture

The front area is the ‘greenhouse’. Zinc clad walls with timber framed glass doors cover the perimeter of the space with plantation displayed throughout. Orchids are presented on wall mounted zinc flower pots with ivy draping from above on ceiling hung planters. Large exotic plants are located within the small internal courtyards. The ceiling is clad in acoustic timber panelling with a number of large skylights that fill the space with natural light.

The colourful triangular shape floor tiles lead you to rear of the space. This space is the bar area. Teal blue to the wall panelling and bar tile cladding and dark timber display cabinets are a contrast to the front conservatory area. The bold tones to the rear provide a point of interest, leading the sight right through to the space. Timber cabinets with brass herringbone patterned screens display product and decorative objects.

The interior experience is relaxed and playful. The new space has the ability to be adaptable to the customer’s request and at the same time it has the flexibility to function as a stand-alone bar within the Oaks Hotel.