STUDIO KRISTEN WHITTLE IS AN INTERNATIONAL ARCHITECTURE AND URBAN DESIGN PRACTICE BASED IN MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA. ESTABLISHED IN 2019, THE STUDIO IS FOUNDED UPON STRONG MULTI-SECTOR EXPERTISE SPANNING 25 YEARS AND $15 BILLION WORTH OF COMPLETED PROJECT EXPERIENCE. WE BELIEVE IN THE TRANSFORMATIVE POWER OF ARCHITECTURE AND WE SEEK TO RE-ESTABLISH ARCHITECTURE’S AUTHENTIC ROLE IN SHAPING OUR COMMUNITIES. OUR ETHOS INSPIRES US TO RESPOND TO TODAY’S SOCIAL AND ECOLOGICAL CHALLENGES THROUGH INSTINCTIVE AND THOUGHTFUL DESIGN, ENSHRINING WELLBEING AT THE HEART OF THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT.

kristen whittle

Education
  • Masters in Architecture – SCI-Arc Los Angeles, USA; Vico Morcote, SWTZ
  • Bachelor of Architecture (Hons) – University of Manchester, UK
  • ARB Part III in Professional Practice – University of North London, UK
Professional Associations
  • Member of The Australian Institute of Architects AIA
  • Member of The Royal Institute of British Architects RIBA
  • Registered Architect in Victoria ARBV Reg No 51956 + NSW ARB Reg No 12673
Professional Experience
  • Health / Commercial / Residential / Civic / Retail & hospitality
  • Urban Renewal / Transport / Education
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Studio Kristen Whittle was established in 2019. Prior to this, Kristen worked in London and Switzerland for Caruso St.John and Herzog De Meuron and was Design Director of Bates Smart, Melbourne.

Kristen is an internationally awarded architect and urban designer. He is a British-born Australian and graduate of SCI-Arc in Los Angeles, California.

As Design Director of Bates Smart from 2005-2020, Kristen created the New Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne, the New Bendigo Hospital, the VRC Club Stand Melbourne and the forthcoming New Australian Embassy, Washington D.C, USA, set for completion in 2023. Kristen has been Architect-in-Residence and Visiting Professor of the Soheil Abedian School of Architecture, Bond University, Queensland.

His unique talent stems from his intuitive artistic capacity, deep commercial intelligence and his core understanding of the human condition. His work is empathetic, imaginative and thoughtful. His socially- focused architecture practice enables him and his team to address the critical and creative challenges of the twenty-first century.

vladimir sazunic

Education
  • Dipl.Ing.Arch., University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia
Professional Associations
  • Member of The Australian Institute of Architects AIA
  • Former member of the Kuwait Society of Engineers
  • Registered Architect ARBV
Professional Experience
  • Commercial / Residential / Civic / Retail & hospitality
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Vladimir has extensive international and domestic Australian experience in architectural design, contract administration, construction/project management and property development. He has travelled extensively throughout the world and is able to adapt and work with different cultures in a multi-disciplined environment. This includes the corporate environment as well as running and managing private professional practice.

After migrating to Australia in April 1991, Vladimir focused on private interdisciplinary design practice, designing and developing residential properties in Melbourne’s premier residential areas which saw his practice produce highly contextual and holistic architectural works including interior design solutions of the highest standard.

Vladimir’s eleven years of experience in the Middle East related to work for and in collaboration with major international consulting, construction and A/E firms where he functioned as lead projects coordination manager, directly responsible to the managing director of a major international contracting company and in this senior executive role involved in the construction of large scale and some of the most prestigious commercial building projects in Kuwait. Prior to that, worked in Baghdad, Iraq for nearly a year and a half on a massive design-construct petrochemical complex near the capital city. He has designed and delivered private houses for clients in Kuwait, Cyprus, Kashmir (India), Greece as well as interiors for executive offices in Hong Kong.

projects

Project
Year

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
Designed for an architectural physicist in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD, this space rethinks the conventional workplace vocabulary and its elements.

The brief was to evoke a welcoming residential feel, with the design conceived as a single space to work, meet and entertain.

Bates Smart worked closely with a meticulous and passionate carpenter, Nathan Ray of Multiplex, who essentially hand crafted the entire space singlehandedly over months of construction. What emerged from the design process was clarity of space and materiality through the use of a single material for floors, walls and ceilings. A sustainable timber was sourced and used with minimal wastage by crafting
left over timber into furniture and various functional elements like door handles.

Wrapping the space with Douglas Fir timber creates an aromatic sensorial experience that transports you back to nature through the detectable whiffs of pine, offering a tranquil and meditative setting.

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
Spring Street is one of Melbourne’s most notable streets and home to some of the city’s most significant government and heritage buildings as well as a newer generation of sculptural towers.

Located near the corner of Flinders Street, the new residential tower at 17 Spring Street is contextually responsive, complementing the surrounding buildings, while at the same time helping to define the edge of
Melbourne’s CBD grid.

Considered from all vantage points, the tower addresses the ground plane, the
adjacent laneway and the surrounding city vistas. A key design decision involved splitting the tower into two vertical forms thereby creating a more elegant aspect ratio for the building. Further verticality is achieved through suppressing the expression of the spandrel panels to
every second and third floor. The masonry framed expression of the
building sets back as it ascends from the streetscape, responding to the surrounding context. Within this stone framework an asymmetrical entry composition is inserted, utilising brass shopfronts and canopies as
a transition from the greater form.

Overview
276 Ingles Street is Fishermens bends newest and largest tower project and set to become its central icon.

The building features a bundle of three semi circular concrete forms which rise 55 storeys making this the permanent central marker for the western side of the city of Melbourne.

The concrete forms echo the surrounding post industrial historic built form language that surrounds Australia’s largest port complex. The three ‘silo’ forms are expressed with red oxide low embodied energy fly ash concrete and thick set bronzed curtain walling. A roof garden sits ontop of the carparking podium designed for future inhabitation and occupation. The tower is raised two storeys above the roof garden to allow for the strong northerly winds to pass through the development without significant downdraft impediments.

Photography
Kristen Whittle

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
35 Spring Street is situated on the far eastern boundary of the Hoddle Grid, opposite the Treasury Gardens and adjacent to Flinders Lane. The luxury residential development defines the urban edge of the CBD and provides a major new landmark for Melbourne.

Treating the tower as a sculptural object, a distinctive pattern has been created across the façade, distinguishing it as a unique tower within the city skyline. The façade was inspired by the history of Flinders Lane and the establishment of the fashion industry in the 1880s, as well as the significant political buildings that characterise Spring Street. Consequently, the tower skin reflects both the warp, weft and layering of fabric and the ashlar patterning found in historic masonry walls. The vertical and horizontal façade pattern creates a woven veil across the building providing apartments with defined windows, and framing views to either the Treasury Gardens or the surrounding city.

The veil also creates inside-outside environments, in the form of protected terraces and balconies, which enhances the character of individual residences residing within a tall building. The apartments are an urban sanctuary from the busy city below. Generously proportioned, they feature finishes that are rich and textural with highly-crafted and bespoke detailing.

Awards
AIA (National), Architecture Award, The Frederick Romberg Award for Residential Architecture – Multiple Housing, Winner, 2018
AIA (VIC), Residential (Multiple Housing) Architecture Award, Winner, 2018

Photography
Peter Clarke
Kristen Whittle

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
The design for 55 Southbank Boulevard utilises cross laminated timber (CLT) to accommodate an additional ten levels on top of a previously commercial building built in 1989. Significantly lighter than concrete and with lower transport costs and carbon emissions, CLT represents a new paradigm for sustainable construction.

The project used 5,300 tonnes of Cross Laminated Timber, which will offset more than 4,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Rather than simply echoing the spandrel banding of the prevailing building, the new addition responds with a series of large and small recesses which complements the original but delivers a more elegant and dynamic façade expression.

The standout feature of the design is the large, recessed balcony which helps to celebrate the corner and the building’s new height, but also importantly allows for an outdoor space where guests can enjoy panoramic views of the nearby parkland and city skyline.

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
555 Collins Street is a landmark site, located on the south-west end of the Hoddle grid. The prominant corner location calls for an architectural response that possesses a dynamic and creative spirit. The south-west area of the Hoddle Grid is presently undertaking a major transformation, with many new large scale residential and hospitality developments presently underway or awaiting commencement.

The proposed development of 555 Collins Street
has the opportunity to transform this key corner site and contribute to the regeneration of this part of the city. It should reflect on the unique characteristics of Melbourne’s urban environment, such as the abundance of expansive public open spaces and quaint bustling laneways.

The tower form tapers inwards to allow for the creation of an active ground plane with retail units and tower entry located in the base of the building. A low level strip of retail units wrap around the tower and allow for a through-block connection into the retail loop of the adjoining building at 567 Collins Street.

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
Located towards the corner of Exhibition Street and Collins Street, in an area of the CBD most commonly associated with luxury dining and fashion boutiques. 63 Exhibition Street incorporates a 59 storey tower, with both hotel and residential apartments.

The development’s dual function is served through a side core to the south of the site which separates the residential lifts from those of the hotel. The lower portion of the development accommodates the public areas and amenities of the hotel, including ground floor lobby and reception, mezzanine bar, restaurant, conference facilities and pool and gym facilities. The hotel facilities are situated above the podium, while 20 levels of apartments continue from levels 37 through to 56. The development is supported by an automated basement carpark.

An intricately detailed pattern has been designed for the podium.

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
Spring Street is one of Melbourne’s most outstanding streets. Beautiful parklands are complemented by some of the city’s most magnificent historical buildings including the State Parliament of Victoria, Windsor Hotel and the Treasury Building. Inspired by the location and the historic sensibility of the site, the design for 85 Spring Street uses strong and enduring materiality to create a unique tower. The articulation of sculptural contemporary geometry provides a clear architectural expression and distinguishes the façade as beautifully crafted and stacked concrete frames. The 39 level tower incorporates 145 apartments and exclusive amenities such as concierge services, private dining room, wine cellar, lounge, gym, steam room and pool. An overriding theme within the project is the emphasis on craftsmanship and exquisite detailing.

The concrete of the façade is shaped in such a way that it is comparable to a handcrafted piece of furniture or joinery. The concrete geometry of the façade wraps around the apartment balconies, and extends inside, creating a unified language between the exterior and interior. This device also helps to optimise and frame the impressive views from the inside outwards. The appreciation of craftsmanship is particularly apparent in the design of the interiors. A neutral palette emphasises the material selection of stone, timber and metal. Distinctive features include a cantilevered stone island bench, which echoes the architectural expression of the building and is accompanied by bespoke tapware and lighting. The project is regarded as a ‘total piece of art’, where the architecture, interior design and material palette work together in harmony.

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
The competition winning design for the new Australian Embassy is to be located at the diplomatic heart of Washington with views of the White House.
The environmentally sensitive design embodies the spirit of Australia through direct references to the distinctive Australian landscape: its bright and clear natural light and open skies, its warm materiality and its vast scale. The use of these associations will create a civic building and symbol of Australia that is both enduring and welcoming.

An expansive glass atrium floods the centre of the building with natural light. At ground floor level a large open public space announces itself as the grand entry into the building looking back towards the White House. This space leads guests into a sequence of finely crafted open, exhibition gallery and bespoke function spaces used for ceremonial and public functions.
Surrounding the atrium space on the upper levels is a series of flexible working areas, creating a highly contemporary, healthy and open workspace setting.
Innovative environmental design solutions permeate the building achieving the highest global environmental design standards available. Features include a thermally efficient façade, a green roof with an extensive photovoltaic array, expansive use of natural light and the latest building services technologies.

The new Australian Embassy will replace the existing embassy building which was designed by Bates Smart in 1964. The original design by Sir Osbourne McCutcheon was the first purpose-built Australian embassy building since Australia House was constructed in London in 1918.

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
The new Bendigo Hospital is the largest regional hospital development in Victoria. The $AUD 630 million project delivers world-class healthcare facilities and aims to provide a welcoming, holistic and positive environment that promotes wellbeing. In addition to the hospital itself, the project incorporates retail facilities, a childcare centre, and hotel. The hospital offers a tranquil and caring environment for staff, patients and visitors through the integration of architecture, landscaping, health planning and evidence-based design. The new building is inspired by Bendigo’s architectural vernacular and natural environment, and unites them with a holistic approach to healthcare.

The design considers the building and landscape as an integrated whole. The built form reaches out and frames the garden setting, whilst the landscape is drawn internally in order to create inner sanctuaries of tranquillity. The building’s façade is distinguished by a pattern of glass panels with increased reflectivity. These windows glisten and mirror the surrounding natural landscape, making the building a more inviting facility. The inclusion of three native trees within the hospital entrance enhances the biophilic ethos of the building. While a rooftop garden, visible from inside the mental health ward provides a visual connection to nature.

Internally a bespoke and intimately woven timber ceiling runs between the hospital’s two entrances. The woven pattern filters daylight from the skylights above, providing an ever-changing dappled light effect. The use of timber provides a sense of warmth and helps to increase the wellbeing of patients, visitors and staff. The Bendigo Hospital development is considered a key milestone for central Victoria and will service the region well into the future. The project was completed in collaboration with Silver Thomas Hanley on this project.

Cost
$650M

Awards
AIA (National), Architecture Award, The Sir Zelman Cowen Award for Public Architecture 2018, Winner
Property Council of Australia, Innovation & Excellence Awards, Victorian Development of the Year 2018, Winner
AIA (VIC), Public Architecture Award, Winner
INDE, The Wellness Space, 2018 Winner / IDEA, Institutional & Sustainability, 2018, High Commendation
International Interior Design Association, Best of Asia Pacific Design Awards 2017, Healthcare, Winner
Premier’s Sustainability Awards 2017, Large Business Category, Winner
Australian Timber Design Awards 2017, Interior fitout – Commercial, Winner
Intergrain Timber Vision Awards 2017, Best Commercial Interior, Special Mention
Urban Design Awards, Build projects – city and regional scale, 2018, Winner

Photography
Peter Clarke

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
171 Collins Street integrates a new generation of workplace environment linking Collins Street’s luxury and sophistication with the intimacy and vibrant atmosphere of Flinders Lane.
The development consists of 29,800sqm of premium office space, spread over 17 large campus-style floor-plates, and 1,700sqm of boutique office space in the restored heritage building on Collins Street. The lower levels incorporate a business centre and over 1,500sqm of high-end retail space.

The design concept addresses the façade’s relationship to St Paul’s Cathedral spires, which sit directly in front of the building when seen from Southbank. Previously, the spires were visually lost among the mixed assembly of structures beyond. This new insertion provides a consistent backdrop, so that the Cathedral’s fine architecture can be clearly discerned against the elegant white glass curtain of the building.

In addition to the finely crafted façade, the building incorporates key environmental features to achieve a 6 star Green Star and 5 star NABERS energy rating. In particular, the use of an under-floor air distribution system provides superior indoor air quality, occupant comfort and flexibility.

Awards
Property Council of Australia, Innovation & Excellence Awards, Sustainable Development – Existing Building (VIC)(inside) IDEA Award for Public Space / Urban Taskforce Awards, Sustainability Development Award
United Nations Association of Australia World Environment Day Awards, Hanson’s Green Building Award
Asia Pacific Property Awards, Best Commercial High Rise Development
Asia Pacific Property Awards, Best Office Development
Australian Property Institute’s Pinnacle PR Environmental Development Award
Illuiminating Engineers Society Excellence Award for foyer/atrium/lift lobby

Media
BHP Billiton- Resourcing the future- 171 Collins Street 2013 (Book)
171 Collins Street- Coco & Maximilian 2014 (Film)
171 Collins Street- Open House Melbourne 2013 (Talk

Photography
Peter Clarke
Kristen Whittle

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
With a GFA of 16,350sqm and a total project value of $120 million, the new Gandel Wing is one of Australia’s most reverred hospitals with optimal performance and functionality and a specific focus on patient restoration. The resulting facility is a finely tuned nurturing building designed with delicate character. The Gandel Wing is the third building designed on Cabrini Health’s site- complementing and sitting alongside the new MC2&3 facilities. A warm coloured slatted terracotta façade was selected as a visual code that responds and carefully blends with the existing yellow brick buildings onsite. This brise soleil sun shading system, which veils the building, behaves as a second skin offering a striking outward architectural expression into the neighbouring area. This double-skin façade also offers heat gain protection and environmental screening which filters views in and out of the building, maintaining the privacy for patients, and incoming views from the neighbouring residences that surround the site. The separated core sits away from the base building and invites visitors to enter through this node before entering the patient spaces. This ensures clear wayfinding through the hospital precinct. Inside, the building is planned in a highly adaptable rectilinear format to optimise future proofing where the patient bedrooms are generally positioned at the perimeter of the building. Lush green perimeter landscaping creates a strong connection to nature, offering a calming and restorative oasis that can influence patient healing. A roof garden has also been created for patients and visitors to further embellish views out from the building. Natural light filters through the patient rooms via the floor-to-ceiling windows that offer a sense of spaciousness and a relationship to the outdoors. A hotel-like experience has been blended with the medical expertise at Cabrini. The use of high-quality products and materials – from the timber panelling through to the carpets –offers an experience that is beyond the traditional clinical environment. Natural materials give the room a warm ambience, while bespoke joinery conceals essential medical equipment, creating a calmer and more nurturing atmosphere. The project was completed in collaboration with DesignInc health planning on this project. Key details of the new Gandel Wing at Cabrini

Malvern:
⁄ Rises seven levels above ground and four levels underground
⁄ Includes a new radiotherapy centre
⁄ An expanded and new emergency department, enabling treatment of increasingly complex patient presentations
⁄ A new cardiac services ward to urgently treat issues of cardiac rhythm and cardiac failure
⁄ A new maternity ward with more beds
⁄ A new acute aged-care service
⁄ A new infusion centre and contemporary day oncology service
⁄ A new inpatient oncology ward
⁄ A new ward for respiratory services and medical specialties
⁄ Total of 110 new hospital beds created, bringing the total number of beds to 556
⁄ Increased underground carparking spaces and establishing new ride-to-work bicycle facilities

Awards
AIA Victoria Architecture Awards, Public Architecture Award, 2020
Commendation for Public Design Australian Interior Design Awards 2020
Gold Winner in the category of Hospitals and Clinics, in the 2020 World Interiors News Awards.
Winner of The Wellness Space 2021 INDE Awards
Winner of Place Award 2021 DIA Awards Australia
Winner of the Health and Fitness category in the 2021 Inside Festival of Interiors
Silver Award Winner for Health 2022 International Federation of interior Architects/ Designers Award

Photography
Peter Clarke
Kristen Whittle

 

 

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
Capitol Grand is a new residential and retail development designed to exploit South Yarra’s vibrant mix of culture, dining and shopping. The dynamic two level retail takes advantage of the level changes on site and creates new connections and interested laneway experiences authentic to Melbourne. The retail loop is flooded with natural light and its dynamic shape has informed the soft form and façade expression of both residential buildings.

The 180m residential tower brings together three elliptical forms, ensuring that light and shadows play across its surface. The design creates an elegant, slender
composition of dynamic character, changing with one’s viewpoint and the weather.
The tower top is expressed differently by reducing the mass to create a unique iconic tower worthy of its landmark location.

Entered through a new paved garden
square, the sheltered porte cochere leads from the hotel-like ground floor to
residences and penthouses of exceptional quality, generous in scale and proportion, and crafted from beautiful materials with meticulous care. This is an environment which is truly metropolitan, yet provides a place of sanctuary. Capitol Grand Club gives residents access to a pool, gymnasium, club lounge and elevated gardens which offer a calm contrast to the energetic neighbourhood below. The pool pavilion extends into the garden, with perimeter skylights which capture and soften the water experience, contributing to an atmosphere of calm contemplation.

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
With the limitations of a 480sqm footprint – roughly the size of a netball court – and a heritage frontage, Collins House required some inventive thinking. Australia’s slimmest tower, and fourth in the world by aspect ratio, is an elegant residential building which demonstrates how small sites can be viable.
The site included a three-storey 1908 Art Nouveau building. The tower is sensitively setback from the heritage façade, reinstating the decorative grandeur of the original features and creating a landmark building, both at street level and on the skyline.

Innovative thinking was applied across all aspects of the project. The design uses a self-supporting ‘H-frame’ wall solution, which moves the structural core to the perimeter and enables floorplates to be column free. This let the height and slenderness of the tower to be maximised.
Air rights purchased from the adjacent property, allows the building to cantilever 4.5-metres, creating unobstructed views. A prefabricated system was also developed, in conjunction with 4D Workshop and Hickory, and 472 prefabricated modules were craned into place.

Overall, the project incorporates 259 one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments and impressive amenities including Collins Terrace and St James Club, in addition to a barbecue, media room, sports bar, private dining spaces, kitchen, and gymnasium

Cost
195M

Awards
CTBUH Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat
Award of Excellence 2020, Construction Award
Shortlisted in the 2021 World Architecture Festival under the category of Housing – Completed

Photography
Peter Clarke
Rory Gardiner
Kristen Whittle

Design Director Kristen Whittle
Project by Bates Smart

Overview
The Dandenong Mental Health precinct embraces a new Model of Care to provide:
50 bed Adult Acute Unit
20 Bed Aged Acute Unit
50 bed SECU Unit

The overriding principle for the development was to create a modern, purpose built facility for the community. The design responds closely to the new Model of Care with particular reference to:
Innovative design
100% single rooms with ensuite
Co-located clinical streams
Bedroom clustering within a stream
Non institutional design
Outdoor and activity areas to encourage social interaction
A calm, safe and therapeutic environment
Supervision and observation without unnecessary intervention
A sense of place and identity for each zone
Flexibility for sharing spaces
Blended interior and exterior environments / avoiding stand alone courtyard walls.

Awards
AIA National Award 2014 Public Architecture
AIA Victorian Awards 2014 Public Architecture (New)
Australian Timber Design Awards 2014, Overall Award for Timber Design
Australian Timber Design Awards 2014, Excellence in Timber Design, Multi Residential, New Buildings

Photography
Peter Bennetts

Overview
Itaewon is an infamous neighborhood in Seoul. Originally activated by the presence of the American ‘GI’s’ from the nearby USA Army Base, the streets and buildings of Itaewon are bought to life at nighttime by a robust and energised cultural scene which has made Itaewon a touristic hot spot in South Korea.

The brief for the new private members club allowed us to explore defining the overall development as a set of discreet platonic volumes intimately assembled around a new pedestrianised piazza space. This strategy naturally blended the needs of a private members club around a generous and publicly activated civic realm open 24/7.

The intention for the new club is to create a strong and widely recognised South Korean Brand capable of competing worldwide with the infamous and successful London based members clubs (such as Soho House) except achieved in a more alternative, risky and intelligent way- ‘Seoul Style.’

Photography
Kristen Whittle

 

Overview
Seoul, South Korea is a bustling and highly energetic city. Kolon Industries ownership of a key site in Gangnam allowed the design to explore a new 21st century workplace for one of South Korea’s largest and most celebrated manufacturing companies.

Two solutions were created, designed to identify contrasting strategies for a prominent site whilst attracting high technology socially aware tenants. Both solutions used a mixed use functional strategy developed around a centrally located commercial office building located within a new public park which covered a large underground shopping centre and health retreat.

The project was completed in joint venture with Heta Architects London.

Photography
Kristen Whittle