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Brisbane Modern Architecture Walk (Self Guided), Brisbane

Apart from its beautiful colonial era buildings, Brisbane is also home to a number of notable contemporary structures, some of which are recognized worldwide for their design. Take our tour to see the best modern buildings in Brisbane.
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Brisbane Modern Architecture Walk Map

Guide Name: Brisbane Modern Architecture Walk
Guide Location: Australia » Brisbane (See other walking tours in Brisbane)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.3 Km or 0.8 Miles
Author: gene
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • The Aurora Tower
  • Central Plaza One
  • Riverside Center
  • Riparian Plaza
  • Waterfront Place
  • Festival Tower
The Aurora Tower

1) The Aurora Tower

The Aurora Tower, located in the Brisbane CBD, stands at 219 meters with 69 floors and is one of Australia’s tallest buildings. It is also Brisbane’s tallest building, although there are plans for taller ones to be constructed in the city in the near future. It is a residential building with 408 private apartments and several leisure facilities such as a heated swimming pool, for year round use, private cinema and entertainment area. There is also a spa and sauna, gym, coffee shop and store within the premises.

The tower was opened in 2006 after it had replaced plans for the site to be used for the Brisbane 200 Tower, which would have stood at 250 meters and been Australia’s tallest building.

The Tower was recently acquired by the Oaks Group and some of the apartments have been converted into a hotel and short term accommodation. Residents are at present uncertain about what the real estate group that owns Aurora Tower will do long term. While staying at the hotel you will be able to enjoy breathtaking views out to Mount Cootha, across the Brisbane CBD, of Kangaroo Point, the Story Bridge and out to Moreton Bay. All apartments have balconies to make full use of the views and the sub-tropical Brisbane climate.
Central Plaza One

2) Central Plaza One

The third tallest building in Brisbane, Central Plaza One was erected in 1988, the year of Australia's Bicentenary. This office building of 44 floors is considered one of the most stunning modern structures in Brisbane.
Riverside Center

3) Riverside Center

The Riverside Center is a relaxed section of the Brisbane CBD right on the river looking out to the Story Bridge. The main landmark of the center is a 40 story building, but there are many cafes, restaurants and boutiques that spread out at ground level. The center is located at 123 Eagle Street, but the best way to arrive is by the City Cat ferry service that pulls into the Eagle Street Pier. Throughout the working week the center is busy with workers making their way to the many offices in the vicinity and other people making use of the Riverwalk, which connects the city to the inner city suburbs of Fortitude Valley and New Farm.

Some of the CBD’s nightlife is centered around the center with nightclub Friday’s, which has just undergone a huge refurbishment and the Pig ‘n’ Whistle English style pub there offering distinct after dark entertainment. The Groove Train Café has a franchise in the center and Jellyfish Restaurant has an award winning seafood menu coupled with sweeping views over the river. On Sundays, the entire center comes alive with the Riverside Markets taking over. The markets are one of Brisbane’s longest running and most vibrant outdoor events.
Riparian Plaza

4) Riparian Plaza

Riparian Plaza is one of Brisbane’s tallest buildings – the tallest at 250 meters if you take into account its spire. The building is multipurpose incorporating car parking, offices, commercial space, apartments and penthouses. One of the highlights of this building is visiting the Siana Bar and Dining Lounge, which is located on the upper plaza level. The Asian inspired design and menu reflect the Australian love affair with fusion Asian cuisine, and can be enjoyed while looking out over Kangaroo Point and the Story Bridge. At street level, along the promenade, the popular restaurants Boardwalk Bar & Bistro, Kingsleys Steak and Crabhouse offer the very best of sub-tropical dining.

You will never need prompting to work out when you visit the center with the buildings gym on the 39th floor featuring stunning river views. The design of Riparian Plaza has won several awards for innovation and excellence – these have been awarded both through national awards and the Royal Australian Institute of Architecture. Residents and guests have full use of the building’s gym, sauna, spa, BBQ area, waveless 25 meter pool and function room. All apartments have balconies and views over the river or CBD while boasting floor-to-ceiling glass windows and luxury installments.
Waterfront Place

5) Waterfront Place

Waterfront Place is one of the tallest buildings in Brisbane and Queensland and holds a prime location overlooking the Brisbane River. The entire complex is a bustling space and in the foyer there are often art and photographic exhibitions. The grand piano in the foyer is often manned by a pianist greeting workers each morning with a little tinkling from the ivories. If you ride to the top of the building you are greeted by extensive views out to Moreton Bay downstream as well as the Story Bridge and the CBD.

The building is home to some of the state’s most important and prestigious businesses as well as featuring some residential apartments. High profile tenants include the British Consulate, the office of the 21st Governor General of Australia Bill Hayden and the Commonwealth Parliament of Australia.

There is a large two story restaurant within the complex, run by high profile local chef Matt Moran, as well as retail space and an entertainment area known as the Eagle Street Pier. The site that the building stands on was part of the original Port of Brisbane and Customs House is nearby. Parking is available on site or it is close to the Eagle St. Pier terminal of the City Cat ferries.
Festival Tower

6) Festival Tower

The Festival Tower is a 41 story residential building that stands out because of its modern green facade. Locals know the spot well because it used to be the site of the Festival Hall. The main hall of today's tower is decorated with artworks representing the stars that played at the former venue.

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