Developer Calls on Architects to Redevelop Prominent Chinatown Corner in Sydney CBD


A concept development application for a $127 million, 40-storey hotel and residential tower on the site of Sydney Irish pub Scruffy Murphy’s has been submitted to the City of Sydney.

Lodged in late December, the new owners have elected to undertake an invitation-only design competition. Consent is being sought under the subject development application for the proposed building envelope, gross floor area, and land use.

The owners, KGH Co Pty Ltd, owned by Pierre Wakim and Mario Khaicy have proposed the 40-storey building at 700 George Street, Haymarket on a 1,225 square metre site in Chinatown which currently houses 698–704 George Street’s “Kiss’s Building” (also referred to as Haymarket House) and “Scruffy Murphy’s” at 43–49 Goulburn Street.

The intended use for this building will be a combination of hotel, residential, commercial and retail purposes.

In total, the developers hope to gain approval for a 240-room hotel, a residential apartment tower and a mixed-use podium comprising retail uses, including food and beverage, and hotel and residential lobbies. The site will also have a four-level basement parking facility with vehicular access to Goulburn Street.

KGH is looking to develop a total of 17,021sq m in gross floor area.

700 George Street 1
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Architecture firm Architectus have been appointed to create the design excellence strategy on behalf of the developers. The competition’s jury will be made up of members of Sydney’s local council and a number of competing firms.

Architectus outlined the requirement that while demolition works are inevitable, the Kiss’s Building must be retained for future hotel purposes and competitors could potentially earn “extra points” by figuring out a way to “consider the partial retention of the Scruffy Murphy’s building and integration of the building into the podium levels of the future mixed-use development”.

Architectus’ design excellence strategy also emphasised that designs needed to reflect a “green” approach. With an estimated $127,240,000 allowed for work on the building, the proposal is currently on exhibition and any future architects willing to take on the challenge will have 28 days to bring in their design.

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