Cox Architecture and Studio S2 Architects have partnered to deliver on the Eden Welcome Centre; a two-story timber form that pays tribute to the wharf side buildings of Eden’s fishing and maritime industries. The interior designers sought a design-led acoustic solution that would improve the soundscape of the entrance hall, whilst still delivering on the nautical theme.
The new Eden Welcome Centre stands as a celebration of the rich history of the town of Eden, now serving as the immersive gateway for tourists entering the region. The design intention for the interior space was to encourage visitors to ask questions, buy merchandise and to be inspired to launch into the region.
Amy Smedley, Director at Studio S2 Architects, was tasked to head the interior fit-out. She described the space before the fit-out as a ‘white box’ with concrete floors, timber beams, and white plasterboard ceiling and walls. A long hallway led visitors from the centre’s front doors down to the information desk. The expansive space combined with a high ceiling and hard finishes created what was described as a ‘cold, vast and noisy public area’.
A total of 27 wave baffles were suspended from the ceiling, arranged in 3 clusters. The designers selected the baffles in colours ‘Denim’ and ‘White’ to reflect the surf which surrounds the building. “Acoufelt products gave us the opportunity to use suspended baffle shapes that would improve the interior acoustics, as well as add a level of softness and movement to enchantingly draws users through the hallway” said Amy.
“We love the way they lead your eye with their shape and colour, and even the slight movement in the breeze feels right in this context. They lower the scale of the space without impeding on view lines, and make a big difference to your ability to have an audible conversation. They are often the first thing that people see and comment on when they enter the space. The client loves that the ceiling baffles not only have a practical purpose, but also bring the ocean waves inside, paying tribute to the original design brief.”
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