UNITED FRONT
Belle Magazine Australia|May 2021
A pair of apartments tucked into a gritty Melbourne laneway has been joined and converted into one soft, generous space.
CARLI PHILIPS
Stepping out from a labyrinthine graffitied laneway in Melbourne’s CBD into this cossetted residential conversion is the ultimate juxtaposition: concrete jungle on one side; peaceful safe haven on the other.

Designed by prominent engineer Sir John Monash in the early 1900s, the building has had many iterations over the years; offices, rag trade businesses and, eventually, subdivided into apartments. In 2014, boutique property developers Uschi and Danny Schwartz moved into the now entirely residential building with a dream to eventually purchase two apartments and convert them into a single residence. The building had extra sentimental value for Uschi, who worked there as an apparel designer in the early 2000s. By 2018, the couple had secured both ground-floor apartments and enlisted architect Steven O’Connor of O’Connor and Houle, whom they had worked with before. Two years later, they decamped from upstairs to their new street-level home.

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