A historic Melbourne eatery and the location of pop star Kylie Minogue’s 1988 Got To Be Certain film clip is under threat of demolition.
An application to demolish Rosati Restaurant in Flinders Lane, to make way for a 38-metre office tower, has been lodged with Melbourne City Council and has drawn the ire of Melbourne’s heritage groups.
Melbourne Heritage Action president Rupert Mann told the Star Observer the proposed destruction of one of Melbourne’s cultural landmarks is “outrageous”.
“We’d like to see the facade retained, and we’d like to see the interiors retained as much as possible. I think the mosaic floors are astounding,” Mann said.
“The building itself is significant as a 120 year-old factory facade, part of the rag trade that was there for many years.”
Mann said inside the restaurant is a “wonderful example of an ’80s interior” and has additional significance for some as the scene of the early Minogue film clip.
“The ’80s is not necessarily widely respected by heritage enthusiasts, and certainly not widely respected by government and regulators in the planning department,” Mann said.
“But we believe it’s a significant interior, we believe it should be protected.
“I’m not a huge Kylie fan but you can see [Rosati] there in all its glory, she’s sauntering around the bar. That’s really indicative of the significance it had. it was the first place in Melbourne where waiters wore white aprons, you could get imported beers, and there were things like coffee and alcohol on the menu.”
The Council is currently reviewing the development application and a notice of decision, which council will vote on, is expected in the next few months.
Mann said he wants developers to listen to the objections and incorporate some of the exisiting facade into the new building.
“We’re asking the developer to at least incorporate the significant elements of Melbourne’s history in this building.
“Melbourne is a multi-layered city heritage-wise, art-wise. The layers of influence and styles in Melbourne are one of the great things about it.
“To come to a place like Rosati, with all these layers of skill, style and art and history, and to just suggest we’re now going to totally demolish and destroy all of that, and not even attempt to entertain the idea of imaginatively incorporating some of these beautiful and unique things into a new building, is extremely unfortunate.”