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Brisbane Open House

Home > Brisbane > Festivals | Architecture | Family | Free | Volunteering
by Amanda I (subscribe)
I'm a freelance travel writer living in Brisbane. Visit my blog at
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Celebrating Brisbane’s architecture
It's that time of year – on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th October, Brisbane is hosting its 7th annual Brisbane Open House. This free public festival is packed with activities. Enjoy behind the scenes building access, informative lectures and concerts. There is even a dedicated program for children.

Brisbane City
Brisbane City

Celebrating Brisbane's architecture, the weekend will showcase more than 100 buildings and sites across the city. Immerse yourself in Brisbane's rich history and experience new and exciting architecture.

Wander through the Commissariat Store, Queensland's oldest habitable building; its thick stone walls erected by convicts during 1828 and 1829, experience the elegance of Customs House or explore the handsome Arkefield building, which began as a Queensland brewery and is now home to an architectural studio.

The modern offices at 480 Queen Street, the ABC Studios at South Bank, the Queensland Herbarium at Mt Cootha and the $270 million Ecosciences Precinct at Dutton Park are also open.

South Bank
South Bank

A number of buildings require pre-booking. These include the heritage listed Walter Taylor Bridge at Indooroopilly, Torbrek, Tattersall's Club, The Moreton Club, Bayside Fire Station and Fernberg, Government House. Bookings can be made through the Brisbane Open House website.

The children's program is full of fun activities. Whether it is building towers from Lego, playing giant games or dancing along to the DJ at the Brisbane Open House Hub at King George Square, creating a paper model of an award winning design at bureau^proberts, meeting the cast of peter Pan at the Brisbane Arts Theatre or enjoying the face-painting, jumping castle, baby animal farm and sausage sizzle at Hummingbird House and Wheller Gardens, there will be something to keep the youngsters amused.

The 2016 Brisbane Open House Children's Program can be downloaded from the Brisbane Open House website and is also available from the information hub over the Brisbane Open House weekend.

Brisbane City Hall
Brisbane City Hall

In the lead up to the weekend, guests are invited to explore ideas and opportunities with architects, designers and planners in the Speaker Series. All Speaker Series events are free.

Join 612ABC, the Museum of Brisbane and special guests, including a Brisbane based photographer, an award winning journalist and a board member of Orange Sky Laundry (a non-profit, free mobile laundry service) as they discuss homelessness in Brisbane.

Another great event within the Speaker Series is The Great Debate – Is the Use-By Date of Timber and Tin Up? Six panelists will debate whether the iconic Queenslander is still relevant to the Brisbane of tomorrow or whether it limits the opportunity to define a contemporary and sub-tropical 'Queensland style'.

If the Brisbane Open House weekend has inspired your creativity, don't forget to enter the 2016 Focus on Architecture photography competition for your chance to win $1000. Categories include exterior, interior, detail and people.

Volunteers are essential to a successful event. If you have an interest in architecture or are looking for a fun way to spend the weekend, sign up through the Brisbane Open House website. Volunteers have the opportunity to choose the building of their interest and are invited to attend the Thank You party. Volunteers will receive a volunteer pack that includes a satchel and a VIP access pass to non-booked buildings.

Reddacliff Place
Reddacliff Place

For a weekend of fun, inspiration and history, look no further than Brisbane Open House.
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Why? A fun free public festival
When: 8 & 9 October 2016
Phone: 07 32371914
Where: Brisbane
Cost: Free, some activities may require a gold coin donation
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