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Mitchell House
Graham Denholm

Mitchell House

This six-storey example of Art Deco "streamline moderne" architecture in the heart of the CBD has become a super-cool commercial hub

By Meg Crawford

It's one of those cool and curious CBD buildings that you've possibly walked by a million times – but have you ever popped in to check out what's there? If not, you need to remedy that situation right now.

And once you've enjoyed a new shopping adventure at Mitchell House, you should explore the vertical-retail joys of the Nicholas Building and Curtin House.  


What's in Mitchell House?

Rocksteady Records

Shopping Melbourne

Having worked in record stores since the late ’80s, Rocksteady Record’s proud owner Pat Monaghan is a laidback, thoughtful and thoroughly knowledgeable music devotee. The store will stock mostly vinyl (new and second hand) and turntables, while Monaghan promises that his black-wax baby will focus on local talent, including bands not signed yet to big distributors.  “A real driver for me was that when I was growing up, you could go to the city and do a tour of the CBD’s record stores,” he says. “I wanted to bring back more of a circuit – so now there’ll be Missing Link, Collectors Corner, Wax Museum Records, Off the Hip, Basement Discs and you can finish up at Rocksteady Records”.

Distinctive Dame

Health and beauty Hairdressers Melbourne

Be pampered in this vintage-beauty salon, while enjoying some yesteryear luxury and leave feeling prettier than Betty Draper. The proprietor Margeaux Vallantyne specialises in vintage dos from the ’20s to ’60s. It’s a got to for brides, but there’s no reason you can’t go for an old-fashioned wet set and high hair glamour any time.


Off the Top of My Head

Health and beauty Hairdressers Melbourne

This is the most peaceful salon imaginable: only one customer is dealt with at a time and tunes come supplied by turntable. Then there's the coool artwork and good chat. Add to that the haircut and colour of a lifetime and matchboxes by way of promotional material – seriously, why would you go anywhere else?

Lord Coconut

Shopping Designer Melbourne

Lord Coconut is the city’s only retailer, gallery and online boutique selling jewellery specifically for men, and a cornucopia of eccentric finds. Guided by the interior design ethos of a 19th century natural history museum, the space is replete with pinned butterflies, (faux) scrimshaw, birds’ eggs and a few spots of taxidermy. Wedding rings are their bread and butter, but you’ll find everything from cuff links to tie pins.


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