The design brief for the refurbishment of The Oaks Hotel in Neutral Bay involved extensive used of rustic timber for the ceilings which needed customising to meet the acoustic and structural engineers’ requirement. SUPAWOOD helped achieve this by supplying DRIFTWOOD rustic timber slats fabricated precisely to suit.

One of Sydney’s most iconic hotels and built in 1884, The Oaks has undergone many facelifts but never to this extent. The $4millon revamp was designed by Paul Kelly Design and undertaken by The Chillie Group in 2 stages. The intent, to create a unique identity with strong history links while re-invigorating The Oaks into the present-day.

The new ceilings required fixing to the existing old structure so the weight of timber used potentially posed a problem. SUPAWOOD solved this by supplying loose DRIFWOOD slats customised in width and thickness to suit the structural engineers’ weight constraints. These also met requirements for acoustics.

Stage 1 transformed the original bars into an old butcher shop themed Bar and Grill with an Art Deco twist. DRIFTWOOD Blackwash has been used on cleverly illuminated sections of the ceiling which define 3 seating aisles. The finish completes the cosy mood of the rich décor as a whole.

Stage 2 transformed another area into a space inspired by a classic Victorian conservatory that that opens into the famous oak tree dominated courtyard. The new Garden Pavilion features a diagonally DRIFTWOOD White slatted ceiling which lifts the light filled interior.

While resolving other specific problems encountered, the rustic DRIFTWOOD ceilings blend perfectly to successfully complete an atmosphere of old-world charm, the décor as a whole uplifting the building to befit current trends.


Finalist in the National Interior Design Awards – Hospitality 2014.