NBLA marks 10 years of supplying living displays for the Australian Open

In 2012, NBLA first met with Tennis Australia and Chard International to embark on something entirely new and diverse. Unknown to all was that this would become a decade-long collaboration for Tennis Australia’s premium offerings at its annual Grand Slam event.

During this time, NBLA has collaborated on spaces at the Australian Open for many well-known brands such as Emirates, Penfolds, Rockpool, Supernormal and Nobu.

The aim is to provide a premium immersive experience for patrons that visit these areas. “For the exclusive zones, we are endeavouring to provide a setting that feels luxe and almost transports you somewhere else,” said Nathan Burkett, Director of NBLA.

“A023 had a beach theme, so we were tasked with bringing the beach to Melbourne Park. This involved designing temporary landscapes using sand and coastal grasses.”

This year was its largest undertaking to date. Armed with two semi-trailer loads of plants, including 6-metre advanced palm trees, the NBLA construction team were equipped to fit out 10 different spaces throughout Melbourne Park.

In the months leading up to the event, Nathan travels around Australia sourcing premium stock specifically for the Australian Open. “This exercise also assists with the sourcing of plants for all of our other projects,” explained Nathan.

The annual project has not come without its challenges. According to Nathan, “Bringing plants in from all over Australia to arrive alive and healthy is not easy. You are contending with the heat and the added complexity of the Holiday Season. For NBLA, these challenges have worked to further enhance the studio’s knowledge and expertise in the realities of landscape design.”