Cook Street Social, Hamilton Hero

A refurbishment of an iconic bar in Hamilton East

Hawkins completed this project in just five weeks, allowing the client to have the bar open in time for the busy summer period.

Cook Street Social is a new addition to the Good George Breweries. The project was a refurbishment of the iconic heritage bar and restaurant, The Cook, which has been a local social spot for countless Hamilton East residents for many years.

The contract was negotiated with the client, with Hawkins providing a cost estimate based on concept drawings, as a budget guide for the client. From there, many of the details were developed onsite, requiring close liaison with the client throughout the course of the works.

The historic building was constructed prior to the 1900s so a key focus for the Hawkins team was to successfully complete the refurbishment while ensuring as many of the heritage elements remained intact as possible.

The work included demolition of existing fixtures and fittings; reconfiguration of the main building area; a new bar fitout, steel balustrades, new floor coverings; banquet seating and a new kitchen. These were all carefully designed not to stray too far from the original, historic interior.

The building is situated on a busy one-way street at the end of a shopping
area, adjacent to residential and local park amenities. Access for deliveries and getting materials onto the site was challenging at times.

Another key focus for the team was to ensure extremely high health and safety standards, especially given the number of trades and subcontractors working in the limited space.

The client wanted to open the new premises in time for the busy summer and Christmas period, which was the driver for the five-week project programme. This short duration meant for a fast-paced project, with some 15-hour working days. Decisions were often made on the spot to ensure a fast turnaround.

Thanks to great team collaboration from all parties involved - and Hawkins' strong relationship with the client from previous projects - the doors opened on time and with a result that exceeded the client’s expectations.