EOIs for the 2020 Weekend will open here in November 2019.




Open House Melbourne is the largest and longest-running Open House program in Australia, with more than 72,000 visits recorded across 220 buildings in 2018. The program is a great opportunity for building owners, managers, custodians, and architects to reach a broad cross-section of the community, accessing completely new audiences.

Most buildings participate to promote their activities to a new and different audience, and engage with the local community. They participate to encourage the public to become advocates of good design and to value their building and its present use and activities.

Of the reasons people attend, over 83% participated to stay informed and learn more about their city’s architecture. Almost half of our visitors reported that they participate to stay informed about factors that influence city planning. 84% are now more likely to pay attention to local architecture and urban design issues.


to all




annual website visits

Measures of


Our mission is ‘to foster public appreciation for architecture and public engagement in the future of our cities’.

For a site to be included in the Open House Weekend program it must answer yes some of the following:

  • Does the building represent design excellence? Is it award-winning?
  • Is it innovative, pushing boundaries and/or a great addition to the skyline?
  • Is this a significant heritage building? Is it a rare example?
  • Is this an exemplar in the space of Environmentally Sustainable Design (ESD)?
  • Does the building contribute to a more resilient city?
  • Does the building contribute to a more equitable, inclusive and safe city?
  • Does the building represent innovation in new housing models, shifting the needle on housing affordability? Providing better designed public housing?
  • Does the building tell an important story about Melbourne’s past, present or future? About Melbourne as a multi-cultural city?
  • Does the building offer insights into how the city operates?
  • Does the building (or tour) offer a once in a lifetime/very special opportunity?
  • Will there be a great experience for families? Are we inspiring the next generation of design professionals/future urbanists/active citizens?


Why is Open House Free?


The core of the Open House concept lies in the direct experience of architecture and design, accessible and free to all.

A free event… is accessible and upholds everyone’s right to the city

A free event… attracts a large and diverse audience

A free event… encourages people to explore and engage with architecture and design in an informal way



Open House Melbourne is able to promote your building to a wide audience, with an established database of over 82,693 people on our email and social media database and 200,000+ annual website visits. The 2018 Melbourne Weekend media campaign generated a PR value of $9,546,656 and reach of 19,323,340.

Buildings are also included, with individual listings, in printed programs and the Open House Melbourne website. A new partnership with The Age in 2018 allowed us to distribute an 8-page insert with a circulation of 103,441, and 10,000 extra run-ons distributed across the Weekend.


of 2018 buildings would participate again


participate to promote their activities to a new and different audience


participate to encourage the public to value and become advocates for their building

What building custodians say about Open House

Being part of Open House definitely reached people that we wouldn’t have if we had undertaken the open day through our own council channels.

– Fitzroy Town Hall, City of Yarra – 2017 Precinct Partner

I think the benefit of making Architecture accessible to the wider public and educating people about Design has far-reaching implications for the profession. That’s why I’m such a big supporter of Open House Melbourne. The more the public understand and experience good Design the better it is for all of us.

– BKK Architects, 2017

We really enjoyed being part of Open house Melbourne 2017. It’s the interaction with the people and the hard work of the volunteers that makes this such a unique and wonderful weekend. Putting a smile on people’s faces never gets tiring.

– Residential Home Owner, 2017

Most of our visitors were locals; many who had not visited the homestead before and many also who learned of the homestead for the first time through the Open House Melbourne program.

– Woodlands Historic Homestead