For months, Dr Sisi Zhu had been incubating grand visions for a new surgery to be located in one of Melbourne’s hottest retail hubs, namely Melbourne Central Shopping Centre. Impressed by the way Dentec refurbished one of her surgical rooms early 2009, Sisi approached us for her latest project. Having decided to relocate her four-year-old practice, Melbourne Central Dental, from co-occupying a unit with a medical outfit, to her own space within the downtown shopping precinct, Sisi had in mind to create a surgery that was, in her terminology, “a masterpiece”.
“Not only did the people at Dentec think out of the box
to provide practical solutions throughout the design and
construction process, they delivered on their promise
of quality “Personally, it was the best fit-out experience
I’ve ever had.”
Dr Sisi Zhu
The simplistic, Solid Stone L-shaped reception counter gives the front desk area its most arresting centrepiece, exuding a stately yet not too imposing presence. The brightly lit room, pristine white walls and grey carpeting accentuate the clean and corporate design that Sisi favours, in going for that “hospital look and feel”.
At first glance, the open-plan concept and corporate colour theme conforms exactly to how Sisi had imagined it. The four chair surgery houses a spacious front desk and waiting area, consultation offices, sterilization room, patient refreshing area, staff room and WC for the disabled.
The wide open space surrounding reception is wisely used as a waiting area which also incorporates a large patient refresh area. These two well designed areas allow total patient relaxation in an otherwise busy clinic.
While the clean and open space suggests a neat and highly efficient work environment, understated furnishings project a professional image.
While tasteful ergonomic features are evident throughout the work-oriented environment, there are hints of relaxation both in the patient refresh area and staff lounge. The Patient refresh area was included to further promote patient comfort and a welcoming atmosphere.
Flower decorations placed at strategic spots help soften the clinical atmosphere and add colour to the conservative hues in its surrounds.
Clever optimisation of space and ample storage cabinets extends the clutter-free environment into the surgery rooms. The grey-and-white colour palette is repeated here, not least to create a consistent look throughout.
Large open surgeries allow ease of movement and immaculate organisation. Meaning, despite all the material requirements of day to day dentistry, the benches, cabinetry and floor space remain clutter-free.
In the Steri department, the wall space is optimised by neat rows of cabinets and drawers. A shelving enclosure that serves as a lab workstation features a unique rolling blind that obscures the lab when not in use.
Desktop devices like computers and autoclave units seat neatly on the cabinet tops. The staff hygiene area is neatly tucked into a corner, complete with hand-towel dispensers and glass splashbacks.
Dr Sisi Zhu required a Private office where she could attend to paperwork away from the hustle and the bustle of her busy clinic.
Her office was designed so that it could easily be used for patient consults that required more time and attention than normal day to day chair-side consults.
When you design a dental surgery, the balance between form and function is not an option but that of paramount importance. For good measure, quality materials are used throughout the surgery, as are complemented by superior workmanship. Any busy dental practice inevitably puts a newly constructed surgery through its paces.
A dental practice is not for display purposes only. If quality materials are not being used, the construction will not hold up against the strain of daily use.
The Branding design for MCD was to be fresh and simple, yet still having the desired result of helping to give patients a lasting impression of the state-of-the-art clinic.
Months after the project has been signed, stamped and delivered – Sisi relocated in June 2010 – it continues to garner positive feedback from the client.
Despite being tucked away in the heart of Melbourne Central Shopping Centre, Dr Zhu’s masterpiece surgery has a cheery welcome that is a perfect prelude to the quality of service patients are inclined to expect inside.