NAB Place Melbourne

Balancing act: NAB’s new Melbourne headquarters is an engaging hub for the future of banking.

As one of Australia’s four largest financial institutions, National Australia Bank (NAB) knows that banking is far more about trust than transactions. That’s why their newest premises in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD are all about connections. It’s a place where colleagues, clients and partners can come together.

Envisaged as a vertically-connected network of teams, Hassell has designed a highly flexible and welcoming new 39-level hybrid workspace that invites interaction. From a holistic focus on health and wellbeing to locally-sourced renewable materials and abundant daylight and greenery, Hassell’s sustainable values are reinforced with NAB’s throughout.

The outcome – a magnetic workplace’ that strikes the right balance for people-oriented, future-driven banking.

The new offices are designed for team meetings, strategy sessions and meetings with our customers. They are also designed to allow maximum flexibility, so we are set up for success today and for decades into the future.”

This is where innovation happens, where new employees can learn from colleagues and relationships are strengthened.”

— Patrick Wright, NAB Group Executive, Technology and Enterprise Operations


National Australia Bank


Wurundjeri Country
Melbourne, Australia






39 levels / 65,000 sqm floor space


Lendlease, Norman Disney & Young, Stantec, IPP Consulting, Robert Bird Group, Studio Ongarato, Cini Little, Deloitte

Design team

Robert Backhouse, Scott Walker, Jeff Chang, Bronwyn Pratt, Tony Dickens, Emily Moss, Stephanie Tame, Jack Stephenson, Kate McCann, Rebecca Trenorden, Brenton Beggs, Hong Lee, Ella Crothers, Nirvan Basnet


Nicole England

There is no one way to work, or one type of NAB employee or customer. Our design offers choice, flexibility and a wonderful welcome back to office-based work.

NAB’s new headquarters benefit from sustainability initiatives delivered through an integrated build process. It’s a workplace that reflects environmental and wellbeing best-practice. Highlights include:

  • Ten sets of stairs – each spanning three levels – connect the tower from top to bottom. Stairs promote beneficial movement and interactions as well as a degree of transparency uncommon in banks.
  • Material selections hero sustainably-sourced local timbers – particularly Victorian Mountain Ash and Victorian Spotted Gum.
  • Abundant greenery enhances the spaces with over 6,200 individual plants – 32 species of all scales – thoughtfully incorporated through the tower. Even the pebbles used in planters are made from recycled computer parts.
  • WELL Building Standard Equivalent Melanopic Lux lighting designed to increase health and wellbeing for occupants.

Situated at 395 Bourke St, in the heart of the CBD, the brief for NAB’s new Melbourne head office was to attract and retain the best local talent by providing state-of-the-art facilities, while providing a space that echoes the NAB banking experience.

Accompanying 700 Bourke Street Docklands, this new tower is now NAB’s new headquarters. At full capacity, the building can host 5,600 employees and brings together previously disparate departments.

The interiors emphasise openness and adaptability in tune with NAB’s progressive brand and the​‘new normal’ of hybrid working.

NAB has championed flexible working for a long time, and the global pandemic accelerated the shift to hybrid working. Working from home is often particularly good for individual work and focused time, but face-to-face interactions and our CBD offices remain vital.”

— Patrick Wright, NAB Group Executive, Technology and Enterprise Operations

At NAB Place, colleagues and their clients can connect in a vast three-storey lounge where planting shrouds banquette seating, and changes in floor height cocoon smaller spaces. It’s a strategy that achieves intimacy in a grand space. In fact, landscape is fundamentally entwined in the design outcome. We worked closely with our landscape team to integrate over 6200 plants — 32 species of all scales — through all 39 floors. 

The magnetic attraction extends from the entry and reception deep into the work zones. Our holistic approach makes back-of-house as appealing as front-of-house.

Health and wellbeing are prioritised for NAB’s diverse and inclusive workforce. Abundant natural light and views make for airy interiors. Acknowledging that stress is the antithesis of innovation and productivity, an entire floor is dedicated to betterment’ through wellness, learning and training. Staff can enjoy​‘retreat’ spaces with day beds and zones for quiet contemplation as well as parent rooms, multi-faith rooms, and large studios for exercise. Those walking, running or cycling to work also have the use of the building’s 644 bike parking spaces and end-of-trip facilities.

The new home supports different types of working — team-based, hybrid and focused. The tower is connected top to bottom via ten sets of stairs — each spanning three levels — that promote movement, visibility, and collaboration. A refreshing change from the usually-siloed banking workspace. Lacing stairs through the entire building allows people to traverse freely while affording the security necessary.

We’ve taken a people-focused design approach. Stairs weave through floors, creating opportunities for interaction.

Forward-thinking research into engaging workplaces informs an aspiration that places NAB’s people at the heart of the design. One of the most compelling findings in the Hassell 2022 Workplace Futures Survey is that the traditional 9-5 office culture may never return.

To attract people back to the office, it has been acknowledged that employees now desire thoughtfully designed workspaces with social spaces, great coffee, gardens or greenery, a place to unwind, and spaces without distractions.

The future workplace is a shared agile space that feels as comfortable as home yet is more enticing.

We don’t think in terms of home or office but rather home and office, as both offer people choice and balance.

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