Posts Tagged ‘Commercial Conversion’

Converted St Stephen’s, Hampstead UK

St Stephen’s, which is considered to be one of London’s finest Victorian Gothic Churches, had been standing empty and neglected for more than 30 years.

Completed in 1869, the church doors finally closed for worship in 1977 as congregations dwindled, and the building fell into a derelict state.

In 1999, the St Stephen’s Restoration and Preservation Trust was awarded a lease to restore the church, which saw it transformed into a multi-purpose event space, and breathing new life into the old building.

More information and photos can be found at:-

Here are some photos during the restoration of this grand building.


Catholic Church Converted to Restaurant and Brewery – Pittsburgh, PA

Founded in 1878, this Catholic Church served the Lawrenceville area of Pittsburgh, and over the years survived a fire, flooding, and the depression.

The doors finally closed in 1993 and the building underwent extensive renovations. In 1996 The Church Brew Works opened for business.

Painstaking effort was used when the renovation of the church and the rectory was undertaken. Attention to detail and the reuse of existing fixtures all help to create a spectacular atmosphere. 

The reddish orange hue of the flooring comes from the original Douglas Fir floors. These floors were uncovered and meticulously restored after lying dormant under plywood for 50 years. 

 By far, the most breathtaking element is the position of the brew house on the altar. Because the altar was built as a centerpiece of the church, the steel and copper tanks gleaming in the celestial blue backdrop is nothing less than captivating. 

For more information and photos see:-

The Church Café, Bar, Restaurant, Club – Dublin, Ireland

The former St. Mary’s Church of Ireland is one of the earliest examples of a galleried church in Dublin. Built at the beginning of the 18th century, it boasts many outstanding features, such as the Renatus Harris built organ and spectacular stained glass windows.

St. Mary’s closed in 1964 and lay derelict for a number of years until it was purchased by John Keating in 1997, who undertook extensive restorations, before re-opening the doors in 2005 as John M. Keating’s Bar.

In 2007 the building was acquired by new owners and renamed “The Church Bar & Restaurant” and its range of services was expanded to include a Café, Juice Bar, Night Club and a Barbeque area on the terrace.

It is certainly a place I would like to sit and have a few cold ones in, and the menu looks devine.

For more information and photos see here:-

13th Century Church Converted Into A Bookstore – Holland


Merkx+Girod Architects’ redesign of the former Dominican Church in Maastricht, Holland, is for all eyes to see. Merkx+Girod were approached by the Dutch booksellers Selexyz (think Barnes & Noble), who asked them to convert the thirteenth-century church into a modern bookstore. 

With only 750 square meters of available space, Merkx+Girod were asked to create 1,200 square meters of commercial area. Instead of creating several floors within, which would destroy the buildings unreplicable spacial quality, they built a monumental walk-in, three-story bookcase situated a-symmetrically inside the church. Climbing the “bookflat” rewards the customers with a close-up of ancient murals and stunning views, paying homage to the building’s details rather than concealing them.

Visitors can also experience the ancient architecture from a whole new variety of angles, which symbolizes not just a functional rebirth, but a physical one as well.

For more information and Photos see