The Brisbane Arcade is celebrating 95 years as Brisbane’s oldest and grandest shopping arcade, from 1924-2019.
In celebration Brisbane Arcade presented the Spring Flower Show “Jewel in the Crown” between Saturday 31 August to Friday 6 September 2019, which included a lovely assortment of flowers from Redlands, Victoria, New South Wales and further afield from Columbia, Singapore and Vietnam.
This flowery display consisted of 20,000 stems and buds throughout the Arcade, with shops participating through presenting floral displays in their windows.
Brisbane Arcade History
Brisbane Arcade was developed by Dr James Mayne and his sister Miss Mary Emelia Mayne.
The Mayne’s engaged Brisbane born architect Richard Gailey (Junior) 1873-1954 to create a traditional 18th Century European looking arcade, accessible between 160 Queen Street through to 117 Adelaide Street in the Brisbane Central Business District. The Arcade was built by Messrs J. and E.L. Rees at a cost close upon £70,000. On 21 October 1992 Brisbane Arcade was heritage listed.
As neither Mayne sibling had children, a Trust was establish with proceeds from the Arcade going to benefit medical research, which continues today.
Past notable stores include the Johnstone Gallery, which was owned by Brian and Marjorie Johnstone, who collected Australian and overseas art. The Johnstone Gallery was located in the Brisbane Arcade basement from February 1952 until December 1957. State Library holds the Johnstone Gallery Archive.
Another delightful store was the ‘G. E. Adams. Rich Cake Specialist’.
G. E. Adams may be gone, but cake can still be purchased at the cafes within the Arcade, including at long term tenant Room with Roses.
- 1924 ‘A Year of Building Enterprise’, The Daily Mail (Brisbane, Qld. : 1903 – 1926), 5 February, p. 11.
- Brisbane Arcade History
- Johnstone, Brian William (1920–1988) by Louise Martin-Chew, published in Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 17, (MUP), 2007