Sunday, June 13, 2010

Surrey Mansions, Durban

Surrey Mansions, DurbanTomorrow, at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban, at 4:30 am (!!!) Australian Eastern Standard Time, the Australian football (soccer) team, the Socceroos, take on Germany in their first game of the 2010 World Cup.

So it's an early night and an early wake-up call for me but not before I show you one of the best Art Deco buildings in Durban.

Surrey Mansions dates from 1934. It was designed by Langton & Barbourne and is a knock-out building.

There is some decoration at ground level, especially around the entrance but most of the action is high up on the top floors.

Surrey Mansions, Durban

One the small rounded balcony and along the wall below the open terrace, panels featuring stylised Art Deco floral forms are separated by groupings of five chevrons.

Surrey Mansions, Durban

The most striking elements are, however, the series of winged lions that sit on the spandrels between the windows, each one decorated with pieces of broken glass or tile.

Lion, Surrey Mansions, Durban

Winged creatures are a feature of Durban Art Deco as the birds on Broadwindsor and the mythical creatures on the Enterprise Building and Victoria Mansions attest.

Reference: Durban Art Deco website