Twenty months in the making, Vertigo, a fine-dining restaurant on the top of a four-storey-high wall at Brisbane Powerhouse, will launch this October. The venue will see guests escorted to the rooftop, where they’ll don a harness before climbing out to their seats 17m above ground.
“A first in the world, Vertigo is a complex project requiring the advice of engineering, design and safety specialists,” says Kate Gould, Brisbane Powerhouse’s CEO and Artistic Director. The Powerhouse teamed up with Brisance outdoor tourism operator Riverlife on the restaurant.
“The most thrilling part of Vertigo is the moment you step out over the edge of the Brisbane Powerhouse wall,” says Gould. “The experience is safe, but you feel so out of control. When you finally catch your breath, the view across New Farm Park to the city is magic.”
Once at their seat, guests will be served a meal by chefs from Brisbane Powerhouse’s Italian restaurant, Bar Alto, made with mostly all local ingredients and served with crockery and cutlery that’s attached to the table. No one, not even Gould, has yet to experience a meal at Vertigo.
“I’m looking forward to the Brodetto [Italian fish stew], with bay bugs, king prawns, mussels, calamari, saffron brood and brew sourdough,” she says.
After dinner, guests will get to choose if they want to descend back inside Brisbane Powerhouse the way they came or, instead, dropline down the building’s façade, an experience Riverlife Co-Founder John Sharpe says will be unforgettable.
“Vertigo will inspire fear, but with the knowledge that safety is the priority of our experienced team of adventure tourism guides,” Sharpe says.
The experience is being supported by the Queensland Government’s $15 million Tourism Experience Development (TED) Fund, one of 50 new and reimagined experiences the fund is supporting to grow the state’s visitor economy. The fund’s aim to deliver more than 900 new construction and tourism jobs.
From October 2023, Vertigo will be open Thursday to Sunday, weather permitting, hosting multiple tables of two each evening. The set menu will cost $250 a head and can be adapted to cater for most dietary needs.