Enjoy the lowland rainforest plants and impressive canopy of trees that make up the ecosystem in the Bicentennial Conservatory.
Built in 1988 and designed by South Australian architect Guy Maron, it is the largest single span conservatory in the Southern Hemisphere.
The building is curvilinear in shape – 100 metres long, 47 metres wide and 27 metres high. An elegant steel superstructure supports the 2,434 metres2 of toughened glass, which forms the roof, walls and doors. Its glistening and distinctive shape is a landmark, particularly for visitors flying in to Adelaide.
Inside the Bicentennial Conservatory you'll find a lush display of lowland rainforest plants from northern Australia, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and the nearby Pacific Islands. Many of these plants are at risk or endangered in their natural habitats.
A lower walkway winds across the undulating forest floor and an upper walkway takes visitors into the canopy of trees and palms. Both walkways have full wheelchair access.
Shortly after the Conservatory was opened, it received a Royal Australian Institute of Architects (RAIA, SA Chapter) Award of Merit (1990) and the RAIA Sir Zelman Cowan Award (1991), which is widely recognised as Australia’s leading award for public buildings.
More recently it was rated the 9th best building in Australia in a poll by The Australian (2010), received the Jack Cheesman Award for Enduring Architecture in South Australia (2014) and became the ‘youngest’ building in SA to receive Heritage Listing (2014).
The South Australian Heritage Council has described it as an outstanding example of the late 20th century structuralist style in Australia.