Chris Lucas – whose eponymous Lucas Restaurants group is behind Grill Americano, Society, Yakimono and Chin Chin – is opening two new venues in the CBD.

A “new style” Chinese restaurant and a Mediterranean concept operated by Lucas Restaurants will be the centrepieces of a new high-rise office tower on the corner of Bourke and Elizabeth Streets.

The 48-storey building at 435 Bourke Street was approved by the Victorian Department of Planning in 2022. The $1 billion project was designed by Australian architecture firm Bates Smart, and developer Cbus Property expects the building to be complete at the end of 2026.

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“This project is an important city-shaping project for Melbourne and is set to be a landmark commercial tower and new dining destination for future generations,” says Lucas. “As with 80 Collins Street, 435 Bourke Street will be a cool and delicious integrated commercial and dining precinct with an inherent focus on sustainability.”

The two venues will be all-electric and Lucas says both restaurants will use “some of the most advanced hospitality technology available, such as electric woks”.

While many Melbourne hospitality venues have recently closed, Lucas Restaurants has amped up expansion. The announcement of the two new CBD venues today follows the opening of Club Chin Chin, a year-long pop-up restaurant in Geelong’s GMHBA Stadium, and the announcement of Lucas Restaurants’ first Canberra venue, Carlotta, a Mediterranean-style restaurant that will open in the Scotts Crossing precinct later this year.

The group is also due to open Batard, a French restaurant inspired by New York French restaurants such as Frenchette and Le Coucou, on the top end of Bourke Street later this year.