They call it Xanadu: Discovering an abandoned skating ring in Brisbane


For anyone who is a fan of old derelict buildings and/or street art, then this should be right up your alley.

Tucked away in the Brisbane suburb of Redhill is this former roller skating rink.


This place operated as a roller-skating rink from the 1920s right up until it was destroyed by a fire in 2002.


The artwork depicts its fate…

It’s unclear what is happening with the building now.  Peering through a small gap I could see that some work had taken place inside, but that appeared to have stopped for whatever reason.  The sad fact is that it will probably end up demolished and replaced with more shops or offices.



Well, if I had the money I would restore it as a roller disco, complete with glitter ball and a 1980s pop music mix.  I have happy memories of going to roller discos (not this one obviously, but around South London), although I think I am viewing the past through rose-tinted specs here.  I never had much balance and always needed to cling on to the sides, watching the prettier girls gliding gracefully by.

Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get inside this roller rink (it was well padlocked), however I did manage to find this picture online of the gutted interior.

And for any of you who are too young (or like to pretend you are) to remember roller discos, here is the 1980 Olivia Newton John movie Xanadu (so bad that it almost becomes quite good).  The ‘plot’ involves a man opening a roller disco after meeting a muse who has come to earth to encourage him to follow his dream.

20 replies »

  1. Hello Sarah. So much of this post I love. Buildings, street art, 80s music, glitter ball and being a muse. my life in this blog. Love the street art, how cool is that! I will go halves with you, let’s buy it and open it up the world. Love and hugs xx

  2. That’s some of the coolest street art I have ever seen! I hope they don’t tear it down, it would be such a shame given its history. Hopefully someone buys it and restores it to what it used to be!

  3. The art on this building is seriously cool! It would be amazing to have a roller disco inside – maybe someone will read this and invest! 😀

  4. This street art is amazing. I’m hope someone will step up to preserve and invest in it. It’d be a shame if it got torn down with art like this.

  5. Street art is my favorite form of art. The ones on this building are so gorgeous, it’s a shame that the building will probably be torn down. Love your idea though, I’d go if it was a roller disco 😀

  6. Undoubtedly some of the best street art I have seen and it’s wonderful the transformation that a few visionary people can do to what would otherwise be an awful eyesore. But, as previous comments have stated, unfortunate that it may be torn down but hopefully, this other other places like it can survive. Fabulous shots.

  7. Too fun!! I clicked on this thinking it was about this club I saw in Ecuador called Xanadu, but this was so much better!

    • Ah, I’m not so knowledgable of Ecuadorian night clubs I”m afraid 🙂 I was just thinking of the bad 80s movie Xanadu, because the 80s was more my era 🙂

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