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Wednesday 23 January 2019

Pentridge: From prison cells to wine cellars

Cells in D-Division of the notorious former Pentridge Prison are about to be given a new lease of life – as cellars for discerning lovers of fine wine.

Pentridge Cellars, owned by self-confessed wine enthusiasts Paul Tardivel and Michael Woodworth, has a limited number of cellars available for those keen to capture a unique new way to store their favourite drops.

Located within the bluestone walls of the historic prison precinct in Coburg – former residence to such infamous criminals as Squizzy Taylor, Mark ‘Chopper’ Read and Christopher Flannery –the private wine cellars will be equipped with racking, temperature control, ambient lighting and security, including CCTV.

The owners say custom finishes and features can be incorporated into each cellar to create a truly personal space.

“These spaces in D Division were used to hold prisoners right up until the closure of Pentridge Prison in 1997,” says Tardivel.

“Now we’re giving wine connoisseurs the opportunity to own a little piece of history and a wonderful space to house their collection.”

Each cellar is able to house up to 2000 bottles, dependent on the type of racking and storage selected, and it’s anticipated some people will purchase concurrent cellars for commercial collections.

“The cellars are made of about 500mm-thick bluestone walls, which in itself keeps the wine at a cool and stable temperature,” Tardivel says.

“We have added a state-of-the-art climate-control unit to ensure an absolute year-round stable temperature and humidity, which are the key elements required for perfect cellaring conditions.

“The unique history of the building itself aside, you would think that it had been purpose-built for its second life as a wine storage site.”

Cellar owners will have access to their space at all times using a swipe card, and can bring guests to the cellar to showcase their collections.

Pentridge Cellars says it will also offer comfortable common areas for owners and their guests, and plans are underway to offer larger spaces for events.

Prices start at $115,000, with each of the wine cellars sold with its own strata title.

“We see this as a really exciting opportunity for wine collectors to have a safe, climate-controlled and beautiful environment to keep their most valuable bottles.

“And, with development continuing throughout the precinct for the next couple of years, it won’t be long before owners can drop by their cellar for a bottle of wine and take it along to one of Pentridge’s restaurants to have with dinner.”

Pentridge Cellars is located at 4 Wardens Walk, Coburg. For more information, visit

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