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Spotlight on Bear Agushi ft. Workroom Design

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Bear Agushi has cultivated a reputation collaborating with some of Melbourne’s most creative architects, interior designers and landscape designers to offer a design and build service that is personalised and unique in the luxury home space.

Working alongside renowned contemporary architects like Workroom Design, these highly esteemed industry partners of RT Edgar are building the Stonnington dream one lavish residence at a time.

Bear Agushi began his career working for a property developer over twenty years ago, who predominantly focused on ‘cookie cutter’ apartment developments. His passion for design grew as he started getting involved with higher quality homes, and from there, strived to achieve a better result with each project.

“At university I studied accounting and business, I never studied architecture or building, so even though designing and building beautiful homes wasn’t a planned part of my career path – constantly evolving and improving is what lead me to where I am,” Bear explains.

In the beginning of his career, Bear worked closely with the late David Watson, an established architect who he credits as “the only person who gave me the time of day, when a lot of other people didn’t.”

After establishing AGUSHI in 2002, collaborations with high calibre designers such as Jack Merlo, and John Bornas [head of Workroom Design] inspired continuous innovation. Bear explains, “I started working with John Bornas around 14 years ago, he has probably been my greatest influence, and is certainly an unofficial design mentor to me in a sense.”

Bear’s appreciation of Workroom’s architectural style and process saw him consistently invite the team to collaborate on more and more of his projects.

When asked about the typical process for a new project, Bear identifies two arms of the business. The first centers purely around his own work, such as his property on Kooyong Road. The second is client lead, where he is provided with a budget for a residential build, from which AGUSHI will create the full specs and images to demonstrate what they can deliver within that range.

“We work collaboratively with the client. I project manage the entire process, engaging designers like John, or I design it in house.”

Bear highlights the importance of his project management approach, stating, “the client gets better value in house at AGUSHI, as we can offer greater efficiencies in construction. It’s a much more effective and streamline way of designing and building a house.”

As an esteemed partner of AGUSHI, Workroom Design was built off an intimate understanding of both architecture and interior design. “It’s about understanding form, space and materials, how they go together and how to best exploit them for what they can bring to a project. This understanding manifests in buildings that are considered, layered and textured beyond initial perception,” Workroom explains.

Some exciting projects Workroom has created include Bear’s own property in South Yarra, as well as many luxury residences in Toorak, Malvern and Armadale where they have found many clients have come to them for their unique approach to design. “We place extreme importance on our clients’ brief, the site and our context. Our design language has a consistency of exploration but tells a different story with each and every project.”

On professional collaborations with AGUSHI, Workroom states, “Bear is a great builder and he understands the architectural intent of our projects. When you’re working on complicated, highly detailed and challenging projects, that is a valuable asset to have on your team. We still have our arguments but they are always constructive, and I love finding solutions to an idea together.

Bear has had a big influence on Workroom in the way we approach detailing and construction. Working with Bear over the years has given me an invaluable insight into construction and has helped me develop as an architect and Workroom as a practice.”

To view the incredible work from both AGUSHI and Workroom Design, check out their respective portfolios on Instagram at:



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