Cereal: Victoria State Library
It is magnificent to sit under the enormous white octagonal cupola, bathed in natural light, and surrounded by more than 32,000 books. This is the reading room of the State Library of Victoria, known as The Dome, for obvious reasons, and opened in November 1913, to the enchantment of awestruck Melburnians. It was the largest reinforced concrete structure in the world at the time. Spanning six storeys, it was considered a remarkable feat of modern architecture. Originally known asThe Melbourne Public Library, itfirst opened with a carefully curated collection of 3,800 volumes in 1856, and became an immediate refuge for the literary minded. It was commissioned by Lieutenant Governor Charles La Trobe, who proposed a competition to find the perfect designer. Joseph Reed, a local architect who had migrated from his native Cornwall to Melbourne in 1853, won the honour. He later designed Melbourne Town Hall and the Royal Exhibition Building, creating a series of classical structures in the heart of the city.