If Katie Melua is to be believed, there are nine million bicycles in Beijing, and the rest of the world’s cities are catching up fast. Rising fuel prices and a desire to keep fit and healthy means the bike is an increasingly popular way to get around – all in all a good time to be an award-winning bicycle designer like Pablo Chappelli of Chappelli Cycles.
Founded by Englishman Pablo (a former Dyson and Breville designer) and his mate Tom Davies, Chappelli Cycles now has a showroom in Brisbane along with warehouse workshops in Sydney and this beauty in Melbourne. The roots of the business, however, go back much further. In the 1960s back in England, Pablo’s dad Roberto designed and built his own bikes to race in the Tour de France trials, and his heritage is still evident in the fixed-speed style bikes that Chappelli Cycles produce. Recent developments into variable hub bikes resulted in the Chappelli NuVinci model winning a 2012 Australian Design Award. Most of the designing goes on at the Botany headquarters in Sydney (which in itself looks a pretty nice piece of design), with manufacture happening at the company’s factory in Shanghai. Keep your eyes out for a Chappelli whizzing past on a city street near you, drop by their workshops, or get in touch for international sales – the bikes are also available in France, Sweden, UK and Singapore.