As one of the most liveable cities in the world, Melbourne is continuing to grow as one of the most popular destinations to visit in the Southern hemisphere. Everything from the foodie scene, architecture and design, to fashion from this city is slowly gaining more and more attention across the world. In this current wintertime, Indonesia Design explored Melbourne’s hotel scene and found these three amazing addresses to stay in.
1 Parliament Square: Park Hyatt Melbourne
The Grand Residence
The expectation is soaring high when you stay at the Park Hyatt brand around the world. Known as the pinnacle of the Hyatt brand, all of the Park Hyatt establishments always offer refined residential-inspired luxury experiences in top-tier cultural destinations that include a highly personalised and engaged service, renowned art and design, to exceptional food and wine. The Park Hyatt Melbourne nestled near the city’s historic Parliament House is a great example of the brand that showcases refined sophistication.
Developed in 1999 by Lustig and Moar, the hotel with its 240 rooms is done in an Italianate style with modern classic principles to blend into the surrounding heritage buildings.
The Buchan Group architectural firm was appointed to build this hotel, while David Parsons of the Florida-based interior design company named Tatron was in charge of creating an interior design concept that can give the sophistication of a grand gracious home. Lustig and Moar’s directions were clear; this hotel should be able to reflect the city’s cultured and old-world ambience.
As a result, the hotel pays meticulous attention to its interior design featuring intricate details and exotic materials such as cast blue and amber glass, inlaid marble, rare wood and beautifully-crafted metalwork. The grand feeling is built right from the entrance with the lobby space designed to curve and loom above guests, enveloping them upon arrival. The warm tones of gold and red-brown tones on an inlaid marble floor in combination with timber in the lobby and other public areas are offset by custom-made architectural metalwork from Mewo Metal Products. This metal company also created the piece-de-resistance curved, mirror-finish, stainless steel reception desk that adds the contemporary feel to the whole ambience.
On the same floor of the lobby area, we can find the serene Lounge and Garden overlooking the picturesque Trilogy Gardens. This lounge is renowned for its traditional afternoon high-tea. From the lobby area, we can also find Radii restaurant and bar that features a dramatic split-level dining area and a highly-visible kitchen. This all-day dining that venue led by Chef Mark Sainsbury and his culinary team is centred around two staircases featuring beautiful balustrading work in decorative spheres and undulating curves along the balcony level.
As the original interior designer, Parsons was summoned once again by the hotel to do some beautification work on the room division that was accomplished this year. Known to have a spacious room size in the city (starting from 48sqm), Parson’s new take to this rejuvenation process is to introduce a new colour palette to highlight the oversized room layouts while keeping that residential character. He chose to preserve the iconic Madrona Burlwood panelling seen in all guestrooms and suites, as well as the Michelangelo white and Giallo Valencia marble in the bathrooms. The enhancement includes a technology upgrade from Bluetooth media hubs, latest flat-screen TVs and complimentary Wi-Fi connection for up to six devices.
The 60sqm King View Club that we experienced has an impressive view of Melbourne’s gardens and the historic St. Patrick’s Cathedral that represents the city’s skyline. As part of the new room categories that were introduced after the beautification process, accents of colour, texture and patterns are brought out through fabrics and decorative items to compliment the hotel’s existing warm tones. The room also features a full walk-in wardrobe and bathroom with a custom-made marble sink and bathtub as well as a large shower.
It is not a surprise if Park Hyatt Melbourne becomes one of the most luxurious addresses in the city. The hotel is designed to offer absolute luxury subtly. It is a private haven in the middle of cosmopolitan Melbourne.
495 Collins Street: InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto
The Historical Residence
It was the gold rush era and Melbourne was known as the richest city in the world. The city started to grow and develop into a major world city with a population reaching just short of 500,000 by 1890, making Melbourne the second-largest city in the empire after London at the time. “Marvelous Melbourne” was the name given to this city during that time when a wealthy local businessman named Patrick McCaughan commissioned the architect William Pitt to build an office building in the Neo-Gothic style in 1891 on Collins Street. The building was known as The Rialto and named so for its Venetian Gothic architecture. William Pitt as the mastermind for the design is a renowned artist, politician and theatre architect. He is also known as one of the fathers of High-Victorian Melbourne and created buildings with pure flamboyant opulence that typified the Victorian era.
Right next to this opulent building and separated only by the bluestone cobbled laneways is another great building called The Winfield. Constructed at the same time as The Rialto, this building is designed by Charles D’Ebro and was originally known as the Wool Exchange Building. It is believed to have been Melbourne’s first wool exchange and auction house. The building that was renamed in the 1920s into The Winfield was designed in the Queen Anne style which was usually employed for domestic buildings in the city.
In the 1970s, these two buildings were purchased by the Grollo Group and underwent a renovation that unified these two buildings as one complex by adding the glass rooftop in between. In 1984, The Menzies at Rialto Hotel opened and in 2006, the hotel management was taken over by InterContinental Hotels Group. After an extensive $60 million luxury refurbishment, InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto was finally reborn in 2008.
Stepping into this hotel will help you experience the juxtaposition of old and new. The famous architectural firm The Buchan Group was appointed to make this concept into reality by combining modern design with existing heritage elements to create a common design language, carried through the hotel’s front-of-house public areas and suites. The wow factor upon arrival at the hotel foyer is none other than the atrium which features a staircase with its zinc and glass cladding, making a significant architectural element.
Buchan who worked with interior designer Joseph Pang also created a design that features new connections to the entrances. A series of new retail tenancies were also included. The hotel’s main restaurant and bar are accessible via the grand staircase and the hotel lifts. The bar resembles a wine cellar, with the main counter in black zinc cladding with a coloured glass-finish and backlit bar unit as the focal point. A central communal table made from recycled timber and plush leather sofas evoke a club feel.
The restaurant design takes the form of a European Brasserie, with an open-plan table setting and leather upholstered banquette seats. The atrium is beaming with natural light during the day. In the evening, the dining mood is romantic, enhanced by custom lighting.
With 253 rooms in total facing the atrium, each room is soundproofed to prevent noises from the public areas as well as the restaurant and bar that are located in the atrium. Following its original building layout, the standard room has decent space and was done in beige and white as the colour theme, resulting in an ultra-chic contemporary international hotel atmosphere.
The InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto is without a doubt one of the most unique hotels that continues to let the building’s story live forever.
19 Little Bourke Street: Ovolo Laneways
The FUN Residence
The fun thing about Melbourne downtown is the fact that it is occupied with various lanes that hide many great things from artisan coffee shops, boutiques to even hotels! One of the best-designed hotels that are hidden in one of these lanes on 19 Little Bourke Street is a swanky hotel called Ovolo Laneways.
The hotel with all its 42 rooms opened its doors in 2013 and it has immediately become a popular choice amongst travellers who are in town for either business or leisure. The hotel’s strategic location in the city’s Central Business District could be the main reason, however, the powerful quirky pop design that this hotel carries can also be a winning reason to love it. FUN has become Ovolo Laneways’ service ethos which stands for Fabulous, Unconventional and Never boring.
Originated in Hong Kong, Ovolo Laneways is the first property of Ovolo Hotels in Australia. They appointed HASSELL studio, an internationally-renowned design practice company with expertise in creating great designs on a various platforms from commercial places, offices, homes and many more for the last 75 years. Hassel took the city’s best highlights, with cafes, hidden bars and the iconic laneways as inspiration to create a distinctive design.
They transformed a block of a lacklustre serviced apartment building into this playfully-designed hotel that takes the guests on a fun sensory adventure. The journey in this hotel starts from the dramatic concierge-style reception past an illuminated custom artwork that continues to the array of bright colourful doors in dimly-lit corridors, before finally arriving at calming and restorative guestrooms.
All of the 43 rooms comprise of six distinct options that are based on a similar neutral colour palate. Individual character is injected through various trendy designs that emulate the qualities of the laneways. Elements such as a punching bag, pinball machine, to chalkboard walks are accents that enhance the overall design concept. Smart space planning, diverse furniture and joinery components allow guests to reconfigure the rooms to suit their unique purposes.
The hotel also has a Penthouse Suite on the top floor that has a spacious lounge and two large bedrooms. The best feature in this suite is none other than the private terrace with a Jacuzzi spa overlooking Melbourne’s panoramic city view. Ovolo Laneways is also known to feature various photographs about Melbourne street art in the rooms to establish the connection between the guests and
We can say that the overall design environment of Ovolo Laneways in Melbourne reflects its commitment to eliminating “nuisance experiences”. The FUN will definitely fill your stay at this residence.