Forget travelling abroad – this list of new hotels means you’ve got more reason than ever to make your next trip a domestic one. From the impeccably designed to the truly decadent, the best new Australian hotels prove that a chic weekend break is closer than you think.
1. Salamanca Wharf Hotel, Hobart
With a stackable garage, floor to ceiling double-glazed windows and luxury bedding, bunking at this waterfront offering feels more like you’re housesitting the city loft of a wealthy friend than staying in a hotel. The best part is you won’t have to worry about restocking the fridge. Which, by the way, comes fully stocked with an impressive array of Tasmanian beers, wines, cheese and chocolate. Once you’ve made your way through that, you’ll be pleased to find the ground floor is home to the simply delicious Castray Esplanade Food + Wine. Venturing further down the street isn’t a bad idea either, as you’ll be a short stroll away from some of Hobart’s top eateries.
2. Ovolo, Melbourne
A labyrinth of striking design features, the interior of this perfectly-located hotel brings the art of Melbourne’s laneways inside. Not only is this street-art adorned pad impressive for its attention to design detail, but in its stellar services. It’s the little things that add up, such as free local calls and WiFi, complimentary mini bar drinks and snacks, flexible checkout and in-room Apple TVs. Even the Penthouse is no usual penthouse – it’s complete with an outdoor Jacuzzi on the terrace overlooking the city, as well as a pinball machine.
3. Hotel Hotel, Canberra
Like an art project waiting to be lived in, Hotel Hotel is built for “people people” who appreciate sleek, Scandi-style spaces and chic, sustainable design. Think accents of reclaimed oak and timber, alongside natural fibre wallpapers and locally sourced clay-rendered walls. This hotel is at the forefront of the NewActon precinct, an emerging cultural capital north of Lake Burley Griffin. There’s a cinema showing international and art-house flicks, Asian street vendors and pop-up stores within the same building, where you’ll be spoilt for things to keep you occupied.
This hotel quenches the Sunshine State’s thirst for happening hotels in a big way. The rooms are a decorator’s dream – everything from a colourful clash of Bretton stripes and orange tub chairs to a quirky cockatoo ornaments will greet you in your chic and comfy digs, along with some pretty impressive mountain, river or ocean views.
Spend some time in one of the three tempting restaurants or relaxed hotel café, as well as browsing the aptly named boutique, Qtique, which stocks off-beat gifts such as stand-out stationary and old-fashioned sweets. Add an outdoor pool, a day spa and free hire of the hotel’s adorable retro bikes and you’ve got yourself the Gold Coast getaway you’ve been pining for.
5. 1888, Sydney
There’s no shortage of new bars in Sydney but with the arrival of warehouse-cool 1888, you’ll want to stay here just to have a drink at the bar.
The industrial-style rooms have stayed true to the former woolshed heritage, with crumbling exposed brick walls, furniture fashioned from recycled timer and salvaged iron bark beams highlighting the standard three metre ceilings. Enjoy wonderful open spaces, most notable the impressive five-storey internal atrium.
While the design of the hotel may feel wonderfully raw, mod cons like an in-room iPad, walk-in rain showers and a designated ‘selfie’ area for social media fiends make 1888 as ‘now’ as you can get.
6. Double Tree by Hilton, Alice Springs
It’s all about location, location, location at this relaunched hotel. Downtown Alice is a short walk away but just because you’re in the outback, doesn’t mean you have to rough it. With complimentary WiFi, Crabtree and Evelyn products, a warm choc chip cookie on arrival and sweeping views of the MacDonnell Mountain Ranges, this perfectly situated eco-friendly hotel is your best bet on staying cool in the red centre. Especially with a heated outdoor pool at hand…
7. Kingsford Homestead, Barossa
Going bush has never been so luxurious. This stunning and stately homestead set amongst 225 acres of Barossa heartland offers everything from indulgent outdoor bush baths for two, wine tasting in the impressive cellar and in-house spa treatments – but that’s only if the included country style breakfasts, evening canapés and five-course meals aren’t enough to keep you busy. The only thing that might get you outdoors for a poke around the old shearing sheds or local vineyards is justifying a lazy retreat to your claw-footed soaking tub or the lounge around for a recline in front of the toasty open fire.
8. The Terrace Hotel, Perth
The style may be more ‘cosy’ than ‘cool’, but don’t be fooled – the rooms inside this elegant 19th century terrace boasts just as much Apple and Bang and Olufsen as any super-mod hotel. It’s classicism at its best in this heritage listed terrace, with period antiques dotted around the plush rooms, totally indulgent marble bathrooms and a first class wine cellar. Round-out your stay with a decadent afternoon high-tea or a delicious dinner in the top-notch restaurant or, as your right in the heart of the CBD, make the most of your central location by strolling to Perth’s other nearby eateries.
9. Villa Howden, Hobart
This French-style villa of grandeur has fast gained fame for its perfectly stunning European-feel exterior and luxuriously comfy interiors. Boasting stunning views of Mount Wellington, the estate is perched on the edge of the North Bay conservation area, just 15 minutes south of Hobart. You can enjoy the tranquil surrounds with a glass of wine by the fireplace or while playing croquet in the seductive and extensive gardens. Or, if you tire of your lavish room adorned with French antiques, take a dip in the indoor heated pool.
10. Franklin Boutique Hotel, Adelaide
Smack bang in Adelaide’s CBD, this former backpacker’s sure fits the bill in terms of location, but it’s the effortlessly cool renovation of the hotel’s former down-and-out dorms that really impress. Each room comes fully-loaded with extras like Nespresso machines and iPod docks amongst hand-crafted furniture and artworks from local artists. A killer downstairs bar with courtyard-style beer garden serving pulled pork burgers means this place is a hipster’s paradise – and we mean that in the best possible way.