REVIEW: GRAND PAPUA HOTEL, PORT MORESBY
grandpapuahotel.com.pg +675 304 0000
The deluxe Grand Papua Hotel, built in 2011, sits on a ridge at the top of Port Moresby’s business district where guests are treated to good views of the sea.
The owner, the Steamships Trading Company, has bestowed the superlative moniker of ‘grand’ on the hotel to distinguish it from previous incarnations of the Papua hotel that have existed in almost the same location during the past 100 years.
Most people see the hotel from Hunter Street, its rear entrance; but the main entrance porte cochere is accessed from the narrow Mary Street.
General manager Alex Wilson says: “We are a boutique, top-end hotel with 161 luxury rooms and suites with an overall stylistic theme of colonial meets contemporary PNG. We have all the facilities that government or private-sector executives require.”
The previous two hotels of the same name also strived to be the most luxurious in the country at the time. Black-and-white photos of the original Papua Hotel can be seen in the hallways of the current hotel.
The original, built in 1909, boasted ‘modern novelties’ such as electric lighting and refrigeration, along with good stabling for horses.
It was demolished in 1941 and replaced by a new building in the same year, on the adjacent block on the corner of Musgrave and Douglas streets. It was immediately commandeered until 1947 by the Australian Army as headquarters for the Eighth Military District. General Douglas McArthur was one of the first ‘guests’.