Ho­tel, Mel­bourne

Design Anthology - - Contents - Text / Suzy An­netta Images / Tom Blach­ford

A beach­side icon has re­opened with a look that pays trib­ute to its lo­cale

Mel­bourne in­ner sub­urb St Kilda has al­ways had a Mi­ami-like al­lure. Tucked behind the grand palm tree-lined es­planade that winds its way from Port Mel­bourne, the neigh­bour­hood is home to ex­em­plary pastel­hued Art Deco ar­chi­tec­ture, some of the city's best bars, restau­rants and live mu­sic venues, and just enough grit and char­ac­ter to re­mind us of its for­mer life as the red-light district.

Lo­cated a short walk from the wa­ter­front on one of the precinct's most fa­mous streets is a re­cently re­vi­talised icon. The Prince Ho­tel, for­merly known as The Prince of Wales, dates back to 1863, mak­ing it one of Mel­bourne's first guest houses, and was re­built in 1936 by Robert H McIn­tyre — founder of one of the coun­try's long­est-stand­ing ar­chi­tec­tural prac­tices — in the mod­ern Art Deco style that now graces the streetscap­e.

The re­cent sym­pa­thetic over­haul of the 38room bou­tique ho­tel, led by IF Ar­chi­tec­ture and de­sign stu­dio Meme, sees in­te­ri­ors that bet­ter re­flect its prox­im­ity to the bay and em­body the spirit of the neigh­bour­hood — a lit­tle rough, a lit­tle re­fined. Pas­tel hues are used un­abashedly as the back­drop for fur­nish­ings and pho­tog­ra­phy by a ros­ter of lo­cal de­sign­ers and artists.

Also a high­light is the Prince Din­ing Room, where ex­ec­u­tive chef Dan Hawkins (for­merly of nearby Stoke­house and The Prince's for­mer fine-din­ing venue Circa) and head chef Dan Cooper con­tinue to re­in­force Mel­bourne's po­si­tion as the culi­nary cap­i­tal of Aus­tralia.

Art Deco icon The Prince Ho­tel has had a sym­pa­thetic over­haul by IF Ar­chi­tec­ture and de­sign stu­dio Meme. Its pas­tel-hued, a-lit­tle-rougha-lit­tle-re­fined in­te­ri­ors em­body the spirit of the neigh­bour­hood, and in­clude fur­nish­ings and pho­tog­ra­phy by lo­cal de­sign­ers and artists

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