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5 new Australian hotels for business events
Australia’s luxury hotel scene is rapidly evolving, with several recent openings and more in the pipeline. From The Ritz-Carlton in Melbourne to the transformation of the InterContinental Sydney, here are five new hotels to consider for a business event.
Opened in June 2022, The Langham, Gold Coast is Langham Hotels’ first beachfront property in Australia. Housed in the tallest of the three Jewel Towers located in the Gold Coast’s Surfers Paradise, the 169-room luxury hotel’s interior design reflects a 'coast meets city' theme in a blend of teal, azure and tan shades with sun-bleached timbers, metal and glass finishes. Planners can choose from 11 different event spaces covering 1,198 sqm (12,895 sq. ft), including the Diamond Ballroom which has capacity for 400 seated guests. Groups can enjoy direct beach access from the hotel, which is close to vibrant dining and shopping precincts. For larger groups, The Langham, Gold Coast also manages the neighbouring Jewel Residences which boast luxury apartment-style accommodation.
Brisbane/Meeanjin welcomed its first voco hotel in June 2022 – voco Brisbane City Centre. Perched on the banks of the Brisbane River, the vibrant new InterContinental Hotels Group property features 194 artfully designed guestrooms, a rooftop pool and trendy restaurant/lounge bar Kraft & Co. It’s Queensland’s second voco hotel, following in the footsteps of voco Gold Coast which was the first of the brand to open its doors to the world. Eleven stylish event spaces are spread across 1,200 sqm (12,917 sq. ft) of event space, including a sizeable ballroom that seats up to 520 guests for a banquet-style function. Sustainability is key for the voco brand, and voco Brisbane City Centre has implemented initiatives like aerated shower heads to reduce water usage, plush bedding filled with 100 per cent recycled materials and refillable vegan skincare amenities.
The InterContinental Sorrento opened its doors in August 2022. Located in the Mornington Peninsula’s seaside town of Sorrento, a 90-minute drive from Melbourne/Narrm, this contemporary oceanside retreat is housed in a beautifully restored 1875 Heritage-listed limestone building. Behind its timeless art deco façade, the hotel boasts 108 stylish guest rooms - many with ocean views - as well as 599 sqm (6,448 sq. ft) of events space. Groups can kick off an evening at the hotel with sunset drinks on the terrace overlooking Port Phillip Bay, then enjoy a gala dinner in the opulent Grand Ballroom that seats 90 guests.
The Ritz-Carlton brand made its debut in Melbourne/Narrm in March 2023. Located in the heart of the city on Lonsdale Street, The Ritz-Carlton Melbourne boasts 257 stylish rooms and suites housed in a spectacular new 80-storey building. Instead of the usual ground-floor lobby, guests are whisked to level 80 where they can marvel at the sensational city views upon check-in. The hotel aims to encourage guests to connect with Melbourne’s creativity, diversity and culture, with a uniquely Melbournian décor and a hyper-local culinary offering led by lauded Australian chef Mark Best. Two levels and 2,781 sqm (2,994 sq. ft) are dedicated to event space, including the Grand Ballroom which features 7m (23 ft) high ceilings and an impressive floor-to-ceiling feature window inspired by the National Gallery of Victoria’s iconic Great Hall.
The highly anticipated Capella Sydney opened in March 2023, spanning eight levels of a Heritage-listed sandstone building in the heart of Sydney/Warrane. A short stroll from the famous Sydney Opera House and Circular Quay, the 192-room hotel is the first Capella Hotels property to open in Australia. Built in Edwardian Baroque style more than 100 years ago, the building’s original characteristics are celebrated throughout the hotel, from the majestic marble-clad foyer to the bespoke function rooms and upper-level pool and wellness area. The hotel’s contemporary restaurant Brasserie 1930 offers an elevated dining experience in consultation with The Bentley Group, serving modern classics that highlight small-batch farmers and growers whilst drawing upon age-old techniques such as curing, smoking, fermenting and pickling.
The Louise, Barossa Valley
Fresh from a A$3 million makeover, Baillie Lodges’ The Louise reopened its doors in September 2022. The boutique vineyard hotel – one of the Luxury Lodges of Australia – offers 15 beautifully appointed suites nestled in the heart of South Australia’s Barossa Valley, just an hour’s drive from the city of Adelaide/Tarntanya. By day, incentive groups can explore the many nearby wineries that surround the hotel including Hentley Farm, Seppeltsfield and the certified organic Tscharke Wines which is located directly across the road. In the evenings, guests can enjoy a sunset drink on the terrace overlooking the vines, then settle in and enjoy an ever-changing degustation dinner menu at the acclaimed Appellation Restaurant which celebrates the finest local and South Australian ingredients.
Housed in Sydney/Warrane’s Heritage-listed Treasury building, the iconic InterContinental Sydney underwent a A$120 million transformation before reopening in late 2022. All 509 guest rooms and suites were redesigned, offering modern features and breathtaking views of the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. The five-star hotel has 14 flexible event spaces of varying sizes, but the star of the show is rooftop dining destination Aster on level 32. Available for private functions for up to 110 guests, this sophisticated space boasts unparalleled harbour views, making an impressive venue for pre-dinner cocktails and canapés whilst admiring a Sydney sunset from the outdoor terrace.
Spicers Tower Lodge
The Hunter Valley’s Tower Lodge reopened in July 2022 as Spicers Tower Lodge, after a $A6 million revitalisation by Spicers Retreats. Available for exclusive use for small incentive groups, the hotel’s 14 exquisitely appointed suites are styled in classic Spanish regional aesthetics with soaring ceilings, marble benchtops and elegant lighting. Groups can discover the famous Hunter Valley wine region via bespoke experiences that can be arranged by the hotel team, including hosted vineyard walks and private barrel tastings. Onsite activities include archery and lawn games set amongst the beautiful grounds, and the kitchen team can host culinary masterclasses which will whet the appetite for a dining experience at the hotel’s high-end restaurant, Sebastian.
Published: 24 March 2023