Romance. Reflection. Remembrance. These are the three principles on which David Parsons, lead designer with Florida design studio Tatron, based the Park Hyatt Melbourne. Uninspired by other international hotels which seem to have little identity or personality, owners Ted Lustig and Max Moar had a clear vision for their Melbourne hotel – a vision which highlighted the city’s mix of contemporary style and old-world charm, delivered in an inviting, homely way. Homely on a grand scale, that is.
The romance and reflection go hand in hand. Parsons has filled the hotel with exotic materials – rare metals, inlaid marble, bespoke tinted glass – to create the look and feel of a jewellery box. The guests see themselves reflected in all these polished surfaces, making them feel an integral part of the environment, and warm colours in the public spaces give a welcoming aura. Although some of the materials were imported, Tricia Neagle, who looked after the furniture and fittings, is proud that the majority was sourced from local craftsmen and suppliers. A fitting tribute to Melbourne’s ardent locality beliefs.
The relentless polish may be a little overt for some – the mezzanine-style restaurant, radii, veers on the Vegas somewhat – but as a romantic sanctum just on the edge of the CBD’s thriving centre yet seemingly in its very own haven of calm, there’s precious little showy about the Park Hyatt’s neat brand of refinement. Our Club Deluxe guestroom enjoys sweeping views over St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Fitzroy Gardens and is vast, in a way that belies the very fact that a few short steps will see us onto Melbourne’s most exclusive streets. The sun beats in through each of our three balconies, I seek refuge in our sprawling walk-in-wardrobe (hate mail to the usual address).
Melbourne is far from the fast-paced agressive city living of its arch nemesis Sydney, but the opportunity to seek solace from urban living whilst still remaining on its doorstep cannot be underlined enough. We sip champagne, wolf down strawberries and chocolate. We should return to the third of David Parsons’ principles: remembrance. I can’t put it more simply – our stay will certainly linger long in the memory.