Riverside hotel close to start

NEARLY five years since its inception, construction may soon commence on the $25 million Riverside Pier Hotel development, complete with a new contemporary design.

The project, formerly known as Barrack Square Hotel, is the baby of Asia Pacific Lodging (formerly Country Lodging Australia) managing director Michael Hughes, who has been sitting on this ‘floating’ hotel project since 1998.

Local developer PH3 Property Group and financier Kebbel Limited have been brought on board to help kick off a revamped hotel development application.

Located on the Swan River at Barrack Square the project will comprise an 86-room, boutique hotel that will be built over a leased area of the Swan River foreshore between the WA Rowing Club and the existing Old Perth Port buildings. 

The hotel has a current development approval (DA) that was renewed in March by the Minister for the Environment and Heritage Judy Edwards.

However, after consultation with the Swan River Trust, it was decided to seek a further DA embracing the design progressions.

PH3 Property Group managing director Chris Hazelbrook said although the project’s previous design had a current development approval, the group decided to rework the five-year-old hotel design.

In the new design the facade of the hotel draws on new architectural elements in the area such as the new bell tower and has a more contemporary feel. 

Mr Hazelbrook said Perth did not really have a real boutique hotel and that the unique location of the development would override any problems posed by the deflated conditions suffered by the local hotel industry.

“We have spent a lot of time in hotels in Europe, London, Holland and France,” he said.

“I am of the view that if you do it properly then they will come.”

Mr Hazelbrook said the group was looking forward to developing a building that brought excitement and vibrancy to the foreshore area.

The joint venture group plans to float the project in a public prospectus towards the end of the year to raise funds.

Mr Hazelbrook said the prospectus would work like a pooled fund and investors would have the added advantage of staying in the hotel on a rotational basis when it had vacancies.

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