design: Bates Smart
landscape architect: Indesco
lighting: Point of View
builder: Construction Control
Bates Smart’s aim was to create a uniquely “Canberran” hotel using circles and axes to respond to Griffin’s original vision and create a landmark as the gateway to the Canberra Airport. The interior is aesthetically integrated with the architectural expression of the hotel, creating a holistic approach to the building expression.
They used a bold omnidirectional circular form that marks the terminal entry regardless of approach and is dramatic when viewed in motion from a passing vehicle. Straight edges reinforce the terminal’s entry axis and enable diagonal views to the terminal. A complimentary smaller circle completes the form at the apex of the shape, providing a welcoming geometry on approach from the terminal.
The focus of the hotel is a dramatic circular atrium that unites the rooms together. White circular balustrades contrast with darkened circulation spaces allowing guests to discretely access their rooms while creating a heightened interior drama. A constellation of random circular skylights above casts dramatic beams of light in the interior.
The base of the atrium contains the social functions of the hotel, and can be used as a public room for functions. Interior elements and screen are designed referencing the circular geometry of the building. Enclosed functions on the ground floor are contained within gold clad pods.
The radial geometry of the rooms maximise connection with the view. Full height glass windows are framed to maintain a human scale. Circular screens provide enhanced privacy, while screening the effect of drapes on the expression of the hotel.
Warm natural materials including leather, wood and travertine creates a timeless interior, heightened by the use of reds, and oranges in the fabrics.