In the centre of Perth (Western Australia), at the point from which all distances in Perth are measured, the Como Hotel is part of a multimillion-dollar refurbishment of the 19th-century State Buildings by Perth property developer Adrian Fini of FJM Property. The buildings formerly served as a post office, land titles office and treasury. After lying empty for 20 years, the restoration has created the hotel behind the grand Victorian-era façade as well as several restaurants, bars and high-end shops set around an arcade. Como Hotels is a small group of luxury five-star properties, including The Metropolitan hotels in London, Miami and Bangkok.
Where is it?
On the corner of St Georges Terrace and Barrack Street in the Perth central business district opposite Stirling and Supreme Court Gardens, about a 20-minute drive from the airport.
What’s it like?
A liveried doorman greets guests at the main entrance, which is opposite the West door of St George’s Cathedral and features flamboyant Neo-Renaissance style columns and cantilevered balconies. The restoration project has returned 95 per cent of the buildings to their 19th-century origins, including the re-installation of dormer windows and Victorian roofs finished with copper trimmings.
The “Guest Arrival Lounge” is to the right in one of several elegant rooms on the ground floor, which then merges through a series of open doorways into the Treasury Lounge and Bar with artworks from Art Collective WA, illustrations on the bar walls from the Cape Arid art collection, and lighting by Flynn Talbot and Brendan van Hek.
The 48 rooms and suites over four floors are former offices and are generously sized with high ceilings. Designed by Kerry Hill to create a sense of serenity and a home away from home, they are decorated in a soft, cocooning palette: beiges, whites, limed oak furniture, pale travertine, with bronze and leather trims. The grey-greens are reminiscent of the colours found in the landscapes of Western Australia.
There are handcrafted modern European furnishings, beds with sheets of Egyptian cotton, large windows, complimentary private bar replenished daily, Samsung LED television/IPTV, multi-line VOIP phones with voicemail, a laptop-size private safe, multimedia hub, in-room technology with dual built-in USB ports, and complimentary wifi. Rooms also have Illy coffee- and tea-making facilities, large windows – which can be opened – electronic sheers and blackout blinds or curtains. The bathrooms have showers and Kaldewei Duo bathtubs, twin vanities, travertine stone tiles, heated floors and towel rails, and aromatherapy-based Como Shambhala at Home amenities.
Rooms range in size from entry-level City rooms, an average of 55 sqm, to the 120 sqm Como Suite.
Food and drink
Post, the former General Post Office, is now an all-day osteria serving Italian food. Wildflower, located on the top floor, serves fine Western Australian cuisine; it’s an outstanding venue for an evening meal. The wider development also includes several excellent options including Petition Kitchen, while Petition Wine Bar & Merchant and Beer Corner serve everything from local beers to cocktails and bar snacks. In the basement is Long Chim, where you’ll find Thai dishes from renowned chef David Thompson.
There are several good spaces for meetings including the boardroom for up to 20 guests.
A small but light-filled gym is located on one of the upper floors and there is also a 20-metre swimming pool with views out onto the surrounding streets. The spa is a Como Shambhala Urban Escape.
This hotel is outstanding. Despite its central location, there is a feeling of serenity and luxury. Worth the expense.
- Best for… The huge rooms, luxury furnishings and large range of food and beverage options coupled with great service.
- Don’t miss… Taking a swim in the pool – it’s not rooftop but feels like it – and dining in the Wildflower restaurant.
- Price From US$410 per night in August; suites US$700.
- Contact Como The Treasury, 1 Cathedral Avenue, Perth; +61 8 6168 7888; comohotels.com/thetreasury