While fashion designers and artists are famous in their respective industries, their hands extend far beyond clothing racks and galleries. They are dipping into hotels, decorating them with high fashion and striking art. Designer hotels are here to stay, and Australia is definitely on board. From an island resort to a city hub, here are three haute hotels you can check out or check into.
DVF Penthouse Suite, Hayman Island
Iconic designer Diane Von Furstenberg, who invented the wrap dress in 1972, also knows how to wrap guests in a bubble of luxury at this island resort in the Great Barrier Reef. (She also designed a suite at Five-Star Claridge’s in London.) Von Furstenberg’s penthouse suite flows with style and sophistication. Think organic linen sheets, cashmere lining, full butler service and a complimentary fully stocked mini-bar. Of course, accents of her brand are dotted throughout the nearly 1,700-square-foot, two-bedroom suite — be it the DVF-designed cocktail tray or plush bathrobes. Some other classic DVF touches include her personal photography, animal-print rugs, patterned benches and floral pillows.
Elsewhere in the room, sand-hued walls join forces with the stark-white and yellow interiors, while the bleached European oak timber flooring creates a soothing setting in this Australian abode. The uninterrupted views of the Coral Sea and Hayman Beach can be enjoyed from the Apaiser stone freestanding tub or the wrap-around balcony with white plantation shutters, leaving where you soak in the sun-kissed view of the surroundings entirely up to you.
Imperial Suite, Palazzo Versace
As the hotel’s name suggests, this luxe property in Queensland’s Gold Coast is an homage to all things excessive and extravagant thanks to famed Italian designer Gianni Versace. For the most fashionable accommodations, book the Imperial Suite and immerse yourself in all the 1,700-square-foot space has to offer.
Jewel tones of yellow and blue permeate the space from the moment you walk through the doors. The gold-hued furniture, Italian marble and Brazilian mosaic tiles complement the backdrop of the Gold Coast marina. While the décor is certainly something to admire, the perks that come with booking this palatial suite are even more impressive. You will have a butler, private shopper and even a helipad at your disposal. Style mavens will delight in the walk-in closet, and views of Broadwater (Gold Coast’s estuary) from the master bedroom’s king-sized bed will make getting up no easy feat.
It’s next to impossible to forget who designed the suite simply because you’ll spot the legendary fashion house’s logo stamped everywhere, from pillows and toilet accessories to doorknobs and dinnerware.
The Blackman Penthouses, The Blackman
Gone are the times of faceless chain hotels where a printed rug here and a spacious bathtub there would create a lasting impression. In Melbourne, Art Series properties like The Blackman have upped the ante for all boutique hotels in the city.
As one of Australia’s most respected and celebrated artists known for his “Alice in Wonderland” series, Charles Blackman does more than take up the name of the hotel. Whether you’re an art aficionado or just a casual admirer, the mammoth collection of 777 Blackman prints throughout the hotel will keep you enthralled. His work is the heart of this hotel and the soul of its two penthouses, The Garden Suite and The Reading Suite. In the former, you’ll find Shy Girl (1954). The eyes of the titular girl are covered with red paint. Concealing the eyes became a recurring theme in Blackman’s work, inspired by his wife, who gradually lost her sight. The latter suite houses pieces such as Two Schoolgirls (1952). Caught in a storm, two schoolgirls in oversized hats look to be troubled by more than just the weather. To learn more about the collection, the hotel also offers in-house art tours.
Photos Courtesy of Hayman Island, Palazzo Versace and The Blackman