In a semi post-pandemic world, scratching even the tiniest travel itch serves serious relief. However, my latest hotel stay went beyond such relief… I’m talking euphoric non-stop eye-rolling action. Allow me to indulge you in paradise on Melbourne’s Downie Street, Hyatt Centric.
I’ll start with standard housekeeping: 277 rooms, 25 floors, indoor pool, a gym, and two signature dining outlets. Now that’s out of the way, we can get to the fun stuff. For the sake of the remainder of this article, I’m renaming the hotel Hyatt Cen-Chic, or simply Centric. Seriously, drop the “Hyatt” – this property has the same one-name charismatic charm as Madonna, Beyonce and Elvis combined.
Picture this, behind a graffitied wall (I know, very Melbourne right?) hides a sliding timber door that lures you through a moody corridor. A short ten paces later, you’re surrounded by brickwork to which even the most cunning brickie would pause and start a slow clap. Custom rugs are divinely draped on the walls and floor, and there is a dusty pink hue that deserves to be nominated for Pantone ‘Colour of the Year’ sweeping the spaciously chic, inviting lobby.
Look to your left and the lobby morphs into the hotel’s café, Allie Lane, serving locally sourced delights. Local is the theme of the Centric brand and it’s expressed in glorious fashion. From the uniforms to the fixtures, produce to vino, art to amenities – every single touchpoint mirrors the vibrancy of Melbourne city.
The rooms are a minimalistic sensory delight. Oversized bed, window lounge, sensor lighting, walk-in shower, and a bathroom ring light that will have you contemplating starting your own IG skincare channel. The luxe Mr. Smith bath products lining the vanity and shower are the icing on the perfectly groomed Centric cake.
Speaking of cake, add TOMA – Centric’s signature restaurant – to your itinerary located on level 25. Chef Jordan Monkhouse is at the helm serving Victorian sourced produce with Mediterranean flair. If a batch of his baklava starts roaming the dining room floor, start freeing up space in your tummy and your pockets – it’ll be worth the sticky dry-cleaning bill.
Beyond the Pinterest-perfect interiors, it’s the people who create Centric’s colourful personality. General Manager, Ilan Weill is a larger-than-life character who has created what most hotels aspire to achieve – a feeling. An overnight experience that makes you check out abundantly more energised than when you checked in thanks to a bunch of passionate, fun and vibrant people. This, my friends, is how you nail hospitality in 2021 and beyond.
FOUR AND A HALF STARS (OUT OF FIVE)
Highlights: Ambience, design, restaurant, Mr. Smith bath products, and the Centric people.
Lowlights: No Peloton in the gym
Address: 25 Downie St, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 3000
Rates: From $329