Meticulously renovated Victorian ‘State Buildings’ in Perth home to new Como The Treasury

by Jane Kitchen | 14 Dec 2015

Como Hotels & Resorts has recently opened Como The Treasury – its fifth city property – in Perth, Australia. The hotel occupies a group of late Victorian stone and brick buildings – known locally as the ‘State Buildings’ – that have played an important role in the city’s history for the past 140 years, serving variously as a post office, land titles office and treasury, and also once home to Perth’s original seat of government.

Kerry Hill Architects has overseen a meticulous AUD$110m (US$79m, €72m, £52m) restoration project that encompasses not only the entire Cathedral Square redevelopment on Cathedral Avenue, but also the interior and exterior of the new Como The Treasury.

Como Shambhala Urban Escape Perth – the spa at The Treasury – has four treatment rooms, including one double, as well as a 20m heated indoor pool, gym and yoga studio. The spa offers holistic treatments including massages, body scrubs and wraps and facials using its own branded range of aromatherapy, bodycare and haircare products, as well as Sodashi and Nvey Eco.

Focused on wellbeing for both hotel guests and Perth residents, Como Shambhala Urban Escape Perth is finished with rich tones of dark wood and travertine, with softly-lit bronze ceilings. The original steel shutters and bars on the windows are dramatic, and with a sophisticated lighting scheme, give the sense of a retreat.

The hotel occupies three historic buildings – now interconnected – with its 48 rooms spread over four floors. The architecture includes columns and bold, cantilevered balconies designed in flamboyant neo-Renaissance style.

Hill’s 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. More than 60,000 slate tiles were imported from a quarry in North Wales for the roofs.

However, where there was no heritage to follow, the architects have been “confidently modern,” introducing materials such as steel frames and glass.

Hill has also retained the interior’s grandeur, with the 19th-century feel dominated by the original postal hall. A mix of subtle colours, bespoke furniture and hand-knotted rugs create a contemporary energy, combining tradition and modernity.

“Heritage is the art of saving what is useful and beautiful, but also updating it for modern use,” said Terry Frip, an associate at Kerry Hill Architects.

The hotel’s bedrooms are each different, with spaces dictated by the building’s bones. Decorated in a cocooning palette of beiges, whites and grey-greens reminiscent of colours found in the West Australian landscape, the rooms feature limed oak furniture, pale travertine and bronze and leather trims.

The Cathedral Square precinct will also feature a new library, which contrasts with Perth Cathedral's late 19th-century architecture, as well as an enoteca, a craft beer bar, a barber shop, a chocolatier and a number of restaurants.

Como Hotels & Resorts has recently opened Como The Treasury – its fifth city property – in Perth, Australia. The hotel occupies a group of late Victorian stone and brick buildings – known locally as the ‘State Buildings’ – that have played an important role in the city’s history for the past 140 years, serving variously as a post office, land titles office and treasury, and also once home to
The hotel occupies a group of late Victorian stone and brick buildings – known locally as the ‘State Buildings’ – that have played an important role in the city’s history for the past 140 years / Como Hotels
More news
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7667     
News stories: 1 - 30 of 7667     
company profile
Company profile: Polin Group
Market leader in design, manufacturing and installation of waterslides and water leisure developments.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
The Tree Canopy Walk has platforms designed to ‘lure’ people into the woods
Alan Metcalfe
"When people are a bit scared, they gather together"

Featuring a vibrating glass platform and one of the US’s longest tree canopy walks, Whiting Forest has been designed to bring visitors closer to nature and to one another

Spa and wellness specialist Alberto Apostoli was responsible for the interiors
"Wellness embraces the entire holiday experience"

The design of the newly-opened Lefay Resort and Spa Dolomitti in Italy aims to celebrate and protect its spectacular surroundings

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
The Smog Free Project turns smog into jewellery
"I want to demonstrate that creativity is our true capital as humans "

Rather than feeling fearful and helpless about the future, we must design a way out of the environmental problems we have created, argues the innovative Dutch designer, artist and inventor Daan Roosegaarde

BIG associate Jeremy Siegel is leading the BIG U project in New York
"Funding woes and murky timelines are common problems. It can be easier to make a difference one small project at a time"

From parks designed to mitigate the effects of flooding to warming huts for one of the world’s coldest cities, these projects have been designed for increasingly extreme climates

Francis graduated as a landscape architect in Belgium. He returned to Lebanon in 1993
"I believe gardens are where the soul rests"

With a focus on desert landscapes and collaborations with Zaha Hadid and OMA, the principal of Francis Landscapes has a deep belief in the power of nature

Stephen Barrett (left) 
and John McElgunn (right) were both made partners at RSHP in 2016
"Leisure space – public space – is at the very root of democracy, and architecture is about democracy"

As RSHP completes its latest cultural project, we speak to two of its partners about why Richard Rogers isn’t leaving his succession to chance

The James-Simon-Galerie translates the historical theme of colonnades into modern form
Alexander Schwarz
"Our aim was to create a place celebrating public space and accessibility"

The opening of the James-Simon- Galerie on Berlin’s Museum Island completes two decades of work for David Chipperfield Architects. The lead designer talks us through the building

The Electric Lemon restaurant features glamorous interiors by Rockwell Group
"Further hotels have been confirmed for Los Angeles, Santa Clara, CA, Seattle, Chicago and Houston"

Rockwell Group and Joyce Wang on the inspirations behind the guest rooms, public spaces, spa and gym at Equinox Hotel Hudson Yards

cladkit product news
Móz Designs columns anchor the world’s largest indoor aquarium
The design of the columns was inspired by the sea
Magali Robathan
After a two-year renovation, Oakland-based metal experts Móz Designs have unveiled their inclusion in Georgia Aquarium’s new shark gallery. Located ...
Alberto Apostoli and Newform collaborate to launch the A.Zeta showerhead
The showerhead offers two modes; rainfall or waterfall
Megan Whitby
Italian architect Alberto Apostoli has renewed his partnership with Newform – an Italian wellness company – and designed A.Zeta. A.Zeta ...
Diamond balloon concept merges tourist attraction with advertising billboard
Magali Robathan
A group of Dutch engineers have presented a new attractions concept that combines a flying observation cabin with LED digital ...
cladkit product news
Cosm unveils Experience Centre with ‘one of a kind’ LED dome
The new Experience Centre houses a 20m LED dome
Magali Robathan
Cosm, a global technology company that builds end-to-end solutions for immersive experiences, has unveiled its Experience Centre which houses a ...
Fabio Alemanno Design uses elegant semi-precious stones to create memorable spa experiences
Alemanno believes the stones are well-placed in the spa environment thanks to their capacity to positively support physical and mental health
Megan Whitby
Fabio Alemanno Design has expanded its collection with semi-precious stones to enhance spas, wellness facilities, hotels and private residences. The ...
Christie laser projectors power new Five Senses Bubble dome theatre
The dome aims to integrate technology with arts and culture
Magali Robathan
Christie® GS Series 1DLP® laser projectors are delivering vivid and lifelike visuals in a new dome theatre located in Xiong’an ...
cladkit product news
Eden project uses drones to spell out climate change warning
Magali Robathan
Almost 300 drones were used to signal an environmental message above the Eden Project’s biomes, during the UN Climate Change ...
LianTronics’ glasses-free 3D Star Trek LED screen attracts attention
Magali Robathan
LianTronics’ giant curved LED wall with stunning glasses-less 3D spaceship display effect has attracted many on the street of Chengdu, ...
Jaffe Holden helps bring Academy Museum of Motion Pictures alive
Jaffe Holden provided architectural acoustics for the Academy Museum
Magali Robathan
Acoustical consulting firm Jaffe Holden provided architectural acoustics and audio/video design services for the recently opened Academy Museum of Motion ...
Sign up with CLAD for regular news updates