A Home Away From Home – United Places Botanic Gardens by Carr Design Group
South Yarra, VIC, Australia
Step inside the discreet entrance of United Places Botanic Gardens and one discovers a level of unparalleled architecturally-designed sophistication that offers guests an immersive hotel experience in a city where style is everything.
Following four years of careful planning, United Places Botanic Gardens has opened its doors to introduce Australia to a redefined standard of luxurious travel accommodation in the city of Melbourne. Combining a stylish international vision with distinctively local undertones, the hotel is situated in the heart of the prestigious Melbourne suburb of South Yarra, directly opposite the leafy parklands of Melbourne’s Royal Botanic Gardens and iconic running track The Tan.
United Places Botanic Gardens was derived from the simple idea of combining the excitement of a hotel stay with the simple pleasures of home. Keeping true to this vision, guests in any of the 12 suites will experience spacious rooms with premium amenities and a personalised concierge service to ensure the stay is as comfortable as possible.
United Places Botanic Gardens has opened its doors to introduce Australia to a redefined standard of luxurious travel accommodation in the city of Melbourne.
United Places Botanic Gardens began life as a deeply personal project for property developer, and first-time hotelier, Darren Rubenstein. “United Places is a creative platform, built upon my very own experiences in design, travel and hospitality,” explains Darren. “I wanted to create a ‘home’ for the likeminded traveler seeking experiences that celebrate locality.” Today Darren’s vision for the combination of homely comforts with luxurious hotel living is contained within the understated façade of the 12-suite building brought to life by none other than celebrated Australian design firm Carr Design Group.
Whilst Carr was commissioned to develop the hotel’s architecture and interiors, Darren also enlisted the services of a number of other esteemed Australian creatives when developing his overall vision for the project. Melbourne creative studio Projects of Imagination was brought in to create the brand, and award-winning chef Scott Pickett, of the ground floor restaurant Matilda, helped to develop the in-room dining and breakfast menu. The services of these esteemed Melbourne design studios and restaurateurs makes the United Places Botanic Gardens a truly Victorian project at its very core.
United Places Botanic Gardens was derived from the simple idea of combining the excitement of a hotel stay with the simple pleasures of home.
To the actual design of the hotel, United Places Botanic Gardens has a modernist yet refined textured concrete façade that overlooks 36 hectares of bucolic views over Melbourne’s Royal Botanical Gardens. Guests enter via a discreet front entrance that leads to a corridor with a minimalist palette of dark metal screening and dramatically lit board-marked concrete. The stylish arrival point is heightened by a specially commissioned kinetic sculpture, hanging from an asymmetrical conical void, by Melbourne artist Laura Woodward.
Carr Design Group, at the bequest of Darren, wanted to completely restructure the traditional hotel lobby and check-in experience through design and service. “The United Places team will be as present or discreet as the guest would like”, explains General Manager Kurt Bunyard. “We ensure that your every need is catered to – from valet laundry service to private picnic set-up and everything in-between. It’s all about a personal experience and personal space.”
“United Places is a creative platform, built upon my very own experiences in design, travel and hospitality.”
The hotel spans three floors containing nine one-bedroom suites and three two-bedroom suites that have large sunken bathtubs overlooking the city’s skyline. “Each suite has its own personality and dichotomy of spaces that create theatre and a heightened sensibility,” proudly explains Director of Architecture at Carr, Chris McCue. “It’s all very Melbourne.”
Continuing this theme of ‘uniquely Melbourne’ design, the ‘extroverts’ (Garden Suites and Penthouses) overlook the moving trees of the Royal Botanic Gardens and connect with the public sphere of passers-by. The ‘introverts’ (Urban Suites and Penthouses) are private, south-facing retreats with views of the neighborhood’s historic Victorian mansions and red brick industrial apartments – insights into a bygone era of urban Melbournian architecture.
United Places Botanic Gardens has a modernist yet refined textured concrete façade that overlooks 36 hectares of bucolic views over Melbourne’s Royal Botanical Gardens.
The interior colour scheme developed by Carr reflects the individual personalities of the urban and garden suites, with green and pink accents respectively. Each room has a richly textured material palette, with original designer furniture pieces including the renowned velvet Redondo sofa by Patricia Urquiola and distinctively Australian Scape Chair by Grant Featherston. Each room exudes tactile beauty, with velvet drapes, organic cotton sheets, richly coloured hardwood floors and bathroom pods clad in charcoal-tinted one-way mirror. Whilst this all sounds extremely luxurious, the hotel ensures that these finishes are paired with the homely comforts of a well-equipped kitchen and recessed terrace with floor-to-ceiling sliding doors.
At its core, United Places Botanic Gardens exemplifies excellence in design, service, experience and hospitality. It represents a hotel experience unlike any other in the Australian market. Designed for introverts and extroverts alike, United Places Botanic Gardens offers guests unparalleled design luxury without disconnecting them from the simple pleasures of home.