IHG chooses South Melbourne for seventh Australasian voco hotel

The Plus Architecture designed 20-level tower will replace a seven storey office at 10-16 Dorcas Street, South Melbourne.

InterContinental Hotels Group has committed to its seventh Australasian site for its near-new hotel brand, voco.

The 171-room complex at 10-16 Dorcas Street, South Melbourne, will occupy the bulk of a proposed 20-level tower also containing 36 apartments and 2293 square metres of commercial space.

Penned by Plus Architecture, the asset would replace a seven storey B-grade office which BEKL, formerly known as Amazon Property Group, acquired from Crescent Wealth off-market for $37 million in 2017.

Artist’s impression of a Pelligra Group hotel in Swan Street, Richmond, set to be occupied by IHG for its Holiday Inn brand.

That Australian-Islamic investment house vendor paid $30.75m for the asset two years earlier.

If approved, the voco inn will contain a restaurant and bar, four meeting spaces and a gym. It would be open for business in 2023.

IHG vice president, Development, Australia and Japan, Abhijay Sandilya said “it’s quite astounding to reflect on the fact that IHG launched the voco brand just 24 months ago, and we already have two open hotels and another five in the pipeline, three of them in Victoria”.

Elsewhere in the state a voco is being fit-out at 380 Lonsdale Street in the city and one trades at the Yarra Valley. A Queensland inn on the Gold Coast recently opened its doors, too.

One of the parent’s other marques, Holiday Inn, last year committed to a Swan Street, Richmond, hotel (artist’s impression, right) being developed by Pelligra Group on a site owned for years by The Reject Shop co-founder (story continues below).

The seven storey office which will make way for the voco hotel.

IHG also recently sold the leasehold of its Melbourne Airport Holiday Inn on a manage-back arrangement. In 2018 it committed to occupy part of a 16-floor complex being developed by 94 Feet at 301 Maroondah Higway, Ringwood.

BEKL managing director Katherine Liu said voco’s “refreshing take on the travel experience made them a standout choice in delivering an iconic development to Melbourne’s St Kilda Road precinct”.

“Melbourne is one of the world’s greatest cities with an enviable events calendar, strong tourism and an increasing appetite for outstanding accommodation,” the executive said.

“Even after a challenging period over the past few months, we know Melbourne will bounce back better than ever and we look forward to joining with voco in welcoming domestic and international travellers alike.

“BEKL is passionate about developing spaces that encourage guests to indulge in their zest for life while connecting with the local community – a value that is synonymous with the voco Hotels brand,” Ms Liu added.

Three kilometres south of the CBD, the proposed hotel is walking distance to Lakeside Stadium, Melbourne Sports & Aquatic Centre and the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit.

The Melbourne builder has two other projects underway nationally.

Artist’s impression of the voco hotel at 10-16 Dorcas Street, South Melbourne (above and bottom).

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of realestatesource.com.au.