Anyone needing a chic bolthole in Melbourne for that much needed stopover? If your head is nodding then you may want to consider The Olsen Hotel on Chapel Street, right in the heart of fashionable and very central South Yarra. The Olsen has rightly become, within just over 12 months of trading, a buzzing location that has housed anyone from actors shopping their wares to regular hipsters pit-stopping for the latest gallery opening or much needed retail therapy in one of the strip’s prestigious fashion boutiques. One may question whether a modest hotel group can successfully combine an authentic art aesthetic with mainstream attractability? Based on the extreme popularity of The Olsen, the answer to that question would be a resounding ‘yes’.
In terms of the design aspect of the hotel, The Olsen is the brainchild of Melbourne dynamo Will Deague in conjunction with esteemed Melbourne architectural firm Rothelowman. Next to its siblings, the also recently launched accommodations The Blackman and The Cullen, The Olsen was the first in a series of art hotels opening around Australia, each inspired by an iconic Australian artist.
Named after famed Australian painter, John Olsen, The Olsen ticks all the boxes in terms of intelligent design paired with excellent service and high-end comfort. Olsen’s artworks – all 492 on them – are positioned around the hotel’s expansive digs, both hung traditionally throughout as well as re-created and re-imagined cleverly in other areas of the hotel. From artist’s grand ‘The Yellow Sun And The Yarra’ painting that hits you as you enter the foyer, to the matt adhesive wall coverings (where work is blown up and stretched) adorning bathroom walls in many of the hotel’s 229 signature suites, Olsen’s blueprint is well encompassed throughout.
All 16 stories offer a gamut of indulgence, from the glass bottom swimming pool to the in-house day spa. On the culinary side of things, offerings include South American inspired fare at Steer Bar & Grill, or more casual cuisine at Bluebottle Restaurant. The hotel also offers a series of styled conferencing facilities, meeting rooms and event spaces, each featuring high-tech equipment while again being complimented by Olsen’s imprint.
The pinnacle experience would have to be booking The John Olsen Penthouse, offering those able to part with a price tag of $2,000 per night, the ultimate in niche comfort and luxury. The price point isn’t small pennies by any means, but it does promise one of the most stunning views across Melbourne’s CBD whilst basking in the open air jacuzzi on the expansive deck. With the double king suite also boasting full gourmet kitchen facilities, the penthouse is appropriately geared for entertaining and hosting cocktail parties. In fact it’s this suite that is not only in high demand for a luxury lay-over but has also been targeted as the hot spot for a number of high-end media dinners and exclusive events in recent months.
To top all of this off, The Olsen offers its own Private Art Tour with its own in-house curator, art channel, and a library of art books in every room. The most fun and bespoke yet practical brush stroke [pardon the reference] of brilliance also has to be the the smart cars and bicycles branded with the artist’s works, always at the ready for use by any of the hotel’s patrons.
The Olsen seemingly brings what the creative community are always on the look out for – a perfect pied a’ terre when exploring the many wonderful happenings in the always effervescent and exciting hub that is Melbourne.
The Olsen is situated 637-641 Chapel Street, South Yarra, Victoria.
For more information visit www.theolsen.com.au and for reservations phone 1800 278 468.